The Golden Rule - the foundation of most self examination

The Golden Rule - am I being consistent? Am I applying this criterion with bias to one party over the other?  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Rule

to me - this is a must in my checklist of reflection. To the point that a small voice warns me when I've said something underqualified or a nagging feeling occurs when I am not being consistent. 

If I am angry because X did Y, I check if I do Y. I'm saying a group of X does Y, I ask if Group Z does Y is that Ok? its more of a Variable Replacement mental test - but it begins with a personal examination - Do I do Y? What in the range of my behaviors is doing Y? 

A catholic upbringing first introduced us to the catechisms which s a terribly designed list of reflection notes. Comparable is the list of Checks and To dos in the last chapter of the Strategikon about what a General should or should not do (or Sun Tzu's art of war which is better cause it relates the Method and not a semi-random list). BUT there exists a better and handy tool for reflection that boils down to this reciprocation test aka the Golden Rule. 

A more elaborate derivation of the Golden Rule is the list of Arguments, Biases, Fallacies, Philosophical Razors, Anti Patterns, and Objections. In essence, these are more complicated Formulas of the Golden Rule that yield more specific results. 

An example of a golden Rule being connected to an Ad Hominem - can I just Attack someone and not their argument? How would It be if someone attacked my person instead of answering or proving my argument otherwise? What if I attacked the person and not their argument?   eventually, we realize what is reasonable with empathy. 

Science and the Brain trying to conserve resources would rather we learn the fundamental RULE and master the more specialized applications. Basically, instead of a very specialized tool for cutting a particular way, it recommends we learn to use a knife or our hands, then master tools based on the need. 

As I prepare for my cognitive slow down - as I learn from my grandparents and their serious limitations and observe my parents aging - I try to reprogram myself to perform a simpler mental exercise for reasoning. 

I will eventually have my grandfathers dementia - and forget my most cherished memories. One day i will wake up to unimaginable pain and have no idea why. He had one of those days where he was struggling to remember something, he would walk back and forth in the extension my parent made for them above the garage in san juan. Lola would say he's trying to remember something and he would agonize over the lost memory. I think he wasn't even 70 then and my parents are just at their 70s.

with those of us who have problems with cognition is it a mercy to be euthanized? 

Before he died, I would visit him in Tacurong in Mindanao. I remember the nights were terribly hot and humid. My grandfather finishing instant pancit canton and drinking a bottle of cold coke was smiling at me. My lola said "He's forgotten who you are" (Di ka nya kilala). It was a poorly lit house. He then stood up and began his exercise struggling to walk to the other side of the room, only to sit down and pant from the effort. And that memory haunts me when I look at my kids. When my kids hug me and want to sleep beside me - One day I will not know who they are.

Would it be better if they let me be me before I go or let me wake up remembering who I am in an aging body unable to see them or unable to see the oceans of time that has passed?  Would I also smile at my grandson without recognizing the child I tutored and taught science to? Who keeps a notebook and lanyard wallet in memory of me? 





Comments