Adventures in Ethics: On Flatulence
One school of thought has it that being ethical is like a muscle or a skill that you can develop with practice and effort. As Karen Armstrong portrays it in "The Great Transformation" selfless devotion to ethical behavior is practically a golden road to enlightenment. So as a personal challenge I'm going to experiment with slowly ratcheting up my ethical quotient.
It's hard to have a project like this without well defined metrics for measuring your progress. I don't have any good system in mind yet for how I will measure the total value of my various ethical behaviors but I will use two basic principles for measuring my progress:
So one relatively easy ethical goal is to raise the amount of money I give to charity. If you are looking for deserving place you could do worse than the Malawi Children's Village And no I didn't learn about Malawi from Madonna. Stop asking me that!
But giving money is easy, I want a bigger challenge (not too big) that will reshape my ethical instincts in a permanent way, make the world a better place and teach me something deep and meaningful about myself. So in that vein I've given up farting for the month of April. OK, not all farting, just around people. Ethics is all about other people anyway, right? This will develop a constant concern for the welfare of others, encourage discipline and may even help with global warming.
If you are concerned about the direction the world is heading and are looking for a small but meaningful way to set the ethical course for your life, please join me in making April a flatulence free month. You have nothing to lose but that toxic haze.