I am taking a sociology course this year and generally am having a lot of thoughts about the interactions of people.
I'm trying to come up with something simple and fairly self-evident that most people would accept as a set of guidelines or principles.
While other people may focus on other issues, I've chosen four:
The first principle is respect. Everything in this universe should be treated with respect. Even enemies can be treated with respect. People of different sexes, races and religions can be treated with respect. Though we should always treat others with respect, we must also be able to deal with the fact that we will not always be shown respect by others.
The second principle is humility. We are not that important. Our countries are not that important. Our regligions are not that important. Our beliefs are not that important. We should strive not to place so much importance on ourselves and our beliefs that we find it easy to justify violation of the principle of respect towards others.
The third principle is wisdom. We should strive to learn and to think clearly about the issues around us. Part of our uniqueness in the universe is our ability to develop knowledge. We should value knowledge and wisdom and strive to increase these attributes in ourselves over our lifetime. This is the proper way to show respect for this gift.
The fourth and final principle is strength. The mental aspect of humanity is not the only aspect. We are physical creatures and we must also embrace this. We should maintain personal strength and conditioning in order to ensure the ability to defend ourselves from external threats, in essence, to survive.
I believe the concept of respect is enough to develop laws that reflect the same ideals espoused by modern society.
I think that humility could remind us all to be respectful, such that we could avoid unnecessary conflict.
Wisdom and strength reflect our rational thinking existence and our physical existence. To develop principles of living it would make sense to celebrate all aspects of life that we have been given.
Anyway, as well as your thoughts on the concept in general, I am trying to develop these thoughts. Can they be simplified? Can they be stated in a way that makes them even more self-evident? Do they preclude any current national or religious doctrine, such that conflict is required?