Ethicsof Right and Wrong
Thelegal system denotes that children have the necessary moral sense oftelling right from wrong between the ages of 7 to 15, depending onthe geographical location. On the other hand, the Roman Catholic pinsit at the reasonable age of 7, a phenomenon marked by the firstcommunion and confession of sin. Researchers and developmentpsychologists have for years delved into that issue but have not comewith a conclusive answer as to when a child can correctly distinguishbetween right and wrong. How old a child of any pedigree orintellectual making must be to both feel in his heart and know in hismind that stealing, lying, hurting, cheating or even murdering aremorally inappropriate is and will be a matter of scientific debate.
Moralphilosophy or ethics entails defending, systemizing, and recommendingthe ideas of wrong and right conduct. As a facet of philosophy,ethics looks at investigating the best possible way that people canlive with one another (Aristotleand Reeve 23).Additionally, it also looks at what actions constitute what is wrongor right in a particular situation. In practicality, ethics looks atways of resolving matters to deal with human morality throughdefending concepts such as right and wrong, good and evil, justiceand crime and virtue and vice. Ethics is more or less like a field ofmoral philosophy and intellectual inquiry related to other areas suchas descriptive ethics, value theory and moral psychology. Theapplication of ethics is best explainable using the implementation ofan individual’s philosophical and theological assumptions in tryingto distinguish right from wrong (Aristotleand Reeve 25).Consequently, there are various worldviews with differing ethicalsystems for their day-to-day life activities.
Mostreligious groups and sects often tend to affirm a transcendent, fixedmoral order that has its governance steaming from creation and firmlyrooted in the reality of the existence of a Supreme Being, anagreeable yet debate fact. Donlevyand Keith explain that though undetected, the eternal moral order ofreligion adherents is more vivid than our physical and actual world(56). In my own perspective based on my religious understanding,ethics have an entire basis of the character and nature of God. Also,I like most Christians tend to believe that God has revealed hisnature to his people in two ways. The moral light which often residesin our hearts through an agreeable covenant is one of the ways.Furthermore, there are logos through which God communicated thereason, thought, purpose, order, law, intelligence, and design bycreating man in his image (Donlevyand Keith 59).Therefore, right and wrong for Christians have to stem from theirreligious belief and perspective of God’s light. I tend to believethat religious foundation tends to play a critical role in theformation of an individual ethical background.
Thesummary of ethically moral laws in the form of the Ten Commandmentsand other documented writings should not really define anindividual’s ethical decisions. The teachings and sayings ofphilosophers of the old and the new ages in most instances tends toexpand on the rules and manage to summarize the principles of rightand wrong (Donlevyand Keith 67).The perfect life that anyone ought to emulate should consist of thelife and teachings of selfless individuals such as Aristotle as thepinnacle of a morally upright life. The moral laws of Christianity onwhat is right or wrong assume human responsibility. For those of uswho care to believe in a supreme being believe that such as a beingwill use his consistent standards in judging man. It is the nature ofpeople to want to believe that everyone is inherently good.Consequently, the moral goalposts keep on shifting to accommodatepeoples’ self-delusion. For instance, a century ago, same-sexmarriage had the perception of being morally and religiously wrong(Donlevyand Keith 74).However, the changing time through the so-called rights has made itseem okay for people of the same-sex to get married and even adoptchildren.
Secularists,who often have their code of ethics referred to as secular ethicsoften deny the very existence of God and any global transcendentmoral or ethical code. Consequently, such people have arbitraryself-made ethical conducts on distinguishing right from wrongpredicated on evolution, atheism, and naturalism (Lee47).The secularists have with them humanist manifesto which explicitlyshuns the Ten Commandments and terms them as being too restrictivefor their version of right and wrong the only part of their notionthat I tend to agree with. Consequently, the very basis of theirarguments sprouts from the belief that man can only depend on hisintellect or moral resources to know wrong from right by human reasonand insight. Leeillustrates that the lack of fixed moral standards or sources makesit hard for there to be a consensus among humanists on whatconstitutes right and wrong (50). Consequently, such logiccontributes to the world where everyone comes up with a moral code oftheir liking, subjectivism which has different applications dependingon the circumstance, situational ethics.
Humanistshave presented a valid argument that there are no objective ethicalstandards but only external circumstances and situations. Everysituation than an individual finds themselves in, calls for anethical choice. In such instances, ethics boils down to theories,experiments, preferences, and opinions (Lee56).Humanists explain that there is no right or wrong but unwise or wisedecisions based on desired outcomes and situations. Consequently, asignificant problem for the humanists` view comes about. Without someform of objective standard for conduct cropping from some focalpoint, there is no way in which humans will restrain bad behaviors(Lee62).Humanists believe that provided they pursue things which are sociallyhealthy and useful all will be pleasurable, reasonable and happinesswill be the result.
Newage ethics has come up with ways of telling right from wrong. Itdenotes that because of the divinity of humanity there is some formof moral authority existing within each. It means that every manought to be liberated in finding their particular set of values thatwill help in telling between right and wrong (Shaw83).The evolving of man through self-expression preempts him to forsakeany other law of distinguishing between good and evil. Up until thetime man became conscious of the knowledge of right and wrong, goodand evil he was happy. New age ethics explains that we need to regainthe ability of not being able to make any moral judgments. New ageethics tend to invoke karma as an ethical scheme of punishments andrewards for doing right or wrong (Shaw97).Bad things come back to you if you are bad and vice versa based onthe ethical decisions of right and wrong and behaviors.
Thedifferent notion about ethical standards gives rise ethical pluralismwhich constitutes of the idea that there are many explanations andtheories about what is wrong or right, moral norms. Internationalengagements often involve working within different societies wherethere is the likelihood of facing different standards. It takescareful consideration when deciding the appropriate act or norm. Anexcellent example of a moral standard may be whether it is right orwrong to harm a child physically and whether the perpetrators oughtto face some form of punishment. In any international engagement,ethical dilemmas are bound to surface because of the variedperceptions of right and wrong.
Aristotle,, and C D. C. Reeve. NicomacheanEthics., 2014. Print.
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Donlevy,James K, and Keith D. Walker. WorkingThrough Ethics in Education and Leadership: Theory, Analysis, Plays,Cases, Poems, Prose, and Speeches.Rotterdam: SensePublishers, 2011. Print.
Lee,Daniel E. NavigatingRight and Wrong: Ethical Decision Making in a Pluralistic Age., 2002. Print.
Shaw,William H. Mooreon Right and Wrong: The Normative Ethics of G.e. Moore.Dordrecht [u.a.: Kluwer Acad. Publ, 1995. Print.