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Questions tagged [ethics]

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

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180 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
47 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
176 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
55 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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1answer
86 views

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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1answer
54 views

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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105 views

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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1answer
77 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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0answers
36 views

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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1answer
58 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
89 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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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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0answers
37 views

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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2answers
133 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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2answers
115 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
114 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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59 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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1answer
102 views

Utilitarianism revisited

I assume utilitarianism to be the doctrine that one should act to maximize the overall amount of "happiness". Next to the fact that it's not quite clear what happiness is supposed to be and how it ...
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36 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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1answer
75 views

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
121 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
126 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
65 views

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
136 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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2answers
109 views

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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1answer
152 views

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 ...
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Is there a quantitative model of Bentham's Hedonic Calculus?

Jeremy Bentham, in Chapter 4 of his 1781 An Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation, defines what has become known as the Hedonic Calculus. He states, Pleasures then, and the ...
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2answers
57 views

Ethics of Cryonics

I was always interested in the question "to what extent is extending the life of an individual through technological means considered ethical?" That is to say, are human beings trying to extend our ...
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51 views

Are the following examples hypocritical? [closed]

My friend and I got into a big argument over whether some of the following examples are hypocritical positions to take: Being pro climate protection while not doing ANYTHING to stop it yourself (such ...
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1answer
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Can neglect and refutation towards rejuvenation (anti-aging) be considered as suicide?

There is emerging view that the aging is the reversible and bidirectional epigenetic/molecular/cellular process. Some reflections are in https://www.karger.com/Article/Abstract/477209 . There has been ...
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81 views

Is the normative value of linguistic usage a counterexample to the impossibility of deriving “ ought” from “is”?

I really believe that one cannot derive " ought" from "is". But the case of linguistic usage causes me some intellectual trouble. (1) Linguistic usage is a simple fact. (2) Linguistic usage ...
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1answer
114 views

Do morality requires a grounding (especially a being)?

The Moral argument for God's existence as used by William Lane Craig is: If God doesn't exist, objective moral values do not exist. Objective moral values do exist. Therefore, God exists. Now, I ...
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3answers
121 views

Would it be ethical to use AI to determine a user’s gender from the content they upload, without them knowing?

I originally tried to find an answer on /UX but was told that this would get a better response here. I’ve been thinking about this for a while, and am unsure how the average user would feel about ...
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64 views

Are these Two Premises Potential Flaws in Kant's Moral Theory?

In the Preface of the Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals Kant says he believes that moral philosophy must be devoid of inputs from human nature (“anthropology”): [Starting at about 4:389] “...
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1answer
56 views

Ethics of saying “this cause is a just cause, but now is not the time to fight for it”?

This question stems from a discussion I heard with regards to LGBTQ rights in Arab and Muslim communities: Arab progressive: LGBTQ rights are very important, and I respect LGBTQ people and think ...
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1answer
68 views

For Kant, is it immoral to offer solutions that may backfire when generalized?

I once read long ago Immanuel Kant came up with a model of Maxim. What I interpreted of it is basically that "if everyone does this and it still works in the long run, then it is right." This makes ...
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41 views

Is there a perfect duty against self deception about imperfect duties?

I assume that Kant says that the categorical imperative exhausts all morality? I'm guessing so, both perfect and imperfect duties. There's, I think, a particular conclusion that appears a little ...
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1answer
73 views

Is it ethical to profit from an anomaly at some else’s expense?

In some states in the US you can return your cans/bottles for a fee. This fee was added to your purchase and you redeem the fee by returning the can/bottle. The process of collecting your fee is ...
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1answer
56 views

Views on identity of an individual [closed]

I have been wondering for a while that I technically have specific traits of specific people around and have known the fact that humans tend to emulate other people. My question is that is it alright ...
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1answer
100 views

Is the following application of Kant's Categorical Imperative valid?

I'm reading about Kantian ethics and my question is if the maxim/prescription "Increase my Darwinian Fitness" is valid according to Kant's Categorical Imperative.
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“I have lied but I am not a liar, and I have done bad things but I am not a bad man.”

What logical fallacy would this be? I am doing a project and I need to identify what kind of logical fallacy this would represent.
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2answers
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For Kant, is the bad will bad in itself?

I'm taking ethic classes in college and the last author we studied was Kant, in his Groundwork for the metaphysic of morals, of which we read only the first book, where Kant states the good will is ...
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2answers
139 views

What does Slavoj Zizek mean by Hegel's reading of “felix culpa”?

Recently I watched "The duel of the century" between Slavoj Zizek and Jordan Peterson. Briefly in 2:17:45 min. Zizek points out to Hegel reading of "The story of the fall", a quote from Zizek This ...
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1answer
123 views

Which Christian philosophers examine their understanding of Pharaoh hardening his heart? [closed]

I have read many Christian commentaries on Pharaoh and they all assume he had moral responsibility for having hardened his own heart. However did Pharaoh choose his nature and nurture or did his God ...
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80 views

Notions of Right and Wrong in Perfectionist Ethics

In perfectionist ethics, there are self-regarding duties -- that is, duties that prescribe responsibility to strive for excellence. However, one particular passage in the linked text seems ...
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2answers
95 views

Vegan ethics : purchase vs consumption

In a recent debate we came to blows about whether or not it was immoral to eat meat. (I’m vegan so I’m surrounded by people who say it is). But I made the case that eating meat isn’t immoral. The ...