White & Black

On December 30, 2010, in Musings, by Sean

I have been thinking recently about the concept of right and wrong and it occurred to me that despite the debate about which behaviors or actions should fall in each category, all humans understand the concept.  It seems to me that when it comes to discussions on humanity few things are truly universal, or at least easily demonstrable as being so. The concept of right and wrong is one of them.

Every human who has ever lived has at one point or another felt wronged, as well as felt the guilt of having wronged another. On the flip side of the coin I would say that every person has at some point felt that they have  done something good. Now we definitely do not all agree on the criteria used to determine right and wrong but I think it safe to say that the concept exists for all people.  This leads me to ask why.  Why does morality exist? It doesn’t appear to manifest itself in any other species, why in humans?

Following closely on the heels of morality is justice. I would once again assert that all humanity understands the concept of justice, the atonement for wrong done, or retribution for a wrong suffered.  Where does the idea that there should be justice come from and why do we most often look outside ourselves for it to handed out.  It seems to me that intuitively humans understand that there is a higher standard to measure themselves against and that the measuring or judgment needs to be done by someone else. That ultimately it comes from somewhere else.

I think this is evidence of a higher power. Now I don’t wish to debate the nature of this power in this post merely to suggest that it is really beyond reasonable doubt that it exists. We are created with an instinctive grasp of the concepts of right and wrong and justice. All of our legal systems have at their heart principles that are presumed to have originated from outside of the race.  All morality ultimately stems from religion, which is really, when taken as a whole humanity’s attempt to relate to a power that they instinctively realize exists outside of themselves.

We understand the concept of justice because on some level we know that some day we will be judged. We understand the concept of right and wrong because it forms the basis for judgment.  The part of us which defines us as an individual, that which I would refer to as the soul longs to communicate with the higher power. Put simply “right” actions are those that bring us closer to the higher power and “wrong” actions are those that push us away. Justice can be seen as what is necessary to bring us back into proper relationship with the higher power when we have done something “wrong”.

It seems to me that this higher power wishes to have a relationship with us. Why else create us with an innate need for justice that causes us to look outside of ourselves, that causes us to interact with something/someone outside of our species?  In my opinion all of these things provide clear evidence of a higher power; what we do about that knowledge or what we are supposed to do is debatable but its veracity isn’t.

 

2 Responses to White & Black

  1. s corp says:

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  2. Tracy says:

    I love this…”The part of us which defines us as an individual, that which I would refer to as the soul longs to communicate with the higher power. Put simply “right” actions are those that bring us closer to the higher power and “wrong” actions are those that push us away.”

    I agree whole heartedly and do believe if you listen to your internal voice and follow your heart, it will never lead you off your path to connecting to ‘the source’ of all powers.

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