Last Updated on 15th May 2020
The philosophers hold two views on the transformation of morals. There are those who hold that man has the strength to reform his morals, and there are some who say that man does not have the capacity for such reformation. The fact of the matter is that if an individual does not act indolently and out of sloth, and if they make an effort, a transformation is within their power. Here, I am reminded of a story. It is said that a person came to the renowned Greek philosopher, Plato, and when he arrived at the door, he sent word inside. It was Plato’s practice that he would not allow anyone to enter until he was first apprised of their appearance and features. By virtue of his experience in physiognomy, he would come to a conclusion about the character of the person in question. Regardless, Plato’s servant entered and described the person’s physical features as was the routine, to which Plato responded:
‘Tell the person that since you are a man of many ignoble morals, I do not wish to see you.’
When the person at the door heard this response from Plato, he asked the attendant to go in and say, ‘Whatever you have stated is true, but I have forsaken my evil habits and have reformed myself.’ At this, Plato said, ‘Indeed, that is a possibility.’ And so the man was called in and Plato met with him very respectfully, showing him honour. Those scholars who believe that a transformation of morals is beyond the strength of man have erred. We have observed that when certain employees who once habitually accepted bribes off er true repentance, if after this, someone offers them a mountain of gold, they do not even care to cast a glance upon it.
(Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas, Malfuzat, Vol. 1, pp. 134-135)