What happened to the golden rule?

October 12, 2018


Businesses throughout the decades have been extracting, retracting, culling, and simply using a method of exploiting the world’s natural resources for mass market production. Whilst so doing, they have taken a somewhat visually impaired glance at what steps they might need to take in order to replenish what they have uprooted.


The Golden Rule is nothing new. One of Jesus’s statement’s in the Bible argues ‘Whatever you desire for men to do to you, you shall also do to them; for this is the law and the prophets.’ Similar philosophies can be found in many other religions; in the Abrahamic faiths (Judaism, Islam and Christianity), in Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and many other branches of God-fearing groups – it is just phrased/worded differently. Once you take the religious connotations out of the equation it is simple enough to understand; don’t do to others what you wouldn’t want done to yourself.


You do not need a religious upbringing to learn this simple social contract. We learn it very early on in our lives as children.

Yet those same children who grew up, maybe went to university/college, graduated and became a board member or a C.E.O of a major company seem to have forgotten this moral principle. Corporations have known for a long time through scientific research what the negative effects their businesses contribute to the environment, including to human well-being.However, the Golden Rule should not just apply in the human context. What would we be without the oxygen we need to survive? Of which we are given a round the clock service by the world’s atmosphere and the bio-chemical interaction, where oxygen is produced as a resulting effect.


Therefore the environment should rightly be placed as having equal status to us humans.So it’s best to remember this: Mother Nature does not owe us anything, but we are eternally in her debt. We are not her equal, and we should not consider ourselves her superior. It is foolish to think that we are, simply because the plants don’t fight back instantly when you take them out the ground. Take. Appreciate. Replenish.


The views and opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or positioning of InQuire. 

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First published in 1965, InQuire is the University of Kent student newspaper.

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