Assignment Week One
The theories of Aristotle, Kant, and Mill have influenced how we view morality. Each philosopher has their own vision as to how their theory of morality influences one’s culture and behaviors. The philosophers sought to explain the difference of what is right and wrong in terms of morality. Aristotle characterized his theory as virtue ethics, or what virtues make a good person. According to Kraut (2014) Aristotle felt that we must go beyond learning general rules and practice deliberative, emotional, and social skills that allow us to use our understanding of well-being, and practice in ways that are appropriate to each occasion. In other words Aristotle asks the question of what kind of person do we want to be? His theory was based on what a person of virtue would do in a particular situation and what habits or behaviors should one develop to become that person.
Kant’s theory of morality was based on what was rational or what he called the categorical imperative. Kant asked the question of what ought I to do. With Kant’s theory one has determine what is rational and have a positive attitude about moral duty. According to Johnson (2014) Kant believed that moral perfection was not really possible in this life and there were not many who deserved the happiness that we are lucky enough to have. According to Johnson (2014) Kant felt the highest good for humanity is complete moral virtue along with complete happiness, the former being the condition of our deserving the latter.
Mill believed that the ultimate aim of each person is predominantly, if not exclusively, the promotion of their own happiness (Brink, 2014). Mill asks the question of...
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...ate any of the experiences of my life in terms of my social responsibility. My cultural identity is what helps to make up the morals and ethics that I live by; and those moral and ethics are what guide me in my obligations helping to make my community and society as a whole a better place.
Brink, D. (2014). Mill’s moral and political philosophy. In E. N. Zalta (Ed.), Stanford
encyclopedia of philosophy (Fall 2014 ed.). Retrieved from http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/mill-moral-political/
Johnson, R. (2014). Kant’s moral philosophy. In E. N. Zalta (Ed.), Stanford encyclopedia of
philosophy(Summer 2014 ed.). Retrieved from http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/kant-moral/
Kraut, R. (2014). Aristotle’s ethics. In E. N. Zalta (Ed.), Stanford encyclopedia of
philosophy (Summer 2014 ed.). Retrieved from http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/aristotle-ethics/
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