Golden Rule (Cont)

The basic level of morality has historically had 2-models. The Karma Rule Model is a patriarchical model of morality saying do so and so, or something bad can happen. It is often fear-based and is a model of external control. The Golden Rule Model is a matriarchical model of morality stating I will react to you, the way you act towards me. The two models meet basic morality needs. The Golden Rule is probably a healthier way of interacting (reciprocity) with others than to act out of fear. However, the maternal model at times can be a pollyannaish view of morality that is overly optimistic, and a naïve manner of interacting with the world. Pollyannaism sometimes can have simplistic solutions to complex issues. Lewis Presnall noted, “the unrealistic  interpretation of the Golden Rule overlooks 2 facts:  first,  genuine love does not bargain with the universe  on a  return for its investment of love, and 2nd getting along with other people on a mature basis  certainly does  not mean getting along with everyone in every situation.” (1959)   Amit Goswami suggested, “this maxim love the neighbor as thyself is useless to most of us as a code of behavior because we do not truly love ourselves,  and therefore, do not really know what love is  in the first place.” (1995)

golden rule






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