Sunday Read and Judgement

Moral relativism is inherently troubling. It raises the specter, in our minds, that there is no position we can hold that is privileged enough to allow us to pass judgement onto others. And passing judgement is something we are hardwired to do because it’s how we establish a basis for trust.

It seems that when we are designed to do this something in order to establish a sound basis for the way we operate, the focus should be not so much on not doing it as on doing it right.

Far too often we dress up our instinctive responses (like judgement) in the culturally-acceptable language of morality that is designed to safeguard us from judgement ourselves. Additionally, it signifies that we belong to a group that is somehow superior hence capable of passing judgement on the ‘other’ that is inferior and therefore deserves to be judged.

Self-knowledge, introspection and self-awareness are the basic skills employed in changing cognitive behavior that leads to biased responses.

This is a mine field. It requires constant questioning. The ‘wisdom’ we are given by tradition. Our own thoughts and their origin. Our sense of values. Our responses to specific situations. When we’re in a world where “nothing is true, everything is permitted” becomes our guiding principle our every action has consequences. Our every thought comes with responsibility.

There is a problem with that. It is an energy-intensive, troubling and occasionally, troubled way of living. Life stops being ‘easy’. Everything becomes part of a journey made up of conscious decisions and choices.

It is funny to think that ‘morality’ in its broadest sense is designed to help us understand right from wrong and make decisions easier

So, here we are. The very same things that from an evolutionary point of view were designed to help us live a safer life and make better decisions are now responsible for getting us in hot water.

How can we deal with that? Can we even deal with a life of constant dissonance where we second-guess our every decision and choice?

I cannot make that decision for you. I know the world is complex. The complexity is challenging us. We have to learn to adapt and overcome and for that we need to develop our own personal survival strategies.

In order for you to be comfortable with discomfort you need to re-evaluate your aims and goals and beliefs and the price you’re willing to pay for them.

Life is tough. It’s about to get tougher. The one word of comfort I have here is that we’re all in this together. No exceptions.

You have coffee. And donuts. Croissants, cookies, ice-cream and chocolate cake. Not much more I can add to this except, have an awesome Sunday, wherever you are.

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