ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Is Evil Born Or Made?

Updated on July 13, 2017

Is evil born or made? The way you answer this question may depend on your general outlook on life, are you a glass half full or a glass have empty kind of person? Do you believe humans are inherently good, or inherently bad?

This long debated question has confused many people for decades, even those who have a psychological or scientific background. Over the years, experts have collectively developed multiple theories in attempts to answer this highly controversial question, but unfortunately we still don't have a definitive answer as to why some humans are capable of committing the most heinous of crimes.


What Makes Someone ''Evil''

Some people will interpret ''evil'' differently than others as our ideas of what can be defined as moral or immoral may conflict. But there is a chemistry behind morality which allows us to somewhat understand why the majority of people will behave morally (at least most of the time) and some people won't. When we are nurtured we release the hormone oxytocin which allows us to feel empathy and in turn behave morally.

Those categorised as evil often portray the same negative behaviours, such as the inability to socialise in a way we would deem normal. Being socially impaired is usually a tell tale sign of an abusive or neglectful childhood, but not always.Though most children who are raised in these detrimental environments will go on to lead stable adult lives, some will not. The cause of this is believed to be due to oxytocin as without being nurtured the oxytocin levels produced by these individuals is limited which can cause them to lack empathy.

A lack of empathy is a common trait associated with psychopathy which increases the likelihood of the individual going on to commit deleterious acts.

The Killer Gene

Studies in Sweden led by Professor Jari Tiihonen suggest that killers are born. The tests he performed were conducted on 895 Finnish inmates and the results he concluded show that the majority of these offenders all share the same gene we know as MAOA and CDH13 giving them a higher potential than those without the gene of committing violent offences.


Charles Manson

Taking a look at the early life of Charles Manson it is clear to see where things went terribly wrong. As a child born into a dysfunctional and abusive family it is fair to conclude that Manson was very much molded by his home environment, thus making it unsurprising that he became responsible for the loss of seven lives.


Jeffrey Dahmer

Contrastingly, Jeffrey Dahmer is one of the most infamous serial killers talked about to this day and has like many others, inspired a multitude of books as a result of how despicable his crimes were. Yet, we know from looking at his early childhood and home life that he grew up in a healthy household where he was surrounded by a supportive family network.

Do We All Have The Potential To Commit Evil Acts?

So does this mean that we all have the potential to commit such terrible acts? Yes, and no. Some people believe the suggestion that genetic makeup is what causes a person to become evil, is alleviating the blame of those who commit these abominable acts and therefore sympathising with criminals because ''It's not their fault.''

Regardless of your genetic makeup, the choices we make in life can be influenced greatly by our experiences, our surroundings and our relationships but having autonomy ultimately means we are completely free to make our own decisions.

Nurture AND Nature

With there being just as much evidence to support both opposing views, there is always the chance that we will never be able to make a definitive conclusion, but perhaps the answer doesn't lie with one more than the other. It is highly likely that both are just as equally valid responses and reasoning's when it comes to questioning the motives of those who perpetrate such malevolent acts.

Do You Believe Evil Is Born or Made?

See results

As always feel free to leave your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below or share any of your experiences related to the subject. Remember to take part in the polls to see how many others agree with your views.

Do you think scientists and psychologists should be working harder to find out?

See results

This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)