Dr. Naveen Lohar
I have written this year mains, many of my friends asked me about the books which I followed for GS Paper-4. Here I would write about the usefulness of this book for covering the GS Paper-4 syllabus. I found this book very useful in the exam.
You people are aware about the pattern of ETHICS paper. This paper is divided into two sections –
1) Section A related to some basic questions 125 marks
2) Section B case studies 125 marks
(This book may be available in Hindi medium.)
Firstly, how many questions of paper 4 could be attempted from this book?
What do you understand by ‘values’ and ‘ethics’? In what way is it important to be ethical along with being professionally competent? (10 marks | 150 words)
Meaning of ethics and values are best described in this book. I could not find such a simply written and whole definition anywhere.
Meaning and understanding of ethics – page 1
Meaning of value ( positive value and negative value, instrumental and intrinsic value)- page 164-177
2nd part is not found in this book( can be answered from the book ” values in administration” by UNDP and DoPT)
What do you understand by the following terms in the context of public service? (5 terms x 3 marks each=15 marks |250 words)
Spirit of service
Courage of conviction
This question was copy- paste from the UPSC sample paper.
Not mentioned in this book. (can be answered from the book ” values in administration” by UNDP and DoPT)
Indicate two more** attributes which you consider important for public service. Justify your answer. (10 marks |100 words) [(**other than those five earlier mentioned integrity, perseverance etc.)
It is common-sense
Here I mentioned wisdom and prudence (from four cardinal values of PLATO) – chapter on virtue – page 295-296)
What do you understand by the term ‘voice of conscience’? How do you prepare yourself to heed to the voice of conscience? (10 marks| 150 words)
A very good chapter on conscience (also mentions educability of conscience) – page 241-248
What is meant by ‘crisis of conscience’? Narrate one incident in your life when you were faced with such a crisis and how you resolved the same. (10 marks| 150 words)
This question can be answered by reading above chapter on conscience . One story was published in YOUNG WORLD the hindu
I manipulated it and wrote as I was out of time and my brain was jammed.
It is often said that ‘politics’ and ‘ethics’ do not go together. What is your opinion in this regard? Justify your answer with illustrations. (10 marks| 150 words)
Relation between politics and ethics – page 18 and 19
“The good of an individual is contained in the good of all.” What do you understand by this statement? How can this principle be implemented in public life? (10 marks| 150 words)
Best answered by chapter on “the individual and the society” Page 258-266
Given below are three quotations of great moral thinkers/philosophers. For each of these quotations, bring out what it means to you in the present context: (each quote for 10 marks and 150 words=total 30 marks)
“There is enough on this earth for every one’s need but for no one’s greed.” Mahatma Gandhi.
“Nearly all men can withstand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.”—Abraham Lincoln
“I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who overcomes his enemies.”—Aristotle
1st quote was based on one of the essays of insights (sustainable development)
Not found in this book.
2nd quote is not found in this book but some part can be written with the help of chapter on ethics of power (chapter 15) page- 178-186
3rd quote can be answered by the chapter on desire – Page 26-36
Also Buddhist ethics on desire page-380
What is ‘emotional intelligence’ and how can it be developed in people? How does it help an individual in taking ethical decisions? (10 marks | 150 words)
You can not find this topic in this book.
Section B case studies – Good source that helped me is:
Some topics from syllabus in this book-
1. Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in human actions;
dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships. Human Values – lessons from the
lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of family, society and
educational institutions in inculcating values
2. Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and world..
The first topic of the syllabus is best described in this book. No need to read all philosophers but only important one.
This book I found worthy not only for paper4 but for general reading also. I am not saying that this book is panacea for UPSC ETHICS paper but whatever I read from this book that helped me immensely to write answers.( I am not PhD in ethics) Questions were general but you know that this time there was no time to think. Readymade material and some stuff about the topic may help in writing answers with speed and quality.
Other useful material-