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Principles Of Ethics Case Project: An Enquiry Concerning The Principles Of Morals.

1554 words - 6 pages

What is a moral? What is right and what is wrong? This is a question that has plagued philosophers and mankind for centuries. Is it possible to have a set of universal morals? There are many questions that surround the mystery of morals. They seem to drive our every action. We base our decisions on what is right and what is wrong. But what is it that actually determines what is right and what is wrong? Is it our sense of reason? Is it our sense of sentiment? David Hume spent much of his life concentrating on such topics. I will address many of the perspectives Hume discussed in his article, "An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals".What exactly is it that drives our actions? Yes, morals drive them, but what determines what our morals are? I think it has to be one's own family and social culture. I know in my life my mom always taught me to obey the civil laws, whether they were just or not. So I wanted to be the good son, so I did as I was taught, and when I did question a law, she would say write your congressman. So in effect, if I wanted to change something or at least believe I could affect this change, I would have to act. What is it that ultimately drives our actions; our feelings or our minds? Hume would say that it is our sentiment that ultimately drives our actions. According to Hume, reason is incapable of motivating an action. According to Hume, reason cannot fuel an action and therefore cannot motivate it. Hume felt that all actions are motivated by our sentiment and, reason has its place in determining morality, but it is not in the motivation of an action. Motivation must come from the heart, or better yet, from within the person; from their beliefs. says this about it," Whatever you truly feel to be right, is right". I certainly see validity in this. Hume writes that "Truth is disputable, not taste": what exists in the nature of things is the standard of our judgment: what each man feels within himself is the standard of sentiment." If the only thing that we can know is how we feel then this is all that is relevant. I make decisions everyday without regard to any other issues, other than how I feel about something. My co-worker played hooky from work and pretended he was out on company business, well, I covered for him because he had worked 14 hours in one day without being rewarded for it. I felt he was due. So when I was asked if he was on business I said yes. cites, In Rousseau's words "The morality of our actions consists entirely in the judgments we ourselves form with regard to them. The justification for this rejection of reason is simple: reason can never tell us what we want, only how to get what we want". I tend to agree with this perspective also. Reason merely allows the person to make moral distinctions. Without reason, there would be no morality. Without reason, one moral clause would not be differentiable from another. That is to say that below all morals, there must be some underlying...

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