Anti Utilitarianism : Making Choices By Yourself And For Yourself Essay

Anti Utilitarianism : Making Choices By Yourself And For Yourself Essay

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Ryan Clark
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Anti- Utilitarianism: Making choices by Yourself and for Yourself
The principle of utility influences people to act on the wrong terms and encourages its followers to make decisions solely based on what produces the best results. Consequentialists, Jeremy Bentham and John Stewart Mill believe that it doesn’t matter why a person does something or what motivates them to do so; but rather they think that the outcome is the most important factor in decision making. These two Utilitarian philosophers concluded that the greatest form of good in society was happiness, and that the absence of pain and the presence of pleasure should always be one’s number one priority and ultimately always one’s end goal. Encouraging members of society to act on behalf of the greater good of all people, rather than for themselves, as well as to make certain decisions because they are known to be good, produces shallow people who don’t understand the importance of process and what it means and takes to really do something because it is valuable and of importance.
On the other side of this argument, some people, including myself, have always been taught that life is just one big learning process, and that no matter where you end up it is the journey along the way that really defines who you are as an individual; and after reading both Bentham and Mill I can’t help but feel that they are both strongly influencing and encouraging their followers to lead lives where the quantifications should control and rule over all situations. Their approach to life’s purpose is that of a person who doesn’t understand the worth that lies within the process of making difficult decisions and individualism .Personally, I think that if one were to le...


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...a simple principle, life is just way too complicated. Happiness is a word that means something different to everyone and a general rule of thumb to help produce the greatest amount of ‘happiness’ makes no sense especially if everyone’s definition of the word is not the same. Also, by encouraging people to act for the greater-good, both Mill and Bentham are neglecting to see the importance behind being selfish some of the time, and that making other people happy can disguise and hide that fact that you, yourself, are not happy. Encouraging members of society to act on behalf of the greater good of all people, rather than for themselves, as well as to make certain decisions because they are known to be good, produces shallow people who don’t understand the importance of process and what it means and takes to really do something because it is valuable and of importance.

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