“That promise I did not keep.”
“Well, then, it was jolly rotten of you,” said Digory.
“Rotten?” said Uncle Andrew with a puzzled look “Oh I see. You mean that little boys ought to keep their promises. Very true: most right and proper, I’m sure, and I’m very glad you have been taught to do it. But of course you must understand that rules of that sort, however excellent they may be for little boys–and servants–and women–and even people in general, can’t possibly be expected to apply to profound students and great thinkers and sages. No, Digory. Men like me who possess hidden wisdom, are freed from common rules just as we are cut off from common pleasures. Ours, my boy, is a high and lonely destiny.”
As he said this he sighed and looked so grave and noble and mysterious that for a second Digory really thought he was saying something rather fine. But then he remembered the ugly look he had seen on his Uncle’s face the moment before Polly had vanished: and all at once he saw through Uncle Andrew’s grand words. “All it means,” he said to himself, “is that he thinks he can do anything he likes to get anything he wants.”C.S. Lewis, The Magician’s Nephew, 18.
If you begin to think the rules of decency and virtue no longer apply to you; If you think that some higher gifting or calling gives you a pass to be cruel–you may be sure that you’re on a path to villainy (if you haven’t already arrived).