Morality is defined as the things that differentiate between wrong and right. A saint is someone who is regarded as being extremely and exceptionally holy. A moral saint can therefore be described as a person whose every action and deed is as morally good as possible. A very essential feature of a moral saint is that one must be able to commit to the improvement of the welfare of others in society (Scripter, 2018). One must be able to forego his desires to benefit the desires of the majority and bring goodwill to them. A moral saint is a person who has to undermine their well-being to promote the well-being of others. Moral saints sacrifice their well-being for the sake of ensuring others are comfortable and happy. The life of a moral saint is seen as perfect and should be something desirable but then the way of leading a moral saint’s life is discouraging given the things one has to forego to achieve it.
Being a moral saint requires a lot of commitment and self-giving to promote the improvement of the welfares of others. This discourages the development of oneself since a person undermines his interests to ensure that they act right for the good of others. Being a moral saint means that personal life goals, dreams, and relationships may be suppressed to ensure that we satisfy the welfare of others (Skácelová, 2019). This in general discredits the reasons why we should be moral saints because for what reason then shall we be living if our lives are just meant to impress others rather than our self-development and satisfaction? It does not make sense at all to lead a moral life that is aimed at creating and fulfilling the happiness of other people yet our own lives are in disarray. Being a moral saint is something that should be optional to people and no one must be forced to lead a moral life. Moral sainthood can be termed as a calling. People should not try to be moral saints but rather, they should strive to do what makes them happy and is right and brings benefit to them and the people around them, instead of achieving moral sainthood that brings happiness to others and sadness to them.
Living the life of a moral saint is unattractive but this does not discredit that they are unsuitable ideals. It creates a sense of ownership to other people such that they make take advantage of one’s behaviour of being good to everyone. These people cannot enjoy what should be enjoyed in life (Archer, 2018). Their successes seem to be for nothing since it only benefits others and not them. Who loves being around people who cannot be humorous and always seem dull? These are the characteristics of a moral saint who is forced to be less or not humorous since they might create jokes out of things that might hurt others and this is not one of their moral virtues. They have to lead a more serious life that is appealing to everyone to ensure that they do not create discomfort to anyone around them.
Since their lives revolve around the happiness of others, these moral saints do not have hobbies since they do not have time to play, listen to music, or even engage in literature reading. Their lives do not have “life”. They lead very boring lives. Despite the fact moral saints lead holy lives, the characteristics that their life portray are a major turn off that would discourage people from such lives. A moral saint person’s life has no room for wrongdoings which is a part of the life of every human being. Living a perfect life is something that is very complex and demands a lot of input not just from oneself but from the people around you. It will not be easy to achieve moral sainthood while trying to lead the normal lives that people live.
People tend to find moral sainthood as being attractive simply because they expose their weaknesses and flaws in their normal lives. It is worth noting that leading a life that is different from moral sainthood does not disqualify one from being a morally right person. There are certain things that people do that are right and yet do not fit the standards of moral saints (Framarin, 2019). According to Wolf’s philosophy, there are rational and loving saints. The loving saint generally characterizes the utilitarian ideal in that it considers their well-being with that of others. A loving saint will achieve his good while benefiting others as well. Rational saint describes the majority of Kantian ideal where a person still has the non-moral values and is more self-centred but out of duty does not behave on them. The fact that personal excellence is encouraged gives way for the non-morals behaviours to root themselves to achieve the personal greatness that a person desires. It’s not worth giving away personal excellence to achieve moral sainthood that in itself is a commitment that decreases the happiness of the individual while trying to please others who may never appreciate it.
Utilitarianism theory advocates for one’s happiness as well as that of the people associated. It does not hinder people from realizing their happiness and self-interests which therefore means that there is an existence of non-moral doings that do not go well with moral sainthood. This means that the utilitarian theory despite supporting moral sainthood does it in some aspects but not as a universal ideal. A society that aims to achieve moral sainthood has to accept the unavailability of the value of happiness as compared to a society that works to achieve various ideals for its people. It is advised that if utilitarianism aims at attracting more people to do more good, it encourages people to do what makes them happy and are interesting to them, which therefore leads to a higher output of good being generated. Despite all this, utilitarianism is aimed at achieving greater goodness which aligns us to the line of moral sainthood. Moral sainthood demands the giving away of some portions of our lies that may be right but are not aligned with the characteristics of moral sainthood.
Kantianism theory is aligned towards self-satisfaction rather than that of others. It is more important to note that with Kantian theory, a person takes care of his welfare first before looking out for others. This, when applied to personal development, can fit the ideal of a moral saint but when the need to look out for others arises, the Kantian ideal promotes non-moral behaviours that do not promote moral sainthood (Binyu, 2018). Kantian theory tends to be in the considerable line of action with universal law that is predefined and thereby achievable since moral laws have to be obeyed. With Kantianism, moral perfection can be achieved by obeying a specified set of side constraints. The Kantian theory promotes the acts of benevolence that demand us to allow others to pursue what they believe in, as we take what they believe in as our own for the greater good of happenings. At the end of it all, achieving moral sainthood demands a lot from people. In one way or another, it must take away some goodness of a person to be achieved. It is not worthy to try to be morally saint by giving away what makes us happy.
A moral saint does not necessarily mean that the moral values outweigh the non-moral values but rather, the moral doctrines submerge these non-moral ones. Non-moral values are only seen as good up to the point they achieve moral ideal requirements. We are advised not to change the moral theories that do not suit us but rather recheck the necessity we provide to the morality in the picture of its thoughts reflect. It is disturbing and not right to only do what pleases others and leave our happiness. It creates an imbalance in our livelihoods since in one way or another it leads to either the total lack or denial of the existence of some personal traits. But the line of life a person chooses is acceptable so long as they do not cause discomfort to others.
Moral perfection in the aptitude of moral sainthood does not in any way involve a character of person welfare aligned towards rational or good or that which can be desirable for people to work towards achieving it. It is significant to note that people can be perfectly wonderful and lead normal lives without being moral saints and leading lives that do not bring them happiness or lives that cannot be advocated for in society. People should not strive to be morality perfect since this will strip them of their happiness as they will not be able to engage themselves in activities that were previously interesting to them and brought them happiness but rather they should work to achieve living perfect wonderful lives that bring the very best of them while ensuring that the lives they lead conform to the standards that are deemed as good. The role that morality plays in our lives should not be that which is universal or one that we have to pass our judgments through to attain the results that we believe are right.
Archer, A. (2018, September). Are We Obliged to Enhance for Moral Perfection?. In The Journal of Medicine and Philosophy: A Forum for Bioethics and Philosophy of Medicine (Vol. 43, No. 5, pp. 490-505). US: Oxford University Press.
Binyu, D. (2018). Kant Opposes the Moral Saints: From the Categorical Imperative to the Moral Perfection. Fu Dan Xue Bao. She Hui Ke Xue Ban, (6), 17.
Framarin, C. G. (2019). The Motivation of the Moral Saint. The Journal of Value Inquiry, 1-20.
Scripter, L. (2018). The Variety of Values: Essays on Morality, Meaning, and Love.
Skácelová, A. (2019). Should We All Be Moral Saints?.Order Now