What is Right?


The article on the Young Blood section of the Philippine Daily Inquirer published last Saturday, January 9, 2010 made me think about my ideals and principles. The author posed a question: Why do we do the right thing? Is it simply because we know that it is the right thing to do? Or is it because we are afraid of violating a rule and be punished for that violation?

Those questions had great impact on me because I know for myself that I am one of those people you may label as goody goody. But why do I choose to be goody
goody? Because I want to impress others? Because I am afraid to get caught doing the wrong thing? Or simply because I know it is right thing to do? I thought hard. My answer is I am a goody goody because I choose to. Because I think and feel that it is the right thing to do.

The question now is: When do we say that a decision,a choice, a path, or a thing is right? This is more difficult than the previous question. I remember “The Myth of the Cave” by Plato. Plato said that reality is subjective. What we perceive as reality can be simply the world painted by our senses. Our visions may be too limited and we may be too content in our world that do we not bother to seek if there is another reality we do not know. I think the same thing can be said about deciding which one is right or wrong. Sometimes the boundary of the two can be very vague. That’s why what might be right for may be wrong for others. How do we know when something’s right? I still do not know.

So how do I come up with a decision? I weigh options. I choose what is more
practical. I identify what and who to prioritize. These priorities will then dictate my moves and my decisions. I do not if what I chose is indeed practical or whether I was able to accomplish my priorities. I guess the bottom line is… So far, I am contented with what I have done… so I guess I may have done the right thing. 🙂

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