Questions tagged [ethics]

For questions about ethics, a branch of philosophy dealing with morality, justice, virtue, vice, good and evil.

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34 views

Do Nietzscheans think not lying to yourself has intrinsic value?

Do Nietzscheans think not lying to yourself has intrinsic value? It's just a guess, that they might, even though Nitezsche claimed "everything is permitted". I don't think it works completely in the ...
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2answers
66 views

What do we mean by “impossible” when we say “morality does not require doing the impossible”?

"Morality does not require us to do the impossible" has long been an axiom in ethics, but the definition of "impossible" seems to be vague when we examine some extreme cases. For example, silly ...
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What is Our Existence?

can someone help me understand these 3 statements about our existence.. Our Existence is Social Our Existence is non existence through the others Our Existence is non existence for one another I ...
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1answer
37 views

Are there any notable works that touch on pursuing a moral good that is likely futile?

I'm slightly at a loss for the correct terminology and context here.. Apologies if the question isn't all that precise. It is relatively uncontroversial to state that if someone identifies a morally ...
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7answers
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What are the basis of all or a majority of moral systems?

What are the basis of all or a majority of moral systems? By basis, I intend to say "core principles" of all or a majority of moral systems. After analyzing moral systems, I found that most of them ...
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Why does the ethical doctrine of double effect presume “the bad consequence is not a means to the good consequence”?

I trust it's obvious why this presumption looks as it is supposed to - "the bad consequence IS a means to the good consequence"? Consider Herring's example on p. 169 with the surgeon. If the bad ...
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1answer
174 views

Does Gandhi's paraphrase of Augustine's phrase distort its meaning?

His [St. Augustine's] Letter 211 (c. 424) contains the phrase Cum dilectione hominum et odio vitiorum, which translates roughly to “With love for mankind and hatred of sins.” The phrase has become ...
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24 views

How does particularism fare with descriptive relativisim and its relation to moral skepticism?

As I understand it, descriptive relativism, acknowledging that there are very many disagreements about morality, ones which are often practically intractable, feeds into moral skepticism. As I'd ...
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74 views

Is brain reward hacking immoral?

Consider the following scenarios, each of which at their core refer to a form of 'reward hacking'. Based on personal observation, each scenario below generally elicits an immediate, visceral feeling ...
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51 views

Do percentages of negative things in a given sample matter more or less than the quantity of negative things?

Do percentages of negative things in a given sample matter more or less than the quantity of negative things? And is there a name for this concept? Is it some sort of fallacy to appeal to percentages? ...
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890 views

Authors on the Credibility and Corruption of Modern Science

During the Renaissance and Industrial eras science was a way to remove superstition, religious misconception, and irrational fears. The scientific method was proved to be valid and available to ...
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What is to be understood by the phrase “Israel's right to exist”? [closed]

As someone who is interested in the Israeli-Palestinian question one phrase that comes up in the pro-Israeli position is the insistence that the Palestinians recognise '"Israel's right to exist". ...
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Why there are “Copy Rights” if not Reference Rights?

While a Child grows, the child did learn. ( like all of us ) What did the child learned? Mostly what the child did Saw & Eared. By this simple Law ( Our Own Natural Law to Learn ) we develop "...
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27 views

Death in utilitaranism

Define utilitarian: Utilitarianism is a family of consequentialist ethical theories that promotes actions that maximize happiness and well-being for the majority of a population. (Wikipedia) Is ...
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2answers
49 views

Reconciling Utilitarianism and Rawls's Theory of Justice as Fairness

I will argue that John Stuart Mill's greatest happiness principle (GHP) should be revised to avoid problematic implications and to better fit humans' intuitive sense of morality. Furthermore, the ...
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130 views

Does anyone claim freedom toward death is not for me, but for others?

My "freedom toward death" (Being and Time, p255, SUNY Press, 1 Jan 1996) is key for authenticity, according to Heidegger. It seems obvious that he means that this freedom is me, and that claim for be ...
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142 views

Why do we punish crime?

I have no formal training whatsoever in philosophy but have a question nonetheless. I am sorry if this is way off topic for this site. Crime begets punishment: let us say that punishment is prison. ...
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3answers
101 views

Is the moral compass of an individual inherent or is this aspect of their nature acquired due to experience?

My question in its simplest form: is the moral compass of an individual inherent or is this aspect of their nature acquired due to experience? Now one needs not look far for the countless cases of ...
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1answer
126 views

What if Euthyphro gave the opposite answer?

As part of a course I am taking, I was asked to continue the dialogue Euthyphro as if Euthyphro had given the opposite response to Plato's famous question: Is the pious loved by the gods because it ...
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5answers
164 views

If each of our thoughts is entirely determined by the brain, can there be free will or a soul?

Supposing that every single thing that exists in our mind is due to the brain, and supposing that each and every decision we have is determined by our neurons, can there be free will? How? If ...
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1answer
43 views

Why is Plato's visible world said to be Heraclitean and Plato's intelligible world said to be Parmenidean?

I have been learning about Plato's Theory of Forms, and I have read that Plato's visible world is Heraclitean, and Plato's intelligible world is Parmenidean. I think I understand the parallel between ...
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4answers
157 views

When is it okay to criticize someone?

Both in my family life and in politics, I see people running into the following dilemma. Some entity (a person, or an organization, or a country) is doing something that someone sees as wrong. So, ...
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1answer
54 views

Philosophy of Law, Ethics and Visualization

Slides https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1wO4BUZGp09UGPVoSyrHZKt3KDyJFUwg12KXZiyRW76s/edit?usp=sharing Can anyone provide authors or references to material on Ethics, Philosophy of Law or Logic ...
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How can a theist justify not having children?

Most theists (perhaps, most people in general) would say that having a happy person is better than having no person at all. Indeed, most theists admit to this by saying that God "wanted to" or "...
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As a person with no descendants/family is it ethical to spend all one's money during lifetime rather than leave it to charity / the state on death?

Let's say I have no descendants or other living family but I am fairly wealthy in my lifetime due to a combination of work, inheritance, refraining from spending where others would. Is it ethical/...
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Contractualism — Moral Contract Theory

I cannot really wrap my head around what Contractualism is. I have taken a logic course and I'm a rising sophomore. Could somebody explain the basic tenets of the theory? Thanks so much.
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why is a man of sound mind responsible for his actions? [closed]

A sound mind would naturally suppose it had not created itself, i.e. absolutely designed its own fertilised egg and subsequent nurture. Then it is inconceivable that anything is responsible for ...
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66 views

Can an entire society be unethical?

Every month or so, I encounter an argument of the following basic form: A representative of Florin claims that the Guilderians are unethical for having the death penalty. A representative of Guilder ...
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Why do some actions contain normative implications and some do not

Off the bat, my specific question is actually if someone can point me to the philosophic domain of inquiry which deals with the above question. In context, I am doing a paper on Rawls. Joseph Raz ...
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57 views

Divine Command Theory vs. Rational Ethics

I've heard the claim that rational ethical theories do not require God or any other deity in order to arrive at their conclusions. Pure reason is enough to provide sound ethical arguments. However, ...
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1answer
71 views

Categorical Imperative vs. Utilitarianism

I'm watching philosophy crash course, and the narrator claimed that Utilitarianism is the antithesis of the of Kant's categorical imperative. However, on the surface, I can't see a major difference. ...
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4answers
181 views

The morality of indulging in fiction

Are there any schools of thought that consider the morality or lack thereof of indulging in fiction? The question comes up now that the last season of the popular series 'Game of Thrones' has so many ...
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Is there a term for prioritisation of values in ethics?

By prioritisation of ethics, I mean examples such as someone in WW2 lying to the authorities that they didn't hide Jews in their basement, therefore indicating that they value preserving lives more ...
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109 views

How does utilitarianism deal with probabilities?

This is the most frustrating problem I encountered in understanding utilitarianism. If we've chosen the best possible alternative according to the expected value of 'happiness' it brought. Could our ...
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112 views

Is is logically inconsistent to say that male on female violence is wrong? (Compared to vice versa)

I have always believed that the reason it is more wrong for a man to hit a woman than vice versa is mainly because women tend to be physically weaker then men, and that even if a women initiated ...
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4answers
105 views

Completeness and Consistency of Moral Systems(Ethics)

Before I state my question: I have no formal education in philosophy but am exposed to the basics of most moral systems - (utilitarianism, altruism, etc.) Is it possible to show that it is possible ...
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57 views

Is there a term for the belief that if it's illegal, it's immoral?

Closely related to Is there a term for the belief that "if it's legal, it's moral"? Is there a term for the belief that if something is illegal, it's immoral? Is it simply a variant ...
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Is there a term for the belief that “if it's legal, it's moral”?

Sometimes I hear arguments that seem to appeal to the fact that something is morally permissible because it is legally permitted. For example: Abortion is moral because it's legally permitted. ...
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Ethically dilemmas, empathy,aggression [closed]

Respected group members, I want ask you that if food scarcity in group and other group have limited resources for survive , my wife and children dying with starvation would I morally right to attack ...
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Utilitarianism revisited

I assume utilitarianism to be the doctrine that one should act to maximize the overall amount of some "happiness". Next to the fact that it's not quite clear what happiness is supposed to be and ...
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34 views

Quantifying moral obligation

A follow-up, of sorts, on this question, in which I'd like to refine the notion of moral obligation. Consider some instances in which the notion might arise: Most people agree that a trolley operator ...
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Is it immoral to make a living off of a religious product that I made?

I'm a software developer, and I'm making an application that is, basically, a religious-inspired social media platform. It's free, not freemium, no consumables, nothing to pay for and users have ...
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1answer
120 views

Is it immoral to kill a philosophical zombie?

Is unplugging a robot from power the same as killing a person? As the commenters said this does not quite work because robots can be plugged back in. So let's replace robots with philosophical zombies,...
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1answer
124 views

Moral reasoning asymmetry

​​Being a complete dilettante in the field of philosophy I will accept any warranted smackdown with grace. It is my understanding that moral philosophers are actively trying to resolve the following ...
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1answer
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Attitude towards different animal species

I am not sure whether philosophy stack exchange is the right place to ask the following questions, if not please suggest the right website. How can people so easily kill a mosquito but not a dog or a ...
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1answer
111 views

What is the essence of stoicism?

I am a materialist, and I heard that stoic philosophers can be described (to some extent) as materialists. I am a big fan of stoic logic and ethical philosophy (and attitude towards death, emotions, ...
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Enchiridion, 16: Does a stoic moan, or not?

The translation of Epictetus' Enchiridion, part 16 by Elizabeth Carter (http://classics.mit.edu/Epictetus/epicench.html) seems to contradict that of Thomas Wentworth Higginson's (https://www.gutenberg....
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What are the top candidate ideas for pursuing a good life?

What are the candidate pursuits for a good life and who are the best to read to get a good understanding of the argument for pursuing any one over others? So far, these come to mind: Self-expression ...
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The ethics of evolutionary custodianship

Firstly of note is that the closest genetic/evolutionary family of humans, namely the chimpanzee, also engages in an activity once thought to be uniquely human: namely warfare. And just to forestall ...
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Do people tend to immorality like every Abrahamic religion told? [closed]

In many sentences of the Quran and other Abrahamic religious books, we are told about many different people who were immoral (thieves, corruption, adultery, etc.) until prophets come and help them ...