Finding Direction: Ethics – Definitions, Characteristics, and Principles 2.1.0B
All of us sometimes choose or act toward Decay and sometimes toward Growth. Our thoughts and actions waver back and forth in the center of the bell-curve, gradually trending in one direction or the other. To cite a simple example: the first time you consider dropping a candy wrapper on the ground, it might be difficult to even notice what you are doing, to say nothing of choosing to put the wrapper in your pocket until you come to a wastebasket. But choices gradually become a habit. So after choosing to be responsible and careful of the world around you, eventually the very thought of throwing that candy wrapper on the ground is almost impossible to consider. But in a crowd of people who are leaving litter around, it is much easier to do because it suddenly seems normal.
Choosing toward Decay gradually makes choosing Decay easier and more natural. On the other hand, choosing toward Growth gradually leads to more Growth. The power of habit is strong, but not invincible. Our attitudes and behaviors are contagious and affect others, making Growth or Decay easier for them also.
The variety of our choices each day and over time create patterns that begin to define our lives, our relationships, and our way of being in the world.
Without Words We Cannot Think
“Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth.” 1st Letter to the Corinthians 13:4-6 from the Apostle Paul, The Bible
Growth: patience, kindness, truth vs. Decay: envious, boastful, arrogant, rude, demanding, irritable, resentful, wrongdoing