C is for Consequentialism

CSo Day 3’s word is ‘Consequentialism’ – the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy explains it like this – “of all the things a person might do at any given moment, the morally right action is the one with the best overall consequences.”

I suppose it’s not a theological term as such, though it does appear on some glossaries. It is however another one of those concepts that I’ve been aware of, even if only vaguely, but didn’t know what it was called.

The action that comes to mind when I think of this word is, lying. I have told so many lies in my life, I can’t count them. I have justified almost all of them and have felt many of them a necessity.

I think of how many times I fobbed my Dad off with lies. It was easier to tell him that my brother’s band were playing in some far off venue. If he knew they were performing just up the road, he’d have been in a taxi on his way to the pub, rather than safely tucked up in his bed where I preferred him to be.

The ‘overall consequences’ of my action helped me to justify the lie; and I freely admit that if he was still alive, I’d still be doing it.

It is something I have and still wrestle with. I don’t have a balanced thought to round this one off with. Only to say that I’m so thankful to God for His mercy and forgiveness for this and many other things I’ve done for the sake of ‘the best overall consequences’ – more commonly known as – ‘an easy life.’

2 thoughts on “C is for Consequentialism

  1. greyzoned/angelsbark

    What a great word and an even better concept! If only people could look ahead at the consequences that will result from their actions, how many of said people would change their action? Probably a good many! But we are here to learn and to grow. All we can hope is that as we get older, the concept of Consequentialism will be one of our stronger fibers. Great post!
    Michele at Angels Bark

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