It focuses only on happiness and pleasure. It lacks the flexibility that other moral aspects have in their definition. The utilitarianism theory is based on a single rule that positive results of an action automatically make the action moral. This rule is also subjective and does not take into account the varying definitions of happiness. It is unpredictable as it is based on consequences at the end of the action.
Aristotle believes that ethics is about doing the things that make one an excellent and ultimately a happy (fulfilled) person. Kant claims that happiness is irrelevant in ethics and that the right thing to do is to determine what our duty is and to act on it. Both of these philosophies pose their flaws, but the question of what should we follow if we have no basis is raised. Although I strongly disagree with both philosophies, Kant’ s philosophy would work the best in an ideal world, while on the other hand, Aristotle’s philosophy wouldn’t work in an ideal or realistic world. Aristotle is a strong believer that reaching happiness is the ultimate goal of humans.
Mill’s critics would likely say that Utilitarianism as a whole can function to create selfish people because all are striving towards a life of more pleasure than pain, but Mill shuts this down with the idea of happiness being impartial. Basically, a person must choose an action that yields the most happiness or pleasure, whether that pleasure is for them or not. Mill would recognize that, “Among the qualitatively superior ends are the moral ends, and it is in this that people acquire the sense that they have moral intuitions superior to mere self-interest” (Wilson). By this, it is meant that although people are supposed to take action that will produce the greatest pleasure, the do not do so in a purely selfish manner. Mill goes on to argue that the happiness of individuals is interconnected; therefore one cannot be selfish in such a way.
In this essay I will argue that ethics of happiness are a set of acceptable principles that guide the way individuals should act in a given situation. Utilitarian Ethics is morally right acts that bring the most happiness to individuals. For instance, utilitarian ethics main focus is happiness and what decision will produce the maximum amount of happiness for everyone involved. Kant would say that the actions of somebody who acts justly because of the desire of happiness or pleasure have no moral worth. In fact, even if that person acts justly because of the desire for happiness of others, Kant would say that a person’s actions have no moral worth.
Rather, the good life for a person is the active life of functioning well in those ways that are essential and unique to humans. Aristotle invites the fact that if we have happiness, we do not need any other things making it an intrinsic value. In contrast, things such as money or power are extrinsic valuables as they are all means to an end. Usually, opinions vary as to the nature and conditions of happiness. Aristotle argues that although ‘pleasurable amusements’ satisfy his formal criteria for the good, since they are chosen for their own sake and are complete in themselves, nonetheless, they do not make up the good life since, “it would be absurd if our end were amusement, and we laboured and suffered all our lives for the sake of amusing ourselves.” Happiness can be viewed as wealth, honour, pleasure, or virtue.
Mill defines utilitarianism as a theory based on the principle that “actions are right in proportion as they tend to promote happiness, wrong as they tend to produce the reverse of happiness.” In his words he defines happiness as a state of pleasure without pain. Mill rebuttals that the pain caused to one can differ in quality and quantity, and that pleasures aren’t always the same, meaning one’s higher pleasure might be someone’s lower pleasure. Meaning he makes it clear that often times ones goals and ends results conclude to someone’s happiness. Mill also states the Utilitarianism is a form of consequentialism. An action could be morally wrong or morally right, depending on what action brings out the best outcome out of the... ... middle of paper ... ...s theory, often called hedonism.
As stated, Mill believes that an action is right if it promotes happiness and an action is wrong if it promotes pain. Second, the principle of utility does not focus on an individual’s happiness but it focuses on the overall happiness. As stated, “first laws of social arrangement should place the happiness or the interest of every individual as nearly as possible in harmony with the interest of the whole” (Utilitarianism, 17). The principle takes into consideration the happiness of others and does not allow you to only think of yourself, this incorporates the idea of equal treatment to the principle. Another element to the utility principle is consequentialism, which is defined, as what makes an... ... middle of paper ... ...le of utility, helping the family would promote the most happiness because it’s a greater number compared to only one person.
A final consequence was examined which showed that virtue is necessary but not sufficient for happiness, and that only a subset of the individuals who acquire virtue might acquire happiness. However, while this final consequence might seem problematic or counterintuitive, Aristotle offers that happiness is actually one of the most divine things and seems to suggest that our concept of ‘happiness’ in the context which makes this seem so troubling is not a fully conceived notion. That is, you can still lead a good or blessed life without happiness, but the most blessed life is a happy one. Works Cited Aristotle. Nicomachean Ethics.
From this idea of “a priori” concepts, Kant begins his thesis with the notion that the only thing in the world that is a qualified good is the “good will”, even if its efforts bring about a not necessarily good result. A “good will” is good because of the willing that is involved. Two main implications arise with this idea of the “good will”. The first implication is moral actions cannot have impure motivations. There are many impure motivations but Kant tends to focus mainly on the motives of the pursuit of happiness and self-preservation.
In fact, they would not say that they will live in a happy life. It just something that people desired for its own sake. Aristotle claims that not real happiness but people just desired for its own. Human being tries everything to pursue the happiness, and believes that it will be completed. He concludes that virtues are soul’s habits by which one acts well for the sake of what is noble or