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Part II: Ethics. Ch. 2: How should one live? Ch. 3: How can I know what is right? Ch. 4: What makes society just? Ch. 5: Is justice for all possible?. Chapter 2: How Should One Live?. What constitutes a “good life”? Need to answer moral questions in a way that is not ambiguous or vague

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part ii ethics

Part II: Ethics

Ch. 2: How should one live?

Ch. 3: How can I know what is right?

Ch. 4: What makes society just?

Ch. 5: Is justice for all possible?

chapter 2 how should one live
Chapter 2: How Should One Live?
  • What constitutes a “good life”?
  • Need to answer moral questions in a way that is not ambiguous or vague
  • What is the difference between actual desires and one’s idea of what they ought to do?
answering moral questions
Answering Moral Questions
  • Moral questions must be answered in a way that is not:
    • Ambiguous – has many meanings and is not clear precisely to what it refers
    • Vague – without clear distinctions
answering moral questions1
Answering Moral Questions
  • Moral questions should be answered in way that is:
    • Descriptive – describes the kinds of values people have and the sorts of principles they use
    • Normative – the norms that ought to guide one’s actions
reading the philosophers
Reading the Philosophers
  • Ask yourself how the author would answer these questions:
    • What is the good life?
    • How is the good life attained?
    • Why is the life described as a good one?
justification for answers
Justification for Answers
  • When asking why questions, the author should provide two types of justification:
    • Justification of the goal
    • Justification of the means
the buddha and the middle way
The Buddha and the Middle Way
  • Buddha= “the Enlightened One”
  • Siddhartha Gautama (563 BCE.) was deemed Buddha after being enlightened concerning how to attain wisdom and overcome suffering
  • Nirvana – release from suffering
buddhism
Buddhism
  • Buddhism developed from Siddhartha Gautama’s teaching
  • Three main groups
    • Theravada – Way of the Elders
    • Mahayana – Greater Vehicle
    • Vajrayana – Diamond Vehicle
buddhism1
Buddhism
  • Four Noble Truths – heart of Buddah’s message.
  • Middle Way or Eightfold Path – the Fourth Noble Truth
the four noble truths the buddha
The Four Noble TruthsThe Buddha
  • The Noble Truth of Suffering
  • The Noble Truth of the Origin of Suffering
  • The Noble Truth of the Cessation of Suffering
  • The Noble Truth of the Way of Practice Leading to the Cessation of Suffering
the noble truth of suffering
The Noble Truth of Suffering
  • Suffering is understood through the five aggregates (components of the individual human being) of grasping
  • The aggregates of grasping
    • Form
    • Feeling
    • Perception
    • Mental formations
    • Consciousness
the noble truth of the origin of suffering
The Noble Truth of the Origin of Suffering
  • A craving or desire arises and establishes itself through the pleasures of sights, sounds, smells, tastes, tangibles, and mind-objects
the noble truth of the cessation of suffering
The Noble Truth of the Cessation of Suffering
  • Complete fading away and extinction of craving or desire
  • Liberation from desires
noble truth of the way of practice leading to the cessation of suffering
Noble Truth of the Way of Practice Leading to the Cessation of Suffering
  • Noble Eightfold Path
    • Right View
    • Right Thought
    • Right Speech
    • Right Action
    • Right Livelihood
    • Right Effort
    • Right Mindfulness
    • Right Concentration
the fourth noble truth walpola rahula
The Fourth Noble TruthWalpola Rahula
  • Fourth Noble Truth Composed of Eightfold Path
  • Called the “Middle Path” because it avoids two extremes:
    • Search for happiness through pleasure of senses
    • Search for happiness through self-mortification
the fourth noble truth walpola rahula1
The Fourth Noble TruthWalpola Rahula
  • Eightfold Path promote three essentials of Buddhist training and discipline
    • Ethical Conduct – Right speech, action, and livelihood
    • Mental Discipline – Right effort, mindfulness, and concentration
    • Wisdom – Right thought and understanding
confucius and the life of virtue
Confucius and the Life of Virtue
  • Confucius:
    • born in China (551 – 479 BCE)
    • “humanistic social philosophy” – concern for achieving good social order and cultivating humane qualities in the human spirit
confucius and the life of virtue1
Confucius and the Life of Virtue
  • Key attributes of Confucian philosophy
    • Ren (jen) – “goodness,” “benevolence,” and “humanheartedness.” What we become by cultivating aesthetic, moral, cognitive, and spiritual sensibilities.
    • Li – rules of proper behavior. Grounded in tradition.
    • Xiao (hsiao) – practice of kindness, honor, respect, and loyalty among family members
    • Yi – refers to what is appropriate or fitting to do in a given situation
confucius and moral character d c lau
Confucius and Moral CharacterD. C. Lau
  • Distinctions of ideal moral character
    • Sage (sheng jen) – highest level of moral character
    • Good man and complete man
    • Gentleman (chün tzu) – characterized by benevolence.
    • Small man (Hsiao Jen) – opposite of gentleman
confucius and moral character d c lau1
Confucius and Moral CharacterD. C. Lau
  • Becoming a Gentleman: The meaning of benevolence.
    • “Do not impose on others what you yourself do not desire” (XII.2)
    • Shu – method of discovering what other people do or do not wish done to them
    • Chung – doing one’s best, practicing what one has learned from shu
    • Benevolence consists in overcoming self and observance of rites
socrates on living the examined life
Socrates on Living the Examined Life
  • Socrates was born in Athens 9 years after Confucius died
  • Socratic method – consists of asking questions to formulate, critique, and reform definitions of concepts
  • Divine command theory – God’s command or will makes something morally right
the apology plato
The ApologyPlato
  • Plato’s account of the trial and defense of Socrates in 399 BCE.
  • What is the good life?
    • The examined life, because “the life which is unexamined is not worth living” (pg 57).
  • How is the good life attained?
    • Examine life through asking questions
    • He who understands his own limitations is wiser than he who thinks he is wise
the apology plato1
The ApologyPlato
  • What makes this the good life?
    • In the examined life, one seeks virtue and wisdom and looks to the welfare of others
    • This is profitable both to one’s self and others
aristotle on happiness and the life of moderation
Aristotle on Happiness and the Life of Moderation
  • Aristotle was a student of Plato (384 – 322 BCE)
  • Tutor of Alexandor the Great
  • Aristotle was a teleologist – he believed that all existing things have a purpose
    • Teleology = “end,” “goal,” or “purpose”
    • He was concerned with the good of all humans, or eudaimonia
nicomachean ethics aristotle
Nicomachean EthicsAristotle
  • Every action and pursuit aims at some good
  • The things we do for the sake of a desired end are the chief good
  • Human good is the activity of the soul in accordance with virtue
nicomachean ethics aristotle1
Nicomachean EthicsAristotle
  • Happiness is the activity of the soul in accordance with perfect virtue
  • The nature of virtue
    • Intellectual – virtue born through teaching
    • Moral – result of habit
  • Virtue is a state of character concerned with choice
  • Moral virtue is a mean between excess and deficiency
the song of god
The Song of God
  • How does one strive for moral perfection in morally imperfect world?
  • Hinduism
    • Dharma – order of the cosmos embodied in social and ethical law codes
    • Karma – “consequences of action.” As you sow, you will reap
    • Samsara – cycle of rebirth, death, and suffering of human life
    • Reincarnation – rebirth into new physical body
bhagavad gita
Bhagavad-Gita
  • The First Teaching: Arjuna’s Dejection
  • The Second Teaching: Philosophy and Spiritual Discipline
the virtue of selfishness
The Virtue of Selfishness
  • Ethical egoism – view that people ought to do what is in their own self-interest
  • Altruism – people ought to do what is in the interest of others
the ethics of emergencies ayn rand
The Ethics of EmergenciesAyn Rand
  • “Altruism has destroyed the concept of any authentic benevolence or good will among men”
  • The moral purpose of life is the achievement of one’s own happiness
  • Values are the first concern and motive power of life
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