The Golden Rule
Freedom to Follow ~ Freedom to Choose
What exactly is “The Golden Rule”?
The Religions of the World agree – kindness and consideration are universal rights and principles worth following.
As with most just causes, the implementation is challenging.
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What is “The Golden Rule”?
The Golden Rule is a moral principle that states one should treat others as they would like to be treated themselves. It is also sometimes referred to as the “ethic of reciprocity”. This principle can be found in various cultures and religions throughout history and is often considered a fundamental principle of ethics and morality. The Golden Rule is a reminder to act with empathy and kindness toward others, and to consider their feelings and needs as if they were one’s own. It encourages individuals to act in a way that promotes mutual respect, understanding, and harmony in society.
Behavior that runs contrary to the Golden Rule includes any action or behavior that involves treating others in a way that one would not want to be treated. This can include behaviors such as lying, cheating, stealing, bullying, discriminating against others, or engaging in any form of physical or emotional harm.
For example, if someone were to gossip about another person behind their back, that would be a violation of the Golden Rule because they would not want someone else to do the same thing to them. Similarly, if someone were to steal from another person, they would be violating the Golden Rule because they would not want someone else to steal from them.
The Golden Rule is based on the idea of mutual respect and empathy, and any behavior that does not take these values into account would be considered contrary to the principle.
The Golden Rule, or a variation of it, is found in many religions and cultures around the world. Here are some examples:
- Christianity: “Do to others as you would have them do to you” (Luke 6:31)
- Islam: “None of you [truly] believes until he wishes for his brother what he wishes for himself” (Hadith)
- Judaism: “What is hateful to you, do not do to your neighbor” (Talmud)
- Hinduism: “This is the sum of duty: do not do to others what would cause pain if done to you” (Mahabharata)
- Buddhism: “Treat not others in ways that you yourself would find hurtful” (Udana-Varga)
These are just a few examples, and there are many more religions and cultures that have similar principles of ethical behavior based on empathy, compassion, and reciprocity. The Golden Rule is considered a universal principle of ethics that transcends any particular religion or culture, and it can serve as a guide for people of all backgrounds to treat others with respect, kindness, and understanding.
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