People also have the ability to think morally for themselves so morality is relative to someone’s point of view. The main point favoring the cultural relativism argument is that if there are no moral principles, then the principles can only be relative to culture. If someone were to express their opinion about the morals of a culture that they didn’t agree with, including what the culture already believed to be right, then that person would lose the argument without any question. This can be easily disproved because in one culture, not every person is going to have the same moral judgments about what is right or wrong and people can establish objective moral principles. A culture also can’t think of them as having the power to decide which is right and
Of the remaining criteria we might consider, only sentience―the capacity of a being to experience things like pleasure and pain―is a plausible criterion of moral importance. Singer argues for this in two ways. First, he argues, by example, that the other criteria are bad, because (again) they will exclude people who we think ought not be excluded. For instance, we don't really think that it would be permissible to disregard the well-being of someone who has much lower intelligence than average, so we can't possibly think that intelligence is a suitable criterion for moral consideration. Second, he argues that it is only by virtue of something being sentient that it can be said to have interests at all, so this places sentience in a different category than the other criteria: "The capacity for suffering and enjoying things is a prerequisite for having interests at all, a condition that must be satisfied before we can speak of interests in any meaningful way" (175).
According to hard determinism we are not free in the sense required for moral responsibility, and therefore, what happens cannot be affected by choices that are free in the sense. But what happens may nevertheless be caused by the decisions we chose and the choices we make. A reaction to hard determinism is that if it were true, we would have no reason to attempt to accomplish anything, to try and improve our lives because our decisions and choices would make no difference. If everything we do is pre determined then why try hard to achieve anything, if you are meant to do a certain something, it will happen, it is already determined for you, so the hard determinist would say. In the hard determinist’s judgement, this feeling of freedom is an illusion.
The traditional account of weakness of will is as follows: an agent is weak-willed on an occasion if and only if the agent does not do that which she believes is best. The agent thinks she knows what the best course of action to take is, and knowingly acts against it. However, Holton disagrees, he argues that weakness of the will involves revising one’s resolutions too easily. By this, Holton means it is possible to act against one’s better judgement (that is, being Akratic) but without being weak-willed. Holton, on the other hand, argues that the traditional akratic account is flawed.
A person cannot do “whatever they like” because in many cases that would include things that are actually not beneficial to them. (Doing drugs might be an example. It might seem satisfactory at the moment, but ultimately, it damages their body.) A person must only do what seems to be in their best interest. Under moral egoism, no moral duty exists to anyone other than self.
“For there are two main obstacles to gaining knowledge of affairs: modesty, which throws the mind into confusion; and fear, which keeps people from undertaking noble exploits once the danger becomes apparent. But folly removes these hindrances in a fine fashion”(42) Naturally given the nature of Folly the answer is herself. But Folly as an answer to attaining wisdom is paradoxical. To overcome the parameters of gaining knowledge she embraces the very opposite. It doesn’t attempt to solve the problem of knowledge, it just distracts from it.
Each situation and each person must be assessed on their own merits (Thiroux, 2004, p. 42). Since we cannot look at each client individually to determine whether or not Dr. Smith’s confidentiality policy is morally justifiable (it may be for one client, but not for another), we cannot properly answer this question using act-based utilitarianism. Rule-based utilitarianism, on the other hand, changes the basic utilitarianism’s principle from “everyone should always act to bring about the greatest good (i.e., “happiness”) for all
If a person believes that political doctrines are void of content, that person will be quite content to see political debates go on, but won’t expect anything useful to come from them. If we consider the other case, that there is a patriotic justification for a political belief, then what? If the belief is that a specific political position is true, then one ought to be intolerant of all other political beliefs, since each political “position” must be held to be false relative to the belief one has. And since each political position holds out the promise of reward for any probability of its fixing social problems, however small, that makes it seem rational to choose it over its alternatives. The trouble, of course, is that the people who have other political doctrines may hold theirs just as strongly, making strength of belief itself invalid as a way to determine the rightness of a political
While Ethical Naturalists believe it holds great importance as it can convey facts and help us to understand ethical theories, there are those who strongly disagree with this. For example Intuitionists, such as Moore, believe that our intuition is more useful when wanting to know how to act morally than knowing the definitions of ethical terms. Although Non-Cognitive theories disagree with the factual content of ethical statements, it is clear that they still see some significance in ethical language. However rather than seeing it as facts, they accept that morality is subjective and suggest that the importance of ethical language is provided by the emotions conveyed in the phrases used. Perhaps more so than Emotivists, Prescriptivists see ethical language as fairly meaningful.
The issue here is whether a deontological ethical system is the only one which is defensible, i.e. whether it can be defended and accepted philosophically when teleology cannot. This statement is claiming that it is, at the same time implying that teleology is not a defensible ethical system. People may agree with this, as one reason that philosophers might give for saying that a deontological ethical system is the only one that is defensible is because although humans are motivated by their happiness, the problem with this is that it can seem selfish to only think of ones own happiness and it could be argued that being moral involves more than happiness, and more satisfaction can be gained long term from doing something moral than doing something for your own happiness. However, other people may disagree with this and believe that a deontological ethical system is not defensible because it cannot encourage human beings to act morally, as they will not gain enough satisfaction out of doing so, as they would in a teleological ethical system where the ultimate end or goal is human happiness.