Moral Hipocrysy And Moral Decline Behind Human Actions

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The author argues that moral hypocrisy has the main aim of self-benefit by those who choose to practice it. He goes on to state that moral philosophers often persuade us to behave in a certain acceptable way that, in essence, we have to act in a certain way because society expects us to behave that way. They do not stop to ask the question as to whether moving in a way that upholds the moral principles are possible, and if it is genuinely practiced. In a nutshell, people are more focused on self-benefit rather than moral integrity.

People are moral hypocrites because of the social and self-rewards that come with it, thus try to avoid the social and self-punishments that go with it. In a way, we cannot run away from moral hypocrisy since it was ingrained in us while we are still young to make us better persons in the future to avoid selfish and impolite manners. Individuals are hindered by their conscience to break free moral hypocrisy, although deep down, we want to (Batson, 2008). Since what other people think of them matters, they have no option other than to morally masquerade.

Moral principles are ingrained in people during childhood through the practice of reward and punishment and, once people get accustomed to them, practicing them becomes the ultimate goal. Based on the method of reward and punishment, then an individual is then compelled to be morally upright and thus the concept of moral integrity (Batson, 2008). The author goes on to argue that moral integrity has the ultimate goal of acting according to one's ethical principles compared to intrinsic moral motivation, which aims at enhancing one’s welfare.

According to various philosophers, moral motivation is either driven by integrity, hypocrisy, or both (Batson, 2008). Based on research on the concept of moral motivation, individuals are more moral hypocrites in nature when given a chance to chosen between the positive and negative consequences of any action. Where self-reward is involved in being ethical and avoiding self-punishment for being a hypocrite, individuals tend to be more moral to themselves and thus are compelled to practice their moral principles. One can violate their ethical standards by engaging in Self-deception. Here self-deception allows a person to hold two contradictory beliefs about something; this kind of self-deception does not go hand in hand with moral hypocrisy.

Moral hypocrisy ascertains when the confrontation between ethical standards and self-serving behavior remains avoided. Moral hypocrisy is, therefore, identified when immoral behavior obtains perception as being virtuous and avoiding comparing one's reaction to their ethical standards (Batson, 2008). Once an individual convinces themselves that they acted morally, then their character can be analyzed from the perspective of their moral standards without feeling any guilt.

The second type of moral deception receives elimination by avoiding comparing one's immoral behavior by one’s ethical standards. The concept of self-awareness, for example, by one looking themselves in the mirror, increases the awareness of divergences between character and the personal standards that give one the pressure to act in conformity to it. When one is self-aware, they tend to accept themselves more than when they are not. The society forgets moral hypocrisy when a righteous person avoids the cost of being honorable and not comparing their behavior to the set standards. Self-awareness pushes people to honest to appear virtuous, thus it creating the room for self-deception which, leads o moral hypocrisy.

The universal underpinning of morality is the Golden Rule, which requires individuals to do to others what they expect done unto them. According to the Golden Rule, for a person to be moral, he or she should first place themselves in another person’s situation. Perspective-taking, therefore, requires the ability to put ourselves in another person’s shoes. This concept comes from the point of view that if a person is persuaded to take the situation of another with whom their interests are different, they will be more convinced to tone down their interests. They will then give room for the benefit of the others and, thus, feel inclined to abide by the moral principles in lights of the needs of the others.

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Perspective-taking is divided into two, first is the imagine self-perspective entails imagining someone else’s thoughts and feelings if they were in the situation of another. Secondly is the imagine-other perspective, which looks at the views and the emotional state of an individual in need. These two forms of perspective thinking invoke emotional reactions compared to objective perspective thinking.

The results of these two types of perspective thinking are different in their results in that the imagine-self perspective is more likely to elicit mixed reactions to a situation while the imagine-other aspect has pure empathetic feelings. The imagine-self view is, therefore, the concept that stimulates moral integrity in a person. This argument coins on the idea that for a person to be ethical, they must first imagine herself in another person's predicament. Therefore, if participants in any research are made to go through another person's encounter before undertaking the study, the contact will stimulate the moral integrity in them and thus influence the findings (Batson, 2008). To this end, therefore, imagine-other perspective creates a vigorous reaction that leads to the right motivation and not increased moral response.

Some philosophers believe that exposing participants in research to imagine the other's feelings preceding the investigation is inappropriate since it results in the provision of positive results without having to flip the coin. Studies have demonstrated that the imagine-self perspective has little influence in encouraging moral integrity. The idea of imagining yourself in another person's situation can act as a corrective measure to absolute moral intolerance to which a position of advantage is more inclined to. People who are self-reliant and advantaged in life will not bother minding those the situation of others, they will, at all means, try to resist and, therefore, fail to have moral integrity at all.

From my point of view, the concept of moral hypocrisy is not absolute and, it, therefore, varies from individual to individual from the circumstances. It is common for moral values to be taught in individuals from childhood to make them better persons. However, the behaviors do not go all the way into adulthood because, as an adult, you have a choice on what you think is right for or not. Moral hypocrisy depends on the situation or the position of a person in life, and this can be from an economic or social perspective.

When a person has all that they require in life and, therefore, placing them in a position above other, they do not engage in people-pleasing actions for the gainful gesture. Such kind of self-accomplished people is less likely to be more moral hypocritical. They are more like to be the real themselves because they do not mind what people or society thinks about them; hence, do or act in a way that they feel is right for them.

On the other hand, when an individual has to rely on someone for something or want to appear suitable for their own hidden agenda, they may want to be morally hypocritical because they know what is in for them. From a religious point of view, when a person indicates good morals from childhood, they are more likely to follow the same thus will not see the need to masquerade morally. They know what is acceptable and not and, therefore, will stand by it whether they get the liking from the society or not. However, the situation may be different for individuals who are active and serious about their faith.

Imagine-other perspective thinking impact on individuals is relative and, therefore, less likely to have the same effect on people. There are those people who, when put in other people’s shoes, will be empathetic, and that will significantly change who they are in life. However, there are those despite being in another person's situation will remain unmoved despite the experience.

In life generally, everyone wants to be liked and be praised for how good they are, whether poor or rich. It is human nature for individuals to seem kind and morally upright, and therefore, they will do what it takes to get the liking they want. Almost everyone in society is a moral masquerader because they have the community or parents that, in a way, are answerable to and, therefore, they have to practice the set ethical principles to avoid creating bad blood. Can you imagine a society that has no religion and where morality is not stilled in children when they are young? In this kind of society, people would be the real them because either religion or societal expectations will not have influenced their morals.

Most people act in a certain way because they know the benefits that come along with it and upholding the creation of moral principles. There is a reward that people always expect to have certain ethical principles, and some expect proper treatment from others. Some assume that people will treat them the same way they do to others, and some expect favors from those that they hold similar moral values with. Behaving as per the required ethical principles, therefore, creates some sort of fear in people because they have to follow what is needed; otherwise, they will be outcasts, and will never get the support from their family and friends when they need it. Societal expectations curtail the freedom for them to be who they are, and breaking free moral norms is fatal.

Exposing research participants to a situation that creates the imagine-others perspective will always influence the findings because they give answers without having to do what is required. Although the outlook is supposed to entreat strong feelings and promote positive reactions, most people are more likely to ignore the situation of others. 

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