Foundation of Morality


From a spiritual point of view...

Unlike animals and other worldly creatures in the universe, humans have been given conscience that allows them to be moral and do what is "right." But due to different belief systems, culture and religion, people have come into conflict of understanding what is deemed as appropriate behavior. What guides our morality? What is the force, the intrinsic drive that promotes our behavior of acting good rather than bad? The intrinsic drive in compassion. All moral systems are based on compassion for the other. The true meaning of religion is not a belief system that takes you to heaven. Rather religion is a path for the man to walk and follow its guidelines to live an ethical life. Until there is animosity between faith communities, until there is a hierarchy of determining which religion is more moral, there is no harmony nor any true understanding of the religion. Inherently, any religion that gives command of annihilating other out group religions, is not a religion. But morality doesn't stop where the righteous path stops. Being moral is the nature of all sentient beings. But due to our own ignorant mind and its tendency to find pleasure in serving its own body rather than its soul, we are unable to live according to our true nature. The delusion that arises from thinking that pleasure to body is pleasure to the self is the fundamental error of ignorance. The path of religion and the leadership of those who have walked that path will lead to the end of this ignorance. 

Before choosing a path or the people to follow, you must ask yourself two questions: does this path lead to liberation of my soul and that of others? And do these people follow the path with discipline and passion to serve others? If the answer is yes for both, you can proceed on the path, with a feeling of being moral. But what happens when there is a moral dilemma? What is the ultimate moral dilemma? The ultimate moral dilemma is when an individual walking the righteous path is asked to leave that path for a certain time. The mindset of the individual should be unaroused and steady while taking the decision of whether to leave the path or not. If the decision is made under pressure or ignorance, it may lead to faulty behavior. All righteous paths, as stated earlier, lead to liberation of others. So, in reality there can never be a moral dilemma if the individual intents good and acts to liberate other souls. In the case that the soul has been lost in an ignorant mind, the best option is to liberate the soul from its body and allow it to be reborn into another body, in which it will be able to do good karma for others and uncover its own ignorant mind. In other words, killing is not always immoral. Killing is justified as moral if the killer is steady and unaroused and if the victim is someone who has repeatedly caused suffering for others and has lived an ignorant life. Similarly, other vices such as lying, stealing, and manipulating are deemed justifiable if the doer is not doing them for his own personal gain, nor under an aroused mindset, but is calm and steady and is doing it with an intent to liberate the soul from its own ignorant body and mind. So how do we know if a body has reached such a wicked state that forgiveness or teaching cannot resolve its ignorance. There must be repeated peaceful attempts of trying to convince the victim of their ignorance, to help them resolve their maladaptive behaviors and cognitions. After all tries, if the victim still continues to cause suffering unto others and itself, then it is proper to kill them. Remember though, it is equally important to have an unaroused mindset that is not full of vengeance but rather compassion for the soul to escape its ignorant mind. 

Thus, the foundation of morality lies in both internal and external states of oneself. The internal state must be calm and steady, unaroused by any emotion besides compassion. While the external state should be ready to help others liberate from their ignorant world. Morality is nothing but compassion, and compassion is nothing but liberation of all beings from their own minds.