Ethics and Morality

I have generally been a hard line for absolutism. Recently though, I have been putting my stance to the test and questioning it. Stumbled across this article and wanted to share it in case others are working through this issue.

Here's the second article on this topic from this source. I haven't read this fully and it is getting late. So I will get back to it and finish reading it when I can concentrate better.


Blogger Mike Clawson stated ...

So, just out of curiosity, how would an absolutist deal with a passage like Romans 14?

I studied these kinds of issues as part of my philosophy major in college. I think that first article way oversimplified the issues. I didn't like the alternatives he presented us with. I'm not an "absolutist" but "situational ethics" doesn't completely describe my views either. I guess you could say that believe in teleological or relational ethics. In other words, some ethical commands are "higher" or more absolute than others. Thus some morals are "relative" to other, higher principles.

For example, honesty and truth-telling is an important moral principle, but there are times when the principle to love and care for those in need supercedes honesty. The example of someone hiding Jews from the Nazis is the prime example of this. Is it immoral to lie to the Nazis in order to protect those Jews, or are we in fact morally required to lie in order to carry out the command to love our neighbors and defend the oppressed?

IMHO, "absolutism" doesn't do justice to the complexity of real life moral decisions.

commented at March 17, 2006 3:04 PM  

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