Who is responsible for improving the world? Philanthropy is private initiatives taken for public good, with a focus on quality of life. This is an interesting dynamic and begs the question of responsibility. Private initiatives taken for private good is capitalism, and public initiatives for public goods is government. Philanthropy is a personal commitment to improving the human condition. But with such vast suffering and such need for resources, time, commitment and creativity, where does the responsibility fall? Is it left to the motivated, the creative, the rich, the poor, the educated, the religious, the resourceful, the powerful, the divine? The responsibility to improve the world falls to everyone on the world.
The first thing to take into account is the backbone of most religions, many forms of government, democratic social structures and kinder garden classrooms- The Golden Rule: Treat others as you want to be treated. But it is more than just saying please and thank you, and not cutting people off on the highway :-) When stretched to encompass all of the world’s problems, the golden rule becomes more complicated. Humanities constant challenge is to understand and improve itself. And the effort needed to raise the quality of life on earth is huge. What is the method for this type of challenge? How do we apply the golden rule across the world? Morality is the sense of good and bad, right and wrong. It is a subjective sense, catering to individual preference, belief, culture and psychology. Studying morality is essential to understanding and improving the human condition. What is GOOD and BAD? What is RIGHT and WRONG? What is the GREATEST GOOD? Answers about morality and meaning come from human reason and knowledge of the natural world. It is an ever evolving process. Each generation must search for new methods for understanding and improving humanity. There is a unique responsibility behind the consequences of human decisions. And what can we learn from looking to nature? The natural world, composed of perfectly balanced ecosystems, transcends morality. Aristotle said "Nothing in nature happens in vain," and by looking to nature we can better use our sense of morality.
The morality of action should be judged by their consequences in the world. It is everyone’s duty to see their own actions as having consequence in the world, and take on a great deal of personal responsibility. You are responsible for- thinking for yourself, following your own curiosity, joining the search for new methods of understanding and improving humanity, questioning authority, using your own reasoning, being creative, holding high standards, loving human potential, and realizing that what you do impacts the state of the world and the future of humanity!
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