Pope John Paul II in 1993
Emotional sympathy and moral reason, despite their essential contributions, do not solve every moral problem. We can be well attuned emotionally and well informed, but sometimes our best thinking does not find the answer, and we spontaneously reach out for higher wisdom. Or we know what we should do, but the beautiful way how to do it is beyond us. These situations call for the golden rule on a spiritual level of interpretation.
On a spiritual level, the golden rule may be regarded as the principle of the practice of the family of God: Treat others as brothers and sisters, as sons and daughters of God, as you want others to treat you. Or we can imagine treating others as God would treat them; we can participate in the goodness of God, the highest possible interpretation of the rule. Imagine how others need to see you: brimming with God, balanced, and shining in the mystery of your unique personality.
The spiritual interpretation of the golden rule opens new vistas. The golden rule means living the truth beautifully in love.
What difference do you find it make to add spirituality to psychological empathy? To moral reason?
And how can a beginner learn the way of love without it becoming just another moral demand?