Does your behaviour reflect your ethical standards?
by Jacquie Wise
We all say we have a clear code of conduct, but do we truly express it in the way we behave? This is what living a spiritual life means.
Because of my experience in the field, I was recently interviewed as part of a university study on how social media has transformed notions of etiquette and has shaped the way that people, particularly Generation Y, socially interact.
The topic was to be discussed within the framework of ‘ethical consumption’, that is, is there such a thing as ethical communication?
One of the questions I was asked was how someone’s approach to communication reflects their personal ethics.
Everything we do reflects our personal ethics
Living a spiritual life means having clearly defined ethical standards and consciously making moment-by-moment choices to live by them.
When asked by my interviewer to define ethics:
There are specific codes of conduct for different professions, but in general, an ethical code of conduct includes honesty, integrity, transparency, accountability, confidentiality, objectivity, respectfulness, and loyalty.
(I would add that we need to include ourselves in all of those aspects, for example, honesty with yourself, respectful to your own needs as well as to those of others, and loyal to who you choose to be).
Within the context of social media, we discussed the value and the risks of being transparent in such a public arena, and the importance of knowing what to put on Facebook and what to hold private about oneself or about somebody else. Cyber bullying came up within the context of respectfulness and loyalty.
My definition of ethics: I said the bottom line is: Do no harm. Play nice with the other kids. It’s as simple as that.
One of my favourite quotes, by Voltaire, is:
‘Life would be very simple if it weren’t for man’s love of complications’.
In essence, that’s the code I live by: Do no harm. It covers everything. Do we really need to get more complicated than that?
If you’d like to define your spiritual journey and your code of ethics, contact me directly to arrange a convenient appointment time.
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