Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Moral question of the day.

Let's say that you have a chronic condition, or struggle, or burden. (Think medical, psychological, mental, emotional, financial, etc.)  If you could pass it off to another person, anonymously, would you? By this, I mean that you cannot choose who receives your condition. It may be your best friend, a total stranger, or your worst enemy. (If you have a lot of enemies, let's talk about that later.)

So. Would you pass it on?

19 comments:

Marcus Fidel said...

No I would not. I operatevon a core belief of "love your neighbor" and the Bible says,"
Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. —Romans 13:10" So no, as this would violate my core.

Jen Brimmage said...

I agree. What made me think about this is how people tend to behave differently when they are anonymous. But I also think a lot about how we can lose perspective with suffering.

nicrap said...

This is great. You can start a series of posts beginning with this one. :)

What would i do? I can't say exactly. Only the moment would tell. I can only trust that i would do the right thing.

However, would it be such a bad thing if somebody took the 'burden' off our shoulders once in a while? Isn't this in the very nature of 'burden'? So maybe we need to a slightly different question than yours ... Maybe what we need to ask is not so much whether we would pass our burdens off to another or not as whether we have the right understanding of what constitutes a burden (and what doesn't). Same with fortune and misfortune. Is poverty a burden? Is ill health? And are wealth and good health really blessings? In other words, are we sure that we call a burden really a burden and not a blessing? ... For it is possible — just possible that it may be the other way round, and vice versa ... I am not saying that it has to be. But i think every human being ought to at least once in his life answer these questions for himself. For, on these will depend the direction he will give to his life.

So perhaps the only truthful way to answer your question is: Yes, if it is really a burden, then perhaps it wouldn't be such a bad thing if somebody would take it off my shoulders once in a while. But first i have to be sure that it's a burden. :)

Jen Brimmage said...

That's why I like you. That kind of thinking is why I am thankful to know you.

nicrap said...

He he. :)

Ducky's here said...

I'd like to believe I would not but given the opportunity can any of us predict how we'd act?

Values don't always translate to action.

Thersites said...

Can they, subsequently, "pass on" the burden/affliction? If yes, why not?

Jen Brimmage said...

That's a good point Ducky. But...

Values don't always translate to action.

Are they really values if they don't translate? Or are they wishful thinking? At times in my life I have lived according to my values, and at other times I have not. I think it was directly related to my connectedness, whether I was true to my values or not. When I am not living according to my values, there's a spiritual disconnect.

Jen Brimmage said...

I suppose they could pass it on, in this fantasy scenario. But then at some point, someone has to accept the burden/blessing.

But if they could not pass it on, would that change your answer?

Jen Brimmage said...

I suppose they could pass it on, in this fantasy scenario. But then at some point, someone has to accept the burden/blessing.

But if they could not pass it on, would that change your answer?

nicrap said...

But isn't there another side to the same question, namely, would you take someone else's burden off his shoulders and on yours? There have to be some takers too, right? ;) Would you?

nicrap said...

...Reminds me of this childhood tale.

Thersites said...

If I believed that my affliction had a purpose or that I brought them upon myself, I suppose that I could and should bear them myself. Since they most likely don't, and since I most likely cannot rid myself of them simply by wishing to inflict them upon another, sure, I suppose that yes, I'd wish that they happened to anyone else, but I wouldn't go so far as to go out and break someone's arm in the expectation that my arm would thereby be healed. In other words, I wouldn't "believe" that such an action would cure me or that my "wishes" could do any harm.

Jen Brimmage said...

nicrap, don't we do this all the time (take the burden) for our friends? when we offer to cook a meal, listen patiently, watch their children, etc. If we can't take the illness for someone, we can at least cook for them. Is that bearing the burden?

Jen Brimmage said...

Christians believe that we can "stand in the gap" for one another. Meaning, when a friend is having a crisis of faith, and is unable to bear the weight of sadness, grief, depression, etc, we can love them through it. We can use our own faith to strengthen them and help carry them through the hard time.

Jen Brimmage said...

FJ, you're getting all literal! :p
It's all an imaginary scenario. Basically, do I have the integrity to contain myself (my burdens) if I could magically and anonymously dump them in someone else's lap.

Here's where it comes from:
I've often wondered how some people can seem so put together and...squared away. I feel like I'm constantly five minutes late, hair slightly wet, and homework not finished. But some folks arrive early, well dressed, and cheerful. They even have yearly family portraits done (with all seven kids in matching, clean clothes) and post them all on facebook. ;-)

Hmm...I don't think I'm explaining this well at all. :-(

-FJ said...

Sounds like they're passing their own afflictions (expectations) onto you...

You don't have to "pick them up". ;)

Jen Brimmage said...

Exactly!!
:)

Z said...

No way...