Insights 70 Days Ethics Plan
Day – 26
Utilitarianism is a theory in ethics holding that the moral actions is the one that maximizes utility. It is a form of consequentialism which implies that the consequences of an action are of moral importance. It is an effort to provide an answer to the practical question what ought a man to do” its answer is that he ought to act so as to produce the best consequences possible.
It is the ethical position that judges the morality of an based on the action’s adherence to rules. It is sometimes described as duty or rule based ethics
Deontology argues that decisions should be made considering the factors of one’s duties and others rights. Deontology considers what benefits you and the people you care about, not necessarily what is good for society or anyone else
c) Virtue ethics:-
Virtue ethics focuses on inherent character of a person rather than on specific actions .It emphasizes the role of one’s character and the virtues that one’s character embodies for determining or evaluating ethical behavior. Virtue ethics is one of the three major approaches to normative ethics, often contrasted to deontology (mainly Kantianism), which emphasizes duty to rules, and consequentialism (Mainly utilitarianism), which derives rightness or wrongness from the outcome of the act itself.
Although virtue ethics lacks in popularity, many people still think it is indispensable. Virtue ethics requires us to understand how to transform ourselves into better people. That means we have to understand what is moral, how to be motivated to be moral, and how to actually behave morally.
Eudaimonia refers to a state of having a good indwelling spirit or being in a contented state of being healthy, happy and prosperous. In moral philosophy, eudaimonia is used to refer to the right actions as those that result in the well-being of an individual.
Eudaimonia can be perceived as any theory that places the personal happiness of an individual and his or her complete life at the core of ethical concern.
2.Discuss briefly contribution of following philosophers to moral philosophy:
a) David Hume
Hume a Scottish philosopher held that passion rather than reason governs human behaviour. Hume argued against the existence of innate ideas, positing that all human knowledge is founded solely in experience. Hume thus held that genuine knowledge must either be directly traceable to objects perceived in experience, or result from abstract reasoning about relations between ideas which are derived from experience
Hume’s opposition to the teleological argument for God’s existence, the argument from design, is generally regarded as the most intellectually significant attempt to rebut the argument prior to Darwinism.
Hume was also a sentimentalist who held that ethics are based on emotion or sentiment rather than abstract moral principle. Kant himself credited Hume as the spur to his philosophical thought
b) John Locke
He is one of the most influential of Enlightenment thinkers and commonly known as the “Father of Liberalism”. Locke’s theory of mind is often cited as the origin of modern conceptions of identity and the self, figuring prominently in the work of later philosophers such as David Hume, Rousseau, and Immanuel Kant. Locke was the first to define the self through a continuity of consciousness.
He maintained that we are born without innate ideas, and that knowledge is instead determined only by experience derived from sense perception. This is now known as empiricism.
c) Francis Bacon
Bacon has been called the father of empiricism. His works argued for the possibility of scientific knowledge based only upon inductive reasoning and careful observation of events in nature. Most importantly, he argued this could be achieved by use of a sceptical and methodical approach whereby scientists aim to avoid misleading themselves. He argued that reasoning, facts and scientific inquiry must be the basis of philosophy to interpret nature.
d) Thomas Hobbes:-
Hobbes was an English philosopher who is considered one of the founders of modern political philosophy. Hobbes believed that the only true and correct form of government was the absolute monarchy. He argued this most forcefully in his landmark work, Leviathan. This belief stemmed from the central tenet of Hobbes’ natural philosophy that human beings are, at their core, selfish creatures.
Hobbes believed that human beings naturally desire the power to live well and that they will never be satisfied with the power they have without acquiring more power.
The social contract is the agreement by which individuals mutually transfer their natural right. Thus he too contributed to the concept of social contract.
3) “Happiness or well-being (eudaimonia) is the highest aim of moral thought and conduct, and the virtues ( ‘excellence’) are the requisite skills and dispositions needed to attain it. Elaborate Plato’s conception of moral philosophy. (150 Words)
The virtue ethics of Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, the Epicureans, and the Stoics were very individualistic and primarily concerned with helping one person become a better person though self-improvement.
Plato believed that all people in some way desired happiness. A person’s actions do not always create happiness but this is because people do not know what their actions will produce. Happiness is a result of a healthy soul but moral virtue makes up the health of the soul.
People do not always seek to be virtuous but this is because they do not realize that moral virtue produces happiness. However, Plato set forth that if a person knows that moral virtue leads to happiness, he or she should act according to this knowledge.
Being moral or ethical, then, has its basis in knowledge or reason. If a person knows that virtue leads to happiness but acts contrary to this idea, he or she is immoral, and immoral behavior is the sign of a diseased soul.
Plato said that Virtue, is the basis of every sound society and the only way to have great men lead other great men properly.