Why Must We Live a Moral Life?

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WHY MUST MAN LIVE A MORAL LIFE BY EMMANUEL IWUH C. (DI/400) Being a term paper submitted to the department of philosophy, Dominican Institute of Philosophy and Theology Samonda, Ibadan, for the award of B.A. degree in Philosophy. COURSE: INTRODUCTION TO ETHICS CODE: PHI/302 LECTURER: FR. EMMANUEL NNADOZIE JAN., 2012 INTRODUCTION Morality is subsumed under the branch of philosophy known as Ethics. Ethics being that aspect of philosophy which investigates human conducts in so far as such conducts can be said to be right or wrong: it can be defined as the branch of philosophy which deals with the morality of human actions or as a systematic study of the fundamental principles of moral law[1]. Ethics is the discipline while morality is the study. Morality therefore aids us to distinguish those actions that are right from the wrong ones. Most of such actions we grow up to see that people and the society frown at them and also the actions that are morally prudential. In this essay, we will try to answer the question on why we should live a moral life. In doing this we would look into what a moral standard is and what constitute a moral action or conduct. And finally, sum up with a conclusion. WHAT IS A MORAL STANDARD? There is variation in ethical opinions as to how we come to know right and wrong actions. The intuitionist school for example, takes intuition as the moral standard. The experiences commonly spoken of as intuitions typically came all at once, as if in a blinding flash. But one major problem with this view is that different people’s intuitions often conflict. And intuition itself provides no way of deciding which of two conflicting intuitions is correct. One man may claim to know by intuition that contraception is morally wrong, while another man may also claim to know by intuition that

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