To the philosopher and society,
I have made a philosophical claim that the key to understanding morality is if some act helps you love others. If it helps grow your ability to love, then it is good. If it instead grows your selfishness, then it is evil. You probably see that this is true, it is the duty of philosophy to explain why.
It is very important to be able to set a moral code when dealing with philosophy, especially when discussing ethics or religion. This is because a moral code can help you debunk or prove something to be good. In the case of religion, someone argued that if you cannot prove something is true 100%, you have a moral obligation to not believe it, especially religion. His argument is that you are responsible for all of the negative effects of your belief. My counter claim is that if you cannot disprove something 100% and see the positives outweigh the negatives, you have a moral obligation to choose it. Which is correct? Both actually when you examine the moral code.
As you can see, both sides refer to a moral obligation, but they have yet to define what that is. Generally, people turn to religion to provide this code, but since religion is in doubt, it cannot be used. True morality must exist outside of religion. That means if a religion is true, it must abide by this moral code. The amazing thing is that once we establish what the moral code is, we can see the two arguments are not mutually exclusive, but complementary.
When the other person was talking about negatives, he was referring to something that negatively impacts others, such as mass murder by some religions. It would then be the duty of that religion to prove it wasn't murder, otherwise it is false. My claim about the obligation to choose something positive is that it positively impacts you and others. However, if there are negatives, then the positives must outweigh the negatives while still abiding by the moral code.
The problem with the other man’s argument when it lacks my addition is that it ignores a few facts of life. Almost everything you do and believe in requires some faith. We cannot know many things 100%. If we followed that chain of logic by itself, we would never take medicine. That is because there is almost never a 100% that the medicine will work and there are always side effects, some of which can be worse than the disease it is treating. Factor in the placebo effect and most medication may only be effective 60% of the time at the highest. We just don’t know if something will be good for us or even work. However, we do weigh the risk and judge the medicine to be beneficial and so take it. Therefore it is an act of faith that we hope it will do as promised.
We even have faith in science. We act on faith that not only are scientists right, but that did everything correctly. It’s far too common that scientists will toss out data that disagrees with their hypothesis. Even if it is done right, we occasionally see that our understanding of physics was wrong. Science is by far good, but the presence of contradictory studies show that we act on faith on whether to accept the findings or not.
So you can see how when our morality is based on the good of self and others, also known as love, the two arguments I presented earlier actually fit nicely. Reject things that certainly negative for you and others, but take a chance with things that are positive for you and society. However, you probably want to see proof that this moral code is the absolute truth.
There are actually many ways you can reach this conclusion. One way is that this code is what people instinctively call upon when making arguments like this. Whenever someone mentions a “moral obligation,” it’s almost always about what is good for someone else. The problem here is that we instinctively rely on it, without having defined it. This means that people tend to accept their moral code from others based off what sounds good. This is not the right way of doing it. It is a good guide, but we need to know why it is the moral code we depend on. We actually do have a moral obligation to learn that. When we don’t fully establish our moral code, then we play around with the rules and become inconsistent and cause suffering. To be fair, I would blame the confusion on our corrupted society that even promotes selfishness as if it is love.
Now for the logic you have been waiting for. To show that Love is the key to morality, we need to show that the perfection of man is to love. If you believe in a certain religion, this is easy. However, that is only useful as a check to see if the religion is valid. Again, the moral code must exist apart from religion. In other words, religion must advocate it because it is true, not claim it’s true because it advocates it.
The ultimate goal in life is to be happy. Happiness is the reason you want anything else. No one ever says why they want to be happy. In fact, some people will seek sadness in order to be happy. Happiness is the effect of perfection. There are no other needs or desires for one self. We seek happiness in many things like honor, riches, pleasure, but none will ever fulfill it completely except for giving love.
That might be hard to understand if you have been mostly selfish. That is because selfishness cannot grasp True Love as they are complete opposites. Selfishness seeks self pleasure even at the expense of others, but True Love seeks what is good for others even at your own expense. Therefore, if you are selfish, you need to practice acts of love in order to diminish your selfishness before you can truly understand the joy from giving love.
Even if we do not have the experience, we can see the effect of happiness in those who have had it. It is very common to hear stories about people who leave civilization to help poor countries. They claim that they were far happier then than any other moment of their life. Some people even completely abandon civilization in order to stay there. Their attempts to make a difference when stemming from love, makes them happy
Another way of looking at the proof for love is that selfishness is the cause of misery. You are only miserable when you focus heavily on yourself. When you are loving, you may be sad, but that sadness actually does not diminish your happiness. You desire others to be happy as well, but your personal love tank is always full. It sounds weird and paradoxical, but that is the best I can explain it.
The love tank is a clue for another proof. You may have noticed that when you receive love, you can become so elated that that you perform acts of love as well. Likewise, when you are deeply in love, almost nothing can bring down your joy. These provide hints that we are suppose to love.
My last look is that society depends and thrives on love rather than selfishness. If two men are alone but are selfish, there is a small chance they may work together, but a guarantee one will probably kill the other. If they are loving instead, then it’s guaranteed they will work together and not kill each other.
A man and a woman must sacrifice selfishness when having a child. Society depends on children in order to grow and flourish. Care for children also promotes virtues and us becoming better people. It was certainly common that even when an adult was doing something wrong, he may stop if he sees a child in order to be a good role model. Our heroes also happen to be that who perform acts of goodness, the greatest of heroes doing so with love and sacrifice. On the other hand, those who act without love are likely to be disillusioned and then become villains. Lastly, if everyone acted with love, we would have no fear of cops, war, divorce, injustice, homelessness, hunger, etc. Society depends on us sharing our talents with one another. Love is what makes a society great.
One more small argument is this: Man is a social animal (Man depends and thrives through society). In order for society to be become perfect, one needs to love. Therefore man is meant to love.
When you look at all of these arguments and more, you can see that since Love is Perfection, it is the perfect moral compass. Therefore the key to understanding if something is good is if it helps you grow in love. If it hinders instead by promoting selfishness, it is an evil. The beauty of this morality is that since human nature never changes, this morality never changes as well. It is perhaps one of the greatest anchors in life I can give you.
N. D. Moharo