What is good?
I'd really like to know. You see, I hear all these versions of good and evil, and none of them seem to agree. Even two churches of the exact same denomination don't agree, not on the specifics. Considering, with my moving, I have attending different baptist churches, I assure you that it's very different. From the levels of tolerance, to the levels of friendliness I've seen a lot of different approaches.
One church I attended had a preacher who preached tolerance for all. Another church I attended preached both outreach and intolerance for moral sins. I was very confused. I've seen preachers that preach an acceptance of science, and preachers who shun every single aspect of science out there. It's a varied world, even within one denomination.
So what is good?
This isn't a question from out of nowhere by the way. In a story I am writing, a child is struggling with it. He certainly wasn't taught it my birth parents, who abused him. And his foster mother regularly breaks the law in gruesome ways. all he's got rooting for him is a jaded cop. So what is good, when you've never been taught what good is?
For this kid, he doesn't know. His foster mother tells him through her actions that what is good is power, thus power makes you good. Those without power aren't good, not in her mind. The cop though, he lays it out in concrete things for the boy.
"...y'know... don't murder. Don't steal. Help people in need. Stop people who are bad. You've heard that shebang, right?"
Don't murder. Don't steal. These are things all cultures agree on, I think. World wide, it's agreed that violence without just cause is immoral, not right. Taking things that aren't your own isn't right either. But even then, you have people, usually extremists I think, that can't even agree on what murder is, on what just cause for violence could be.
So what is good?
For some cultures, helping others isn't good. People should, in these cultures, always be able to stand on their own two feet, once they are fully grown at least. They shouldn't need help. In other, helping those less fortunate is good, but those fortunate to have a lot don't get any help, even when they need it. After all, they have a lot, what do they need help for?
When people can't even agree on what one book says is good and bad, even when they read the same words from that book, then you find yourself wondering, what is good?
What is good, what is bad? What's moral, or immoral? Beyond the basics, when it comes down to the nitty gritty of what is good and bad, can anyone agree?
I know that there are times that I don't agree with my family what is good and bad, right and wrong, and we were raised by the same people with the same morals taught to us at a young age. I don't know everything out there, but I can tell you the basics are the same:
Don't kill, steal, or cheat. Don't lie, be jealous, or be cruel. Be kind to everyone. Stay true to your beliefs. Listen to your parents. Everyone agrees on these, agrees these are moral.
More than that? Not so much. What it all boils down to though is fairly simple:
Treat others how you want to treated.
You don't want to be lied to, cheated on, or killed. You don't want to be stolen from or bullied. It's not fun when people are jealous of you, or mean to you. It doesn't feel that great to betray what you belief in. And while, I admit, it may not always be fun to listen to your parents, its generally easier to listen to them in the long run.
And I didn't get any scholarships done this week. I couldn't find any that I hadn't done and was eligible for, which is mildly inconvenient. I'm still searching.
One Final Byte: Moral issues never pull their punches, do they?