Case For Cristianity Essay, Research Paper
Moral conviction is something that everyone should have, it is inherent, or at least that is the assumption. In the book, “A Case for Christianity”, by C. S. Lewis, Lewis argues that it is part of the “Moral Law”. Not the part that will make you forget about yourself and help someone else even though it might put you in danger, but rather the part that makes you feel bad when you have wronged another person or broken your own moral code. That is just it though, you set your own moral code, not anyone else. Sure it can be influenced by teachers, parents, friends, movies, media, and numerous other entities of our society, but the end result is your own choice, your own moral standard that you have set for yourself.
I was brought up believing that everyone has some sort of slight moral conviction after every action, this now, I believe, is simply just not true. Speaking from personal experience, if you believe that what you are doing is not wrong, or that it has a legitimate purpose, than you will not feel any moral conviction. This is of course a rationalization; a fake truth that you have convinced yourself is the truth. I once had it explained to me by a career criminal, that what he was doing was keeping society in order. As he explained it, if he and all other crime seized to exist, the economy would be destroyed. Inflation and unemployment would skyrocket, the dollar would be crushed, and nothing could save us except for the rebirth of crime. His explanation stated that once crime seized to exist there would be no need for police, security companies and their employees, judges, prisons, and the need for doctors and lawyers would drop significantly. Millions would be out of work, causing an economic disaster. This rationalization worked for him and kept him from feeling morally convicted about any crime. He seriously felt like he was doing his part and helping in society.
Often the assumption about convicted criminals is that they are not sorry about the crimes they commit, but rather about being caught. This is probably true in some and maybe even most cases, but not in all. Has not everyone done something in his or her life that they felt bad about, or morally convicted, and then went out and did it again? What is the difference if you feel bad about breaking your word, or robbing a bank? In both cases you feel morally convicted, but that does not mean you will not do it again. Some criminals commit crimes, serious crimes, such as murder or rape, feel horrible about it, and then go out and do it again. Does not seem like your average psycho, cold-hearted killer, but a weak-minded person will give into the temptation rather than stand up against it.
All the time people act on impulses, on urges. A car cuts you off and you scream obscenities through your closed window, and maybe even issue a single-digit gesture. This was an impulse, a reaction to an action, it was not thought out carefully beforehand. The driver of the car did not think to himself, if this driver cuts me off, then I am going to scream at him and flip him the finger. To some drivers this kind of actions might be part of everyday life. No moral conviction, not even a second thought about it. While to others it might bother someone so much that they feel bad until they confess to doing this. Both cases have the driver breaking societies so-called rules of etiquette, or falling victim to road rage. The difference is the moral standard that each driver has set for him or herself.
C. S. Lewis stated in the book “A Case for Christianity” that sometimes you need to suppress certain feelings and let others rise during the right time. Such as war, you must suppress all that you know about your moral conviction to kill, steal, and sabotage. You must raise up your feelings of patriotism and fight for your country. At times like this it is necessary to suppress your moral convictions and due your duty for your country. I certainly agree with this ideology. There are times when you can not let your moral convictions get in the way, at these times you must change your moral standards, so that you can do your job.