Is man born good, bad, pure at heart, with a dark side, or inherently neurotic?
Well let’s cut to the chase, man is born sinful, depraved, and selfish. It gets worse with neurosis.
People with neuroticism tend to have more depressed moods, guilt feelings, envy, anger, and anxiety. Hence, neurosis can trigger a person’s “dark side.”
Most psychologists believe that childhood upbringing contributes greatly to adult traits—good or bad. But how do you explain kids who grew up in a loving family, but still came out rotten?
Atheist Sigmund Freud defines neurosis as a coping strategy caused by unsuccessfully repressed emotions from past experiences. These emotions overwhelm or interfere with current experiences, causing the inability to maintain a “good mood” at all times.
Jung’s pairs of opposing forces
For Carl Jung, the mind has pairs of opposing forces. For example, each person has a persona, a kind of mask we use outside our comfort zone, and the shadow, our deep inner self, including a “dark side.”
Jung also proposed we have animus and anima (male and female; good or bad personality). We balance these forces through our conscious selves. Thus, the big question is where does the “dark side” come from?
→ Psychological safety in small groups.
we have animus and anima
What the Bible says
The Bible demonstrates evil exists in man’s nature. The reason there is hell. Man has inherent selfish needs, regardless of upbringing or environment.
Our depraved minds
Every person born into the world is enslaved to sin as a consequence of man’s fall. We are completely unable to follow God, refrain from evil, apart from God’s grace and intervention, and a repentant mind.
We are completely unable to follow God
We were born sinful but Christ alone is able to make us brand new, and without sin in the eyes of God
Apologist R.C. Sproul reiterates the Bible teaches “total depravity.” In short, Sproul believes weGod re born sinful.
“Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.“
“… put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.“
2 Corinthians 5:17
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.“
“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.“
“For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not.”
“We are dead in trespasses and sins, sons of disobedience, and by nature children of wrath“