FAQ: Morality and Spirituality

What are human cardinal values?
Sympathy, compassion, fundamental respect for others’ life, love for others’ inherent divinity, universal outlook, and service-mindedness are all human cardinal values.

Where may human cardinal principles be found?
The meeting point of the highest attainment of humanity and the blossoming of divinity is the base on which the human cardinal principles are established. It is the silver lining between the psycho-spiritual and the spiritual. It is the area of spiritual practices.

Must one do meditation in order to express and cultivate these principles?
Many good people do not practice meditation as such practices were not a part of their tradition or the culture. However, spiritual aspirants meditate in order to develop their consciousness continuously so that they will be able to realize the spiritual and human cardinal values more and more.

What are social values?
The social value of an excellent citizen is different from that of an ordinary citizen as their social utility value differs. However, the existential value of all living beings is one and the same as they are created by the same Supreme Consciousness and they all carry the same intrinsic potential within the essence of their being. Social values, based in the relativity of an ever-changing world, will always differ and change whereas cardinal values remain steadfast as they are based in the psycho-spiritual.

What is more important, human cardinal values or social values?
Human cardinal values such as respect and sympathy are more central to individual and collective wellbeing than social values such as efficiency and laboriousness.

Does yama and niyama represent objective morality?
The ancient Tantric principles of yama and niyama represent dynamic morality. Morality pertains to the relative world where everything is subject to continuous change. The goal of morality is provide human beings with that moral stamina which is needed to move towards an absolute and effort-free state of spiritual being where the dos and dont’s of morality come naturally and external imposition of moral principles are no longer needed. Hence morality is not a goal in itself but one of the means towards a supreme state of living. PROUT ’s morality is not objective or a goal in itself. For example, objective morality states: “Do not steal”, whereas an otherwise honest person may be ready to steal once his or her conditions have deteriorated much due to socio-economic exploitation. Rather, the principle of dynamic morality aims at rooting out the very tendency to steal by building the individual and collective in an integrated and wholesome way.

What is PROUT’s general view on capital punishment (death as punishment)?
Every individual has a right to rectify him- or herself. It is the duty of society to fulfill this right. Only in extreme circumstances, where society does not operate normally as during war, may such an extreme measure be warranted.

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