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Power + Purpose = Moral Responsibility

With the onset of freedom and power moral responsibility for the effects of choices arises. Freedom, the awareness of alternatives, and power, the ability to choose among alternatives and act by consciously applying energy to the chosen course of action gives rise to moral responsibility. Another choice could have been made; a different amount of energy could have been applied to the choice taken. The effects of the action taken on the scope of consciousness of the acting individual and others affected by the individual?s action and the effect on the entire body of life, if extra-biological force is used, are the measure of how the action contributes or subtracts from the human purpose. The moral value of an action is most positive when the action chosen results in the greatest degree of expansion in the scope of consciousness. The inverse is also true. The moral value of an action is most negative if the action chosen results in the greatest contraction of the scope of consciousness. The same measure allies to effects on the entire body of life is extra-biological force is used but the area of application is the biological impact of the energy used. The moral value of an action in this dimension is most positive if the action chosen results in the greatest degree of expansion in the ability of life to grow. The inverse is also true. The moral value of an action is most negative if the action chosen results in the greatest contraction of the ability of life to grow. Consciousness of alternatives is an ever-changing circumstance. Moral decision-making relates to the consciousness of alternatives. One of the ways to improve the overall value of moral decision-making is to expand the awareness of possibilities. Broadening the availability and improving the quality of education has obvious value in improving the value of moral decision making throughout any culture. When the power applied to a particular choice extends the negative or positive effects of that choice in the modern era the effects of choice can expand significantly compared to several hundred years ago when technology was less powerful. Social aggregation of power has always been a significant amplifier of power and a field of choice and action where moral and ethical judgment applies. Presently group action and effects for the better and worse are amplified by the power of technology and the growth of human population compared to previous times. This increase in overall human power calls for an expansion in the way we relate to moral and ethical conduct as amplified by groups and systems. I have created a moral/ethical scale that takes these expanded powers into account.

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