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revision notes…read more

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the great divide
something is wrong for all of time,
absolute wherever it is, whenever and no matter
what the situation. if something is not
allowed, it is never allowed.
right and wrong depends on the
relative situation, the person, and the time.
ends based morality, often called consequentialism,
teleological and disregards motives, only the results matter.
duty based morality, right depends on what the
deontological motive of a persons actions were or are, regardless
of the results.
opinion based morality, the relative approach that
subjective (non cognitive) moral statements are just opinions, there are no
factual information, morals are like factual
objective (cognitive) statements, there is no opinion involved, proving a
moral truth, just like stating that 2+2=4.
morality is given by god, and is innate and an
god incentive to behave morally.
Humans created morality to ensure a functioning
humans society, and things change as society develops.…read more

Slide 3

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s&w: the great divide
· gives a definite answer to is it wrong
· laws are possible
· it is fair, expecting the same of everyone.
· providing a just system of punishment and reward
· there are very few real absolutes
· is it really fair to generalise actions without even taking into account motive ­ murder
could be right sometimes?
· takes into account individuals
· Flexible and invites discussion
· Introduces motive, not just giving a definite answer.
· There is not right and wrong, just opinion, so no real laws can be made
· Doesn't allow us to criticise, because it could just be how someone feels...…read more

Slide 4

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s&w: the great divide
· incentive to behave morally
· he is right and good so would make good rules ­ definite answer.
· why do something you don't know to be real
· only works for people with faith
· christians disagree within themselves
· fits in with history, it explains why views on slavery and homosexuality have
changed for example
· accepted by those with no faith
· all humans think differently, so what is right?
· all societies differ, so which is right? There a societies you may not wish to
live in...Saudi Arabia?
· there are no set rules whatsoever, and no proof who is right, which would
cause chaos...…read more

Slide 5

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s&w: the great divide
· takes into account motive and hence the intention of an action, which is surely what
makes a person a good or bad one, not the result which they cannot control.
· what are our duties?
· what if duties conflict, which do you choose?
· can we truly be sure of our own motives?
· the outcomes are what we have to learn to live with, the consequences do matter to
us, as we can usually predict the kind of reaction that something will have.
· you need to see the future to be sure of the outcome, and we cannot control. we work
on motive, not consequence.
· murder and manslaughter have the same result, but law courts recognise the
· Someone who intends to kill everyone but accidently cures cancer CANNOT be
hailed as a hero.…read more

Slide 6

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meta ethics
· prescriptivism ­ r.m.hare ethical language prescribes the course of acting,
through stating our opinion we try to prescribe it onto others and convince them it is
correct. they have a guiding role in society.
· emotivism ­ a.j.ayer ethical language is not knowledgeable facts, but
simple expressions of our emotions and expressions. the boo hurrah theory, in that
nothing is definitively right or wrong, it is just your opinion of it. c.l.stevenson
suggested that our opinions aren't just random, they have some worth, as are backed
up by our upbringing, values and moral codes which we have within us, we
disapprove of the holocaust because of the worth of human dignity.
· intuitionism ­ g.e.moore we cannot define good, but as part of human
nature we instinctively know what it is. we cannot describe yellow, but we can
recognise it, and goodness is the same...a bit like love. NATURALISTIC FALLACY ­
we cannot judge moral statements solely through empirical data, you cannot get on
ought from an is.
· ethical naturalism ­ moral statements are propositions, this is good = the
car is black. They can be objective and true, proved by empirical knowledge of the
world. ethical terms can be defined using non ethical terms, what is good makes
people happy.…read more

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