Individualism is at once an ethical-psychological concept and an ethical-political one. As an ethical-psychological concept, individualism holds that a human being should think and judge independently, respecting nothing more than the sovereignty of his or her mind; thus, it is intimately connected with the concept of autonomy. As an ethical-political concept, individualism upholds the supremacy of individual rights
Due to some dim but irresistible notion of the way things are, it is simply not possible, out of order, not apprpriate to the situation at hand, if, within the circle of those who are experienced and advanced in years, the young person declaims ethical generalities. Young people will again and again find themselves in a situation that is so irritating, astounding, and incomprehensible to them that their word falls on deaf ears, while the word of an older person is heard and has weight even though its content is no different at all. It will be a sign of maturity or immaturity whether this experience leads them to understand that what is at stake here is not the stubborn self-satisfaction of old age, or the anxious effort to keep youth in their place, but the pereservation or violation of an essential ethical law. Ethical discourse needs authorization, which youth are simply not able to bestow upon themselves, even if they speak out of the purest pathos of their ethical conviction. Ethical discourse does not merely depend on the correct content of what is said, but also on the speaker being authorized to say it. Its validity depends not only on what is said, but also on who says it.
My own concern is primarily the terror and violence carried out by my own state, for two reasons. For one thing, because it happens to be the larger component of international violence. But also for a much more important reason than that; namely, I can do something about it. So even if the U.S. was responsible for 2 percent of the violence in the world instead of the majority of it, it would be that 2 percent I would be primarily responsible for. And that is a simple ethical judgment. That is, the ethical value of one's actions depends on their anticipated and predictable consequences. It is very easy to denounce the atrocities of someone else. That has about as much ethical value as denouncing atrocities that took place in the 18th century.
What is the relationship between spirituality and ethical practice? Since love and compassion and similar qualities all, by definition, presume some level of concern for others' well-being, they presume ethical restraint. We cannot be loving and compassionate unless at the same time we curb our own harmful impulses and desires.
You still owe me a million dollars." I'd presented him with a bill for proving his innocence and getting him freed from prison. He had yet to pay. Couldn't imagine why. "Yeah, I was hoping we could work that out." "The interest alone is going to kill you." "What do you charge?" "Three hundred eighty-seven percent." "Is that ethical?" "It's as ethical as my dating the son of Satan.
I'm a really big advocate of ethical fashion. I actually have a travelling boutique called Maison de Mode, which is all about ethical fashion. I also like Maiyet from Paris. They're very Celine-esque in their silhouettes. I love their back story, too: they work with orphans in Colombia and India.
Even if the most ethical people were elected to high position and we ran out of resources, there would still be lying, cheating, stealing, and corruption. It is not ethical people that are needed but rather a way of intelligently managing the Earth's resources for everyone's well-being.
The relation to the other is not epistemological, but ethical, and the whole attempt to accomodate or account for the other within the confines of my experience already constitutes a breach of this fundamental ethical relation. The other is precisely that which cannot be the object of my experience in the sense of being completely manifest within it, and so cannot be construed as a phenomenon at all.
David R. Cerbone
Unfortunately for ethical egoism, the claim that we will all be better off if every one of us does what is in his or her own interest is incorrect. This is shown by what are known as "prisoner's dilemma" situations, which are playing an increasingly important role in discussions of ethical theory... At least on the collective level, therefore, egoism is self-defeating - a conclusion well brought out by Parfit in his aforementioned Reasons and Persons.
(Because) the notion of absolute truth is difficult to sustain outside the context of religion, ethical conduct is not something we engage in because it is somehow right in itself but because, like ourselves, all others desire to be happy and to avoid suffering. Given that this is a natural disposition, shared by all, it follows that each individual has a right to pursue this goal. Accordingly, I suggest that one of the things which determines whether an act is ethical or not is its effect on others' experience or expectation of happiness.
Ethical veganism results in a profound revolution within the individual; a complete rejection of the paradigm of oppression and violence that she has been taught from childhood to accept as the natural order. It changes her life and the lives of those with whom she shares this vision of nonviolence. Ethical veganism is anything but passive; on the contrary, it is the active refusal to cooperate with injustice
Gary L. Francione
Experience was of no ethical value. It was merely the name men gave to their mistakes. Moralists had, as a rule, regarded it as a mode of warning, had claimed for it a certain ethical efficacy in the formation of character, had praised it as something that taught us what to follow and showed us what to avoid. But there was no motive power in experience. It was as little of an active cause as conscience itself. All that it really demonstrated was that our future would be the same as our past, and that the sin we had done once, and with loathing, we would do many times, and with joy.
The great masquerade of evil has played havoc with all our ethical concepts. For evil to appear disguised as light, charity, historical necessity, or social justice is quite bewildering to anyone brought up on our traditional ethical concepts, while for the Christian who bases his life on the Bible, it merely confirms the fundamental wickedness of evil.
Civilization can only revive when there shall come into being in a number of individuals a new tone of mind, independent of the prevalent one among the crowds, and in opposition to it - a tone of mind which will gradually win influence over the collective one, and in the end determine its character. Only an ethical movement can rescue us from barbarism, and the ethical comes into existence only in individuals.
It's tempting to think that decisions that are not life-and-death are therefore unimportant, and that the little compromises we make don't matter to our bottom line or our spiritual selves. How many of us are tempted, in business, to make a less-than-ethical decision? To appropriate someone else's idea or fudge some numbers? We have to remember that maintaining our ethical and spiritual selves is absolutely linked with achieving the degree of success we're working toward.
I am, I must confess, suspicious of those who denounce others for having too much sex. At what point does a healthy amount become too much? There are, of course, those who suffer because their desire for sex has become compulsive; in their case the drive (loneliness, guilt) is at fault, not the activity as such. When morality is discussed I invariably discover, halfway into the conversation, that what is meant are not the great ethical questions but the rather dreary business of sexual habit, which to my mind is an aesthetic rather than an ethical issue.
Man is appealed to be guided in his acts, not merely by love, which is always personal, or at best tribal, but by his perception of his oneness with each human being. In the practice of mutual aid, which we can re-trace to the earliest beginnings of evolution, we thus find the positive and undoubted origin of our ethical conceptions; and we can affirm that in the ethical progress of man, mutual support- not mutual struggle- has had the leading part.
Pay attention to the voice within. . . . Sometimes the voice of your conscience gets drowned out by crowd noise or by the pep rally of temptations. And your mind may put some selfish spin on the ball, rationalizing that it's okay to veer away from the ethical route. When we run into conflicts between ethical "shoulds" and our selfish "wants," we all argure out ways to con our conscience. But take pains to listen, because it has your best interests at heart.
I believe, indeed, that overemphasis on the purely intellectual attitude, often directed solely to the practical and factual, in our education, has led directly to the impairment of ethical values. I am not thinking so much of the dangers with which technical progress has directly confronted mankind, as of the stifling of mutual human considerations by a 'matter-of-fact' habit of thought which has come to lie like a killing frost upon human relations. Without 'ethical culture' there is no salvation for humanity.
It cannot be denied that Islam, regarded as an ethical ideal plus a certain kind of polity - by which expression I mean a social structure regulated by a legal system and animated by a specific ethical ideal - has been the chief formative factor in the life-history of the Muslims of India. It has furnished those basic emotions and loyalties which gradually unify scattered individuals and groups, and finally transform them into a well-defined people, possessing a moral consciousness of their own.
There's such a thing as being irritatingly ethical, ' said Eldric. 'That's you, right now.' That's a pleasant change. Witches are rarely accused of being irritatingly ethical. 'I've swigged.' I handed the bottle to Eldric. 'Or is it swug?' 'Swug, ' said Eldric. 'It is in bad-boy circles, at least.' He swug. 'It tastes much better outside church.' 'It's the picnic principle, ' I said. 'Things taste better outdoors. And if it's a forbidden thing, so much the better.
Here is my challenge. Name one ethical statement made, or one ethical action performed, by a believer that could not have been uttered or done by a nonbeliever. And here is my second challenge. Can any reader think of a wicked statement made, or an evil action performed, precisely because of religious faith? The second question is easy to answer, is it not? The first - I have been asking it for some time - awaits a convincing reply. By what right, then, do the faithful assume this irritating mantle of righteousness? They have as much to apologize for as to explain.
If you're an Orthodox believer, then what sustains this framework is the obligation that you follow. But if you live in a democratic, liberal world whose motto is: 'Make choices and manage your choices according to what is good for you, ' then there is a built-in tension between that which connects and that which divides. Between the material and the intellectual or ethical. Materialism is not a dirty word, but in this tension between the individual and the material on the one hand, and the communal and the ethical on the other, we are at the end of an age in which the material and the individual are triumphing.
There's a floating distraction in the contemporary world, life at a distance enabled by technology. I want people to commit at the level of their subjectivity. The idea of subjective commitment is at the core of ethics, something that divides the self from itself. I become an ethical self. I cannot meet that ideal, I cannot fulfill it, it divides me from myself and it makes me strive harder. This ideal subjective ethical drive is at the heart of an absolutely earnest, radical politics that insists that people will be able to engage with each other, and they're lifted from irony at that point.
The discrepancy is that the ethical self should be found immanently in the despair, that the individual won himself by persisting in the despair. True, he has used something within the category of freedom, choosing himself, which seem to remove the difficulty, one that presumably has not struck many, since philosophically doubting everything and then finding the true beginning goes one, two, three. But that does not help. In despairing, I use myself to despair, and therefore I can indeed despair of everything by myself. But if I do this, I cannot come back by myself. It is in this moment of decision that the individual needs divine assistance, whereas it is quite correct that in order to be at this point one must first have understood the existence-relation between the aesthetic and the ethical; that is to say, by being there in passion and inwardness, one surely becomes aware of the religious - and of the leap.
The meaning that we are seeking in evolution is its meaning to us, to man. The ethics of evolution must be human ethics. It is one of the many unique qualities of man, the new sort of animal, that he is the only ethical animal. The ethical need and its fulfillment are also products of evolution, but they have been produced in man alone.
George Gaylord Simpson
A father acts on behalf of his children by working, providing, intervening, struggling, and suffering for them. In so doing, he really stands in their place. He is not an isolated individual, but incorporates the selves of several people in his own self. Every attempt to live as if he were alone is a denial of the fact that he is actually responsible. He cannot escape the responsibility, which is his because he is a father. This reality refutes the fictitious notion that the isolated individual is the agent of all ethical behavior. It is not the isolated individual but the responsible person who is the proper agent to be considered in ethical reflection.
We live in a world full of accidents finally in which on aesthetic principles have a consistency of which we can be sure. Right and wrong we will struggle with forever striving to create and maintain an ethical balance. Right and wrong we will struggle with forever, striving to create and maintain an ethical balance; but the shimmer of summer rain under the street lamps or the great flashing glare of artillery against a night sky "" such brutal beauty is beyond dispute.
We live in a world full of accidents finally in which on aesthetic principles have a consistency of which we can be sure. Right and wrong we will struggle with forever striving to create and maintain an ethical balance. Right and wrong we will struggle with forever, striving to create and maintain an ethical balance; but the shimmer of summer rain under the street lamps or the great flashing glare of artillery against a night sky - such brutal beauty is beyond dispute.
One salutary development in recent ethical theorizing is the widespread recognition that no short argument will serve to eliminate any of the major metaethical positions. Such theories have to weave together views in semantics, epistemology, moral psychology and metaphysics. The comprehensive, holistic character of much recent theorizing suggests the futility of fastening on just a single sort of argument to refute a developed version of realism or antirealism. No one any longer thinks that ethical naturalism can be undermined in a single stroke by the open question argument, or that appeal to the descriptive semantics of moral discourse is sufficient to refute noncognitivism.