Lying is simply an act of not telling the truth, and this definition of lying will be used in future sections of this paper. There are three groups of lies t... ... middle of paper ... ...f utilitarian calculus might indicate that there is something wrong with utilitarianism, since a morally correct action can sometimes go against our conscience, and Mill has called conscience the foundation of morality. This is interesting, because it raises the question of whether we will ever have a moral theory that works in all cases. I believe that human nature is too complex for any consistent moral theory to be written down on a few pages. Perhaps a philosopher might come to do that someday.
The theory of Utilitarianism of morality is concerned with the happiness of the general population. The three fundamental principles of Utilitarianism begin with the judgment of actions based on the consequences produced. Secondly, when evaluating the consequences of these actions, one must measure the amount of happiness or unhappiness it produces. Lastly, the happiness of all those affected must be taken into account (Rachels, p.102). Rachels’ explains, “right actions as those that produce the greatest possible balance of happiness over unhappiness, with each person’s happiness counted as equally important” (Rachels, p. 102).
Or could there be more important things to morals, than just happiness? Most of society would agree that happiness is desired aspect of life and unhappiness is not . These are the ideals that get at the heart of Utilitarianism. It is called the “Greatest Happiness Principle” because it states that an action is right if it produces happiness and wrong if it produces unhappiness. Similarly, happiness can either be a pleasure or the absence of pain and unhappiness is pain or the absence of pleasure.
The utilitarianism theory holds that an action is moral if it produces the greatest amount of good for the largest amount of people that are affected by the consequences of the action DeGeorge 44). Jeremy Bentham believed that one should measure the intensity, duration, certainty, remoteness, or purity and their opposites when evaluating for each person that is affected (DeGeorge 46). For example, a consequence that gives a more desirable quality like pleasure would be favored, just like if one would receive a good immediately rather than at a later time, the sooner would be favored. To know whether the action produces the absolute greatest good, one must compare it with alternative actions as well. To determine whether an action is moral or not, one should calculate the action and its opposite.
Kant argues that human reasoning is limited in its ability to provide an example of true morality. In his essay, he states that what humans perceive as good morals does not necessarily fit the conditions of what can be categorized as universal law of morality. Kant believes that people must hold morality not solely as an idea or set of exceptions but as an absolute idea (Kant 408). This absolute idea should be free of human rationalization in order to create a pure example. He believes this to be the case because within this form of rationalizing what is good from what is wrong there are often cases that stray away from true virtue such as human behavior.
Ethical relativism is supported due to the narrowing view of ethnocentrism, which is causing great “prejudice tantamount to racism and sexism” (Pojman, 25). Society is moving away from their ethnocentric view of the world, and allowing for more diversity in what is culturally right and wrong. Moral positions are being based on what their society is following or sees as ideal norms. Because of this turn to what one’s society feels what is right and wrong there is skepticism on these universal princi... ... middle of paper ... ...e ideal if the world followed a set of universal morals in which everyone could agree upon, but in a realistic setting, everyone is different in either what they believe, or how culture has influenced them. Cultures have always differed in what is thought to be morally acceptable, and always will because of their ethnocentric view on different cultures.
Utilitarianism is when you determine rightness or wrongness of an action judged off the consequences. It’s a way to get the maximum number of happiness from the greatest amount of people, so if the majority of the people are content with the consequences then there’s no problem behind the action. The intentions you have behind an action determine whether you perform that action or not. Initially your intentions are to look at the greater “good” of the action and if that good outweighs the bad then you’ll probably initiate that action. There are two subcategories for utilitarianism; act utilitarianism and rule utilitarianism.
Everybody 's happiness counts the same. This version of the good is one that must maximize the good for everyone. My good counts just the same as anyone else 's good. Two specific forms of are Act and Rule Utilitarianism. Both forms agree that the overall aim of evaluating actions is key and should create the best results possible, but they differ about how exactly to get to those results.
Their two basic view consist of believing that we should nurture everyone’s happiness and not just one’s own, and accepting that some pleasures are bigger than others. Act and Rule Utilitarianism is based on two principles called the Consequentialist Principle and the Utility Principle. The Consequentialist Principle pretty much determines what actions are right from wrong. When determining this, actions are judged based off of the consequences. They believe the right actions will have the best outcomes.
Mill’s argument sheds light on the individual more so than the group in his interpretation of Utilitarianism. As I stated previously, Mill doesn’t quantify his interpretation of Utilitarianism. Instead, concepts such as morality, are based internally as opposed to externally. Everyone has the potential to decide for themselves whether their actions are moral or not. Through doing this, Mill addressed most of the criticisms toward Utilitarianism.