French political philosopher Baron de Montesquieu whose ideas about government influenced many national constitutions says that humans “were born to be virtuous and that justice is a quality as innate in them as existence.”
From “The Persian Letters,” he gives two examples of successive generations of Troglodytes, savage cave dwellers of ancient legend, said to have lived in the area of Red-Sea.
The first generation was so brutal and ferocious that there was no principal of justice among them. They killed their king and exterminated the entire royal family.
From then onwards they abhorred any form of government and decided to consult their own savage nature. Pleased to be through with all fetters of authority, each Troglodyte adopted the principal of every man for himself.
Thus neighbor turned against neighbor. The tough grabbed land, wives, anything from the weak. Judges abstained from executing justice. They refused to trade with one another, each withdrawing to individual satisfaction.
Meanwhile a dreadful disease swept the country and a skillful physician came from a nearby country. They refused to pay him when the land was cured. The disease sprung up again and they pleaded for his services. He told them to get lost. They perished due to their own wickedness.
Amid this ruin emerged unscathed two virtuous families, humane when their counterparts were wicked. Cupidity and selfishness was alien to them. They helped each other in times of need and died for each other when enemy attacked. They honored their gods and soon they had plenty to eat. They taught themselves that individual interest is always bound to common interest and they lived a happy, bountiful life ever after.
From this story, we can discern that human beings were created, and meant to remain, virtuous. That’s why the first generation of the Troglodytes, because of their wickedness, died while the second generation, because of their virtue, thrived.
According to Pastor John Kazungu of Christian Evangelical Church, Kicukiro, from the time of creation God wanted human beings to be virtuous.
“The Paradise was the best place that symbolized virtuousness. God wanted all His creations to live in that place without hatred and belligerence we are seeing in the world today”
The Man of Cloth adds that it was Satan that entered into the human heart and planted wickedness there. “God’s plan for us is to live loving each other. But from Satan’s machinations, we see that he has managed to plant wickedness in some of our hearts.”
He further says that all the evil things the world is experiencing is because of this machination of Satan after he managed to outwit human beings and told them to disobey God’s command.”
According to an article appearing in Got? Org, “God created human beings in His image. This means that He enables us to have some understanding of Him and of His vast and complex design.”
It goes on “Our human nature reflects some of God’s attributes, although in a limited way. We love because we are made in the image of the God who is love (1 John 4:16). Because we are created in His image, we can be compassionate, faithful, truthful, kind, patient, virtuous and just. In us, these attributes are distorted by sin, which also resides in our nature.”
The Quran has this to say about virtuousness, “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Allah loves the slave-believer who is poor but virtuous enough to refrain from begging though he has many children.” And on kindness, “Aisha narrated: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Allah loves kindliness in all matters.”
Therefore it behooves all of us to practice virtuousness for our lives to be prolonged by our creator.