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Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

By your opinion what is your conscience, where did it develop from and for what purpose do you have it?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (26783points) April 21st, 2014

Title says it all basically.

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12 Answers

talljasperman's avatar

My conscience came from the Value Tale books and Saturday morning cartoons like Hercules and Spider man and school yard fights. I never really learned anything other than the hard way until I was an middle aged adult. It’s trained the same way that an animal is in order to get food by memorization of a sequence of steps, to get food and what I need. Wait in line, order food, pay, receive food, sit down, open container, eat Big Mac toss trash in trash bin, go home.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

^ Interesting…......

Dan_Lyons's avatar

Conscience is a rather important aspect of mankind which has been evolving with our physical being.
It developed from our mothers protecting us from brutal fathers and the fathers developing a conscience in regard to their offspring.
It is that part of us which refuses to believe that brutal physicality is the only response to an uncomfortable situation.

LuckyGuy's avatar

This month’s Scientific American had an article on innate value systems. The Genesis of Justice by Michael Shermer.
He discusses a series of experiments performed at Yale by psychologist Paul Bloom. using 1 year old babies. I won’t go into the experiments (They are great by the way!) but even at that age babies can determine fairness and justice. He even used babies from 3 to 10 months old. and they too had an innate sense of right and wrong.
Please read it.

Note: I found the “removed” video he mentions in the article. Here.

ragingloli's avatar

Low level behavioural subroutines that have evolved over millions of years to facilitate group cohesion and harmony and by extension, group survivability, modified by reason and logic.
And Star Trek. Which is the same, really.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Modtly my family, church & empathy/ watching others. Parents make you share, behave, they are your first teacher

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

The conscience is a tool that humans use to con science.

I really mean that.

Science tells us how things really are, regardless if humans like the results or not, or judge it as a good or bad thing. Science doesn’t judge. It simply presents the outcome.

The conscience steps in and says, “regardless of the evidence, the way I feel about it is most important”... to the degree that one might kill anyone who presents evidence to the contrary.

Mimishu1995's avatar

Where did my conscience develop from: mystery stories and crime articles on local newspapers.

For what purpose do I have it: to keep my avatar from getting darker and not be a bitch like this

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@Dan_Lyons Curious…..

@LuckyGuy Let me get back to you on that in 16 hours, it is late and I have to be up early, but I have some interesting observations on that.

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies Interesting, very interesting……

@Mimishu1995 As Gunny Heartman said to Pvt. Joker, ‘No expletive?’

Berserker's avatar

Consciousnesses allows us to evaluate our environment and act on it, but this only happens to allow the survival instinct to do its work. Not stating a fact, but there has to be a reason why we can know things and be aware of them.
Any reasoning one brings up about something only serves to fuel a more primitive intent; I hate this person as they wronged me; defense mechanism. Preservation. I think that without this, we would not be able to adapt, and this would prevent man from existing. Just my thoughts, based on whatever logic I posses. Which probably isn’t much, but I tried.

thorninmud's avatar

Conscience isn’t really the same as being able to tell right from wrong, or moral sensibility. Conscience is one’s self-enforcement of a moral code. Psychopaths are perfectly aware of what’s right and wrong; they know the moral code. What makes them psychopaths is that they lack any internal enforcement mechanism. They do not feel at all bad when they violate the moral code. Psychopaths are capable of behaving morally just so they can function in society, but they do this simply by following learned scripts, not by avoiding behaviors that make them feel bad.

Because there’s a genetic link to psychopathy, it’s reasonable to assume that there are structural brain correlates for conscience, and fMRI studies of the brains of psychopaths seem to confirm this. So part of the answer to where conscience comes from is that it’s hard-wired into the brain. It makes perfect sense that a faculty like this would have evolved in a highly social species; the more individuals are able to self-enforce moral behavior, the less resources a society has to put into external enforcement of rules.

On a psychological level, most people have an aspirational self-image, the person that they’d like to be. We form that aspirational self-image from all kinds of social signals that we receive from our entourage as we grow up. It’s the kind of person who gets rewarded with love and acceptance and respect. We want those things, so we’d like to think that that’s who our best self is. The negative feelings, the pangs of conscience, come when we perceive that our behavior doesn’t match up with that ideal self. We’re disappointed in the reality of our self, because it doesn’t live up to the ideal.

Dan_Lyons's avatar

Here’s a quote regarding conscience,

“Your conscience is the measure of the honesty of your selfishness.
Listen to it carefully.”
― Richard Bach, Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah

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