Table of Contents
What is Platonic Love?
Platonic love is the unique emotional and spiritual relationship between two individuals who love and respect each other for their mutual interests, their spiritual connection, and similar viewpoints on the world. It does not require any sexual activity.
Features of Platonic love
Platonic love is unselfish, nonviolent, and non-adversarial. Neither side has to be right or wrong, neither side wants any victory or defeat, and the relationship neither is based on jealousy or revenge.
Platonic love is built on respect for the other person and their freedom to love who they want.
Love Between Friends
Some friendships or romantic relationships are also characterized by the care of the other person’s feelings and honesty, self-sacrifice, trust, and respect for each other.
Friendship in “all its forms” has many similarities to romantic love. Friends love each other for many reasons: friendship, compassion, attraction, esteem, empathy, mutual support, trust, respect, love, a connection of values, a deep connection, and affection. These friendships involve both emotion and action.
Intention and Morality
The goal of action can have a powerful effect on whether it is judged as morally right, even if its consequences are not so great as to affect the future. Some actions would be morally acceptable if the consequences were non-existent or had no significant effect on future behaviour. Other actions would be immoral if the consequences were grave or if the consequences were likely to prevent the action from happening. These consequences are often serious, such as crimes against another person or the destruction of property.
Through intent, action, or statement can be described as morally right or wrong, or at least reasonably accepted or morally objectionable. The intent is the mental state of intending to act morally in a particular way. Some actions are regarded as being essentially wrong, in which case intent would be irrelevant. Others are seen as morally acceptable but insufficiently evil to warrant intentions to avoid harming or using positive good-conduct devices such as brakes.
For example, justifying a car accident through the intent of avoiding a pedestrian is generally not regarded as morally wrong. However, most societies have vehicular justice procedures to prevent wrong-doing (such as requiring injury claimants to prove that they suffered a personal injury, which is costly to prove).
Generally speaking, the intent is not required for morality. The general principle is that “whoever acts morally is automatically right in doing so. Where the word ‘moral’ appears in the law, that law is ‘moral'”.
Moral intents or intentions include the following:
For the benefit of the person whom I am helping, even if this benefit is temporary, or for the benefit of future children, I might have.
To do what I consider the right thing, even if what I consider to be the right thing at the time, involves doing something, I find to be morally wrong.
To protect the rights and property of the person or persons I am helping, even if doing so would involve depriving myself of some personal benefit.
Even if my actions are voluntary, I am still morally justified in doing what I believe to be the right thing, even if the action I take will result in suffering or death to another person.
According to the anthropologist E.O. Wilson, “Platonic love … offers a paradigm of moral reason in which love for a person (or entity) is motivated by a moral concern for the other, and not by self-interest.”
Good, Evil, and Unjust
Each person has a fundamental moral concept or idea that underlies the way they understand right and wrong. These concepts are called “personal notions” in ethics.
Upon reflection, each of us has a fundamental “good” or “moral” concept that underlies what we consider right and wrong. These concepts are called “private” or “intrinsic” in ethics. Individuals may differ about the merits of a particular action. Still, they are agreed that the action can only be right in a morally right person or a morally wrong person. Such an agreement does not depend on objective measurements of the actions or behaviour. Any individual could, if he or she wished, determine that the actions or behaviour being considered was right or wrong by criteria that had nothing to do with right and wrong at all.
Intrinsic moral values are similar to certain tastes or preferences, including taste, emotion, volition, self-image, and attachment.
Individuals may not be aware of their moral concepts’ existence or validity; moral concepts may only affect their action as they also are true or false in their subject. For example, we do not generally observe when we are lying, and because lying is often viewed as morally wrong, we do not realize that our basic moral concepts for what is right and wrong are incorrect.
Ethics theories also differ about what consequences are required to constitute a violation of a concept’s truth value.
Although all humans are subject to the consequences of moral concepts, an individual’s concept of “good” or “moral” may not be completely consistent with those of any particular culture or religion. Thus, the generally accepted theory of ethics varies widely across different cultures, religions, and cultural traditions.
For example, some cultures consider cannibalism to be a moral or even obligatory practice. In contrast, others (such as the Udga’al of the Australian Aborigines) consider it a violation of their moral codes. In the United States, it is a violation of federal law to murder another human being (unless, as in self-defence, the killing is necessary to prevent imminent death). Simultaneously, in Sudan, a person who is caught stealing or looting someone else’s property must immediately pay the victim compensation for the stolen property or face the death penalty.
In general, the phrase “right and wrong” is a colloquial expression that serves a formal purpose. Sometimes in the discussion of right and wrong, the word “ought” is also used.
Sub-categories of Morality
Different religions have different standards of moral conduct. “The morality of religion (if any) cannot be understood on any broader scale than this, as it is based on an individual’s moral beliefs and does not tie them in any way to particular institutions or beliefs.” Most religions have moral codes and see human moral behaviour as an expression of God’s will.
Catholics’ moral beliefs are grounded in the scriptures, dogma, and tradition of the Church, also known as the “Catholic Thinking.”However, they also view reason as a source of moral guidance. The Catholic Church’s statements on moral issues are based on moral principles and Jesus’ command in the Gospels and elsewhere to “Love your neighbour as yourself.” The Catholic Church also uses the Serenity Prayer as a guide for action and moral practice. In contrast to some Protestant faiths, Catholics view that individuals can be moral without submitting to a higher authority. Catholics also have a less negative view of marriage and divorce and have higher rates of both than other major religions. They also have lower rates of extramarital sex than do other religions and, according to the Pew Research Center, Americans overall. The Church does not regard homosexual behaviour as a moral abomination. However, it still regards it as a serious sin if it violates others’ dignity and makes the individual “unfit” for Catholic life. For Catholics, homosexuality is equivalent to the consumption of illicit drugs and marital infidelity, both of which the Church punishes by ex-communication. However, while a homosexual relationship is disordered, a marriage can sometimes be disordered as well. On the other hand, homosexual behaviour can be lawful, such as in a person suffering from a physical or mental illness.
Unlike Catholicism, Islam does not have a hierarchy of sin as one can attain “purity” from Islam. Instead, Islam has a hierarchy of moral acts, starting with the Ten Commandments and the rest being considered moral obligations rather than moral precepts.
Hinduism accepts a relativism of varying gradations, where there are moral values for different people and situations. Most Hindu texts agree that a good person does not depend on his religion. However, there is a concept of karma, which is a constant balancing of good and bad actions that need to be executed during one’s lifetime. A sin committed by a person will remain on their karma, and the resulting punishment or reward depends on the karma. Karma can be compounded by people who are unaware of their karma.
Sikhism believes in the existence of six forms of sin (say) as per scripture Amar Surjya Se Gurani – the Doctrine of Universe, i.e. not the sinful acts per se, but the intrinsic inclination of a person to sin (hakkayat). For example, one may sin pride when thinking of oneself as better than others. When one considers another person as superior to him, he may commit sins such as murder, theft or avarice. Guru Nanak declared this to be wrong (sahiye). Similarly, if a person murders a person of another religion, he may sin avarice, and if one helps others to sin, he may also sin avarice. Avarice results in the action of theft. Similarly, one may sin rudeness if he rejects a request from a person of another faith or violates a verbal commitment with someone of another faith. Such a person may commit rudeness or blasphemy.
Laozi, the founder of Taoism, defined the term (fangyi jin). He defined it as “doing evil whenever one likes and doing good whenever one likes.”
In Theravada Buddhism, “blasphemy” is normally translated as the sin of lust or covetousness.
In Buddhism, lust is the inclination to want what is not present. The senses are more clearly conscious of craving, and its craving produces a reaction or response (tanha) to the desire, so it is a feeling. There are several categories of lust that are not sinful. For instance, a woman lusting after a young man or woman is not practising sin, as long as it is not meant to be more than a temporary enjoyment of the beauty and talent that they possess. Another form of lust is seeing or wishing that one’s parents or relatives be in certain situations, but it is not the lust of covetousness, for it is not about wanting for oneself that which one does not have. Another lust is the desire for some object that does not belong to oneself. Such lust does not violate a precept because nothing would gain or take from another person if he were to act on this lust.
There is also a type of lust committed by a Buddhist monk, layperson, or anyone who does not commit the eight grave sins. This lust can be called celibacy lust because it arises from a desire for celibacy in Buddhist teachings. There is no sin in Buddhist traditions, but one may still feel guilt when he commits such lusts.
In Buddhism, the distinguishing factor between actual lust and “sinful lust” is how one pursues or initiates his desires. Actual lust is the motivation or the mood one is in when one desires an object of desire. Sinful lust is the motivation and mood when one feels like, but is not compelled to act on, what is happening in his mind. Actual lust is considered wholesome and positive, whereas actual lust is considered harmful and negative, but it is similar to the lust of a smokes person. When a Buddhist sinned because of lust, his sins caused his teacher to renounce him in some Buddhist traditions.
There are various taboos in many Buddhist scriptures, which may be broken if they do not apply to a Buddhist. For instance, in the Pāli Canon, a bhikkhu wife may not be present when a bhikkhu takes a bath, but such rules are not binding.
In some Buddhism traditions, moral behaviour is sometimes considered to be just a virtue, but a vice if applied to non-Buddhists.