Scott Putesky, former guitarist of Marilyn Manson and the Spooky Kids, said something about Manson in an interview once that really stood out to me: basically, that he considered it odd that Manson would embrace the villany attributed to him only to get so butthurt about how people blamed him for Columbine. Scott didn’t understand why, after making a career of saying to the world “I’ll be your scapegoat”, Marilyn Manson wouldn’t embrace the notorioty that accompanied the blame for that school shooting.
Personally, I’m a bit more forgiving of Manson’s stance and his consequent action, and I thought Holy Wood was a more than adequate response to being scapegoated. But in how this applies to me, and maybe to Sith in a more general sense… why did we always argue that we weren’t evil? To feel accepted, to make the other Force realists more comfortable with us? To feel more comfortable with ourselves?
Think about what I – and (in my opinion) others – believe in, encourage, and actively promote: empowerment, mindful exercise and expansion of one’s influence, victory, etc. Causing other people pain, taking something that could’ve been theirs, usually isn’t a goal, or even encouraged, but I won’t say not to. Shit happens anyways and, to be perfectly honest, I’d rather it happened for something more meaningful than a vague, impersonal greater good or altruistic idiocy.
*shrugs* I’d thought I’d grown for having evolved passed the idea that I was evil, way, way back. But here I am starting to understand that I’ve been evil for a very long time. A potentially corrupting influence to anyone that dares to listen to or buy into anything I say or do – which is something I’m privately a bit proud of, by the way.
The defining point of many an “evil” character is that he (or she) doesn’t even believe in evil… or good. Only influence, ambition, victory, freedom. In being beyond good and evil, I naturally become a being that, through the eyes of someone that believes in good and evil, is Evil. Being beyond good and evil means that to someone still confined by moralities teaching of Good & Evil, I am indeed evil. Now if you’re going to say, “well, you haven’t killed anybody, you don’t beat women, you don’t deal in slaves… even if you are evil, surely you can’t be the worst,” then that’s true, in that I do none of those things. I mean hell, as a general rule of thumb I don’t even steal or anything.
All the same, part of the reason the Devil is so scary – at least as he’s often been portrayed in fiction – is that he’s convinced scores of people he doesn’t even exist. And the ones that do… he can charm, bedazzle, and be absolutely honest, all the while corrupting them. Subversive, subtle, honest, likeable, and – by the dogmatic standards of, oh, let’s say a Christian extremist (for example) – Evil.
Really, what it seems to come down to is that I’m evil whether I acknowledge the validity of the paradigm that uses such a word or not, and since it applies to me in some sense… I might as well embrace it with a smirk on my face and a sinister urge to spread the darkness around a little. There was a time when people would bicker back and forth about whether Sith (and others with darker leanings) were evil. And there was a time I loathed such an accusation. But for me it seems that time has passed. I don’t believe in evil, but to those that do… even if they treat me simply as a fellow pathwalker, even if they tell themselves I’m not evil, chances are I’m the worst breed of it.