What is your moral barrier?

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posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 10:29 PM
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When do you feel the need to act in accord with some principle, and when do you feel the need not to??

For example. I used to steal when I was younger. It was a really bad careless tendency that was really created from being babied and given everything I wanted by mom and dad. Nowadays, however, I can't even allow myself to steal the smallest things. I'm at walmart with my brother, I have no money on me, and I'm in the candy section being tempted by all the sugar, i.e. sour skittles, rainbow nerds, sweet tarts, sour keys etc, and I'm literally drooling over this stuff. Each pack is from $1.50 to $2.60. Small items, right? Well, I can't let myself do that. Since I got into studying religion, philosophy, theology etc, I've grown too aware of a certain reality to allow myself to change ontological status from 'living in accord with the just and right', to 'not caring, taking what he wants'.

I can care less about people with stuck up opinions who think I'm being 'prudish' and 'goody two shoes'. Those attitudes are untenable, and essentially of the same nature as the attitude that allows you to steal.

This reminds me of the Biblical disposition which sees eating of the fruit of the tree of knowledge as a gateway into 'sin'. The Garden of Eden is that state of ignorance where you can't be said to be held responsible for your actions. To be responsible requires an awareness of the context in question. Once all the elements are known, once consequences are understood, when you a know a particular cause leads to a particular effect, and still you act despite that knowledge, you can be said to have sinned. It is that aspect of knowledge which necessarily compels us to abide by its limits. Another example: I know gravity exists. I know it's properties. I know I can't step off that cliff, because I will fall and die. And that's bad.

A moral barrier can be as negligible as a street thug who can steal, sell drugs, hurt people, etc, without any appreciable awareness of the destruction that he is causing to others, and especially himself. Or, a moral barrier can be as refined as the monks we read about Dostoevsky's The Brother's Karamazov. Kind, tender, conscientious people that are acutely aware of the moral need at every moment. If someone is pale and looking ill, they speak extra tenderly and compassionately with them. They are aware of the need. If someone is annoying them, but they understand for what reasons he is acting, they commiserate, and endure the situation. ]

How would you honestly assess where you are at in your life???

Me myself, I can be as kind as a saint, and as sensitive to others as a monk would be, but I can also be a glutton at times, I can be careless, [snip], if with friends or relatives, I can get very drunk; I can be enormously lazy at times, I constantly indulge in bawdy humor and watch and allow myself to enjoy comedy that betrays all my values.

I am not a gnostic. I don't think we should both indulge good and evil. I think we should always strive for the good, to be moral, but, if we slip up, or we find ourselves in a situation in which little can be done to change it, and changing it happens to be making you depressed and sick, than it's probably better to do the best you can at the level you are at. Rome wasn't made in a day. People don't change overnight. It's a lifelong process not only in the maturation of the heart, but in the understanding of the mind.
edit on 7-11-2012 by dontreally because: (no reason given)
edit on 7-11-2012 by Kandinsky because: Removed unnecessary drug reference




posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 10:48 PM
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Sorry, I got lost in your post.
I don't really think about the garden of Eden if I'm about to do something serpentish. Not that I do.
I just do what I think is right, or not do what I think is wrong. It's easier this way. I don't stop midstream to analyze it.
Not sure what you really asked.



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 10:50 PM
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I'm a very empathetic person, I couldn't steal or hurt someone intentionally unless it was for a greater cause. That's not really the same a morals though, but I think one affects the other.


Originally posted by dontreally
I can care less


The phrase is "I couldn't care less". Sorry, that's a pet peeve of mine.
edit on 7-11-2012 by SpearMint because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:12 PM
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Morality exists to establish communal trust. If your neighbor murders your other neighbor, you can no longer trust them to not murder you or someone you love. And that is the guiding principle.

Now, if you seduce the girl next door, or she seduces you, then we enter the gray areas.

If someone acts strange, can we trust them? This is the heart of what we deem to be right or wrong.

At what point do we decide that we can not trust others.



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:14 PM
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reply to post by dontreally
 

When you steal, who do you really steal from?

Despite the path you take, both give the same realization.

Only in the moment of action do you "know" "why" you acted the way you did. If you stole for "good", then you stole for good. If you stole for "evil" then you stole for evil. It's that simple.

The simplicity continues forever though. As we are given the freedom to retroactively change our definitions such that we can later interpret our previous action(s) as having been for the alternate "reason(s)".

Who am I to understand why I was born?
edit on 7-11-2012 by ErgoTheConclusion because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:18 PM
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reply to post by SpearMint
 


You know what's a pet peeve of mine? Superfluity. You could have just ignored that.



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:20 PM
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reply to post by violet
 



Now, if you seduce the girl next door, or she seduces you, then we enter the gray areas.


If the girl isn't married, or in a relationship with someone else, it's more white than grey.

But if she's in a relationship and you only mean to snatch her away, than that's black, and should be seen as bad.

A part of doing what is 'communally' right is understanding and respecting other people. If we don't respect the value of a relationship between two other people, and act in some way that undermines it, than we have broken a sacred trust. Whether that trust be the trust between yourself and some higher spiritual ideal, or the communal trust, which seeks to preserve public order.



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:23 PM
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reply to post by ErgoTheConclusion
 





Only in the moment of action do you "know" "why" you acted the way you did. If you stole for "good", then you stole for good. If you stole for "evil" then you stole for evil. It's that simple.


So there's no infraction in your mind against the concept of ownership? If something is "his", and I understand it as his, what gives me the right to ignore that and take it? I would expect the same understanding from anyone else with regard to what is mine.




The simplicity continues forever though. As we are given the freedom to retroactively change our definitions such that we can later interpret our previous action(s) as having been for the alternate "reason(s)".


That's a ridiculous reductionism.



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:23 PM
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When I was a stupid teenager I stole an ashtray once on a dare in the mall, I couldn't sleep for weeks after that. But, I think when it comes to our corrupt government I wouldn't miss an ounce of sleep if I could figure out how to steal billions from them. Some corporations have figured out how to, I can understand why they have on some level. If I needed to steal for survival (which most likely would be poaching on my part) I would not blink an eye. because anyway isn't it the government who makes you pay for those stupid hunting licensing anyway?
edit on 7-11-2012 by ldyserenity because: edit to clarify



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:26 PM
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Originally posted by dontreally
reply to post by SpearMint
 


You know what's a pet peeve of mine? Superfluity. You could have just ignored that.


And you'd continue to use a misleading phrase which suggests the opposite to what you mean.

No need to be like that about it.



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:27 PM
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reply to post by ldyserenity
 





. If I needed to steal for survival (which most likely would be poaching on my part) I would not blink an eye


Situations can modify a moral principle. For instance, I believe it was Kant who said he wouldn't tell a lie to save someones life. That to me is ridiculous.

If I had to survive and stealing was the only way I could do it, I would probably do it.

But if surviving meant killing someone else, that's going too far, and I wouldn't.



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:31 PM
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reply to post by dontreally
 


Dear dontreally,

I want to respond to what you wrote; but, it is too late to be coherent and your questions are too deep. I beg that you allow me to return tomorrow and respond. I want to think about it. Peace.



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:53 PM
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reply to post by dontreally
 


That's it. That is what I am talking about.

Now what if she is in a relationship, and she seduces you?

It just gets more complicated.

What if she is the one and she sees you as the one.

Are you following the circle of life, or are you breaking it?



posted on Nov, 7 2012 @ 11:57 PM
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reply to post by dontreally
 


What if killing someone is necessary for your own survival, and the survival of those you love?

That is the struggle of survival that has shaped humanity into what we are.

You want the girl, your rival wants the girl. Is it right or wrong to compete.



posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 12:21 AM
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reply to post by poet1b
 


Viktor Frankl describes a similar situation in his book 'the doctor and the soul'.

A patient explains to him a situation in which his fiances girlfriend has offered to have sex with him before he gets married. The patient doesn't know what to do. In Dr. Frankls opinion (mine as well) you gain more in terms of self esteem and a sense of personal moral accomplishment, than you do in engaging in a momentary passion. The moment may be incredibly intense, but it passes, and then your left with the knowledge of what you did.



What if she is the one and she sees you as the one.


Well, if it's an issue of love than she can leave her husband/boyfriend and hook up with you. No reason why she should be keeping up an affair and you partaking in it.



posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 12:25 AM
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reply to post by poet1b
 





What if killing someone is necessary for your own survival, and the survival of those you love?


I wouldn't kill anyone for my own survival. I realize that for me to live means me taking away someone elses life, and I have no more a right to do that to someone else than they have a right to do that to me.



That is the struggle of survival that has shaped humanity into what we are.


Let me clarify. If I'm forced to defend myself and it means the other person might die, yes, of course, I would kill him. My situation referred to having to kill someone who is innocent. Which I wouldn't do.




You want the girl, your rival wants the girl. Is it right or wrong to compete.


Good spirited competition is great. It becomes evil when people are willing to succumb to any depth to get what they want.



posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 12:27 AM
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reply to post by dontreally
 


Our Country, and the World is awash in Sin.

Morals? Principles?

Words that have no barring on the the youth of today. If you can get away with it, then do it. Thats the common lesson I see out there.

My Moral Fiber is one of Karma. For every action, there is a reaction. EVERYONE for the most part knows whats right and wrong. Its those that are willing to substitute their own standards, because "everyone" else does it.

Its sad.


S&F


CX

posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 12:55 AM
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Originally posted by SpearMint

The phrase is "I couldn't care less". Sorry, that's a pet peeve of mine.

Lol finally!


I've been wanting to say that for years on ATS, but i figured that it was just an American term.

Many people here say it.

CX.



posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 12:59 AM
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reply to post by dontreally
 


When someone is cruel, when someone unjustly kills an animal ...not for food but for sport ...and when someone bullies or makes someone feel bad on purpose just because they can.
When someone hurts a child . When someones's ignorance gets in the way of them seeing reality ...and when someone just won't open their mind to give someone a chance.

Those are a few ....
I could care less about someone's socioeconomic status ...what they've done ...or where they came from ....
I like to believe I'm pretty fair .



posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 01:07 AM
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I can do all things. I know that and choose those things I will let myself do according to the balance I want to achieve in life. If I was living the life of a monk I guess I would do the odd act of destruction. If I was forced to be a saint, I would let my devil out.

I don't think restrictions are good for anything except creating behavior around people by prohibiting something they then feel inclined to do just because it is forbidden. I know I can do all things really, so I am left to choose the things I know I want to do. I don't want to kill people, I choose not to, I do not force myself not to. I do not have that "want" or inclination. I don't want to do heroine, don't think I would like it in the long run, so I don't. Not because it is illegal, or immoral.

I don't like to steal, I don't believe in it. I have a very solid "moral" ground I stand on, all because I choose to. I don't believe in stealing. Not because God may punish me, or my peers will judge me. I think I will be better off by facing challenges without looking for an advantage. To simply put it, I do what is correct because it is what I feel like doing. I don't like chaos, I don't like disorder, I don't like advantage of some over others, so I do not participate in their behavior.

It is a choice, not a restriction.


edit on 8-11-2012 by manykapao because: (no reason given)





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