6 pages/≈1650 words
Morals and Modernity (Essay Sample)
Morals and Modernity 2000 words ( Harvard) essay Essay Questions Write an essay of 2000 words on one of the following topics. Very high level perfect referencing use Havard referencing,title page index cover page bibliography... . thank you very much :0) 1. 'Aquinas's major concern is to defend a "naturalistic" or Aristotelian Christianity.' Discuss with reference to the place of natural law. 2. Examine the development of the idea of natural law and why it was attacked in the 'modern world'. 3. 'Natural law, if it exists, is a system of law binding on men by virtue of their nature alone, and independently of all convention or positive law.' Critically evaluate, including cases of moral decision in your answer. 4. In one case we looked at this term, natural law seems to allow a woman to take medicine which will inadvertently end her pregnancy, while prohibiting an abortion, even when if the pregnancy is allowed to continue, both mother and the fertilized egg will die. Examine the doctrine of natural law and double effect, and evaluate whether you think it leads to the right outcomes in these cases. 5. Natural law prohibits homosexuality and euthanasia. Examine its arguments for one or both of these prohibitions, and critically reflect on whether you think it is persuasive as a moral position. What problems do you, and others, see for it, and can it respond to those criticisms? 6. "Since what is morally good and bad is not an empirical matter Hume cannot really give an account of moral behaviour. For him morality becomes a purely subjective matter of attitudes and feelings. As a result it is impossible, on Hume's theory, really to disagree over moral issues; all that we can do is to express different attitudes and feelings about a given piece of behaviour." Discuss. 7. Can morality be based on sympathy? Discuss with reference to Hume. 8. ‘It is impossible to think of anything at all in the world, or indeed even beyond it, that could be considered good without limitation except a good will.' Kant, Groundwork, 4:393. Discuss and critically evaluate. 9. ‘I ought never to act except in such a way that I could also will that my maxim should become a universal law.' Kant, Groundwork, 4:402. What does this tell us about morality? What, if any, moral principles follow? 10. Examine and evaluate the criticisms of Kant offered by at least two of (1) Hegel, (2) Nietzsche, (3) Horkheimer, or (4) Williams—to the effect that Kant's moral philosophy lacks enough substance to give practical guidance, is too other- or non-worldly, and is perhaps even deeply inhumane or cruel. Are these criticisms just? 11. “Morality aims at producing the greatest happiness for the greatest number, so in some difficult cases, we have to accept even the sacrifice of an innocent scapegoat, if it will lead to the greater good.” Examine the claims of utilitarian moral philosophy, in light of this famous problem of whether moral sacrifice can ever be justified. 12. Mill wants at once to be a utilitarian, and to hold onto a distinction between higher and lower pleasures, as if he were Epicurus or Aristotle. What is his distinction between kinds of pleasure based on, and do you think that it can feasibly be integrated into the purely quantitative ethics of utilitarianism? 13. Williams argues that adopting a utilitarian morality runs up against our legitimate needs and desires for integrity as individuals. Why does he say this? Examine. Do you agree? Evaluate. 14. Utilitarianism, according to Williams, seems to lead to the idea that acting badly, or letting something bad happen—or even letting someone else act badly—are morally equivalent. Critically discuss this idea, using the cases of George and Jim from our Williams readings for week 11 and 12. 15. Should I do my duty even if it means harming others? 16. Examine at least two of (1) Anscombe's , (2) Williams', (3) Nussbaum's or (4) van Hooft's arguments against modern moral philosophy—principally Kant and the utilitarians. What are the key limitations they see in this way of doing moral philosophy, and do you think their scepticism about it is fully justified? 17. Do you think that the emphases contemporary virtue ethicists like Nussbaum or van Hooft place on the particularity of moral situations, the need of ethical agents to develop fine-grained responsiveness to these particularities, together with the way that ethical agents are always educated in particular ethical traditions, leads to moral relativism (the belief that moral conduct can be guided by no over-arching or universal principles)? source..
The natural law can also be called as the laws of nature, which means the governing order to the material universe activities. In the earlier days among the jurists of Rome, natural law symbolized love of offspring and self-preservation. Moreover, natural law can be termed as the rule of behavior that was prescribed to human beings by the Creator. Numerous definitions of nature vary with different philosophers and scholars. St. Thomas of the catholic doctrine, described the law of nature as the rational participation of the creator in eternal law. Some various conduct are said to alter or violate natural law (KAINZ, 2004). Moreover, natural law prohibits the practices that it considers immoral in its sight like; some of these acts include homosexuality and euthanasia. There are various arguments that are posed to support these prohibitions and the controversies it creates amongst distinguished persons.
Homosexuality is one practice that brings controversial arguments among various faiths. The purpose of sex is said to be for the purpose of procreating and uniting. Homosexuality can not serve the procreative purpose is therefore considered it immoral. Some of the arguments are faith based and others traditional. In the ancient times, traditions considered homosexuality as a taboo and the people that were engaged in this act would be excommunicated in some communities. The nature clearly elaborates that the Creator made man and woman and brought them together in this world for procreation (FINNIS, 1991). Marriage should not be considered as just a mere relationship between human beings because God started it. Almost all religions acknowledge that. Marriage was created containing its own nature, vital purpose and characteristic. There is not particular ideology that can alter or erase the reality that marriage should only exist between a man and woman. The man and woman tend toward the unity of their own persons by shared personal gift, which is exclusive and suitable to them (HEGEL, KNOX, ACTON & SILBER, 1975).
The truth that is natural about marriage is evident in biblical descriptions of creation as well as the revelation of expression of unique human wisdom. The original wisdom of human beings is also a voice through which the human nature is heard. There are no clear grounds that consider the unions of homosexuality as in anyway alike or remotely equivalent to the plan of God regarding family and marriage. The acts of homosexuality are performed against the moral laws of nature. In addition, homosexuality shut the sexual performance to gift of nature. These acts do not originate from a sexual and affective complimentarily and they should not be approved in respect to natural law (D'ENTRÈVES, 1951). The negative concept on homosexuality does not necessarily relate to Christian arguments that are mentioned in the bible, it involves existing setoff facts or truth, which God has reveale...
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