A friend of mine once paid me what I consider a very big complement. He said I was the only person he knew who in any situation did not have to hesitate to think about right or wrong. My morality was part of me, inbuilt. And he was correct. I judge actions as to whether I consider them right or wrong. On that basis I either do or don’t do something. And I do not have to think about my decision.
The reason why I don’t have to actually think about any situation is my morality is very simple, very basic. You cannot purposely hurt other people. Very simple. Very basic. Do no harm to others.
I think the reason my friend noticed my moral behavior is only because I have the courage of my conviction to do no harm. What I mean by that is if I see anyone doing harm to another I will say or , if required, do something.
Now I recognize situations are different, spouses arguing is different from a spouse hitting their spouse. But I have intervened when in high school I saw 3 guys bullying 1 guy. I didn’t know the guy being bullied but I knew 1 of the bullies. Thought of him as a friend but after that he stopped thinking of me as a friend. But that was his decision.
I think the hardest thing in morality is accepting within yourself the fact that others have a concept of morality different from yours and not attempting to impose your morality on them. Doing harm to others is pretty much universally recognized to normal people. Psychopaths, not so much do they agree with that.But we recognize they are abnormal and are willing to enact laws against violence to another person.
Fraud, theft and property crimes are a form of violence. The amount of time invested in acquiring a possession is what is being taken from you. A part of your life. So it is an impersonal type of violence. Telling a lie or untruth about a person is an indirect type of violence.
We used to have what are called Blue Laws. One such Blue Law was alcohol was illegal to be sold on Sundays. There are still a few on the books but many have been repealed. Blue Laws were a method used by the majority to impose their morality on those who did not have the same morality. To me all such laws are not for the protection of every person equally but instead morality being imposed on others. Which I consider a form of violence.
The Golden Rule is too easy to pervert. To say “Do onto others only what you are willing to have done unto you” is easily perverted to “Make laws for others that you will obey or believe in”. Besides, “Do no harm” is much simpler.
I would appreciate any comments. Especially if you disagree. I am putting my thoughts out here and any change will only come about from those who disagree and are willing to say why.
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