This paper will be exploring the arguments presented in the book by C. S. Lewis, called “Mere Christianity.” The debate about moral laws and the laws of nature has been going on for generations and centuries. Basically, from the moment first moral norms and rules were outlined in various writings – there has been an argument, caused by the fact that no matter how well humans know what exactly is good and bad, right and wrong – they still tend to make mistakes and wrong choices.
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Moral limitations create a certain pressure on humans; this is why many people would doubt the correctness and the righteousness of these limitations. If being moral is pure good – then why is it so hard for human beings to behave according to all the proper rules and norms of a person with excellent morals? Lewis calls this law “the Natural Law” (Lindskoog and Ellwood par. 2).
The sense of morality is something that is only available to humans. Many philosophers and writers have been exploring this matter, and with time they all came to a realization that moral sense gave us the best of our qualities, but also it became the ground for our worst qualities. Lewis states two main points of the argument.
The author notices that the humanity is convinced that there is some certain correct way to behave for them, and even though they have this idea – they do not follow the correct way of behavior, they break their own moral rules a lot (Lewis par. 10).
The points of view that argue with Lewis’s idea of Moral Law see the Law as noting but a herd instinct that naturally appeared in humans together with all other instincts. There is also an objection, which states that the moral laws and rules are the restrictions brought to us by our education and upbringing, it is a type of a social convention with fixed norms that have to be followed by human beings.
Lewis is curious about the origin of all these laws and norms, wondering about the reason why humans all of a sudden started to assume that their way of living and their behavior are not the way they should be. The author uses a tree as an example – any tree requires soil, sunlight, and water to grow – no matter what type, or shape, or color the tree has, it would make no sense to say that the tree is wrong and is supposed to be different.
Animals, flowers, insects are the way they are, and they do not have a capacity to doubt their own looks or behavior. Only the humans, the creatures with moral laws tend to judge, create frames that they have to fit in and then feel bad if they do not. Lewis calls these moral laws “peculiar” because they are different from the laws of nature.
According to Lewis’ premise, the capacity of humans to create morals for themselves, know what is wrong and what is right supports the possibility that there might be an intelligent force that served as the basis of life.
In conclusion, I agree with the point that morals were created by humans, and they are not available in the world of nature and animals. Even though many behavioral patterns changed over time – the basic morals have remained the same.
The science and its materialistic view on human minds do not have an explanation how and at what stage humans have developed their sense of morals, the understanding of Right and Wrong and the ability to judge the world around and themselves according to these beliefs. I do not support the objections, which say that Moral Law is an instinct, as all human instincts could be found in the behavior of animals, but moral is based on judgment and animals do not have a capacity to judge.
Lewis, C. S. Mere Christianity. Web.
Lindskoog, K., Ellwood, G. F. C. S. Lewis: Natural Law, the Law in Our Hearts. Web.