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Is Moral Behavior Necessary for Happiness?
Can happiness be considered a sign for doing the right things? The answer is probably yes. Both happiness and morality are abstract in nature, which complicates the understanding of the relationship between them. Happiness does not happen by chance, but is sought through many different ways. Moral behavior is one of the means to achieving happiness.
Morality is essentially a prerequisite for happiness. Individuals are morally inclined to promoting the happiness of other people besides their own happiness. An individual’s happiness is influenced by their actions and attributes, as well as those of the people around them. A person who is characterized by morally unacceptable behavior is likely to receive negative treatment from other people. Brülde observed that many researchers believe that all people have a strong moral reason to not just promote their own happiness, but also the happiness of others by doing what is righ. Emmanuel Kant’s theory of ethics attests to the belief that the means to happiness should be justifiable and acceptable. Happiness can therefore be promoted through morally upright behavior, which likely leads to positive treatment from other people.
Religious teachings, Christianity in particular, put much stress on the strong connection between moral behavior and happiness. Christianity promises happiness to those who are morally upright. Happiness comes as a reward to individuals who conform to a society’s norms. Dirk observed that although some researchers view this notion of rating the outcome based on the means as misleading, it is worthwhile for the prosperity of mankind. There are also philosophical view points against the idea that moral behavior is necessary for happiness. Aristotle’s view on ethics disregards the role of morality in the achievement of happiness. Like the Utilitarian theory, Aristotle argued that if the ends are justifiable, then the means to achieving them are of little concern. Despite this view point, the role of moral behavior in happiness is significant.
Moral behavior plays a significant role towards happiness. An individual’s happiness is, to a large extent, dictated by their actions, attributes and treatment from others. Religious teachings attest to the view that morality is necessary for happiness. Although some theories argue against the need for morality in happiness, there are several reasons in favor of this argument. Accordingly, moral behavior is important in achieving happiness.
Why Is Good Behaviour Important In School?
Behavior comprises of the mannerisms and actions exhibited by a person. Good manners are not just about following set rules. Relating well with people, hard work, being able to stand up for oneself and others for the right reasons and knowing how to control emotions are also critical. Instilling discipline in children at an early age makes them grow up confident, respectful and knowledgeable of what is right and wrong. Poorly behaved kids not only create bad publicity but also cause a lot of embarrassment.
Every school has rules and regulations. Breaking them seems easy and fun. Many students see getting into trouble frequently as cool, but this is not the case. It takes gut and courage to constantly do what is right amidst negative pressure. Behaving well attracts favor and honor from peers, parents, school staff, even the administration. All this respect boosts self-esteem. Many would settle for leaders with good conduct. Moreover, well-behaved students always have the best recommendations.
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According to Duckworth and Seligman, good character is more integral to good performance as compared to IQ. (M.E.P, 2005). Morals enable one set priorities. Upright students do not permit any distractions. At school, they only focus on one thing; their quest for knowledge. When everyone else is busy trying to look good, they struggle to excel keeping in mind that their time is coming. They channel all their efforts and concentration to their books. Success in later life is commonly attributed to academic prowess. Directly or indirectly, it is evident that behavior influences people’s life outcomes.
Good behavior sets students apart. Everyone else will use you as a point of reference. Parents would wish for their children to behave like you. Your age mates and those younger than you will always try to put themselves in your shoes before making any decision. In case of any problems, they will run to you for counsel and help because your personality has earned their trust. Overwhelming, right? But it is all in good faith.
The whole issue about good behavior in schools may raise different opinions. Some may think that it’s a plot for the administration to be domineering and strict, making everything about learning boring, definite and predictable; but it is not so. Imagine an institution with self- driven learners; all focused on their education, active in all school activities, following all the set rules, engaging their teachers and guardians adequately in their learning process and presenting their grievances confidently through the right channels. What an epic situation! The school will run efficiently, and classes will be very effective as no one will create distractions of any kind. Learning will even be more fun because more benefits and rewards might be introduced.
In as much as school is meant to instill knowledge, it also presents challenges that can only be overcome by wit and wisdom. Being of noble character from a tender age puts you in a better position to solve more and bigger problems that may arise in the future. Wise people remember lessons learned from their past experiences; good or bad and apply them when a need arises.
Emotional intelligence is a strength very few have. Principles of morality are incomplete without it. Attributes such as self-control, perseverance, and sociability are very essential when it comes to relating with others. It is very common to find students fighting just because one of them bad mouthed another, or one hating a math teacher because of a failed test. Knowing where to direct negative anger emotions helps in building and sustaining relationships. Fighting and hating is not a solution. At times silence is the best medicine. Seeking help can contribute to improving grades and even kill the bad attitude.
The society we live in today is quite rotten. Demanding good behavior from students is quite tall order. Some institutions even go as far as giving incentives for students to behave well. How shameful! Ultimately, winning is the game of those with proper conduct.