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 classic literature ?
I am ready," quoth Reason, "to rest with thee ever so that Conscience be our counsellor.
Again he saw the field full of folk , and to them now Conscience was preaching, and at his words many began to repent them of their evil deeds.
If I could eat grass I would not need a conscience, for nothing could then tempt me to devour babies and lambs.
Additionally, HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is announcing a new proposed rule to enforce 25 existing statutory conscience protections for Americans involved in HHS-funded programs, which protect people from being coerced into participating in activities that violate their consciences, such as abortion, sterilization, or assisted suicide.
Sabella (who earned his PhD in theology from Boston College and has taught religion courses at Fairfield University and Yale Divinity School) is the companion volume to the forthcoming documentary film by Martin Doblmeier on the life and influence of Reinhold Niebuhr, Sabella draws on an unprecedented set of exclusive interviews to explore how Niebuhr continues to compel minds and stir consciences in the twenty-first century.
In examining our consciences, to look back and judge our past deeds and to listen to our consciences as we consider what we should do, we learn to listen to God who speaks through the moral law and offers the grace of discernment as to how that law and the extant situations of life cohere.
What this article doesn't leave out are consciences often ignored in other contexts--those of prochoice Catholics and women seeking reproductive healthcare.
The truth is hard and difficult to know, so people should not be forced to follow one religion or view rather than another, but should be left free to follow and act on their consciences.
I heard his words as suggesting that he would be a respecter of consciences.
Knowingly or otherwise, people either follow the path of our Lord, their consciences, or else that of corruption, satan.
The head of the SS was Heinrich Himmler, who was faced with the problem of how to take decent young German men and deaden their consciences so that they would be willing to perform ghastly deeds of cruelty.
4) A group of nurses filed suit against a New Jersey hospital where they work, stating their consciences would not allow them to care for patients who had had abortions?