Difference Between Good and Evil

Just like how the coin has two sides, philosophies also tell that abstracts concepts are also mostly dual, that is, both good and evil coexist. This concept, however, seems logical and true. If there is no evil, we would not be able to identify the good, appreciate the good, and differentiate it from the others. A very good example of good and evil that differs with perceptions and people is that fighting a war.

Good vs Evil

The main difference between good and evil is that one brings about pleasure while the other causes misery and disappointment. The concept of dualism goes hand in hand in all aspects of life. Without the dark, there is no light. We would not have probably recognized a difference if it was always dark or always light.

Good vs Evil

Good though is an abstract concept and it is universally accepted and agreed to be good, might not remain the same for others. One might turn out to be good for the other, whereas, from other persons’ shoes, it is evil. For example, winning a contest can be good for one, whereas the one who pathetically loses considers it evil.

Evil is feared by many. It is said to bring misery, pain, sorrows, disappointment, and fear. People tend to stay away from evil and put in all their faith and hope to prevent anything from evil from happening. Different religions, communities, and traditions also have differences of opinions about good or evil.

Comparison Table Between Good and Evil

Parameters of Comparison
DefinitionGood is something that is accepted happily, celebrated, and appreciated by the majority of people.   Evil is feared, hated, disagreed, and feared by the majority of people.
EmotionGoodness gives a person happiness and pleasure.Evil gives a person misery and sorrow.
ResultsGood is something that results in love and praise.Evil is treated with hate and curses.
Process of AchievementGood is achieved with pure and genuine intentions.Evil is achieved through cruel and bad intentions.
ExampleWinning a war is good.Losing a war is evil.

What is Good?

According to philosophers and society, good is something that brings happiness, peace of mind, joy, success, appreciation, prosperity, success, and luck. However, to earn the good, you must work hard to endure pain and failures to make all your way to the good. According to mankind, goodness brings popularity, love and it is something the majority of the people yearn for and work every day to achieve their likes.

Laws also define and differentiate between good. The main difference is that good brings happiness and joy, enjoy only for the individual but also for the people surrounding the individual. Whereas evil brings personal and selfish happiness to an individual who might have hurt a lot of peoples, and thus it is evil. The success achieved by spreading joy and happiness is the true significance of good.

The results, actions, and deeds also play a significant role in saying if it is good. For example, if an athlete honestly wins the race with arduous training, practice and efforts, it is good, whereas if an athlete tries to deceive others by taking in drugs or injections to increase his speed, then that is evil; however, the individual athlete may be benefitted from it.

What is Evil?

An interesting fact is that there are two concepts of evil, broad and narrow. The broad concept of evil emphasizes more on bad state affairs and an action that showcases disrespect, dishonesty, and a flaw in the character, behaviors, and also violating laws and rules. The broad category of evil is further branched into two types natural and moral evils.

A good example of natural evil is the natural calamities and the thongs that occur naturally. Moral evil is the one that has differences in opinions. For some, it might be evil, whereas, for others, it may turn out to be good. A health disorder, stomach ache, cyclone, all these things might affect anyone in the world will consider it to be evil. An interesting phenomenon is that evil is synonymous with the word vile.

They are anagrams, and both these words convey the same meaning. It is a moral and an abstract concept. Evil is used in contemporary, regional, traditional, and religion-based communities too. We cannot get to evil without going through and passing the doors of evil.

But you never have to trace the paths of good to reach evil. It is evil in good, but there is not a single trace of good in evil. However, the word bad was not just enough to express some devastating events and thus evolved the concept of evil.

 Main Differences Between Good and Evil

  1. Good is welcomed with appreciation and smiles, whereas evil is cursed, denied, and feared.
  2. Good gives happiness, but evil brings sorrow.
  3. Good goes hand in hand with love, but evil, with hate.
  4. Good is praised, but evil is cursed.
  5. Good is achieved through pure intentions and direct, honest methods, whereas evil is a result of cruel and bad intentions that often follow the path of dishonesty.


The country that wins the war is hailed as a hero, and the country celebrates it as good, whereas the country that lost ends up in misery and sorrow over the evil that just happened to them.

Thus there are a few cases in which good and evil cannot be given a universal definition. But apart from this, there are several events that are considered to be distinctly good and distinctly evil.

For instance, the birth of a child is considered good in most places, whereas death is evil. Even here, some cruel people consider the birth of the female child to be evil but actually, it is not. Similarly, the death of an evil person is considered good, but the death of a good person is considered evil.


  1. https://www.jstor.org/stable/3326442
  2. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1002/9780470751374#page=166
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