Moral Relativism Essay

1099 WordsOct 5, 20085 Pages
Moral Relativism a) Explain what is meant by ‘Moral Relativism’. Moral Relativism is where different people and different cultures have different ideas and beliefs about ‘Moral’ issues. For example if you steal an apple in the UK, you are likely to get off with a warning. Whereas in Muslim countries such as Saudi Arabia, is you commit the same crime you will get your right hand chopped off. It is the opposite of ‘Moral Absolutism’, which is the idea that there are universal standards of right and wrong, whether or not people agree with them. There are different times of Moral Relativism such as ‘Cultural Relativism’, which combines religious beliefs and social behaviour. We should respect the fact that other people’s customs are very different from our own. Christians take of their hats when entering a church as a sign of respect, whereas Muslims take off the shoes when entering a mosque and the men wear a small hat known as a ‘Taj’. Therefore if a Christian was entering a mosque, out of respect for the Muslim culture, they would also take off their shoes, and vice versa. Some might say that morality and good manners are the same thing, therefore we should adapt our behaviours depending on which society we happen to be in. We should not be so ignorant to realise that our ideas or morals can differ by extremes all over the world, and have no right to try and influence others. If I think ‘Dictatorship is wrong’ is not absolute or universally true. It is true within my culture and society. It may be true in many others. But if there was even the smallest country where it was acceptable then it is not wrong for them. For example, in North Korea ‘Dictatorship is wrong’ is false. Situation Ethics is another type of Moral Relativism. It is a type of ethics which encourages people to stop following the crowd and following other peoples moral rules, but to think for

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