Mapping moral emotions and sense of responsibility with those suffering with moral injury — Zachary Moon


The few citizens who fight their nation’s battles on its behalf are often burdened with the full moral weight of war-making. The moral emotions that combatants experience – guilt, shame, disgust, contempt – can be seen as expressions of the need for moral reckoning at a societal level. Rather than seeking the alleviation of suffering within an individual body, moral injury demands reparative and transformative action from the collective bodies of which we are a part. This paper offers therapeutic practices for responding to moral emotions in ways that take moral responsibility seriously, and that move towards recovery through connecting to purpose, preferred values and possibilities for making a contribution through reparations, restorative justice and truth telling.