• Morality

    WHAT ARE ACTIONS?

    What an agent does, as supposed to what happens to an agent (or even what happens inside an agent’s head). Describing events that happens does not of itself permit us to talk of rationality and intention, which are the categories we may apply if we conceive of them as actions. We think of ourselves not only passively, as creatures within which things happens but actively, as creatures that make things happen. Understanding the distinction gives rise to major problems concerning the nature of agency of the causation of bodily events by mental events, and of understanding the will and freewill. Acting usually involves moving in some way or at least…

  • Morality

    HOW TO UNDERSTAND MORAL DILEMMA

    Many moral dilemma arise from conflicting or unclear moral values. To understand moral dilemma, let alone to have any hope of making any progress on them, we therefore need to begin by looking at those values. What do we mean when we say something is a moral value? And how do we begin spelling out the contending moral values in a moral dilemma. Our values are those things we care about, that matter to us; those goals and ideal we aspire to and measure ourselves or others or our society by. When I say that I value promise-keeping, I mean that I do anything to keep promises and I always…

  • Morality

    ASCRIBING MORAL RESPONSIBILITY

    Among things we call moral are theories, arguments, outlooks, rules, reasons, virtues, people, action, intentions, and perhaps desire and feelings. There is an important ambiguity between ‘moral’ as against ‘immoral’ and ‘moral’ as against ‘non-moral’. People are normally called moral only in first sense; problems can be moral only in the second. An immoral principle is still a moral principle in the second sense, as against say a legal or aesthetic principle. Various ways of distinguishing the moral from the non-moral have been tried, a moral principle might be defined as one concerning things in our power and for which we can be held responsible. This would contrast moral principle…

  • Morality

    WHAT IT IS TO BE VIRTUOUS

    Acting as a good person ought to act: responsibly, charitably, honestly, reliably, friendly. Living up to the best of what we are. Virtue is a trait of character that is to be admired; one rendering its possessor better, either morally, or intellectually, or in the conduct of specific affairs appropriately, and persistently. To understand fully what constitutes virtue, requires knowing the criteria of right conduct. And these criteria are independent of the criteria for a virtuous character. The ethics of virtue could still be primary, in the sense that being a virtuous person could still be what is most important in morality. But to know how to achieve this state…

  • Morality

    HOW TO DO GOOD

    Good is happiness and well-being: satisfaction, pleasure, the relief of pain and suffering; fulfillment. Social benefits (social, political or economic products, services, or state of affairs that promote happiness and well-being); reduced social costs. Objectively, the good is used to denote the supposed final end at which action must aim: an intrinsically valuable state, classically identified with some compound of happiness, virtue, freedom from care, and success. The relationship between purely private good and social good is then left to be filled in the good is often identified in economics with the satisfaction of desire or preference, with comparatively little attention paid, in the liberal tradition, to the object of…

  • Morality

    IDEA OF MORALITY

    The idea of morality is essentially social. It is only meaningful because humans interact with one another in society. By virtue of social interaction, necessitated by the reality of the scarcity of resources, human vulnerability and lack of self-sufficiency, questions about how humans ought to relate in society and who should get what at a given time become very important. It is in an attempt to provide plausible answers to these questions that morality came into being. Morality often refers to the normative code of group of people, that is, the set of principles employed by a people to determine the forms of behavior that are to be accepted as…