The Evil of Hope

by Fiona Lotherington, Registered Nurse and Complementary Health Practitioner, Northern NSW. 

You may think that the word evil is extreme when describing the effect of hope. Yet I define evil as anything that holds back our growth and development and anything which perpetuates the separation from the truth of who we are or which delays the healing needed to return to our essence. Defined in this way, evil and hope are perfect bedfellows.

I was recently listening to a friend talk about his experience with his partner who had died many years ago from breast cancer. As he shared the details of the events around her illness and eventual death, the word ‘hope’ came up several times. Each time I heard this word, I experienced a growing sense of dis-ease, as I became aware of what a detrimental role hope had played in her illness and death.

For a moment this surprised me, as hope is normally considered to be a virtue. Like a warm coat in winter, it is used to comfort ourselves or other people when we are ‘down on our luck’. It is common to hear people say, “I hope you get better soon” or “don’t give up hope” and consider this a kindness. We give generously to charities dedicated to researching medical conditions, in the hope that a cure will be discovered.

When I looked at the definition of hope, it spoke of having an expectation or desire for something to happen or wishing for a positive outcome. Reading these words confirmed for me the evil of hope and how it could wreak such havoc in our lives.

In the case of my friend and his partner, the hope they clung to prevented them from accepting the diagnosis or the reality of the rapidly growing breast cancer.  The searching and hoping kept them focused in the future, believing they would eventually find a cure. But in reality, this chase was a distraction from dealing with the severity and urgency of the situation. Like a magician’s trick, hope distracted them, drawing their attention away from what was really taking place before their eyes.

Hope allows us to stay stuck in a loop, repeating patterns and cementing beliefs that do not heal the root cause of our illness. In hoping that ‘something’ will change, we avoid taking responsibility for these patterns we are stuck in. Instead we place our hopes outside of us and wait for the elusive cure, the great healer or the latest treatment. This outward focus means that we never look inside to see what this illness means for us or the part we have played in it. We miss the opportunity to heal the root cause that this illness is presenting.

In the end, hope leaves us surprised and completely unprepared when the reality of dying inevitably hits home.  All the denial, all the hope is revealed for what it is; illusion and delay. Suddenly with only days left, my friend and his partner were met with everything they had avoided facing. Hope had prevented them from using the precious time leading up to her death to heal and prepare for her passing.

As a nurse and friend, I have seen that there is so much to be healed and gained through the palliative care process, not only for the person who is dying but everyone around them.  Surrendering to and taking responsibility for the process, supports the looking at, dealing with and healing of old patterns, deepening of relationships and completing anything left outstanding from this life.  In this way, we are released from these impediments and left free to move on.

What better way to prepare for our next life?

Read more:

  1. What is Evil? 
  2. The way we are living is killing us.
  3. What if reincarnation is true? 



878 thoughts on “The Evil of Hope

  1. Hope is very disempowering. We may find ourselves in situations that do not meet the pictures of what we think life should be like, and judge our lot as ‘bad’. We may then reach for hope which keeps us out of the present and away from engaging with what is presented to us in life, whatever that may be, and we don’t then respond in full to what’s required to grow.

  2. So many of us are tricked by the words used and it feels as though hope is one of them, and yet it is a word we use all the time. So is it one of those words that keep us stuck, for it seems to me while we have ‘hope’ we are not prepared to see the reality of our situation in life. It’s as though we are looking at life from a different angle and therefore are blinded from the truth.

  3. “having an expectation or desire for something to happen or wishing for a positive outcome.” Call this hope, investment in an outcome, expectations, pictures, ideals, beliefs, wants, needs or anything else it’s all the same. None of which is actually supporting us to read and accept the situation for what it truly is.

  4. Hope is always about a future that is in front of us but our true future is something that we’re returning to. It’s an inward movement not a forward one. Everything of value is within us already and so hope by its very nature is leading us up the garden path.

  5. Wow, this brings a whole new perspective on ‘hope’ and how loosely this word is used. So true about the lost time when we could be spending it to be with ourselves. But somewhere along the way, we got to that situation and as already stated, we’re begging ‘hope’ to rescue us.

    Everything has occurred because of an after cause. In other words, it was become because of the way we have been treating ourselves that eventuated to where we are, irrespective of the disease/condition/illnesses. If we address the before cause, then where would life take us then?

    There is much to ponder on what has been shared here and it brings a new perspective in the meaning of ‘hope’, thank you for the enrichment.

  6. Hope is always about our future which we project as being something ahead of us but in truth our future is to return to our past and so hope is part of the grande illusion, an illusion that keeps our eyes fixed on the horizon of nowhere. Our true future is with us right now, we’re carrying it around with us constantly, it’s there to be claimed in our bodies now and always has been and always will be.

  7. ‘You may think that the word evil is extreme when describing the effect of hope. Yet I define evil as anything that holds back our growth and development and anything which perpetuates the separation from the truth of who we are or which delays the healing needed to return to our essence. Defined in this way, evil and hope are perfect bedfellows.’ Absolutely, and years ago I would have thought describing hope as evil would be very extreme and not only that wrong! However, it is only when you truly get to understand about energy and free the body of many ill ideals, beliefs and consciousnesses that get wrapped around it that you really get to feel and understand the truth in what you present here. Not so extreme after all but instead incredibly revealing if we allow it to be.

    1. I can see the times I had subscribed to the word, ‘hope’ and I shudder at the thought of it being a sympathetic, emotional word. For example, with Live Aid, we hoped that we could eradicate famine and millions of people raised money and where did ‘hope’ take us, no where.

      So now I understand the evilness of this word and what’s beneath this and it’s not how I pictured it to be either, very deceiving in fact.

  8. I had not considered what ‘hope’ robs us of but what you share here makes enormous sense. It is like a focus on the present rather than the future or the past and there is an ease in the body when that is done.

  9. Hope, I feel, is very much embedded within Christian doctrine. The religion sets us up to feel lesser, but then offers hope as a way out thereby cementing in the belief that we are indeed lesser and that we simply have to accept life on the planet as it is, without ever taking responsibility for life as we find it or our own lives indeed – keeping the whole sorry mess turning. Pretty clever actually.

  10. So love that the quality within hope has been busted here. Within this we are being asked to step up and be honest about our choices and the impact they have so that we may start to take responsibility for them.

  11. One of the aspects of hope is the picture or ideal we hold of how life is supposed to be, we hope for that but it means we dismiss what’s on offer in whatever situation we are in, it might not fit the picture or ideal but it could be offering a lot of growth and evolution.

    1. When we hope we are certainly filtering the reality of life through the pictures and ideals we desire life to be rather than accepting it for what is is. If we are open to seeing life as it is without the need for it to be different but understanding that it can be different depending on the everyday choices we collectively make, we would then be much more responsible in our approach to life and for each of those choices that either heal or harm.

      1. When I look at Catholicism (I was raised a Catholic) it is so easy to see now how clever the setup is. The church proposes that we are lesser and are never good enough and that in fact we are so bad that God had to send his only son to Earth, sacrifice his life so that we may get to Heaven. Of course, while the message is that this is not guaranteed (if we don’t play ball with the rules we will go to hell) there is always hope that we will get there. We simply need to atone for our sins, say a few Hail Marys and we might be ok. This keeps everyone on the back foot, playing nice and doing what is expected all the while not expressing with honesty how this really makes us feel or how if we were to claim our equality to God, we could easily begin to address the issues in society that our alignment to organised religion keeps us in subjugation of.

  12. “In the end, hope leaves us surprised and completely unprepared when the reality of dying inevitably hits home.” The awfulness of ‘hope’ needs to be exposed from all angles, for it does us no good at all.

    1. Yes, in fact it robs us of space to embrace the opportunity to complete and not completing means we drag around energetic packages that hold us to the past rather than the space of living and dealing with the present.

      1. I know exactly what you mean Lucy, as I feel that I have been dragging around Energetic packages of incompletion for quite a few life times, which have held me in the past and these have to be discarded as we deepen our awareness and return to a higher vibration that allows our soul the one soul to infuse our bodies again.

  13. Hope presents a picture that interferes with our ability to feel and know exactly what is going on. Interesting how often we hope things for one another in our everyday conversation.

  14. I have the growing realisation that hope, usually for something to happen in the future, actually prevents us from stopping and acknowledging what is going on in the present. Not only that, it removes our personal responsibility for what is unfolding in our lives; we hope someone or something else will fix it for us. I have found that there is nothing more empowering than to take responsibility for our lives, and by doing so, hope is naturally consigned to the past.

  15. Wow, Fiona, this is amazing the way you exposed the evil of hope. Absolutely brilliant. This form of evil is harder to see for what it is because our society is built around these false principles that creates more harm than we realise.

    1. To me there is a saccharine type of quality to hope. When people hope on our behalf it feels sickly and whilst they might be feeling quite genuine in wanting things to be a certain way which fit into perceived normal pictures, we have to question whether those pictures are true and if they are truly serving us.

      1. A great analogy of hope … like saccharine. Trying to mask something or wanting something to be better (taste better) without being honest, being responsible and taking responsibility and also without allowing ourselves to truly get to the root cause of our problems. When we are honest the healing can begin.

        Hope asks us to look for something outside of ourselves, instead of allowing ourselves to be honest about where we are at and therefore it is like walking with a constant carrot dangling on a stick in front of us, never being able to get it and with all the focus on the carrot, of course we will then not be looking at being honest about what needs changing and more importantly why.

      2. I was reading an article in a paper yesterday by a journalist who realised she was addicted to alcohol and had given herself a month without it. She realised just how awesome it was to go alcohol free as she felt better in herself, but she was mourning the bliss in that first half hour of consumption where it felt like all her ‘troubles’ melted away. The feeling of clarity she was getting she couldn’t dismiss, yet there wasn’t an understanding yet of having to take responsibility for her issues and the tension she felt in life. Withdrawing, numbing or distracting ourselves from our issues, or hoping things will get better don’t make them disappear – they just sit latent in the body until we realise there is no escape from them. All our ills have to be confronted and dealt with eventually – so much better to do it in the moment rather than go into delay.

Leave a Reply to rachelmurtagh1 Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s