Website owner:  James Miller

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Sense of Resonsibility

   What gives a person a sense of responsibility, a sense of duty, 
   a sense of "should", "ought to", "have to", "must"?  The 
   Spanish word "deber" may give some insight into this question.  
   It means "to owe" and it also means "must", "have to", "ought 
   to".  Its primary meaning of "to owe" has been expanded to mean 
   "to owe it to oneself" (Duff. Spanish for Beginners. p. 95).  
   Can we say a person's sense of responsibility or duty comes as 
   a feeling of "owing something to oneself", of doing something 
   that is necessary for his own soul, doing something that is 
   required by his own inner self?  If so where does this demand 
   of his inner self come from?  Why do some people have a lot 
   stronger sense of responsibility and duty than other people do?  
   What is the connection between this and the moral standards 
   that one sets up for oneself?  To what extent does one set up 
   moral standards for himself and to what extent are moral 
   standards built into a person when he is born (i.e. to what 
   extent are moral feelings and conscience learned or personally 
   chosen or elected and to what extent is it innate)? 

   Nov 1983

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