Why are there sociopaths?

Why did God create people incapable of feeling genuine love and compassion? I’m not talking about people who commit sin but people incapable of feeling. Even if they do the right thing, it isn’t necessarily for the right reasons, but for their own self-preservation. Is there any hope for them?

There is as much hope for them as there is for anybody. Sociopaths may do some horrifying things, but God is aware of their condition and He can penetrate all things and is perfectly aware whether or not the person is one of His sheep.

The deaf, the blind, the ill, and the mad are all created by God’s permission. The ‘why’ of the question relates to sin in general: creation itself is good, but it is under enemy occupation, and we see in the world - this battlefield - both foretastes of Heaven and foretastes of Hell. Depending on where our allegiances lay, one of these realms will become our home. We may bring glory to God by showing charity in all judgements, even when faced with those souls that are afflicted with tremendous evils.

Sorry if you already answered my question but I’m referring specifically to the people afflicted with sociopathy themselves. They might understand intellectually what is right or wrong but they don’t achieve the sense of spiritual fulfillment that normal people would because it doesn’t come from the heart.

I’m not talking regular sinners being delivered from evil. Regular sinners who maybe confused but still have some good inside of them. I’m talking about people for whom every action, moral or immoral, is done out of the selfish need for survival and not out of love. Can God grant them the ability to feel.

God in His love, mercy and perfect understanding can and does reach out to the most unlikely and seemingly hopeless.

Was Saul a bit of a sociopath as he set to with great enthusiasm to persecute and kill the early Christ followers?

Then again we have, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do” [or indeed feel].

What you’re talking about is a personality disorder and unfortunately there is no cure. They can receive treatment for some of the troublesome symptoms like anxiety, depression, irritability, etc., but the prognosis is very poor. I do believe God can cure anything and everything but I really don’t understand why he would let some of these evil predators dwell among us. There are varying degrees of sociopaths though, they’re not all killers. Some have pretty normal lives and just come off as a little callus, those are the ones who function well. I read a book a few years ago called, “The Sociopath Next Door.” I can’t remember who wrote it but it may be able to answer some of your questions.

Physical and mental illnesses are a result of Original Sin. God does not “create” people with such disorders, such disorders are a result of the fallen state of creation just like every other affliction.

Do you think when you do things because of your feelings then you’re doing them “for the right reasons”? To the contrary, we love selfishly in the ordinary way of things. We are good when it feels good and do bad when doing good feels bad/uncomfortable. Many of us seriously struggle to pray/attend mass when there are no nice feelings to accompany it. You will find us constantly complaining about the music at mass, homily etc. They are there to feel good but don’t/can’t recognize this motivation in themselves. Some will even abandon the church eventually even knowing her truth, based on these feeling “goodies” especially if they can find them elsewhere, a better liturgy, church, parish etc. This is the mercenary love that st Catherine of Siena spoke about and progress in holiness requires that we must come to outgrow this stage. A good portion of what is described in spiritual books is the process of being weaned from this feelings-based love/morality, to a more real/pure/spirit-based love of God and morality, because we want to, because God is worth it, not because it feels so good/easy. This love of the spirit is the true love we aim for, the love of feelings is a step very far away from the real thing. While the sociopath may be incapable of the feelings, he us very much capable of true love through grace, as are you.

Sociopaths don’t have deep feelings and that’s a handicap in a spiritual beginner but not so in a more mature believer that’s been seasoned in the journey of inner prayer for many years and grown. This natural handicap is not impossible for God to work with. The sociopath’s “evil” seems more evil than yours because it’s naked and not hidden behind feelings. What you see in the sociopath is what human beings are like at their core with their sinful inclinations. The feelings are like natural goodies or carrots that keep you from going overboard, not out of your personal goodness but out of a subtle self-service doing what feels good/avoiding what results in feeling bad (like the pangs of guilt/conscience) so do not be confused and imagine that they make you a good person or better than a sociopath. For one, you did not merit them. Like thinking you’re personally good because of your race or intelligence or such quality that you simply found in yourself.

Now that was nice, I suffer from panic-disorder and depression. So I am a result of the Original Sin. You know 1ke, comments like that can be very offensive. But I respect you because you give great answers and seem to be a pretty good Catholic, so you are forgiven, but that was not nice, not at all. I am not a result of the Original Sin, I am created by God and the fact why I am sick is something only God know, maybe because I am born out of wedlock and my mother who I hardly know never have, and most likely never will, tell who my father is. Do you really think God is punishing me for that? (But only God knows.)

We are all a product of Original Sin. You, me, every living person. Yes, our mental and physical disorders and illnesses are a result of the fallen state of this world, resulting from the choices of our first parents. There would be no illness or disease without Original Sin.

Defects arise out of the fallen state of creation. This is simply a fact. God does not “create” or “give” us a mental or physical illness. They are the natural consequence of living in a fallen world.

I have no idea why this would be offensive. It is simply a fact-- every single one of us is born in original sin, in a fallen world, and the things we suffer are a result of that not of God inflicting it on us.

Perhaps the language difference has given words meaning that were not intended? Because frankly I have no idea why you would be upset by this-- it is Catholic Church teaching, not my opinion.

We are all a result of Original Sin. We are all born in a fallen world with a fallen nature.

As I said, God does not “create” or “give” us illnesses or infirmities.

I think we are all born with weaknesses. For sociopaths there may be an inherent need for more stable environment than others or a greater need to be guided on how to be empathetic and caring. Since this weakness exists such individuals are more inclined to become self-centered and even ruthless if they are subject to abuse or harsh living conditions.

I guess I am trying to say I am not sure that God creates sociopaths. I think the condition is strongly influenced by environment and genetics. I also think that there are just people who don’t care, period. What we are challenged to do is maintain our own empathetic natures and to what ever degree we can provide some sort of assistance to others that can help prevent the sociopath from developing.

We are not called to “love” only the pleasant and well mannered in our lives , but also those who are not so pleasant, empathetic or honest…etc. This does not mean we overlook their sins or crimes…They need to be held responsible, but in a way that is transforming to them.

I hope for them. The people who know them probably hope for them. Yeah, I think there is a lot of hope around them and for them. Doctors are investigating. Psychiatrists are observing and making notes. Hope has its fruit. God knows the architecture of every mind, heart, and soul. I believe that he can lead anyone who is willing to a fullness of heart.

You are a beloved child of God. You are also not your illnesses. Just as God did not intend for man to be blind, have cancer, die violent deaths, he did not intend him to suffer from anxiety and depression. These are the results of fallenness. They are willed by God because he permits them and draws greater good out of them for you and others that you don’t know about, but they do not constitute his ultimate plan for you. Surely you don’t believe you will be depressed or suffer panic attacks when your body is glorified or when you get to heaven, do you? These say nothing of your worth as an individual human being. You are a beloved child of God and at the same time you suffer from the effects of the fall because you possess a fallen nature and live in a fallen world just like everyone. No reason to be upset.

Exactly, God didn’t create these disorders. They are consequence of our fall and sin.

Even if God does does create the people with such disorders, he created the conditions that allow such disorders to exist.

If a workman poorly constructs a building and someone is injured as a result, is the workman not responsible despite not directly injuring the other person?

Why does God get off the hook when the workman does not?

That is not right, God didn’t create the “conditions”. Humans created the conditions by their own actions. God gave them an order don’t do x because if you do you will die. Human choose to desobey knowing that their action will bring death and when humans choose willingly to desobey and sin they allow sin into our nature and death and disease entered the world. God created humans free from disease or death and they choose death. It is simply actions and consequences. You can’t blame God for our actions.

Imagine if the workman creates the building perfectly and goes and tell the resident of the building and specifically says do not do x because x will damage the building seriously and the resident knowing the consequences goes and intentionally does X. Isn’t in that case the resident’s responsibility? Why are you blaming the workman when hr specifically gave you instructions of how to adequately handle things and it was your choice not to follow instructions?

We have free will, the greatest gift ever given to created beings.

Sin and the fallen state of creation is a consequence of man’s freely chosen actions, not God’s perfect will.

It’s part of the Fall.
Nobody would be disfigured or sick or mentally incompetent if the Fall never happened.

God is not responsible for
sociopathical (word?) con-
ditions.

I interpret your question as asking why God would allow people incapable of love to exist, when our faith teaches that anything we do without love is without merit. It would seem that sociopaths cannot be saved, because they cannot participate in the obtaining of their salvation. Is that why you ask the question?

I don’t fully understand this either, while I don’t equate sociopaths with the aborted, I put them together in the category of souls that don’t fit the catholic normal means of salvation. The best answer to the question of what happens to the souls of those aborted or miscarried prior to birth and baptism, is that God is not bound the same rules (i.e. Church teachings) we are, but can act outside of them. I have no idea what the culpability of sociopaths are. I dated someone who was at least a full-blown narcissist, if not a sociopath, and he really seemed to live in his own world and not in reality. For all of his cunning, he legitimately did not seem to be able to see truth when it was pointed out to him.

The sociopath did nothing to warrant his condition. He was born with it. Why is he not granted free will.

A good workman builds to the best of his abilities. He takes into account time, budget, materials and technologies that are available. These resources are limited so the building is also limited. It would not be feasable to create a totally fireproof or waterproof structure so there are rules that people must follow to limit these risks.

If a building caught fire because someone didn’t follow the rules then the builder is not at fault. However if someone were to be injured because the wiring was not installed correctly then the fault falls to the builder. Even if there was a rule stating not to touch a certain switch because it was poorly installed and might catch fire, the builder is still at fault because it was in his power to install it correctly.

God, on the other hand, is all powerful. There is no resource beyond his means so he can construct a world any way he wishes. He set it up specifically so that people would suffer because of others actions. Could he not have set things up differently? If so, he is ultimately responsible.

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