I’ve been thinking a lot about the concept of “sin” lately. The Ten Commandments warn us against adultery, theft, murder and more.
I think most people are “good” at their core; decent, loving, compassionate and kind. The killer projected one identity to the world, while secretly he was someone else entirely.
Most of us have a public face and a private face. There are parts of ourselves we don’t want the world to see. No one needs to know that we can wolf down a gallon of ice cream in an hour, do they?
I do believe there will be a final “review” of our lives, and we will have to answer for the things we’ve done. I think we will be our own judges.
It’s been said that character is defined by what you do when you think no one is watching. What an illuminating concept that is.
Even those of us who would be considered “good people” often think nothing of stealing, cheating on our spouses, or worse. What does that say about our character?
Do we want to be a person of character, or not? What matters is that we are defined by our actions. If I don’t want to get caught, I probably shouldn’t do these things in the first place.
Sometimes it’s hard to tell what’s right or wrong. Does it “harm” the company, really? Or is cheating only the physical act of sexual intercourse?
We’re not perfect, and no one is expecting us to be. There is a big difference between making a mistake, and purposely doing something we know is wrong. You certainly have the right to do these things, and probably no one will stop you.
In situations like these, how do we know the right course of action? I think it can help to examine your motives and the possible consequences. Could your actions harm another, or yourself?
In some earth religions, there is only one commandment: Harm None; which basically covers all angles in two words. Do nothing that would cause harm to yourself or another. Seems simple enough.
Maybe some of you are rolling your eyes at me right now, thinking, “What’s the big deal? What if I take a few things from work, or cheat on my wife? If it’s true that we are all connected, then isn’t it also true that harming another means harming ourselves?
How many times have you done something that you probably wouldn’t have done if others had been there to see it? Would you feel embarrassed if these things were brought to public awareness? Did you act on your impulses only because you felt sure no one would ever find out?