What is your personal moral system or code of ethics?
On what principles is it based? Justify them.
How does your system make allowances for individual freedom and yet maintain order and stability?
In two paragraphs or more, create your post by answering the questions in a scholarly manner using the textbook and/or outside resources. If using outside sources, it is important that your sources are credible. Acceptable sources come from the following: the library, .org, .mil, .gov, .edu. Wikipedia, or any other “open” sources, are not to be used within collegiate writing. Within your posting, include any in-paragraph citations, and reference the text at the end.
After your initial posting, respond in a scholarly manner to two of your classmates’ posts.
Demonstrate more depth of thought than simply stating “I agree” or “You are wrong.” Your responses to your classmates should be well-thought-out, scholarly, informative, and delivered in a non-threatening matter. Opinions are welcome, but remember to always back up your opinions with scholarly research.
Reply 1: Mariam Dougan
My personal moral system comes from me being a Christian. My parents are Christians so as a result, I was raised in a church. There are a lot of things we were not allowed to do. My religion is based on the following principles love, compassion and the word of God that is what shapes my moral system. Everything I do and the way I treat people is motivated by my morals. We were raised to love everyone, help the needy and treat people right. To this day I ponder over the decisions I make before I make them. My religion and faith help me to maintain order and remain stable in my everyday life. As a result of what I have learned, I am able to raise my children based on that. I do not force my religion on anyone, I am not better than anyone but that is my foundation.
Theroux, JP., & Krasemann, K.W (2017). Ethics Theory and Patience, Updated Eleventh Edition Boston, MA: Pearson Education Inc.
Reply 2: Mary Waugaman
When it comes to ethical and moral systems, I find myself more in line with the consequentialist school of thought and my main concern is being a better person. When I first took philosophy here at SNHU I wrote my final paper on “Why we should be moral?”. Researching this paper taught me a lot about utilitarianism and Kant’s duty ethics. In Utilitarianism, a person chooses an action based on the consequences of that action. This is an action-based rather than an agent-based system (Mohn, 2017). Actions can be deemed good or bad morally by whether the consequences have positive or negative consequences or outcomes. Utilitarianism proposes that we choose the action which produces the best positive outcome for all of those affected by the action (Thiroux, 25, 2017). For me, this was a way to understand something that I had witnessed in my life but didn’t have a name for. Growing up, I was taught an action-based set of beliefs only it was a rule-based system and you chose good actions to avoid hell or parental recriminations. This type of negative reinforcement only taught me to try and avoid the consequences for my action as punishments are not meant to accomplish anything or deter offensive behavior but as a consequence of the action (Thiroux, 77, 2017). It was a system based on punishment rather than trying to be good to benefit yourself and others. Learning about Socrates in my philosophy class taught me about the social contract that exist between people in a community (Rachels, 6, 2012). The social contract is a way of managing your actions and responsibilities in a way that reinforces social cohesion (Rachels, 157, 2012). Among the strands that hold the social contract together are telling the truth. A person who lies is less likely to be trusted by the community at large (Rachels, 157, 2012). This can create mistrust and fear damaging the community (Thiroux, 156, 2017). Upholding the rule of law is an important part of the social contract because if we all obey the same set of rules and abide by the same set of consequences that trust is maintained (Rachels, 157-158, 2012). Act utilitarianism ensures that I take into account consequences on the group and myself before performing an action. People learn the consequences of different actions from cultural stories and norms, personal experience, and perspective (Rachels, 157, 2012).
Another form of ethics than I ascribe to is Immanuel Kant’s duty ethics. Kant felt that through reason and goodwill we would be able to recognize the best possible action (Thiroux, 34, 2017). One philosopher who influenced Kant’s way of thinking was John Stuart Mill who taught that we have an imperative to act in ways set by the moral standard in order to create and maintain a moral standard.
… the end of human action, is necessarily also the standard of morality: which may accordingly be defined, the rules and precepts for human contact, by the observance of which an existence such as has been described might be to the greatest extent possible, secured to all mankind: and not to them only, but so far as the nature of things admits, to the whole sentient creation. (Mill, 2011)
What Mill is saying and what Kant elaborated upon goes back to the social contract. We create a standard of what is morally good and maintain it through our actions which in turn ensures that society remains intact. Furthermore, Mill believed that our goodwill should not only extend to human beings but the life around us (Mill, 2011).
Most importantly, through my studies, I learned that not all of our actions will benefit ourselves and others. We will make mistakes and fail to commit virtuous actions; we may fail our duty to humanity to be better. But what matters is whether we are doing the work of being a better person.