conscience

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conscience

 [kon´shens]
1. an inner moral sense that distinguishes right acts from wrong. Difficulties arise in how the conscience decides between good and bad. Conscience is not always an adequate justification for action.
2. the internalization of parental and social norms, related to the Freudian concept of superego; this conception of conscience has no role in ethical deliberation.
3. in bioethics, the exercise and expression of a reflective sense of integrity, constitutive of reflection about the relationship between a specific course of action and a particular idea of the self and one's integrity. Appeals to conscience presume a prior decision about the rightness or wrongness of an act. Justification is adequate if it is based on universalizable principles; if justification is founded on religious beliefs, personal ideas, or a particular way of life, others cannot be held to them.

conscience

/con·science/ (kon´shins) the nontechnical term for the moral faculty of the mind, corresponding roughly to the superego; differing in that the operations of the superego are often unconscious, unlike the ordinary conception of conscience.

conscience

(kŏn′shəns)
n.
1.
a. An awareness of morality in regard to one's behavior; a sense of right and wrong that urges one to act morally: Let your conscience be your guide.
b. A source of moral or ethical judgment or pronouncement: a document that serves as the nation's conscience.
c. Conformity to one's own sense of right conduct: a person of unflagging conscience.
2. The part of the superego in psychoanalysis that judges the ethical nature of one's actions and thoughts and then transmits such determinations to the ego for consideration.

con′science·less adj.

conscience

Etymology: L, conscientia, to be privy to information
1 the moral, self-critical sense of what is right and wrong.
2 (in psychoanalysis) the part of the superego system that monitors thoughts, feelings, and actions and measures them against internalized values and standards.
References in periodicals archive ?
The conscienceless attitude of unreflective and amoral obedience exhibited by people in a bureaucratic setting resembles Eric Hoffer's unflatteringly description of "true believers" in a political or religious mass movement (1951).
After Incarnation a couple of years ago, which successfully mixed reincarnation, the build-up of arms by China, the messier doings of Saddam Hussein, plus one greedy and totally conscienceless high-ranking British official, we all wondered where he would turn next for inspiration.
What's left when either or both the traditional spiritual, or loose, elemental, humanistic metaphysics are relegated to mothballs by political factions in poetry arid a conscienceless politics outside of poetry?
He is conscienceless, free of any guilt--or even deeply personal emotions.
Memories lingered of the evils of "tax farming," in which emperors managed to call forth the most conscienceless class of tax collectors imaginable by according them a share of the funds they extracted from a helpless populace.
And they are con tricks because, since they are absolutely guaranteed to pay out much less than is put in, there is no way whatsoever that their regular devotees can do anything except contribute steadily to the Capone- style profits of the conscienceless corporations who put them there.
His absorbing task revealed to him a city administration "corrupt & conscienceless.
Being part of an institution turns them into conscienceless social psychopaths.
The court compared the conscienceless state of extreme intoxication to insanity and added that medical evidence would be required to present the drunkenness defense.
When poor people who have no means of meeting their basic needs come to the church seeking release in the words of the gospel, they find themselves obstructed by a conscienceless extortionist who also happens to be a priest.
39) In that case, the Florida Supreme Court found that the aggravating circumstance in question was "directed only at |the conscienceless or pitiless crime which is unnecessarily torturous to the victim.
Obviously not remorseless violent offenders, like the conscienceless killers of the Kansas farm family depicted in Truman Capote's In Cold Blood.