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In your own mind, how do you make sense out of all of these things? The goal of this line of questioning is to give the person permission to think about the meaning of this experience for themselves and those they love.My experience has been that people who believe that the violence they experienced was morally sanctioned by legitimate authority are more likely to find a strong meaning and purpose in their pain and suffering that makes it more easy to manage.Moral justification is the personal conviction that the experiencing or witnessing of violence and suffering is personally meaningful, socially valuable, and spiritually justified.The greater the perceived moral sanction the stronger the moral justification. The higher the level of moral sanction (credible arguments from legitimate authority that the violence, sufferring and death are right, just and proper), the higher the level of personal moral justification (the belief that my pain and sufferring is somehow valuable, worthwhile, and has meaning). People with high levels of of moral justification operating in a climate that successfully provides strong moral sanction for the acts of violence and sufferring of the victims are likely to experience less severe PTSD and manage PTSD symptoms more effectively than those who have low levels of personal moral justification.
The fact that I didn't die trying to save them means that I am weak, cowardly, bad, or defective as a caring and responsible human being." When people confront moral dilemma's they experience inner conflict.
As a result they are more likely to handle it well and recover quickly.
If the credibility of the legitimate authority providing the social sanction begins to diminish, the feeling of personal moral justification also begins to diminish.
Another part of the person fights back by finding evidence that the moral sanction was flawed and their personal involvement was not justified.
This can lead a person to develop a sense of guilt (based on the belief that I have done something wrong) and shame (based on the belief that I am somehow inherently damaged or flawed as a human being as a result of my involvement in these acts.