The Moral Challenge of Suffering

I do not presume that this solves the problem of suffering, nor does it imply that we should not seek to alleviate it wherever possible, but it does seem to me that there is an element of a moral challenge to the suffering we face in life. How we respond to pain and evil in our lives, and how it impacts our character is of moral significance. Confronted with suffering, we can transform ourselves for the better, with hope and courage, and by cultivating compassion, sensitivity and humility. To do so is to succeed in this moral challenge. The same adversity, however, can turn many into bitter, base, selfish and vengeful creatures. That is a moral failure. 

Of course, we do not get to experience the same amount of pain in life. There is a huge disparity, and that is unfair. It is, however, an unfairness that lurks at the very heart of morality itself.

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Comments

Salman Latif said…
The moral goodness or the contrary, in face of a moral challenge, is quite subjective imho. Oftentimes responding to a moral challenge with bitterness, vengeance and selfishness is what sustains one's being; and being nobel and courageous becomes a dangerous choice.
The moral challenge you mention is more of a standoff between our baser, more real instincts which continue to help us survive and that what we, as an intelligent race, have acquired over the ages, that what helps us survive in a different, and some might say better, fashion.