GRE Issue Essay 108
“No matter what the situation, it is more harmful to compromise one’s beliefs than to adhere to them.”
There may have been many instances in our lives when we have faced the dilemma to either compromise our beliefs or to adhere to them. How does one make this choice? It all depends on your principles in life. You can choose to select the easier way out, which would be achieved by compromising on your beliefs. Adhering to your beliefs in the face of opposition is a more difficult task. Nevertheless, irrespective of the situation you are in, it always pays out in the end to adhere to your beliefs. At the first glance it does look as though a compromise would result in benefits, but in the longer run this compromise may prove to be harmful not only to your image but also to your subconscious. However, this line of thought holds true if your beliefs conform to the norms laid down by society, otherwise the opposite would be true, that is, adhering to an immoral belief will be harmful for you.
We all have our religious beliefs ingrained in us since childhood. Everyone is taught by his parents and his community to carry out his religious practices and rituals. If you belong to a religion where you are not permitted to have non-vegetarian food, would your sub-conscious allow you to have a chicken burger if you are offered the same by a person who does not belong to your community? Even if you do have it, what will be the repercussions? The effects of such a compromise may not be immediate, but they are bound to follow up as you move ahead in life. You may be ostracized by your community, you will be admonished by your parents and you may even regret it later on in life. Therefore, the better option would be to politely refuse the offer and adhere to your religious beliefs.
Adhering to your beliefs will rarely lead to any harm unless your belief does not conform to the norms of society. If you are of the belief that there is nothing wrong in taking bribes and you choose to adhere to your beliefs, then it is obvious that this will be extremely harmful for you in the long run. However, if you are of the strong opinion that one should never accept bribery and you have chosen to be honest in your profession, then compromising your belief will definitely land you into trouble. Patriots who stuck to their beliefs that their country should be free from the clutches of an imperialistic power succeeded in freeing their country. The freedom struggle of India is one such example. Could this have been possible if the freedom fighters had compromised on their beliefs? This compromise would have weakened their principles and they would not have had the strength to fight against all odds for the freedom of their country.
Your beliefs define who you are. Your identity and image are shaped by the beliefs that you follow in life. It is necessary to be flexible also in life, but wherever a choice has to be made between right and wrong; one should always follow the right path irrespective of what your beliefs are. If your beliefs are morally correct, then you cannot be harmed by adhering to your beliefs, but if your beliefs are in contrast to those of the society, then adhering to your beliefs may land you in big trouble. Therefore, it is imperative that you choose your beliefs carefully and adhere to them if you want to keep out of harm’s way.