Many times, we know clearly what’s good for us and what is not.
But because the question asked of us in those moments is not one of knowing whether or not a thing is bad for us, but rather, one of courage – the courage to walk away from what we know to be bad, the courage to propel our bodies in the direction of what’s decent and good – of morality.
Because of the nature of this demand, we are pressured into choosing not what is distinctly bad or good per se, but what is merely convenient in that specific moment – (and bad is almost always convenient. It is the nature of it. It thrives on the chameleon nature: becoming the color you desire at just the moment of need.)
Now, this pressure is self-inflicted.
It comes from our own prejudgment of our saintliness, absolutely convinced that we’re better than most, so it is easy to revel in the face of the horror which follows our choices in those what’s good what’s bad moments.
And because this is when we recognize, finally, that, like the next man, we’re thoroughly flawed in the deepest places, we almost never want to be responsible for making those choices. So we blame anger and hunger and political ambition and religious fanaticism and revenge or loneliness for commonplace hatred, stealing, political deaths, terrorism and adultery.
When in truth, what we are truly afraid of, what we are truly admitting, is our own frailties, our own imperfections, and if we had only admitted it earlier, we should not have committed those in the first place. Or the many times we will afterwards.