Does your character have the moral and ethical capacity to withstand internal pressure, while at the same time holding at bay external forces bent on your destruction?

There are times we find ourselves in geostationary orbit around those things that would seek to influence and define who we are. These elements may or may not be grounded in truth. Some are based on perceived or contrived standards brought about by entities that supersede time and environments. They are not easily identified, but have a dark intelligence that deliberately contributes to the wounding of our hearts. There are others with forbearance and grace, who have devoted themselves to the revelation and establishing of true knowledge of who we are and what our worth is as individuals.

Ethical Coordinates
The thing about maintaining a fixed position in space is that it requires effort and the expenditure of energy. Satellites in this type of orbit have been programmed to contend with solar wind, the orbital velocity of earth, including lunar and solar gravitational forces, among other factors. In order to maintain their positional integrity, they also have to follow the direction of the earth’s rotation.

We too are susceptible to influential forces which can lead us to make unhealthy choices, or follow questionable directives. While this may be attributed to past or current experiences, (dark entities notwithstanding), it nonetheless causes us to fall into the cyclical paradigm of forced, if not unconscious compliance. Whether we are aware of it or not, we naturally lean towards following the path of least resistance. Just as satelites are configured to contend with known and to a lesser extent, unknown forces that may derail their predetermined trajectories, so too are we in need of substantive guidance.

Moral Compass
For the most part, this begins in the early stages of life. We are assembled (conceived/born) , fuelled (fed and nurtured), programmed (taught/disciplined) and then launched (released/promoted) in direction(s) dictated by those with the most influence; ironically, in some cases, even by some with little direct influence in our lives. Some have questioned if being raised in a disciplined, yet loving home, replete with healthy food; access to top healthcare services; excellent educational institutions while enjoying the company of like-minded individuals, guarantee that we are more likely to maintain a healthy physiological, psychological and spiritual balance. If we have been subjected to the harsh realities of rejection, or physical or emotional abuse, or other aspects of life that may have been beyond our control, there is a risk that any latent moral or ethical guidance system that may have existed at the outset, would either be dulled or damaged beyond all perceived repair. Any discourse on morals or ethics will cause to rise differing viewpoints, but at the end of the day we are still left with arguments that blend into, or contradict the two defining positions.

I came across a rather fascinating chart (see below) that attempted to differentiate between ethics and morals. While not an all-encompassing treatise, it encapsulates things quite succinctly.

Living By Dead Reckoning
When attempting to navigate uncharted avenues that connect these two potentially contentious thought processes, do we establish and ultimately defend, our current position by adhering to a previously determined line of reasoning or belief system? If so, are we then promoting our stated position based upon real or perceived historical events that have transpired?

Allow me to use an aeronautical analogy for clarification. During my flight training days, we studied various methods of navigation. One application involved the navigational technique of Dead Reckoning, which can be described as follows:

In navigation, dead reckoning is the process of calculating one’s current position by using a previously determined position, or fix, and advancing that position based upon known or estimated speeds over elapsed time and course.

One primary inherent problem with the Dead Reckoning technique, is that it’s subject to cumulative errors. For example, errors build upon errors. So if wind velocity and direction are unknown or incorrectly known, then the aircraft will slowly be blown off course. This means that the next positional fix is only as good as the last one.

Threatened By Integrity
So, our ethical and moral points of reference can be invalidated due to forces seen and unseen, that can, and will challenge the veracity of our positions at any given moment. With that in mind, what then is to be made of all this? I had previously written a short article on truth and yes, while it is only my opinion, it turned out to be a springboard to more questions relating to who we are; for me at least. Whether or not someone believes in, or even takes an ethical or moral stand on something, it does not negate the fact that those conditions or arguments exist.

Some would argue that in order to have a definitive understanding of morality and ethics, one would have to encapsulate the law of man as it pertains to (or not) Divine law. Some cannot extricate the two, while some cannot, or will not, advocate either one. One does not have to be prescient, to see that the choices we make, determine what we do, who we are, and invariably what we become. There are always at a minimum, two sides to a choice. Sometimes we do things, not by choice, but by compulsion; which in my view, indicates there are external or internal forces at play.

The process an individual undertakes to arrive at a specific conclusion, reveals much about what constitutes their character. This revelation invariably provides an unquestionable litmus test of the true essence of a person.

Rom 7: 15,16 – I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good.

Feature Image Source: designjuices.co.uk
Chart Image Source: Diffen –  http://www.diffen.com/difference/Ethics_vs_Morals