Discussion Questions of Ethics
a) Define ethics & discuss its relationship with normative systems
The Meaning of Ethics:
Ethics, also known as moral philosophy, is a branch of philosophy concerned with the study of questions of right and wrong and how we ought to live. Ethics involves making moral judgments about what is right or wrong, good or bad. Right and wrong are qualities or moral judgments we assign to actions and conduct. Within the study of ethics, there are three branches: metaethics , concerned with methods, language, logical structure, and the reasoning used in the interpretation of ethical terms, for example, what exactly the term “good” means; normative ethics , ...view middle of the document...
This approach to setting standards of conduct is called ethical relativism.
Others argue that one set of ethical standards applies across all societies, and
people have an obligation to do what is “known to be right”; that is, they argue in favor of ethical absolutism.
b) Discuss the notion of the good life & the self
What is the Good Life?". The concept of "the good life" can be interpreted in many different ways depending upon the experiences, values and aspirations of each individual.
In a concise narrative, describe your notion of "the good life." How will your undergraduate experience at the University to prepare you to live "the good life"?
I can still see it; I can still see his face: a face which days prior, was warm and full of joy; a face that could make anyone smile. A face that now only brings tears to my mother's eyes. A face that is now emotionless and cold, so very cold. It is the last image of the last memory I have of my brother, to which there will be no new memories, no new fun times to recall when we get old and visit each other on the holidays. The possibilities that lay in front of us just days before have all but misplaced. It was all that was scurrying through my mind as I helped the pall-bearers carry him to his final resting place. All I have now to carry around is that last image of that last memory. But such a memory, that it now allows me to analyze my experience and find my own solution to the age-old question "What is the Good Life?"
Given the very short time on Earth, people strive to achieve their own unique version of the good life. Before you can achieve the good life, you must define it. In order to define it, you must define what it is not. If you were to ask my 13 year-old self "What is the Good Life?" you would have received a distorted answer along the lines of "obtaining wealth." The distorted part was not the answer itself, but my definition of wealth. What it meant to me then was no more than simple cash, cold hard money, but what it means to me now is far beyond that. What it means to me now is happiness. Not the fake-it-until-you-make-it kind of happiness, but the happiness that is bought with the acceptance of what you cannot control. The happiness that is bought with a career you love. To reach such happiness, I must first let go of the things I cannot control.
The Good Life
In Plato’s dialogues in which Socrates is the leading character, the recurrent theme is the search for the good life. And from Socrates’ discussions with his fellow Greeks, it is evident that this was not at all a new question but one about which virtually everyone had very strong opinions. And almost all of these opinions are still defended today. Most prominent among them is the philosophy called hedonism, the view that says the good life involves getting as much pleasure out of life as you possibly can.
Freedom can be singled out as a separate conception of the good life. Usually,...