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An eye for an eye?

  1. Sep 2, 2003 #1
    out of curiosity, what are everyones views on revenge? justified? wrong? [?]

    (i ask this because i have begun reading Shakespeare's tragedies (only Titus Andronicus so far) and in this era it seems to be a commonplace idea)
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 2, 2003 #2
    Re: revenge

    Hmmm.... I have mixed feelings about revenge. On one side, I think that revenge is part of the God given fight-or-flight response, which allows us to survive. And, if we don't revenge ourselves we run the risk of becoming emotionally and/or physically hurt. However, some extents of revenge such as murder or other serious actions should not be justified, as almost all conflicts can be resolved without harm.

    P.S. I believe that Hamlet is one of the better plays which deals with revenge.
  4. Sep 2, 2003 #3
    I agree to a large extent as well. I don't really have to big a problem unless it gets to hurtful. Killing is always wrong, for example.
  5. Sep 3, 2003 #4
    Well, which is it? 'Eye for an eye', or 'turn the other cheek'?
  6. Sep 3, 2003 #5
    "Turn the other eye" "An eye for a cheek"

    Stop forcing me to take one rule and apply it to all situations. That's very "in the box" of you, even though I HATE that saying. I'm saying that different situations can warrent different levels of response.
  7. Sep 3, 2003 #6
    Ok, ok...no more cliches...

    The problem is, as I see it, is that revenge doesn't correct the underlying problem. Unless we plan on killing everyone who commits any crime, our best course of action is probably to fix the underlying issues that caused the crime to be commited in the first place.
  8. Sep 3, 2003 #7
    Yes, I agree with you. I think the problem lies with education. We need more education.
  9. Sep 3, 2003 #8


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    I don't even think justification comes into retributive action. Rather, it is simply a raw emotional response - they hurt you, so you make them pay. Hardwired into the human mind as a basic justice drive? Maybe.

    But since we have a society that is drastically changed from the early years, the revenge way of though has grown somewhat incongruous. Nowadays, an act of vengence by an individual damages social order on the whole far more than allowing a case of injustice to go "unpunished".
    Maybe we can even use the bible as a historical document in this - in the old testament, with small groups co-habiting, the one defining cornerstone of the society was mutual trust, and so revenge and punishment was pivotal in maintaining this. In the later New Testament, living in much more urbanised roman times, society began to rely more on the preservation of general values than singular "justice", and so a personal attitude of turn the other cheek became more useful.
  10. Sep 3, 2003 #9
    An eye for an eye and turn the other cheek are both needed. It depends on the situation. Both can lead to dire conconsequences.
  11. Sep 3, 2003 #10
    ...human nature? hmm

    an eye for an eye reminds me of communism, good in theory, bad in practice. a blind guy pokes out your eye, so you poke out his... yeah doesn't seem balanced really. the punishment ought to fit the crime. course, i don't believe in the death penalty, or even violence, or really any negative action... when it came to punishment when i was a babysitter i always made kids write essays titled "what i did wrong" or if they fought "why i wasn't right" they hated that a lot worse than anything else i couldda done.

    anyways an eye for an eye is supposed to balance out the crime i guess... it doesn't, usually things just get worse cause now you got two blind guys who hate eachother and want to kill eachother's families.
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