CONSCIENCE

1. Popular Definitions
Conscience is derived from three Latin words
– cum alia scientia. This means the application
of knowledge to a specific individual.
 1.1. A “little voice” within.

In the popular mind of Filipinos, conscience is
understood as that “little voice within” (tinig ng
budhi) which tells us whether we have done right
or wrong.
 Perhaps more importantly, this little voice tells us
whether the decision we are considering or
contemplating to do is a good one or a bad one.
This definition places the role of conscience before
an act is done [CFC: 701].

1993: 55-56]. popular definitions like these are useful as starting points. An indicator of joy or guilt. but they are not very accurate.  . In relation to the above-mentioned definition. and a sense of disquiet and guilt if we act wrongly.CONSCIENCE  1.2. and they do not adequately distinguish conscience from other factors with which it can easily be confused [R.  At times. conscience is also understood as a place within us where we feel a sense of joy and contentment when we act rightly. Padilla.

1993: 55-56]. Rather.  Since it is an act of judgment.  It is not a separate faculty from the intellect. . Padilla.1. it considers a choice between what is right or wrong [R.CONSCIENCE  2. it is an act of the human intellect regarding an action with respect to the morality of that action. Conscience is a judgment of human reason  concerning the moral goodness of evil of one’s action. Essential Definitions  2.

CONSCIENCE  2.2. practical judgment on the morality of a concrete action. . Conscience is an ultimate.  It is called a practical judgment because it is related to praxis (concrete practice or action) of the moral activity. commanding to do what is good and to avoid what is evil.

. Peschke.2.2. The morality of an action or a concrete line of conduct (which a person wants to do or has already done). Its corresponding moral obligation (consequences) in the concrete situation [K.   The object.CONSCIENCE  Conscience goes into action when the following are to be judged: 2. of conscience is always the morality of the action and the corresponding obligation. 1996: 172-173].2.1. therefore. and  2.

1. It forbids – prohibits one from doing an act because it is evil. The antecedent conscience functions in either of the following:    It exhorts – gives advice or warning. we will present the types of conscience by division.   1. For purposes of our study.Types of Conscience  Moralists present the types of conscience differently. It permits – allows one to proceed.Antecedent or Consequent Conscience 1. . Antecedent Conscience – if the judgment on the morality of an action is done even before a particular action is performed.

.2. It excuses – gives a reason. It reproves – negates the presence of goodness in an act. Consequent Conscience – if it evaluates an act already committed or omitted. for example for doing or not doing an act. It accuses – points a finger to the doer of the evil act. The consequent conscience functions in either of the following:     It approves – affirmation of the goodness of an act.Types of Conscience  1.

or it passes judgment with the fear of committing an error. a person who is convinced he has paid the PhP 500. This conscience suspends judgment. Thus.Types of Conscience   2.1. Thus. Doubtful Conscience  – if it is uncertain about the morality of an act. a person who cannot determine whether letting his wife die by pulling the plug has a doubtful conscience. Certain Conscience   – a conscience is certain if it passes judgment without fear of error.Certain or Doubtful Conscience 2. 2.2.00 he owed from a friend has a certain conscience. .

 A person who decides not to take home office items without the permission of the authority has a right conscience.  .Right or Erroneous Conscience 3. Right – it presents good as good and evil as evil. The practical moral judgment agrees or disagrees with the objective norms of morality.Types of Conscience   3.1.

It may result from a malformation of one’s conscience due to ignorance (both invincible ignorance and vincible ignorance) or wrong information.Types of Conscience  3.  Thus.  . and something evil to be good. a student who feels justified to spread slanderous remarks about a fellow student who has previously done the same to her acts with an erroneous conscience.2. Erroneous – it mistakenly judges something good to be evil.

Scrupulous. . until their conscience becomes dull and incapable of proper decision. Such is the act of a psychologist who reveals a very serious professional secret about a patient to some lay people and considers the disclosure a mere small talk. and Tender Conscience    4. Such people begin by rationalizing minor faults. Lax – it is inclined to judge something to be lawful that which is sinful. or something to be a light sin that which is grave.1.Types of Conscience  4. Lax. They find excuses for grave misconduct. A person with a lax conscience sometimes becomes persuaded that great sins are permissible.

Scrupulous Conscience – it sees evil where there is none. Such a conscience is developed by many sincere people.2. . the guidance of a regular confessor or spiritual director is of tremendous value. Tender Conscience – it is sometimes called “delicate” conscience because it forms correct judgment with comparison even in matters which involve a fine distinction. 4.Types of Conscience   4.3. In achieving this desirable goal.

Types of Conscience    Conscience is an infallible guide in each individual. Padilla. R. CFC: 195-198]. 1993:56-62. Peschke. 1996: 158-187. goodwill and sincerity are more important that a thorough knowledge of moral or ethical principles [K. If we act according to our conscience. Therefore. . we are acting rightly whether or not we have received training in morals or ethics.