The Angel, The Evil and The … Ordinary People

This post is the result of a conversation with a friend of mine. Generally people categorizes other people as either good or evil. For me, we actually deal with 3 kinds of personality: The angel type, the evil type and the most common ordinary type. There is an interesting puzzle called “The Hardest Logic Puzzle Ever” where there are three gods that either speak correct, wrong or random all the time. The objective of the puzzle is to find who’s who by asking yes-no questions. This is indeed a very correct abstraction of real human character types. (spoiler alert for 1 sentence) The answer of the puzzle starts with identifying the random person first (end of spoiler). Maybe this tactic is all you need to solve real type of human interaction problems. Anyway, I listed some key properties of these three types.

  • Angel and Evil -> predictable (they have a clear and meaningful objective); Ordinary people -> random (they think they have an objective but their behavioural outcomes are unpredictable)
  • Angel makes decisions complying with a moral code; evil ignores morality; ordinary people doesn’t have a morality standard i.e. their vision of morality can be modified externally
  • Angel and evil are usually active decision makers; whereas moron (did I say moron? I meant ordinary people) goes with the flow
  • Number of angels and evils are very small compared to number of ordinary people
  • Angel keywords: equality, self-sacrificing, overall outcome, trusting, optimistic, love
  • Evil keywords: the best, greediness, narcissism, exploitative, egocentric, insensitivity, opportunism
  • Ordinary people keywords: now, fear, low self-esteem, co-dependence, adaptive, prejudice, lack of control

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