Questions tagged [ethics]

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

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Is Group Suffering Worse than Individual Suffering?

There are two jails. Both employ torture of prisoners as a means to gain 'admissions'. Jail A has one prisoner. One guard tortures him. Jail B has 1000 prisoners, all of whom are also tortured, each ...
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Objective vs Absolute Morality: Is one possible without the other?

Can something be objectively immoral and not simultaneously absolutely immoral? Definitions of the difference between objective and absolute morality tend to commit a comparison error. For instance: &...
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Ethics vs. fairness

I'm wondering if there is an example where something that is fair is actually unethical? After reading about ethics, it seems that if something is fair it cannot be unethical. Update: Fairness is ...
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26 views

Term for a moral test to see if someone is honest?

Is there any terminology for the general situation where a test is carried out to check if someone is honest? A really simple example could be when you know the answer to something and you know ...
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3answers
157 views

What are some objective truths in ethics?

Someone told me that the idea that there's no objective truth in ethics is highly debatable. I am wondering what are some purported objective truths identified or claimed by various philosophers ...
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4answers
159 views

Ethics: a simple definition using simple words

I can't find a definition of Ethics that I can understand without looking for other definitions. For example, many definitions of Ethics include "Moral Principles" and then the question is ...
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37 views

Can moral statements or theories be refuted?

I feel like moral statements cannot be refuted at least in the strictest sense of the term. Why? Because morality doesn't fully depend on logic and partially depends on emotions and normative (...
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2answers
133 views

Reconciling an aversion to bestiality with being a carnivore

I have often heard the reason given for bestiality being wrong is that animals are incapable of giving consent. However, I'm a meat eater - I regularly eat animals that have been raised, slaughtered ...
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What is the moral difference between parenting and child marriage? [closed]

What is the moral difference between parenting and child marriage? The reason I ask is that parenting is considered one of the most admirable things you can do in life in most societies while child ...
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What does Spinoza mean by Acquiescentia in se ipso?

In Part V of Spinoza’s Ethics the pinnacle of human freedom and understanding is discussed as the viewpoint from eternal blessedness. How are we to characterize or interpret this doctrine of ...
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27 views

Can a moral theory be eudaemonological but not teleological?

Aristotle's moral theory is said to be both eudaemonological and teleological. But what is the difference between these two concepts? If a moral theory is eudaemonological, then happiness/beatitude is ...
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1answer
52 views

Is killing a crime reporter good as seen from the criminal commiting the murder?

Many people, including myself, shed a tear yesterday (and now again!) after the news came through that a here famous crime reporter died. Peter R. de Vries was (is!) a beloved man who helped people ...
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1answer
27 views

Criticism to the premise of arbitrariness of moral desert in Rawls

I am aware of several criticisms to Rawls's redistributive mechanics in A Theory of Justice. I am wondering whether there are also criticisms on the premise of arbitrariness of moral desert. I have ...
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What distinguishes moral rules from other arbitrary normative statements?

What distinguishes moral rules from other arbitrary normative statements? Kant's moral law which states we should not use others merely as means to an end. This rule, how is it different from other ...
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1answer
130 views

Is there a philosophical justification for the dichotomy in discimination law?

In the UK, and in many other countries, it is illegal to discriminate on certain personal characteristics in many circumstances, including employment and accommodation. These characteristics include ...
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90 views

I read lots of introduction books about philosophy, now I want to learn more. Reccomend some books thar are not too basic or too advanced

What should I read? Should I read the books philosophers themselves wrote or the ones that is written by someone else??? I don't want books that only give introduction. I read lots of easy ...
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1answer
61 views

Is Determinism a valid objection to Utilitarianism (or ethics in general)?

I understand Utilitarianism to be the ethical theory which states that "we should choose to do those things that cause the most happiness". As soon as I see the word "choose" in ...
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3answers
35 views

Reference request: books about meta-ethics theory

I want to construct an ethics system, my ethics. When I studied logic was very fruitful to understand the theory of the theory of logic (meta-theory). Now I want to learn about ethics because I want ...
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1answer
85 views

What do Aristotle or Plato mean by improvement?

In this answer to this question I read: Plato has Socrates make the argument that punishment, when it is just anyway, actually improves the individual. So if you’ve done wrong you should want to be ...
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Is there any moral reasoning behind punishment?

Usually when someone does something bad they get punished. There are a few reasons for this, e.g. Them not doing it again or other people not doing in the first place. I was wondering if there is a ...
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1answer
52 views

What would be virtue ethics' response to the stranger drowning problem?

I just finished reading Strangers Drowning by Larissa MacFarquhar. It is a collection of profiles for people who go to extreme length to help strangers. The title comes from Peter Singer's famous ...
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1answer
108 views

What ethical philosophy can decide between me eating or not?

If I'm with a number of people and therr is too small supply for everyone but just enough for one, should I choose for all eating a bit but dying shortly after, one eating it all and dying later with ...
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1answer
165 views

Should one actually sit on Attila The Hun's outdoor Throne?

A few miles East of Venice, is the island of Torcello. It is a quaint, picturesque looking island with a history dating back to the Early Middle Ages-(and perhaps earlier). In the middle of the ...
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1answer
42 views

Wisdom and John Vervaeke's awakening from the meaning crises?

I've been watching John Vervaeke's awakening from the meaning crises ( I haven't seen the whole lecture series). And while I am finding it intriguing I think to myself is this really wisdom? I mean in ...
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3answers
117 views

Why do some people say the world is overpopulated?

Many times I read or hear that the world is overpopulated. The first thing that springs up in my mind then is "Then kill yourself!". It seems an attitude that shows little value for human ...
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4answers
140 views

Is there a reason that utilitarianism is the “default” moral system of thinking for many humans, and if so, why?

Over the past few centuries a shift has been seen, from the likes of strict adherence to Christianity (at least, in Europe) to greater reliance on science, etc. as observed by Friedrich Nietzsche. ...
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5answers
172 views

Why thank God for good things, but not blame God for bad things?

Why should one thank God for good things but not blame God for bad things? Why is it common for theists to do so? Rationally speaking, it seems one should both thank and blame, or do neither; this is ...
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3answers
220 views

Are there some subjects about which we should not even ask questions? ​

high school student here: Are there certain topics that must be avoided in science, sociology, psychology or philosophy? Will talking about taboo subjects alleviate fear or perpetuate undesirable ...
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2answers
84 views

I know Survival of the fittest is realistic. But is it morally ethical?

Survival for the fittest and extinction for the weakest. I know that should be the way. But ethically if you think about it just because it happens in reality, does that statement make it morally ...
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1answer
44 views

Ethics, axiology, and decision theory

I'm confused about the precise terminology to use when referring to various subjects which are all related to making good choices. I know that axiology is general study of value, including moral, ...
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1answer
58 views

Is there a name for a philosophy that seeks to increase human suffering?

The vast, vast majority of ethic systems seek the minimization of human suffering as a good, considering it ethical or righteous in some way. Even anti-natalists believe this after a fashion, ...
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Is Augustin's love sermon 7 available online in Portuguese?

Many philosophers think highly of Augustin's Homily 7, on the First Epistle of John, as a moral philosophical consideration. Is there a Portuguese version available online?
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30 views

What area of ethics appraises the value of moral actions?

What area of ethics appraises the value of moral actions? I was wondering if there was an area of ethics that does that, but after some research I couldn't find anything on that matter. Is there any ...
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68 views

In a Just Society, are there any Moral, Illegal Actions

Imagine a perfect legal system, whatever that looks like to you. I don't care what it is, just put it in your head. There are plenty of examples of moral, legal action that can happen under this ...
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2answers
42 views

Are there criteria that allows you determine if something is out of the scope of ethics?

Are there criteria that all you determine if something is out of the scope of ethics? Some people said that it is immoral to believe in God, but how can you argue against that if you cannot determine ...
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1answer
81 views

Comparing Albert Camus and Karl Marx

My brother is lawyer. He likes reading philosophy and writing about law. He wants to find a source about a conflict ideas of revolution as you know Albert Camus and Karl Marx have. He wants to write ...
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1answer
46 views

How does Kant treat the sublime in the Anthropology compared with the Third Critique?

Is Kant treating the sublime consistently in the third critique and Anthropology? In other words, what are the differences being addressed in these empirical and transcendental inquires regarding the ...
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2answers
55 views

“I abhor X” vs. “Prohibiting X benefits the area”

Can you please assist me to understand this "categorical difference between saying" I abhor X. Prohibiting X benefits the area.? Bingham exemplifies with X = the death penalty, in the ...
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10answers
379 views

What is one’s incentive to be moral?

Assuming there is no afterlife, or whatever afterlife there is does not depend on the morality of my actions in this life, what is one’s incentive to be moral given basic rational self-interest is ...
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1answer
63 views

Did “Scientific Reasoning” helped European Societies change the laws of what's right and wrong?

During the enlightenment period, people began to look political, economical, and moral aspects in a more scientific way (i.e., eliminate bias imposed by church on these understandings, use scientific ...
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30 views

Are there models that seeks to explain and predict ethical phenomenons?

Are there models that seeks to explain and predict ethical phenomenons? By models, I mean something like a scientific model. Is there anything like that or did we choose to not use any mathematical ...
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1answer
49 views

How do philosophers explain the change in one's ethical code when given a lot of power?

How do philosophers explain the change in one's ethical code when given a lot of power? Some people can be very ethical people and be completely consistent in terms of ethics like say Chomsky, but ...
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2answers
76 views

Does there exist a maxim which is rooted in morally permissible principles that cannot be universalized?

I'm wondering if there's a maxim that is morally permissible that cannot be universalized, or at least done so consistently under Kantian ethics and his formula of universal law. In Examples of ...
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54 views

According to utilitarianism, are the only moral actions the ones that maximize utility? What about actions that increase utility, but not maximally?

Whenever I look at a definition of utilitarianism, what I see is that it only seems to prescribe actions that maximize utility. Suppose that, for a given junction, you have a set of possible actions ...
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104 views

What's the difference between morality and rationality?

What's the difference between morality and rationality? Some of my friends argue with me saying, What is rational is what is moral I do not believe so because, I believe there are absolute moral ...
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1answer
67 views

How would you apply John Rawls “Theory of justice” to everyday decisions?

How can I apply John Rawls theory of justice to everyday decision making?
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1answer
28 views

Is it a voluntary action (and therefore something one is responsible for) to remain alive?

Creating a life is (normally) a perfectly voluntary action with well known consequences, and hence the people involved are morally responsible for the result. But, what are the arguments for that the ...
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28 views

Examining and challenging the IS-OUGHT gap and the FACT-VALUE dichotomy

Could anyone recommend undergrad-level intro papers or secondary literature on the is-ought gap and fact-value dichotomy please? Keen to read examinations and challenges. thanks
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485 views

Is the killing of animals justified because of humans being at the top of the evolution/food chain?

I recently argued with a friend about veganism. My position was basically that everyone who can allow a dietery change in their lives ought to be vegan. I argued that these days there are sufficient ...
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1answer
86 views

How do the authors show that arguments based on property rights can't be used to determine the wrongness of rape in Gardner's paper?

In "The Wrongness of Rape" by Gardner and Shute, (section 3: Infringing the proprietor's rights), what do the authors mean when they say that The analogies between rape and burglary here ...

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