The modern Gamaliel should teach ethics. Ethics is the science of human duty. Arithmetic tells man how to count his money; ethics how he should acquire it, whether by honesty or fraud. Geography is a map of the world; ethics is a beautiful map of duty. This ethics is not Christianity, it is not even religion; but it is the sister of religion, because the path of duty is in full harmony, as to quality and direction, with the path of God.
The very essence of political philosophy is the carving out of an ethical system - strictly, a subset of ethics dealing with political ethics. Ethics is the one rational discipline that demands the establishment of a rational set of value judgments; political ethics is that subset applying to matters of State.
Using the phrase business ethics might imply that the ethical rules and expectations are somehow different in business than in other contexts. There really is no such thing as business ethics. There is just ethics and the challenge for people in business and every other walk in life to acknowledge and live up to basic moral principles like honesty, respect, responsibility, fairness and caring.
Those of us who believe in God and derive our sense of right and wrong and ethics from God's Word really have no difficulty whatsoever defining where our ethics come from. People who believe in survival of the fittest might have more difficulty deriving where their ethics come from. A lot of evolutionists are very ethical people.
The thinking man must oppose all cruel customs no matter how deeply rooted in tradition or surrounded by a halo. We need a boundless ethics which will include the animals also. My life is full of meaning to me. The life around me must be full of significance to it. If I want others to respect my life, then I must respect the other life I see however strange it may be to mine. Ethics in our western world has hitherto been largely limited to the relation of man to man... but that is a limited ethics.
All pantheism must ultimately be shipwrecked on the inescapable demands of ethics, and then on the evil and suffering of the world. If the world is a theophany , then everything done by man, and even by animal, is equally divine and excellent; nothing can be more censurable and nothing more praiseworthy than anything else; hence there is no ethics.
I took ethics classes in college, and it always amazes me how they [tabloids] will blatantly say something that I did not say, in quotation marks. The first thing that we learned in ethics is that you better have it right. If you're putting quotation marks around something, it better be exactly what that person said.
To me, it really seems visible today that ethics is not something exterior to the economy, which, as technical matter, could function on its own; rather, ethics is an interior principle of the economy itself, which cannot function if it does not take account of the human values of solidarity and reciprocal responsibility.
Pope Benedict XVI
The philosopher Edmund Pincoffs has argued that consequentialists and deontologists worked together to convince Westerners in the twentieth century that morality is the study of moral quandaries and dilemmas. Where the Greeks focused on the character of a person and asked what kind of person we should each aim to become, modern ethics focuses on actions, asking when a particular action is right or wrong... This turn from character ethics to quandary ethics has turned moral education away from virtues and toward moral reasoning. If morality is about dilemmas, then moral education is training in problem solving.
I came to office promising major ethics reform to end the culture of self-dealing. And today, that ethics reform is a law. While I was at it, I got rid of a few things in the governor's office that I didn't believe our citizens should have to pay for. That luxury jet was over-the-top. I put it on eBay.
Finding a new ethics or esthetics, as Dr. Douglass asks, will not put us in a state of grace. Existence is not given meaning by importing it into a revelation from the outside. The meaning is -there, in more closely contacting the actual situation, the only situation that there is, whatever it is. As our situation is, closely contacting it would surely result in plenty of trouble and perhaps in terrible social conflicts, terrible opportunities and duties, during which we might learn something and at the end of which we might know something, even a new ethics; for it is in such conflicts that new ethics are discovered. But it is just these conflicts that we do not observe happening. Everybody talks nice. At most there is some unruliness and dumb protest, and some withdrawal. So urging the juveniles to go to church is not serious, for how will the church give them faith? What opportunity will it open?
...Ethics has not only to do with mankind but with the animal creation as well. This is witnessed in the purpose of St. Francis of Assisi. Thus we shall arrive that ethics is reverence for all life. This is the ethic of love widened universally. It is the ethic of Jesus now recognized as a necessity of thought...Only a universal ethic which embraces every living creature can put us in touch with the universe and the will which is there manifest...
Faith drives a wedge between ethics and suffering. Where certain actions cause no suffering at all, religious dogmatists still maintain that they are evil and worthy of punishment. . . . And yet, where suffering and death are found in abundance their causes are often deemed to be good. . . . This inversion of priorities not only victimizes innocent people and squanders scarce resources; it completely falsifies our ethics.
...mathematics is distinguished from all other sciences except only ethics, in standing in no need of ethics. Every other science, even logic, especially in its early stages, is in danger of evaporating into airy nothingness, degenerating, as the Germans say, into an arachnoid film, spun from the stuff that dreams are made of. There is no such danger for pure mathematics; for that is precisely what mathematics ought to be.
Charles Sanders Peirce
Thus we seem to be on the verge of an expansion of welfare economics into something like a social science of ethics and politics: what was intended to be a mere porch to ethics is either the whole house or nothing at all. In so laying down its life welfare economics may be able to contribute some of its insights and analytical methods to a much broader evaluative analysis of the whole social process.
Kenneth E. Boulding
This is the first time I have heard 'ethics' in the mouth of a man. You and I are the only men on this ship that know its meaning. At one time in my life, I dreamed that I might someday talk with men who used such language, that I might lift myself out of the place in life in which I had been born, and hold conversation and mingle with men who talked about just such things as ethics.
The seventh rule of the ethics of means and ends is that generally success or failure is a mighty determinant of ethics. The judgment of history leans heavily on the outcome of success or failure; it spells the difference between the traitor and the patriotic hero. There can be no such thing as a successful traitor, for if one succeeds he becomes a founding father.
A minimal level of sportsman ethics afield is mandated by written law. Beyond that, say, when an action is legal but ethically questionable, or when (as Aldo Leopold long ago pointed out) no one is watching, hunter ethics is an individual responsibility. As the existentialists would have it, we determine our own honor minute by minute, action by action, one decision at a time.
Today it is considered as exaggeration to proclaim constant respect for every form of life as being the serious demand of a rational ethic. But the time is coming when people will be amazed that the human race existed so long before it recognized that thoughtless injury to life is incompatible with real ethics. Ethics is in its unqualified form extended responsibility to everything that has life.
Ethics occupies a central place in philosophy because it is concerned with sin, with the origin of good and evil and with moral valuations. And since these problems have a universal significance, the sphere of ethics is wider than is generally supposed. It deals with meaning and value and its province is the world in which the distinction between good and evil is drawn, evaluations are made and meaning is sought.
A code of ethics cannot be developed overnight by edict or official pronouncement. It is developed by years of practice and performance of duty according to high ethical standards. It must be self-policing. Without such a code, a professional soldier or a group soon loses identity and effectiveness. Once we know our job, have a genuine code of ethics, and maintain unquestioned personal integrity, we have met the first and most demanding challenge of leadership.
Silas L. Copeland
The notion of ambiguity must not be confused with that of absurdity. To declare that existence is absurd is to deny that it can ever be given a meaning; to say that it is ambiguous is to assert that its meaning is never fixed, that it must be constantly won. Absurdity challenges every ethics; but also the finished rationalization of the real would leave no room for ethics; it is because man's condition is ambiguous that he seeks, through failure and outrageousness, to save his existence.
Simone de Beauvoir
Ethics and power are separate. Ethics and morality. I think life would be miserable if there weren't some kind of code that people operated by, but history is full of many, many people who have gotten power by very unethical means, and people who were very ethical, who get no power, people who have the most brilliant, lovely, wonderful, nice intentions and bring about horrible things in the world because they don't know how to play the power game.
We need to employ a secular approach to ethics, secular in the Indian sense of respecting all religious traditions and even the views of non-believers in an unbiased way. Secular ethics rooted in scientific findings, common experience and common sense can easily be introduced into the secular education system. If we can do that there is a real prospect of making this 21st century an era of peace and compassion.
To think the welfare and the goodness of the next generations is indeed a good ethics, but there is much greater ethics than this: To think the welfare and the goodness of the current generations, the very people of now! The reason is simple: Future may not exist, it is only a possibility, but the people of now are not possibility, they are here!
Mehmet Murat Ildan
Thought cannot avoid the ethical or reverence and love for all life. It will abandon the old confined systems of ethics and be forced to recognize the ethics that knows no bounds. But on the other hand, those who believe in love for all creation must realize clearly the difficulties involved in the problem of a boundless ethic and must be resolved not to veil from humankind the conflicts which this ethic will involve us, but allow us really to experience them. To think out in every implication the ethic of love for all creation this is the difficult task which confronts our age.
Evolution, energy, and ethics are the core elements that will guide us along the challenging path toward the Life Era: the first - evolution - because a good understanding of our universal roots and of our place in the cosmic scheme of things will help us create a feasible future course; the second - energy - because our fate will bear strongly on the ways that humankind learns to use energy efficiently and safely; and the third - ethics - because global citizenship and a planetary society are crucial factors in the survival of our species.
I can imagine no greater catastrophe than if I were mistaken, and the theory were correct that what I consider secondary instincts or drives are actually primary instincts! Because in that case the emotional plague would rest upon the support of a natural law while its archenemies, truth and sociality, would be relying upon unfounded ethics. Until now both lies and truth have taken recourse to ethics. But only lies have profited because they were able to appear under the guise of truth. Under these circumstances, egoism, theft, petty selfishness, slander, etc., would be the natural rule. (26.july.1943)
I have argued elsewhere (Fighting Words: The Origins of Religious Violence ) that we need to treat ethics in biblical texts just as we treat ethics in any other works of ancient literature. It is a vacuous exercise to pick and choose which atrocities were really ordained by any gods and which were not. We should have a zero-tolerance view of any text or collection of texts that at any time endorses genocide, misogyny, and other atrocities. We always judge ancient texts by modern ethical standards, and the Bible should not be treated differently.
Robert Torricelli, a powerful fund-raiser who helped raise more than $100 million for the Democratic party, took inappropriate gifts from a businessman, including an $8,000 gold Rolex watch, for which he was severely admonished by the Senate Ethics Committee in July. To recap: raising $100 million in contributions from gigantic corporations - ethical; taking a watch - unethical. That's the Senate Ethics Committee, an oxymoron since 1974.
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
The wolf eats the lamb; the strong eats the weak. This is not God's Order, because it lacks justice, ethics and goodness. This chaotic structure belongs to the evolution! Evolution is primitive and it lacks high intelligence; it moves ahead by crawling and it is faulty! He who calls this system as God's Order openly insults God! We must know that God is not in this universe; He is somewhere else, somewhere where there is no evolution, where there is justice, ethics and goodness!
Mehmet Murat ildan
What is worse than doing evil, is being evil' (Ethics, p.67). To lie is wrong, but what is worse than the lie is the liar, for the liar contaminates everything he says, because everything he says is meant to further a cause that is false. The liar as liar has endorsed a world of falsehood and deception, and to focus only on the truth or falsity of his particular statements is to miss the danger of being caught up in his twisted world. This is why, as Bonhoeffer says, that '(i)t is worse for a liar to tell the truth than for a lover of truth to lie' (Ethics, p.67).
In April, I asked my staff to determine if Senate rules and relevant laws would allow me to direct the trustees to sell any remaining HCA stock. In May, my staff worked with outside counsel and with the Senate ethics committee staff to draft a written communication to the trustees. After obtaining pre-approval by mid-June from the Senate ethics committee, I issued a letter directing my trustees to sell any remaining HCA stock in my family's trust.