Is Morality Alive and Well?
This election has raised a lot of questions for many people, but few have raised the issue of morality itself, not this individual’s sense of morality, or the other’s. That, I think, is just finger pointing and we know that whenever we point a finger at someone else we need to point the same finger at ourselves because that’s where change and transformation take place. The only place. For me the litmus test of morality, or virtue, is the human values I’m manifesting in the face of whatever I may judge as someone else’s faults. Am I practicing W.A.T.C.H, watching my words, actions, thoughts, character, heart?
Although “thoughts” sits solidly in the middle of that acronym, that’s where it all begins. Am I watching my thoughts and the emotions they create? Are they leading to fear, or argumentation, aversion, denial, passivity, or aggression?
I was fortunate that one of my professors at Teachers College assigned me to read “After Virtue,” by Alisdair Mcintyre (Scottish philosopher primarily known for his work in moral and political philosophy). His major premise is that the meaning of the word “virtue” has gotten lost over the ages, having been subject to the cultural, historical, religious, social, and political winds of the ages.
While the use of words like virtue or morality may change over time, “dharma” does not. Dharma implies a set of universal human values that are intrinsic and the source of human excellence: Truth, Right Action, Peace, Love, and Nonviolence. A perfect equation, E=T, RA, P, L, N over Pi (something infinite, indivisible, and always so.).