CONSCIENCE AS GUIDE IN AUTHENTIC COMMUNICATION
TABLE OF CONTENT
2. Definition of terms
3. Theological aspects of conscience
4. Causes of violations of conscience
5. Effects of conscience violations in communication
6. Conscience as guide to effective communication
Conscience awards an individual for cooperation and punishes the same individual for violation. We all know that we can’t punish ourselves whenever our heart questions us, because it’s our conscience obligation to punish us for violation and awards us for a job well done. Moral subjectivism affirms that individuals determine for themselves what is good or evil, right or wrong. Consciousness stands in proxy to our definition of what it means to be human, yet at close examination it appears to be peripheral in much of our communication. In conscious communications, our words matter, and our body-talk and our actions also speak volumes, to a great extent a guide in authentic communication. Conscience is a natural moral endowment that is deposited in every human being. Our subconscious minds reminds us of the use of an unhealthy words immediately or after a communication, even when we attempt to ignore it (Gnilka 1999, p. 207).
This moral phenomenon presupposes an understanding of the human person as ordained towards action and consequent moral judgment upon action in relation to his material and spiritual development. The Christian conceptualization of conscience is both anthropocentric (a belief that human beings are the most important entity in the universe) and theocentric (a belief that the Christian God is the central aspect to existence). The danger with exclusive anthropocentric interpretation of conscience is that, it proposes an autonomous, creating conscience of the moral order and works from the void of itself. On the other hand, the Christian understanding of conscience has the merit of interpreting conscience as illuminated by God (P. Delhaye, 1968).
According to (Merriam’s Collegiate Dictionary 10th Edition), conscience is defined as the “sense or consciousness of the moral goodness or blame worthiness of one’s own conduct intentions, or character together with a feeling of obligation to do right or be good” It describes it as, “a faculty, power, or principle enjoining good acts”. Conscience refers to a moral law outside of us that we must obey, and on the other hand, it refers to the voice of God echoing in the deepest part of ourselves. Communication remains the basis of human existence, for it is the heat of all society intercourse. Our society cannot exist without communication for it is the only mechanism through which human interaction exist. According to Advance Learners’ Dictionary of current English, communication is defined as the process of imparting thoughts, knowledge or intelligence verbal or written form from a source to a receiver. From the above definition it is clear that living solely depends on communication, as our body systems cannot function without the relationship of communication with each other through contact (Wolter 2014, p. 216). It is pertinent to note at this juncture that, for conscience to act as a guide in authentic communication there must be voluntary willingness or submission of the communicators. For conscience enjoins every man and woman to conduct his or her activities in manner reflecting respect for a moral universe or law. What motivated this study was the attempt to understand the place of conscience in authentic communication.
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