“Budhi” making a “Bulong” urging an “Utos” – this is “consciencia” in the common understanding of Filipinos. In other words, conscience is an inner voice urging every individual still imbued with ethical values and/or still subscribing to moral norms, to do what is right and proper as well as to avoid doing what is wrong or bad. The shameful and detestable opposite of the reality of conscience is precisely its absence – along the line of the tirade “Wala kang consciencia!”
Such a reprimand is neither readily made by someone about another nor readily accepted by the person object thereof. This is said when somebody appears to have already lost the sense of what is good or evil, what is right or wrong. And this makes the individual concerned a danger to his neighbors, a liability to others, a debit to society. Reason: Just as no one can be good to nobody, no one, too, can be bad but to himself. In other words, the right or wrong done by someone has its equally good or bad impact on others, directly or indirectly.
So it is that no matter how one looks at it, conscience cannot really be something purely personal, simply private – considering that the workings of conscience impact the sphere of realities and necessarily manifest their social dimension. The workings of one’s conscience cannot but have an effect on one’s family, neighborhood, and society that agent is a member of. This is to say that irrespective of whether someone is a good or evil person, this in fact has its direct or indirect repercussion on others around him. This is the phenomenon of “Social Conscience.”
Professional gangsters, hardened criminals, thieves, incarnate and all other categories of evil men and women – they can be rightfully considered as devoid of conscience. For this reason, they are all threats to others, all dangers to society. In the same way, individuals with upright conscience and consequent righteous and honorable behavioral patterns – they are big moral assets to their families and friends, to their co-workers and other in general.
The highly negative features of “Yolanda,” that not only destroyed everything on its way but also killed men, women, and children on its path, continues to appeal to the “Social Conscience” of people spared by the really terrible calamity brought about by the extraordinarily cruel typhoon. So is it that just as millions Filipinos are the victims thereof, millions of people, too – in and out of the country – have been responding to their cry for help.
Would that the “Social Conscience” of people the world over continues to affirm and promote the mandate of human solidarity.