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Fear is the mother of morality

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Fear is the mother of morality.
Plan:
Mother > gives birth, is superior to, has power over, is the reason for morality> doing good, encompassing ethics, having a conscience, being virtuous...the difference between actions, intentions and decisions that are good vs bad
Why is fear the mother of morality? Why should we do good? Why can't we just kill each other or behave in a 'bad way'? FEAR OF DIFFERENT THINGS:
1. Fear of being ostracized by others/not receiving altruistic behaviour/humans are highly social beings and we wish to be accepted. No good if people hate us.
2. Fear of god - repercussions. Those who believe in heaven or hell feel that morality is the road to heaven
3. Fear of guilt/conscience - that feeling when you do something bad. This is what separates us from other species in that have a conscious mind. We are capable of thought.
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10:00am
Morality can be thought of as an overarching idea that suggests a big difference between what it means to do good versus bad. Most people in this world have some idea of what things constitute doing the 'right thing' and what constitutes doing the 'wrong thing'. For example, people would agree that it is morally right to keep secrets and morally wrong to kill someone. Why is it that as human beings, we act so morally? Friedrich Nietzche once said 'Fear is the mother of morality' in an attempt to explain why people exercise morality. Morality may be thought of as the "child" of three sources of fear: fear of ostracism from social groups, fear of god and fear of the internal conscience - that which makes us human. Individuals may have fear of one or more of these and it is when they truly do not fear any one that they go on to commit the gravest of immoral acts such as murder.
1. It is the fear of being ostracized from the social group that drives individuals to be moral. Human beings are a highly social group formed of networks of family, friends and members of the general society. In saying this, if one chooses to be immoral by harming others or benefit themselves at the expense of others, they will be ignoring the 'rules' of the social group (made to keep everyone happy) and risk not being a part of that group anymore. Social psychology research has also shown that being ostracized can be just as painful as a physical injury- demonstrating the salience of social interactions. Furthermore, altruism - beneficiary good behaviours that are reciprocated between individuals - is potentially lost if one chooses to do harm. Then, in the future, if they need something, they will not receive the action they need all because they chose not to do good in the first place. Such social pressures tend to keep people in check to do the right thing so as not to be excluded from the social group and to participate in altruistic behaviour. Fear of our conscience filled with remorse, regret and guilt also drives individuals to exhibit morality. We are capable of thought, of empathy and of having a conscience. It is when one commits a bad act that they know is immoral (we have a conscience) and harms others (we have empathy), that we experience guilt, remorse and regret because of our strong social ties. This is also a form of psychological pain and to avoid this, people will act morally.
2. Fear of god also drives individuals to be 'good' people. Most religions have a dichotomy regarding the afterlife: If you're good, you go to a good place (heaven) and if you have lead a bad or 'evil' life, you will go to hell and be punished by the higher power for the rest of eternity (a very daunting thought). Religious individuals then have a sense that to enjoy a wonderful afterlife, they will have to do good in their present life. Religious texts often accompany this warning of hell/heaven with ways to be good. The 10 commandments (e.g. do no harm to thy neighbour) are an example whilst the Quran and the Bhagvad Gita also have similar notions that encourage individuals to follow the "right path" and avoid punishment by god.
3. Fear of the state drives individuals to be 'good' people. Most if not all societies have rules for transgressors of rules. With relation to immoral acts such as stealing, murder or treason, the punishment ranges from incarceration to capital punishment. The possibility of death if one commits an immoral act is a huge deterrent and the fear of being executed is why most people are hesitant to commit murder.
In conclusion, fear of ostracism, psychological punishment, of god and of the state drive people to be moral in order to avoid the negative repercussions. Any one of these reasons may be enough to deter people but it is usually a mix of one or more that results in most individuals acting in highly moral ways that lead to the development of civilized societies. It is when individuals do not fear any of the repercussions (due to mental illness for example) that they go on to commit immoral acts such as murder.

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