Morality is an objective system of action-guiding precepts which distinguish right from wrong and assign praiseworthiness and blameworthiness to actors. I think this is a generally acceptable definition. It must be objective, lest it be capricious. It must be systematic, lest it be internally contradictory. And it must be action-guiding, lest it be purposeless. It also must assign praiseworthiness and blameworthiness because morality, as we conceive it, not only judges actions but also persons. While I anticipate that most objections to this definition of morality will focus on its classification as "objective," I wish to focus more on its classification as "action-guiding" for the purposes of this thread.
It strikes me as obvious, on some fundamental level, that morality must seek to direct our actions and not simply categorize them. This is true, I think, because mere categorization would run afoul of morality itself. If morality merely categorized--leaving us utterly blind as to how to behave--there could never be ascriptions of praise or blame, since we would lack the requisite foreknowledge to be genuinely responsible for the rightness or wrongness of our actions.
I would also venture that, in order for morality to genuinely direct our actions, we must have free will. If I cannot choose to behave wrongly, then I cannot be guided into choosing rightly. Instead, I simply choose rightly by default. A guide points to the right path when you come to a fork in the road. But if their are no forks, you cannot be guided.
Now I come to the question I am interested in posing. Given all of the above, in a perfect world, would morality exist, and could a perfect world exist without morality? A perfect world is one in which everyone would always and automatically make the right decision even if they did not know why it was the right decision and even if they had no guidance as to how to act. If agents did not always choose rightly, the world would not be perfect.
It seems, counterintuitively, that a perfect world does not need morality. Given the guaranteed nature of right action in a perfect world, there is no need for an action-guiding system delineating right from wrong. In other words, morality might not exist in a perfect world. Indeed, it is possible that morality could not exist, because no agent could ever be assigned praise or blame. Yet, this challenges a basic assumption I have always held, namely that a perfect world is perfectly moral (implying, of course, that morality must exist in a perfect world).
Perhaps one could reply by objecting to the notion that morality requires free will. If it doesn't require free will, then it need not always be action-guiding. But then again no agent could ever be assigned praise or blame. So maybe ascriptions of praise and blame are not integral to morality, but merely a non-integral or ancillary function of it. But that suggestion seems problematic as well, largely because it restricts morality to merely judging actions and not persons. We do not typically say "the murder was wrong, but the murderer cannot be blamed/condemned" or "Hitler's actions were wrong, but Hitler cannot be blamed/condemned." It does seem to me that praise and blame are a core part of what we conceive morality as being.
So, I put my question to you now. Can morality and perfection coexist? If yes, must they always coexist? What implications might this have for discussions of heaven and hell, for example? Please discuss. Also, this is not the right post to debate morality's subjectivity or objectivity. That is not really the question I am concerned with in this post.