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21.1.14

The origin of Evil.

The origin of Evil.

That does not seem like a hard problem. To the Ari it comes from the light that came from the eyes of Adam Kadmon שם ב''ן דאדם קדמון and when that light reached the region that would later become  the world of Emanation (אצילות) the events called the breaking of the vessels occurred (שבירת הכלים).

This subject is dealt with at length in the Ari and I don't want to rehash it here. [In my opinion it is the best rational account of the existence of evil that I  have seen. You can try Hegel if you want, but I think the Ari wins the debate here.  As far as I can see his account is even better than that of Schopenhauer.]
 Israel Salanter:  the evil inclination{the "Yetzer Hara haRa"}  has two components: (1) the physical desire part and (b) a spiritual part [see the famous"Letter of Musar" written by Israel Salanter about this subject ]

He considers the evil inclination to be a continuum from the low physical desires up until the Satan himself. But the former levels of the evil inclination are not  significant causes of evil. Now the main force of evil in people is  delusion.

Divide the problem of evil into two major subdivision. -Kelipot and demons.
Kelipot in this context means delusions including delusions of demons or of grandeur etc. Demons he considers real.
Now in this context it is hard to say what he does with world view issues.

 even good meaning people can have all their good channeled into evil because of evil world views.

There is a deeper kind of evil to the original condensation of the presence of God from the space where later would become the worlds. From there is drawn an evil in which it is impossible to find God because people don't even know that God is hidden

So the best approach to evil that I have seen is that of Isaac Luria. It is based on motifs from the pre-Socratics and the Zohar and builds into a rigorous logical system in the Eitz Chaim and Mavo Shearim.
 For those with limited time the thing to do would be to get the Eitz Chaim of the Ari. and read from the beginning until about towards the beginning of Emanation. That is to do Adam Kadmon, Akudim, Nekudim, Shevirat HaKelim. If possible I recommend doing the Reshash Shalom Sharabi's Nahar Shalom with this. Then the Igeret Hamusar of Israel Salanter. In any case  the whole question of evil gets to be enormously complicated. In a practical sense it seems to have sources outside of a person like his group, religious leaders, bad friends, and internal sources. In any case, it always comes down to either the חלל הפנוי or שבירת הכלים the empty space or the breaking of the vessels.