Internal and external responsibility

Internal and external responsibility

In terms of responsibility and many other moral end ethical topics, perspective makes a significant difference. When we treat something as our responsibility, it is in most cases healthy. This voluntarily is essential. When others throw responsibility upon us, it rarely leads to a desired effect. ?? Here I both mean responsibility as a blame, and as a duty.

Responsibility as a blame

For example, imagine that an official made a terrible mistake. The public might start a loud discussion about whose responsibility is that. Some might claim it is this official responsibility, but it is so? Maybe he could be trained better, or have more time for checking, or the office could make a procedure to validate errors, or the government, and many more. We might argue that this is the responsibility of this officials superior, of the whole governmental office, of the government, of the system, or nearly anyone. So whose responsibility is that? I would say that of everyone and anyone. Maybe even myself, as I could have become a politician and change it. The question is who cares. Is blaming someone in any way helpful? I don’t think so. For the one who is blamed, he or she will likely not accept it. This fact is widely shown in a sociological literature. If external guilt is higher than the internal, people start defending themselves, and as a result rejecting this responsibility more and more. It leads to conflict and many pathologies. It is not helpful for others involved in the process as well. If the responsibility is decided to be on someone else, they can easily neglect their role in it and will not contribute to the solution. It is especially toxic when there are many opinions and everyone blame someone else. Just the opposite of the most desired situation - where everyone say that it is their responsibility, and then everyone start thinking what they can do to improve.

The point is to not let such a situation happen again, to solve the problem, and for that we need to understand what happen and then look for solutions.

Dostoyewski Peterson how to win friends and influence people, chapter 1: how to win friends and influence people pdf, Principle 1: Don’t criticize, condemn, or complain.

If someone made mistake, correct him. If you cannot, fix his mistake. If you cannot, do not worry about at as when you cannot correct and cannot fix, it would be illogical to worry about it.
Nie pamiętam czyj to cytat, chyba Marcus Aurelius Meditations, ale nie mogę znaleźć

Take responsibility voluntarily, do not force it upon others, and as Marcus Aurelius said 2000 years ago, if they

If they’ve made a mistake, correct them gently and show them where they went wrong. If you can’t do that, then the blame lies with you. Or no one.
Marcus Aurelius Meditations

The responsibility is a funny thing.

This article does not mean you should use it when someone throws responsibility upon you to explain them why he or she should not. If you do that, you missed the point. The point is that we should take responsibility voluntarily, and that we should not blame others. This might be hard, but this is virtuous.

This is also a message to the readers of this publication. When I share some moral reflections or lessons, please, do not use them as arguments in discussion. Do not use them to prove anything. Do not use them to edify anyone. Use them to reflect on your own behaviour. If someone else asks you for advice, share your recommendations and support their way on learning philosophy. But do never force anything upon them.

What do you think about the article?
Marcin The author of the Effective Kotlin and Android Development in Kotlin books, founder of the Kt. Academy and Learning-Driven, programming trainer, speaker at international conferences, experienced developer.
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