conscience

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conscience

an internal sense of right and wrong. To respect differences between persons the law sometimes permits a CONSCIENCE CLAUSE. Freedom of conscience is a HUMAN RIGHT

CONSCIENCE. The moral sense, or that capacity of our mental constitution, by which we irresistibly feel the difference between right and wrong.
     2. The constitution of the United States wisely provides that "no religious test shall ever be required." No man, then, or body of men, have a right to control a man's belief or opinion in religious matters, or to forbid the most perfect freedom of inquiry in relation to them, by force or threats, or by any other motives than arguments or persuasion. Vide Story, Const. Sec. 1841-1843.

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.
"You have a good conscience, friend Horse," it said, "and if you attend to its teachings it will do much to protect you from harm.
"If I could eat grass I would not need a conscience, for nothing could then tempt me to devour babies and lambs."
And, once sure of the course pointed out by conscience, you know me too well, Cousin Hepzibah, to entertain a doubt that I shall pursue it."
These offerings greatly helped to ease Tom's conscience.
"I don't b'lieve you'd eat a baby if you lost your Conscience. Come here, Polly," she called, "and be introduced to my friends."
One might interpret Nussbaum as grounding respect for conscience in the fact that people loyal to their consciences are worthy of appraisal respect just because they endeavor in a search for meaning.
The conviction of erring and suspected public servants in the country by the masses in their various consciences will go a long way to ensure wanted public servants and politicians are denied access to public, political and non-political offices.
The moral consciences of millions of people had failed: This was demonstrable, as were the horrible costs of that failure.
The goal is to try to change unjust laws by appealing to the consciences of those in the majority in a democratic state through public, nonviolent disobedience of the law.