Sometimes the morality-thing can seem like a game, one where everyone just follows rules because those are the rules of the game and for no other reason than that. Sure, most of us believe murdering someone is wrong, but do we know why? What about the minor stuff, the everyday acts we take for granted? Is it really important we follow these rules? What is it that anchors down a moral code (if anything does)?
Ethics is the philosophical study of conduct, and conduct taken broadly can mean pretty much all of our actions in a given day! You’ve figured out that punching random strangers is a horrible thing to do, but you’ve likely never thought about whether or not the way you staple a stack of paper is ethical or morally right, but we perform our actions in a certain way for a reason, whether that reason is conscious to us or not.
Humans are notoriously bad at making decisions. We make mistakes all the time, even when we had deliberated on the issue for a very long time and believed we had a good handle on it. The truth, however, is that there is more going on behind the scenes than we would care to admit.
How are we effected by the extraneous and what does that mean for personal responsibility and authenticity?
During my time in college I had the great opportunity to tutor students in Logic, a class that I had previously taken and performed pretty well at. I enjoyed the study and enjoyed helping others to understand it and by doing so learned many lessons about not only logic but also the nature of learning itself.
One of the best lessons came to me not when I was in class and not when I was tutoring. Surprisingly, it came during my Discus practice.
Give yourself 5 days to learn how to play a song on a guitar. You are allowed to take the full amount of time off work so you have as much time as possible to prepare. At the end of the fifth day you have to play the song in front of a crowd.
A big crowd.
There will no doubt be a lot of pressure on you to not only succeed in playing the song, but actually play it well enough for people to be impressed. How would you start? How would you plan out those 5 days? Who would you contact to help coach you to short-term success? Do you think you could do it?
More importantly, would this experience help or hinder your further growth as a guitar player?