IMMORTAL MORALITY

Posted: August 23, 2012 in Uncategorized

      In my book, Immortal Beauty, two of the characters have been alive for a very long time. Celine and Marcus were once lovers and now find themselves in the twenty first century as bitter enemies. Celine accuses Marcus’ morals to be from another time. They are from about four hundred years ago and she finds them completely ridiculous and outdated. Celine is a modern woman in any age and embraces all that is new as each century produces its own wonders and horrors. This got me to thinking. Are our morals defined not only by where we live, but also by when we live? I know when my grandmother was young, a woman with make up on in the broad daylight was only one kind of woman, and not the kind of woman you would want in your home. Not so long ago it was very much looked down upon to have a child out of wedlock (do they even say ‘wedlock’ anymore?) and now it is much more accepted and common. When my parents met, if a girl got pregnant, the couple got married. I swear that is how most of my generation came into being! We were mandated by the morals of the time period! Would our ancestors look at us today and find us a heathenistic bunch of sinners? I am guessing they would. They wouldn’t recognize us with our piercings and tattoos and our revealing clothing. So this led me to think about my own morals. Are they just determined by geographic and temporal coordinates? Depending on when and where we live shapes very much what we think is right and wrong and good and bad. So of course, I had to ask myself. “Are my morals even mine or were they just handed to me?” Well, this is a muddle!

I like to think of myself as a stand up guy with good morals though very flexible and accepting of others’ decisions and lifestyles. Now I’m thinking that my sense of right and wrong is just a program that was downloaded into my young brain before I was old enough to develop a firewall. Are there universal and eternal morals? One could go back to the ten commandments and argue that yes, fundamentally most things have not changed on what is accepted and what is forbidden. They are a good guideline to be sure. Instinctively I have always felt compassion for people and animals and yes, even plants for as long as I can remember. I was told many times that I was too sensitive and I had to toughen up if I was going to survive this harsh planet. I was never able to do that and continue to be too sensivite. As for right and wrong, I learned a while back that it is personal in this modern age. Your morals belong to you and you alone and mine are mine. Of course people and institutions try to tell us daily what is right and what is wrong, but at the end of the day I like to believe that we stick to our beliefs, no matter where they came from. I know that what I used to think was evil and bad, I no longer do and that just comes from living life on life’s terms. I cannot judge other people for I have no idea what it is like to be them and to go through the life they are going through. Of course, I do make my silent judgments in my head, but again are these my judgments or just my parents and their parents and their parents passing down their belief system through the family tree like some dominant mutation? Of course I have no answers and only many more questions. So the question of the day is: Are your morals yours or are they hand me downs? Even if they are not our own original judgments, they still belong to us and on some level we believe them which leads me to the toughest question of all. Can I change what I fundamentally believe in? Celine obviously could and embraced the new morality with vigor, while Marcus clung to his old world ways. Would I be a Marcus or would I be a Celine? What about you my Beloved Immortals, which would you be?

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