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BOOK XI . RULES FOR LIFE (FIRST SUB-PART, GENERAL AND INDIVIDUAL RULES)

A . The Nature of Rules For Life

The rules for life are the fundamental moral guidance for each individual who chooses to live as part of our civilization. Any individual who rejects these rules is, by definition, an outlaw and no longer a civilized individual. In extreme cases, total rejection of these rules may properly result in treating the individual as no more than an animal. However, less severe treatment is mandatory for less severe violations of these rules. It should be obvious that the treatment for violations should be in proportion to the harm which occurred as a result of the violation. The violation of some rules would automatically cause great harm.1 In particular circumstances, the violation of other rules may not cause any harm.2 The rules for life are determined based upon weighing a number of different moral values in accordance with the rules of Utility. Since our present civilization determines its rules (or laws) in accordance with the political power which is vested in particular individuals who are periodically selected by sub-groups of the people as a whole, it should be expected that there will be a number of conflicts between the rules of life and the rules (or laws) of our present civilization. The faithful are encouraged to follow the path of morality, breaking the existing civil law, but only if they are prepared to suffer the consequences of civil disobedience. If they are not so prepared, then they must follow the path defined by both the strictures of the moral rules for life herein and the civil law of our present civilization. At present, the conflicts between the civil law and the rules for life would seem to be minor affairs which can be easily reconciled with one another. This is true because the moral code which underlies the rules for life is very similar to the moral code which underlies the civil law. It is just that much of the civil law as it now exists was enacted without reference to the underlying moral code, which is just plain wrong, and is just what is hoped to be eventually changed.


1 For example, murder automatically causes great harm to the murdered individual, and to all individuals who hold that individual dear. Any individual who is found guilty of murder should forfeit the remainder of the life of that individual for the benefit of either the victims or society as a whole. This does not automatically mean that a murderer should be killed. The punishment should be determined by using the rules of Utility. Find a punishment that brings the greatest happiness to the greatest number, or which avoids the greatest harm to the greatest number.

2 To the extent that harmless occurrences can be identified in advance, the rule should be changed so that violations which are found to be harmless are no longer violations.

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