Thursday, September 22, 2016

10 Commandments on the Flipside

The ten commandments are missing something crucial to the human psyche: positive edicts.  They read as a list of laudable, but definitely minimum, standards for human behaviors. Research indicates that those of us who hold minimum standards (like federal laws) to be our ultimate moral compass are more likely to fail the standards and break the law.  
While on the other hand, when we set goals for our own behavior we are much more likely to exceed those goals beyond our own (and others') expectations (see self-management techniques).  So maybe it would be good to have a flipside -- a goal-oriented, positive re-framing -- of the ten commandments? Please indulge me, as I give it a try.

The Traditional Ten Commandments

 (credits to
  1. I am the Lord, your God.
  2. Thou shall bring no false idols before me.
  3. Do not take the name of the Lord in vain.
  4. Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy.
  5. Honor thy father and thy mother.
  6. Thou shall not kill/murder.
  7. Thou shall not commit adultery.
  8. Thou shall not steal††.
  9. Thou shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
  10. Thou shall not covet your neighbor's wife (or anything that belongs to your neighbor).

My Suggested Flipside/ Positive Reframing of the Ten Commandments

  1. Hold a higher faith.
  2. Focus on continuously building and honoring your faith.
  3. Behave so that your reputation, your past behaviors, establish your primary and ultimate credibility.
  4. Devote one day out of every seven to restoring your soul by serving your faith.
  5. Encourage and support those who have raised you/ encouraged and supported your growth.
  6. Bring joy and spread the will-to-live to others.
  7. Love unconditionally and faithfully.
  8. Obtain permission before taking actions that impact others.
  9. Proclaim and praise other's positive endeavors.
  10. Celebrate other's joys as if they were your own.

And a short note for those I have offended...

Who am I to propose such blasphemy? A soul put on Earth to make the most of God's gifts, just like you. An adventurer, a writer, a psychologist, a mail-order ordained minister, a spiratualist, a privileged American, a minority group member (lesbian), a human compelled to try to use my God-given talents for good. Someone eager to see how my fellow humans will use their God-given talents to make my proposal an even better attempt to help us make the most of God's gifts. 

What are your flipside commandments?

Croatian statue of an angel rewriting's been done before somewhere, right?

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