How do our morals get instilled in us? By our parents? By our peers and our environment? By ourselves?
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I feel that our morals are a combination of every moment of our lives. I know its a cheesy thought, but everything that happens to us, and everything that we do has a small impact on us. That being said, people have varying degrees of morality. I personally have a relatively high morality, at least when it comes to following rules. I do my homework on time, don’t spend much time out of class without permission, turn using my turn signals, don’t sneak out, listen to my parents and teachers , and basically follow rules laid out to me by law or by my teachers/parents. I don’t really know why I’m so scared to break rules but I just personally am. That being said I am actually not sure if someone would act like me if they have had my same exact experiences. I think that some of my morals come just naturally, be it how I’m “hard wired” or just nature. I think that environment has a lot to do with the morals someone adopts, but it does not explain why, for example, someone coming from a privileged, rule-following lifestyle would go on and become a serial killer. I feel that some of our actions are just very natural, and can be highlighted by our experiences. However, to totally just discount what I said, nature pushes us to be selfish animals who only think for ourself, while morals normally are for the benefit of others. It is why the runts of a litter are normally the first to die, the other babies are being selfish in their needs and do not necessarily even know that their actions are causing another animal, their sibling, to die. I feel that morality, and its origins are far to complicated to come from one source, however I also think that some of the sources that we get out morality and personality from haven’t even yet been realized.
Our morals get instilled in us in all three ways. Our parents can often show us right from wrong at an early age. Then our peers and environment reinforces this view that our morals that our parents gave us were right or wrong. And if we didn’t get any moral guidance from our parents on a certain topic, our peers usually influence us into accepting their morals on the issue. The question is then begged, is their morals just their parent’s? Yes and no. That’s where we come into the picture. Where we are free to make our own morals. While original thoughts may not exist, we can still come up with odd moral systems. Someone with sociopathic/asocial tendencies may create their own morals with no regard to their peers. They will do whatever it takes to accomplish their objective. A desirable end justifies the means for them. Most people would be willing to go to lengths to accomplish their objective however when hurting people, both emotionally or physical, is involved, they do not continue. This is a prime case of their morals being shown. So in my opinion, it is all three that cause us to make our morals/moral system up.
Outside Source: http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/07/health/lifes-work-de-waal/
This articles gives some light into my idea of how many people may not even realized where morals come from. Also, it opens another question about religion and morality. I agree with De Waal in that religion is not necessarily needed to have morals.
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