The greatest gift of human rationality is morality. In Moral Relativism, Moral Diversity and Human Rights, James Kellenberger addresses different sorts of theories of morality, such as moral absolutism, moral pluralism, and moral relativism. Before I take any position on the issues raised by the differences between these various approaches, I need to offer a definition of morality.
Morality, in the context of these different kinds of theories, can be defined only descriptively in relation to its purpose and to its function. People can only try to provide different answers based on their own assumptions, faiths, experiences and intuitions.
Thus, morality, in the most practical sense, is a tool or way of life used to promote the common good of human beings and eliminate harmful actions that bring negative consequences in life, goals based on the principle of reciprocity and empathy, and a set of universally recognized human needs and capabilities. In line with such grounding, I find that among different types of moral theories, moral pluralism can best serve the universal needs and well being of human kind.
Pluralism recognizes that there is a plurality of moral points of view, and affirms that, among many moral points of view, no one is clearly superior to another. However, the pluralistic nature of this theory and the fact that no complete objectivity is possible could be sources of its fallacies when it is put into practice. No one can be completely objective in their judgments because every human being possesses different perceptions and principles of life that contribute to personal bias.
Thus, to avoid these possible sources of error, moral pluralism needs to be governed by three principles: Moral values should be strictly distinguished from other categories of values such as cultural norms or community values. Moral values, in their essence, should be geared only towards the goal of fulfilling universal needs of well being that are not governed by cultural practices or norms.
For example, the prohibition against arbitrary killing can safely be categorized as a moral value. The lack of strict categorization of moral values, I believe, is one of the biggest problems to be resolved even before the debates between different moral theories can continue. One common flaw among several forms of moral relativism is the failure to draw such clear distinctions between different categories of values. For instance, conventionalist relativism claims that secondary values are considered as relative and are dependent on conventions or social norms.
In this context, secondary values are no longer strictly moral, but adulterated by other categories of values which are non-moral.
In Problems of Moral Philosophy, Ralph Barton Perry addresses the phenomenon of arbitrary categorization of values by pointing out a distinction between the question: Too often, because of such an ambiguity in distinguishing the nuances between definitions, cultural beliefs and physical needs are arbitrarily lumped into subcategories of moral values.
Equivocal overlapping of cultural values, community values, and moral values only jeopardizes the applicability of moral pluralism. Such a failure encourages abuse of the theory to justify actions for pure individual interests or social conventions. Thus, it is important to draw a clear boundary between pluralistic moral values and other categories of values, such as cultural pluralism or religious pluralism. The establishment of a minimalist common ground is another important principle in the application of moral pluralism.
A minimalist common ground requires that ethics be reduced to its most basic elements, those that are required for every human to behave ethically. Such a methodology is crucial especially in response to a pluralist society today. Before I further reinforce my claim, it is important to recognize a limit of the theory of minimalist ethics. One of the possible fallacies of minimalist ethics is that it implies that an action is ethical as long as it does not hurt anybody.
The simplistic and consequentialist nature of this school of ethics provides loopholes for actions done for pure self-interest that indirectly bring negative consequences for others. Thus, the minimalist approach should only be interpreted as a methodology, not as a moral guidance. It is imperative that the minimalist ground should not be manipulated as the sole justification for all kinds of actions.
How should a minimalist common ground be established to reinforce the applicability of moral pluralism? We should recognize that no single individual or group has precisely the same perception of truth and reality due to the differences in religious faith, personal experience and other factors. In a Notre Dame sociologist named Christian Smith led a research that involved young adults and questioned their moral lives. It appeared that majority of the individuals involved in the study had almost no idea of what morality even is, let alone if they have morality in their own lives.
Even when asked questions pertaining to drinking and driving or cheating, answers we should all know, they simply answered with round-about replies. Who am I to say? This goes to show that most young adults have almost no moral compass nowadays and simply go on their feelings to determine whether something is right or wrong.
For example, Buckley speaks of a time that he was in a crowded train cart. He tells of how it is below freezing outside, but for some reason, inside of the train cart, it is over 85 degrees. When the train conductor comes by for the tickets, he goes to complain about the heat, but instead, asks what time they will reach the destination. William Buckley goes on to tell of a time when he was at the movie theatres with his wife, and he started to notice that the picture was out of focus, and when he tried to complain to his wife, she told him to be quiet.
Buckley states that once we stop complaining, we have lost our ability as humans to have feelings. He also talks about whether or not morals are concrete, meaning if one has morals will they deviate from that code no matter what the circumstances? He uses a bunch of studies as evidence that show that people do have morals, and there does not seem to be set moral code, there is usually an exception.
The essay goes through its evolution of studies trying to figure out what a moral code is and what peoples are and what they are based off of. They basically conclude that people choose a moral code that fits their own desires. The studies showed that people do in fact have morals, that they in fact could have more than one set, and they just make a decision based on the situation.
The author goes on to explain how she attempted to go through an entire week without telling a lie and it was nearly impossible. Through all of these lies, the notion of whether or not the lies hurt anything and if the lying has any merit. Examples of each are given and how they affect others. This gives readers a more in your face kind of read so they can actually see why each type of lie is important to know and understand.
Richard Gray goes on to name a few animals and tell about their moral views. The first mammal that he starts with is the wolf. He speaks of the close social groups that a pack of wolves has, and the rules that govern it.
If a pack becomes too big, the pack will slowly start to disintegrate because the bond between them would not be close. He also states that wolves show fairness. The next animal that he goes on to talk about is the coyote. If during play, a coyote cub bites hard enough to hurt the other cubs, it will most likely be forced to leave the group entirely. Gray speaks about one of the most sociable animals, which are elephants. Evidence has been found that shows elephants help injured or ill members of their herd.
In another example, elephants unfasten all of the metal latches that were holding gates closed surrounding antelope that were captured. The elephants showed empathy for these antelopes and let them out. Grays final animal is the Whale. In human and other great apes, there are cells called spindle cells in their brains. These cells are thought to play a role in empathy and feelings.
Spindle cells are also found in whales, and it has been found that they have three times as many spindle cells as humans. Gray ends the article by saying that the finding of spindle cells in whales could show that empathy could be widespread throughout the entire animal kingdom.
I chose this essay because it pertains to the notion of ethics and morality. The expectations and pressure from others are what seems to drive a lot of our actions both ethically and morally. In this case, Hughes was driven to lie to please the members of the church.
It does not make it ethically or morally right however it is somehow justified, in the moment, because someone else did it before him with no apparent consequence.
She talks about different terms that people could call her such as handicapped, disabled, or crippled. Living with MS is an emotional roller coaster for Mairs, there are occasional happy times but there are also periods of depression, and self loathing. Mairs has always had an uneasy relationship with her body, and how this disease has changed her and shaped her makes her feel even worse than she used to.
I am not a disease. She points out that our society views death as the worst evil, but Mairs realizes that there are worse things than dying. Living life in a deteriorating state is worse than death. This article describes how technology is taking over our lives. Having curiositas, recollection, and mindfulness might help solve this problem. Humans are naturally curious. Recollection is a habit. Recollection is clear and undistracted. Technology is distracting humans.
Mindfulness is being aware of what is happening around a person. Morality is made of curiositas, recollection, and mindfulness. Morality is what humans need to keep technology from taking over our brains.
It was found that the volunteers who choice to save the cyclists were more likely to use judgment to come to the decisions. The majority of the volunteers said they would smother the baby to death in order to save the whole village.
The volunteers were again more likely to use judgment to come to the decisions. A significant incident happened that gave him a better view on imperialism. When he got to the scene, there was a body lying on the ground that had been crushed by the elephant. He sent an orderly to go retrieve an elephant rifle.
Orwell then went to find the elephant, with no intentions of killing the animal. All of the people who were following Orwell had expected him to kill the elephant.
Orwell shot the elephant with all five rounds and even a few more shots from his small rifle to kill it. Unfortunately, the elephant still suffered for another half hour before it died. Orwell often wondered whether the people realized that he had killed the elephant in order to avoid looking like a fool.
Human trafficking has been an increasing problem in China, and it seems not a lot is being done to control it. The thought that someone can take away your child and sell them to someone else, as if they were nothing more than any other object you could buy at a store, is baffling.
It makes one wonder, what leads to this unethical act? A large number of traffickers have been caught, but that number could easily increase. It is difficult to track down these groups and it is even more difficult to trace back and figure out where the children were originally from. That task ends up being left mostly to volunteer organizations or the individual to figure out on their own.
People like her and the volunteers that help people find their way back are inspiring and are a beacon of hope in this sad situation. Assuming this tactic works, she asks the questions; for how long? Will the shock factor wear off eventually; will people just ignore the pictures? This over exposure desensitizes people to their atrocity.
Sontag also talks about images from wars, and the fact that there are museums in memory of them such as the Holocaust Memorial Museum. But is it right to take photographs of events like these? So what is the point of a photograph? So they are for the good and the bad, the ugly and the beautiful. When a group of students were asked if a teacher gaining a double reimbursement was ethical, most students felt that it was.
A few students felt that if the teacher could get away with it the teacher should keep it. A study found that people are more likely to help someone if they are in trouble in only limited circumstances. Sternberg says that in order for a person to act ethically a person must follow certain steps. A person must recognize that something is happening that requires them to react. A person must feel that what is happening has an ethical dimension. The person must then decide if the ethical dimension is significant.
The person must take responsibility. The person should figure out what ethical rules could apply to the situation. Then the person needs to use the ethical rules to find a concrete solution. The person needs to be ready for and repercussions for their actions.
Having done all of that the person, should then act out the solution. The author focuses on the notion that moral judgments are not made through logic but through our emotions in the moment. A study was conducted involving monkeys and how they reacted under certain circumstances relating to morality. The study showed that even monkeys have an understanding of fairness, selfishness, and a need to share those feelings with their children.
The results of the experiments on monkeys led some doctors to examine how the human brain functions under similar moral dilemmas.
It was found that particular portions of the brain are stimulated when a moral situation is presented and the emotional and reasoning sections of the brain become conflicted. This is what results in the difficulty with making moral decisions. This research can help to answer why some are criminal psychopaths with no ability to make the distinction between right and wrong and others are able to make clear, moral decisions. Example for University of South Dakota.
Example for Concordia University Collaboration. Food and Weight Loss. Food, Supplements, and Athletics. Media and Pop Culture. Nature and the Environment. Page authors Raul Moreno August 8, Ethics and Morality The Multifaceted Structure of Ethics and Morality When the idea of ethics and morality comes to mind, one often thinks of ideals and codes that are instilled in a person at childhood. Many of the essays chosen for this project offered open ended questions that challenge whether a person selected the ethically and morally correct reaction.
Questions involving the predicament of choosing between a child or yourself, multiple people or one man, and drinking and driving or cheating were asked. The first series of open ended questions involved a study of young adults and their ability to make morally distinct decisions. A scenario used frequently in these studies, as pointed out by David Dobbs in his essay "Kill Whitey. It's the Right Thing to Do" is set up as such: Annotated Bibliography Boghossian, Paul.
In its path are 5 people who have been tied to the track by a mad philosopher. This is a basic template that researchers can build off of and use other examples to test people with. This essay was first seen in the Utne Reader and examines the different kinds of lies that people tell and offers examples of how each type of lie plays a role in our civilization and lives.
She begins the essay by explaining a terrible day she is experiencing. Issues come up throughout her day; problems with the bank, an uncomfortable pregnancy, a rowdy three year old, and IRS complications. To sum it up the author has an all-together horrible chain of events throughout her day.
The greatest gift of human rationality is morality. The establishment of "morality" is based on the recognition that every human has a general set of basic.
Free morals papers, essays, and research papers. The Origins of Morals - Do the morals that people empower evolve from the society that they grow up in, or is there some inborn conscience that all posses.
Moral and ethics are of high importance in determining the nature of a society or a culture. Morals and ethics are used as complimentary terms but they mean different in literal sense. Morals define personal character and refer to the beliefs that a person practices when he interacts in personal and social relationships. The conduct [ ]. Moral Values Essay Conclusion As we have clarified, the concept of moral values is quite many-sided and is defined as a behavioral code that has a certain influence on people’s choices ruling their decisions about “the good” and “the bad” issues.
Oct 23, · Essay on Morality. How do you make moral decisions? What resources inform you, personal, professional, etc.? Moral decision is a rational procedure of moral consciousness that makes the choice of action giving preferences to certain moral values.5/5(2). The Importance of Moral Values in Our Life essay sample. The Importance of Moral Values essay example. Feel free to buy custom essays, term papers, research papers at judoka.ml