The Symbolism Of Moral Saints, By Susan Wolf

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When most people hear the term “moral saint,” they think of the common “goody-good” or a “perfect child”. As defined by Susan Wolf in her essay “Moral Saints”, a moral saint is a person whose happiness “lie[s] in the happiness of others, and so he would devote himself to others gladly, and with a whole and open heart”. Although this may seem like a normal and amiable trait, the entire meaning is to consume oneself in the advancement of others out of pure altruism while simultaneously to ignore the improvement of oneself and to forgo enjoyment of all forms. Moral saints put others first in all aspects of life and their sole purpose in life is to serve others. They do not attempt to improve their own lives or to indulge in any form of recreation, …show more content…
If a person loves some item or activity, yet gives them up the second that a moral predicament appears, it brings into question the ability for the person to actually feel some sort of attachment or love towards an item, activity, or even a person. This leads to some thinking that the moral saint is incapable of experiencing a particular kind of joy that comes when one deep down truly feels enjoyment. By unable to feel enjoyment, a moral saint can then become dull and boring, leading many to cast them aside and for many moral saints to become social outsiders. Furthermore, as it is the essence of a moral saint to be excessively nice and that it is important to not be offensive, they will be perceived as humorless and bland. By being excessively moral in an attempt to benefit the world and those around him, a moral saint inevitably will exile themselves, which causes their attempt to fail because they will have no effect on the world and morality around them. Having emotions is an attribute that is commonly given to humans since humans are social animals, living in large packs and interacting with one another on a daily basis. By not being able to interact with people with normal social skills, a person will not be able to effect change in the world and aid those whom they might attempt to aid. When one thinks of a moral person, one tends to think of famously talented figures that perform moral actions, although they acquired those talents before they lead their lives into deep morality. Furthermore, according to Wolf, “there seems to be a limit to how much morality we can stand”. Morality is a characteristic that not just encompasses one aspect of life, such as an Olympic swimmer who believes that their activity is good enough for

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