Saturday, October 5, 2013


I'm still a little concerned about how the conscience works, so I did a bit of research. It looks like there are two main categories that can be applied here.

1. Certainty. A conscience can be certain or uncertain. Either you know something is good, or you are uncertain if it is good.
2. Secondly, a conscience can be correct or incorrect. Your knowledge of morality can either be true or false.

From what I can tell, the chart looks like this:

Certain Conscience

Uncertain Conscience

Correct Conscience



Incorrect Conscience



As you can clearly see, it is more important to be certain that you're doing the right thing, than it is to actually do the right thing.  I had no idea this was a moral principle, but it makes perfect sense.

After all, a person who accidentally breaks the rules is not as guilty as much as someone who knowingly breaks the rules.  And again, someone who purposely does good things is better than someone who accidentally does good things.

But how do we apply this general principle today?  Think of any of the great ethical debates: gay marriage, abortion, war, poverty.  Both sides are 100% certain that they are 100% correct.  In other words, they have certainty, which is the important part.  But correctness?  Well...since two opposites can't both be correct, only one side has the best case scenario.


GameOverTown said...

As you just explained, you can't just make a chart that resolves all conflicts, it's not that easy.

Anonymous said...

You said it, Michael. And you said it right!!:) God Bless you.:)

Anonymous said...

this post is full of brilliant observations, but it doesn't clear anything up. i mean, it probably does, but what's the use of it? you can't turn your conscience off if it's incorrect or uncertain

speaking of the last paragraph... you're implying you are correct, aren't you?