The moral issue

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     We saw in the point c) of the last post (“sum-up”) that moral values could be a good tool to improve the link between the individual and the reality he lives in. This seems a little bit strange because we usually consider morality and moral values as something heavy, annoying, with lots of imperatives and constraints that seem to hinder our freedom.

      First we have to say that the moral values we are going to present should be considered as ideals, guides and protective values. The aim of these ideals should be to protect the journey of the individual towards its final goal : happiness, harmony and loving kindness. Moral ideals should be considered as friends that come to help the individual in need rather than imperative orders that the individual must absolutely follow.

      The meaning of these moral ideals must be understood : the goal is to put the emphasis on a set of values that can 1) help the individuals and the human groups to act wisely 2) to organise in a harmonious way the society and the relationships between the individuals. We can roughly make a distinction between the negative imperatives (“you must not do that”) and the positive advice (“you should do that”).

       let’s see first the negative imperatives. They are kind of classics and can be found in many moral, religious and legal systems all over the world : do not to kill, do not steal, do not do wrong actions, avoid violence, avoid drug abuse, avoid unnecessary harmful actions against other beings. We can consider that these guidelines are at the very core of the social contract that can be found in all peaceful societies.

     The positive ideals should be considered as distant goals that the individual can slowly reach. Some of these ideals are important, others are less fundamental. Let’s give first and without any order a small brainstorm of important moral ideals : vegetarianism; do good actions; give respect to things and other beings; promote peace, joy, love, happiness, stability and clarity; be kind with other people; to be sexually satisfied with one’s own partner; to be patient; to do one’s best; to live a simple life, to share, to limit one’s harmful desires, to be easily satisfied; to work in positive ways.

      Less important positive moral ideals could include : meditation; enlightenment; opening of one’s chakras; to teach others; to focus one’s thoughts on God or on the goal; to be generous; gift; to be calm; to be full of confidence; to protect; to adapt easily; to be open; to be in good health; to open to the natural abundance of life…

     So, basically, all these moral values (positive and negative) can be compared to a philosophy of love/sharing/harmony/understanding and non-violence. We already saw that war, violence and competition between humans were a great waste of energy. We can extend this principle of non-violence to non-pollution (that is to say non-violence towards ecosystems and so indirectly non-violence towards present-day and next-generations humans) and vegetarianism (non-violence towards animals). We will talk later about the best ways to become vegetarian (and why) but for the moment we can consider this as an ideal : to reduce one’s meat consumption is better for individual health, for the planet and for the moral values.

      Nevertheless we have to acknowledge the fact that many moral issues are very difficult ones and are often involving many conflicting values. Let’s take for example the question : is it correct to kill pests (mosquitoes, insects, snakes…) that disturb our lives ? My answer would be the least, the better. For sure, we have to protect ourselves from the pests because we need clean and quiet conditions to live in peace, love each others and meditate. So the solution in this case will be to use methods as harmless as possible (avoid too much toxic chemicals or only if really necessary, try to make the pest go away is better than completely kill them…).

     Finally, it is all too obvious that in each difficult moral case, we have to be flexible, open and intelligent. Like this we will be able to adapt the moral ideals the best way possible without creating too much problems for us or other beings. Loving kindness is the key that all of us, as human beings, are looking for.

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About buddhananda
independent spiritual researcher, I find inspiration mainly into the buddhist, hindu and new age fields. I try to find connections between religions, philosophy, economy and technology. My aim is to contribute to the emergence of a better world. I also practice reiki.

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