Honesty, integrity, dignity, respect, trustworthiness and kindness are the morals I find most important. I think most, if not all of the morals we live by are directly influenced by the people that raised us- for most of us, our parents. My parents were divorced when I was five years old, and separated since I was three. With that being said, I recognize that I’ve been raised by my entire family- aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, neighbors, family friends, all of whom I hold very close to my heart and very thankful that they have been able to make me the person I am today. Of course we can all be challenged by our own morals when exposed to something that may sway us from what we find most important. In this society some of those things may be popularity, money, material objects, etc. However, I feel that when we analyze what would make us most happy in the long run, the ‘little things’ that end up being the ‘big things’ in the end, its easier to stick to our morals and values. When we think about what really makes us happy at the end of it all, its makes sense to make sacrifices to stick to our morals and do the ‘good thing’.
My number one obligation in life is to be a good person, and I’m still trying to explore what that means in depth. What one person may characterize as ‘good’ could be described by another person as foolish or stupid. My duties are to graduate college, find a fulfilling job in nursing, get married, start a family, and spend the rest of my life teaching my children to be good people. A part of me want to save the world- but I’m not sure how that would even be fathomable. Sometimes I think this world could be saved just by doing a little bit of good here and there- spreading this goodness and being kind.
‘Good’ to me is kindness. Good is putting the good of others before the good of yourself (in moderation of course), and being selfless. Good is recognizing that you are a member of something bigger, a human race, and not everything is about you. You are just one in a world of many- and many people doing many good things can make one big difference.
In the last two lessons we touched upon the views of Aristotle and Kant about happiness and principles. I believe that in order to be an all-around sound person, you need to take both of these viewpoints into consideration. We need to use moderation and find balance in our lives in relation to the virtues to find happiness, and we need principles to guide our actions. I believe that both Aristotle and Kant took their viewpoints to the extreme- and neither of these extremes could be reasonably applicable in todays society.
“Be kind and share your happiness with other people”
Many people say that happiness is contagious. Think about the last time someone greeted you with a smile, wasn’t it almost reflex to smile back? Unless we are innately bitter, it’s hard to ward off someone’s happiness. Happiness harbors kindness. A bitter person is more than likely less prone to preforming acts of kindness than a happy person. I think that in order to spread goodness and the good feelings among society, we need to share these good things with other people so that the society as a whole can aim towards a movement in which there is widespread respect, acceptance, dignity, and compassion.