Hidden agenda? Not.

Been pondering about morality, motivations and why we do the things we do. Analysing it logically, I sort of set up 3 basic factors. More like premises which are satisfied without even trying before an option is even considered for potential execution.

First up, timeless quote from Sandman, which I think pretty much sums up the first premise: “We do what we do because of who we are; if we did otherwise, we would not be ourselves.” Given a generic decision to make, I propose that the distinct thought processes and logical reasoning that takes place like a background service to arrive at the answer, which in this case would be the next best thing to do is unique for every individual, is based on the experiences he has come across, and the way he has perceived them. The phrase, “who we are”, is so very important, and demands a whole new separate discussion about identity. For now, let’s summarise it: who we are is what we were, are and will be, which is in turn affected by your nurture and nature.

Lemme elaborate on this interesting bit: while we cannot truly prove with certainity whether reality is absolute or is only as concrete as we perceive it to be, can we all agree that perception is relative and directly affected equally and radically by personality, mood, long/short term aims, and life style [walks of life-kinda]? I realised this when I was on a social networking website [I know, what am I still doing there?], profile-hopping and grinning at implausible things written in the interests and hobbies column. Even given the benefit of the doubt, I foresee dismal probability ranges for the possibility that so-and-so actually indulged in this-or-that. Regardless, I reminisced on the things I have done, and was startled to remember…so little it actually alarmed me [and still does now, for I *know* I have done much much more.

Perhaps, I could still name the things I’ve done, but I don’t actually have too many memories about them. Which is unusual, cos I seem to remember the most random bits of data I may have come across even years ago, but not memories of things that I personally did. What’s even more shocking about this phenomenon is that i perceive myself to be someone who longs for change [for lack of it implies mundane-ness], and is constantly looking for new experiences. And then I realised the reason for that during the act itself; the act of disregarding the here and now, thinking of the things to come during ATEC. How unusual. I assume this is actually a tragic thing, that I do not actively make an effort to set aside memories to cherish…though I don’t actually *feel* I’ve made any great loss.

Anyway, I’ve digressed. Back to the original discussion.

Secondly, I propose that there is no such thing as morality innate in a human being; yet there is something very similar. It also involves a notion of whether something is right or wrong, but is less ethical than the classical viewpoint, and more rational. The kind of rational that exists as is before and above the influence of laws and ethical arguments. Rational to the point of being cold-blooded. We do what we feel MUST be done. An eye for an eye, tit for tat, revenge is best served cold; an opposite set of synergistic reactions to every action that acts on us. It’s so simplistic it’s scary.

I personally feel we have no real morality per se, just a skewed sense of justice; the same sentiment that silently protests that killing a killer is right, that chopping off the hand of a thief is just, that halving a baby for two mothers is wise. If there were no laws, would we really not steal? Not kill? Not bully? I’m sorry I don’t have such rosy glasses to read humanity with. Morality is just the consequence of thinking along the lines of “do unto others as you would have done unto yourself”. Don’t you think so? Ethical arguments always end off on this note: “Would you like it if it were done to you?” If I didn’t mind, that makes it ok? Why, yes of course! We are who we are because we of the way we think. We think something rather than another is the right thing to do, and that is why everyone is only alike in that we are unique. Every cell in my body burns with righteous fury.

If that’s the case, then crime is an artificial construct, built of guilt which we feel we are supposed feel. Why does the majority plead not guilty? In their eyes, they did nothing “wrong”, in that it was justifiable. Self defence, crimes of passion, reasonable doubt. Incriminating or not, legal terms categorise, and in so doing seek to justify, and in some cases forgive. I think it’s in our nature to justify our actions, because in reality, it’s not justification. It’s exposition.

Sure, I myself can think of a dozen rebuttals. Do rapists really think it’s right to ravish anyone they see? Do serial killers feel justified in killing random strangers? In a manner, yes! When you label these people, there is connotation, and this intrinsic meaning is actually dependent on the code or law and morality that has been instilled in you. If you could look past that, and perhaps try to look at the word rapist, or serial killer or exhibitionist as a neutral word that describes a role/function, then you will also be open to the suggestion that in such disturbed minds, perceived reality is warped. But the basic laws of motive remain. I cannot give a reason for such deviance without making them look worthy of sympathy; and I don’t want to. Because I feel it is right to hate them. Hate them for making reality what one might stoop to in the most horrible of nightmares, the kind of macabre daydream that you direct from beginning to end. Hate them for opening another venue of thought for an already rampant imagination.

Inuits have somewhere between 39 and 401 words for “snow” in Inuktitut, the Inuit language. According to consultants this proliferation demonstrates how important snow is in the Inuit culture — the precision of the language reflects the depth of the Inuit understanding of the exact nature of snow. [From: http://www.fastcompany.com/online/02/snow.html%5D” but not even one for “war”. Perhaps we didn’t even know of murder before Cain killed Abel?

And that finally brings us to the last premise: we do what we CAN do, that’ll cause the greatest change, or reap the greatest profit. Mankind knows no subtlety, unless that subtlety in itself is for the greatest benefit in the long run. I’d hate to mean what I’m saying, but it’s true; I think we are extreme creatures. Every action, however socially invisible, is screaming for attention/change. This is as bleak for me as it is for you; are we really so opportunistic? Do we live to take advantage of everyone and everything that crosses our path? I can’t answer that definitively; I think so.

So where do the gentler emotions fit in, into this scheming, calculating psyche?

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