By Fizza Naqvi:
Last night, I was reading an essay by Alpha of the Plough. It was quite an enlightening experience.
‘Saying Please‘ is an essay that speaks volumes about the current status of our moral values that had once been inculcated by our parents in us to help us make the right judgement, actions and choices.
Through this essay, the author tries to talk about certain actions that say a lot, but people don’t consider it significant enough to be paid attention to.
He begins with an incident where an elevator attendant knocks a gentleman out because he said ‘Top’ rather than a ‘Top, please’. The author wanted to communicate through this incident a general loss of civility in us.
This by extension depicts a clear picture of the society we live in today. The elevator attendant probably took the gentleman’s behaviour as a comment on his social standing. It wouldn’t be too far fetched to say that how we behave in these times clearly shows a lack of introspection on our parts.
The author takes a step ahead and thinks of this incident as an example of how we behave with other human beings in general. The legal system only intervenes when we harm someone else, all other actions, including the aforementioned little act of incivility, is beyond the law and calls for us to regulate ourselves, our actions.
There is a moral code that teaches us to be more compassionate, teaches us not to hurt others’ feelings. Our moral code is not a decoration piece but an essential compass that helps us distinguish the good from the bad, right from wrong.
Without a moral code/compass, we’re hollow beings. A moral code goes a long way in defining the kind of person we are. It’s not a cage; it is not about religion.
A sense of morality develops from observing the consequences of actions. It isn’t a rigid structure but something that’s dynamic and helps us to lead a good life.