I personally enjoyed this next lesson from Pike. The way I read it, Pike is talking about the goodness of virtue, akin to that of religion. Needless to say, evil exist. Therefore, by aligning with goodness we enhance and continue to develop the human race, “Whatever is favorable to virtue, whatever gives the moral liberty more energy, whatever can serve the greater moral development of the human race, is good.” Simply put, do one’s best to transmit and receive moral energy! Enjoy:
Whatever is favorable to virtue, whatever gives the moral liberty more energy, whatever can serve the greater moral development of the human race, is good. Suffering is not the worst condition of man on earth. The worst condition is the moral brutalization which the absence of physical evil would engender.
External or internal physical evil connects itself with the object of existence, which is to accomplish the moral law here below, whatever the consequences, with the firm hope that virtue unfortunate will not fail to be rewarded in another life. The moral law has its sanction and its reason in itself. It owes nothing to that law of merit and demerit that accompanies it, but is not its basis. But, though the principle of merit and demerit ought not to be the determining principle of virtuous action, it powerfully concurs with the moral law, because it offers virtue a legitimate ground of consolation and hope.
Morality is the recognition of duty, as duty, and its accomplishment, whatever the consequences.
Religion is the recognition of duty in its necessary harmony with goodness; a harmony that must have its realization in another life, through the justice and omnipotence of God.
Religion is as true as morality; for once morality is admitted, its consequences must be admitted.
The whole moral existence is included in these two words, harmonious with each other: DUTY and HOPE (Albert Pike, Morals and Dogma, 1871, p. 717).
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