The Kevin J. Rice
Most personal philosophies are usually loaded with (pardon my french) bullshit.
Its usually a bunch of bung like
My philosophy is probably bung, too. But its mine, and Ill
delude myself into believing it for a while longer. At least until
I figure a better way of phrasing it, or change my mind (the latter begin
much more likely, methinks).
their ideal view of themselves
what someone told them they were like
a test-run, trying a concept about yourself on for size
You will notice that this is broken into two documents. The first
are my Commandments, the rules that I have about the way I act. The
second is my Credo, or What I Believe. These are my assumptions
about the universe. One has to have assumptions before making judgments
about the world. These are mine.
FEEL FREE TO COMMENT: If you disagree with any of this,
think its pathetic and wrong, cool. At least Ive gotten a reaction
out of you. If you agree with everything I've got here: drat!
That means Im not the unique person in the universe that I thought I was,
and Ill have to go off and invent something wholly new.
Also see: The Seven Deadly Sins, a relatively new page I created.
A bit of history:
In college, I read a book by Robert Heinlein called, To Sail Beyond the Sunset. I found the main character fascinating.
During adolescence, this character, Maureen, is asked by her father (a
country doctor and free thinker) what her 10 commandments are. She
replies (as normal for the setting of 1890s rural Missouri) the ones in
the Bible, Exodus (chapter 2). The father says, No, your real ones.
Think over the ones that will apply to you and come back in a week.
At this point, so I could come up with my own ideas before seeing how the
character answered, I also put down the book. It took me about a
week, too, to come up with something I liked.
Later in college I revised it again and again, adding or subtracting a
word here or there, but the vast majority of it is actually unchanged.
I added one commandment (#6) after taking a course in world religions at
Hamline University in St. Paul, MN, from Dr. Steven Derfler, a wonderful,
interesting, and insightful professor. He pointed out the difference
between Power and Authority.
Personal 10 Commandments
These are my rules for living
1. To Thine Own Self Be True.
My moral code is the only one I'm responsible for. I report to myself;
I have to be able to look myself in the mirror tomorrow.
The purpose of a morals system is as consistent guides, not as absolute
Violation of my moral code means an unanticipated situation (nothing
to feel guilty about - new is usually good), or
Violation comes from conflicting mutually-exclusive desires, or
Violation comes from self-delusion about my own motives (a violation of
my commandment #3, not questioning myself well enough).
2. Be Nice.
Limited by my best self-interest (be nice to your mugger!)
Limited by best interests of others: telling important truths despite the pain caused (not always required or desired);
- Limited by personal responsibility (spanking your child);
3. Question Everything
There are no subjects that are unquestionable.
Questioning other people's statements means you think, not that you dislike them.
Arguments indicate differing points of view and are a method of finding the truth.
Prejudice is fundamentally a lack of questioning. It includes judging arguments fairly made by people with questionable motives.
No one religion has a corner on the truth (Each, illogically, tends to deny all other's legitimacy).
Question Authority, especially your own.
4. Be Creative.
Attempt at all times and in all things to appreciate the beauty and creativity
inherent in the universe, and echo it wherever possible in my doings.
Contrapoint: Judicious destruction clears space for new creation.
Getting frustrated with life is a good sign of not using creativity enough.
Avoiding waste isn't just recycling, it includes time: Implement Your Dreams.
5. Be Honest.
Includes truth-telling and keeping promises.
Dishonesty is destruction of trust. Destruction opposes Creativity. This reinforces #4, Be Creative.
Honesty includes obeying laws. When laws self-conflict, either change the laws or determine their motives and follow the purest of them, applied, despite the consequences. This is obviously limited by a wise guage of my own ability to change my environment.
6. Respect Proper Authority
Abide by society's Necessary and Proper Laws unless they conflict with personal commandments, and then decide if
it's important to change society or self.
Authorty is Controlled Power. Lightning is Powerful but unguided; God is Powerful and Guides that power, so God is the Ultimate Authority.
7. Abide by the implications of my Credo.
These are my assumptions about the universe, my deepest beliefs.
1. God Exists. The one, immortal, omniscient (subject
to certain restrictions concerning time and creativity, as yet undecided
upon), and omnipotent (may change Earthly circumstances by means unknown)
God is the creator and master of the universe. God is not generally
inimical, spiteful, indifferent or unjust. The universe is patently
unfair, we must cope.
2. The Soul is Separate From The Body. There is life
after death. This may be the pathway/mechanism of human divine communications:
prayer via the shape of the soul, divine influence is God's presentation
of options, and this can be assisted via a person's soulful/worshipful
3. Free Will Exists. I am free to choose any option
presented to me. The universe doesn't have to allow me to act on that decision, but I am free to make it. God may thus influence
- what options I see as available
- how circumstances allow me to act
4. God Commands Universal Justice. When I die, I
will be judged by God. This judgement will be based on my ethical system, behavior, intentions, and recognition of God's presence. The results of this judgement determine something important put unknown.
- An ethical system is different from a belief in a divine being.
- I am responsible for my own ethics and belief
system, and implementing them to the best of my ability. I can choose to adopt someone else's moral system as a matter of convenience or recognition of divine truth, without penalty or reward.
- I am not responsible for the acts of others,
except where I induce or coerce those actions. In that case, I share responsibility in direct proportion to my influence and or my intention to influence. This precludes original sin (the son being held responsible for a father's sin). Note: The Bible (ref: Exodus, Isaiah) is contradictory on this point.
- I am responsible for my actions. If I am forced/coerced to action or thought, judgement is mitigated by the extent of the coersion.
5. Sin is Bad. Sin is both:
- Intentionally causing Unnecessary Pain (to self or others)
- Disrespecting God
- Intolerance of other belief systems is Hubris (greek for godlike arrogance), and thus disrespects God.
- Denying another human's dignity causes unnecessary pain. Dignity is self-determination, a God-granted right.
- All people have equal moral opportunity.
I've been a Methodist by upbringing and none of the above conflicts with that so far as I know.
However, If you have different ideas, cool. I respect that and wouldnt dream of trying to change your mind. Please dont flame me if you
happen to think its blasphemy. It probably is, by the more conservative
branches of Christianity. But its what I believe, and if you disagree,
I will respect your opinion by not telling you youre wrong. Enjoy!
The Real 10 Commandments
(reprinted without permission from the New Revised Standard Version
(NSRV) Bible (c) 1985 (?)
1. You shall have no other gods before me.
2. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything
in the heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.
You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God,
am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to
the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love
to thousands who love me and keep my commandments.
3. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the
Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.
4. Remember the sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days
you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath
to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you
, nor your son or daughter, nor you r manservant or maidservant, nor your
animals, nor the alien within your gates. For in six days the Lord
made the heavens and the earth, and the sea, and all that is in them, but
he rested on the seventh day, therefore the lord blessed the sabbath day
and made it holy.
5. Honor your father and mother.
6. You shall not murder.
7. You shall not commit adultery.
8. you shall not steal.
9. Thou shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.
10. You shall not covet your neighbors house. You shall
not covet your neighbor's wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox
or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.
Commandments 1, 2, 3, 4, and 10 are functionally the same: Disrespecting God.
Commandment 1: Having more than one God disrespects God's unique identity and authority over us.
- Commandment 2: Worshipping idols denys God's uniqueness.
- Commandment 3: "Taking God's Name in vain" is commanding God to do something or denying God's existence. Both infringe on God's autonomy and Supreme Authority. God's paying attention to the light and trivial things mankind does is a gift, not a right.
- Commandment 4: Keeping the Sabbath holy encourages us to respect (regularly recognize) our place in God's universe in deed as well as word.
- Commandment 10: Coveting is worshipping objects (wealth). God has NO competition; creating Everything deserves recognition. The spiritual (God's Authority) supercedes the material
Commandments 6, 7, and 8 are the same: hurtful destruction:
Commandment 5, honor your father and mother, is a part of respecting God's authority by respecting those to whom it was handed down. I phrased my commandment (above) as 'Respect proper authority' which encompasses
this and the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 10th commandments.
- Commandment 6: Theft is tantamount to destruction of the autonomy of another person, denying them the 'use' of an object.
- Commandment 7: Murder is the hurtful destruction of life.
- Commandment 8: Adultery is the hurtful destruction of a love and/or trust bond between committed partners.
Thus, all commandments can be summed up as 'Respect Proper Authority' and 'Don't be hurtfully destructive."
Copyright (c) 1997 by Kevin J. Rice. All rights reserved. Permission to Copy
this page freely is given if a link to my home page is provided: http://www.justanyone.com
and my email address of email@example.com