DOI 10.12887/33-2020-1-129-21

Ireneusz ZIEMIŃSKI – Noninvolvement as an Expression of Opposition: Pilate’s Gesture referred to the Conceptual Universe of Karol Wojtyła’s The Acting Person

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The article comprises an ethical analysis of Pilate’s gesture of washing his hands during the trial of Jesus. The considerations  refer to the four moral attitudes scrutinized by Karol Wojtyła in his work The Acting Person, namely, solidarity, opposition, conformism, and noninvolvement. Pilate’s gesture—the author of the article argues—was neither an expression of his solidarity with the Prisoner nor a manifestation of his conformism; rather, it symbolized opposition to the plot to kill an innocent person. Even though the opposition in question might not have been determined, and ultimately turned out ineffective (Pilate did sentence Jesus to death, having thus met the demands of the priests and of the angry crowd outside the praetorium), as a human being, the Roman governor did not solidarize with the verdict he passed as the judge. Thus his attitude is best described as an instance of noninvolvement, yet, in his predicament, noninvolvement appeared the only available form of opposition.

Keywords: Pilate, Jesus, participation, solidarity, conformism, noninvolvement, opposition 

Contact: Institute of Philosophy and Cognitive Science, Faculty of Humanities, University of Szczecin, ul. Krakowska 71/79, 71-017 Szczecin, Poland

  1. ISSN 0860-8024
  2. e-ISSN 2720-5355
  3. The Republic of Poland Ministry of Science and Higher Education Value: 100.00
  4. Quarterly “Ethos” is indexed by the following databases: EBSCO, CEEOL, Index Copernicus (ICV 2017: 55.26), Philosopher’s Index, ERIH Plus.
  5. DOI Prefix 10.12887