Religious ethics A2

HideShow resource information
  • Created by: Morag
  • Created on: 31-05-13 17:19
Preview of Religious ethics A2

First 469 words of the document:

Religious Ethics Revision
Business Ethics
The system in which the main form of wealth is the ability to produce things.
Prior to industrialisation, feudalism existed in which the main source of wealth was land.
The free market is where people are free to act in their own economic interests and pursue
Individuals are motivated by the self-interested drive to maximise economic wealth, known
as the profit motive.
The price mechanism is the mechanism which seeks equilibrium within the free market,
naturally regulates the activities of individuals to bring supply and demand into balance. The
price mechanism is self regulating and efficient. However, it is self interested.
Private property is the principle that wealth belongs to the individual.
Utilitarianism and John Stuart Mill
Mill is a utilitarian and as such promotes the principle of utility. He also believed in individual
liberty, an example of classical liberalism. He therefore connected the two arguing that the
promotion of individual liberty resulted in the greatest good. Liberty is not a right but
promotes the best outcome- efficiency and wealth creation, personal responsibility etc
The individual is the best judge of his own best interests
The benefits of free competition override the harm principle
Utilitarianism could justify interfering in or regulating the economic freedom of individuals:
o To prevent dishonesty and fraud
o Where excessive inequality leads to a serious lack of social cohesion
o To offset the negative consequences of the business cycle
o Where the loss of individual freedom may be less harmful than some of the results of
it- e.g. discrimination in the workplace or the provision of goods and service
o To correct market `failure' e.g. in the case of `externalities'
Legitimises intervention/regulation of an appropriate authority
Universal destination of goods vs. private property- property can be privately owned but
ultimately there is a universal destination of goods
Business ethics should be governed by morality- the commandments, virtues, principle of
human dignity etc
The free market respects the dignity of the human person as every person is an economic
agent who can affect supply and demand
The free market is indifferent to the needs of people and as such it could be argued that it
does not respect the dignity of the human person
Capitalism treats people as economic units- a means of achieving profit as an overall end
The church also rejects communism as it subordinates human interests to those of the state
Natural Law and Business ethics
Living in society
Requires respect for private property
Duties of solidarity

Other pages in this set

Page 2

Preview of page 2

Here's a taster:

Rights of political authority to regulate economic activity/private property for the
betterment of society
Individualistic and so could perhaps not serve the best interests of society
Worship of God
Rampant capitalism idolises money
Preservation of life
The basic purpose of economic activity is to sustain human life- to meet human needs and
those of the family.…read more

Page 3

Preview of page 3

Here's a taster:

The free market is indifferent to the ends of people and as such it could be argued that it
doesn't respect the dignity of the human person
Natural law
Serves the purpose of sustaining human life as it allows people as economic agents to fulfil
their best economic interests
Requires respect for private property
Economic activity is necessary for life- money for food etc
Individualistic- could potentially not serve the best interests of society
Concerned with the creation and support of wealth for…read more

Page 4

Preview of page 4

Here's a taster:

A union/voice for employees as business is social (living in society)
A fair wage (preservation of life)
Holidays and regulated shifts (preservation of life, living in society, education of the young'
A day of rest (worship of God)
Solidarity (living in society)
To have a balance of work and rest- maximising wealth and ensuring happiness of employees
Kantian ethics
To be treated as ends not means- not just a vehicle for wealth creation
Industrial democracy- to have a say
To…read more

Page 5

Preview of page 5

Here's a taster:

Should offer fair prices etc.- respecting people's right to their fair share of the world's
Golden rule- all people are consumers, including those in business, and so business should
treat consumers as they themselves hope to be treated as consumers
Natural law
Living in society- not exploiting, being socially responsible etc.…read more

Page 6

Preview of page 6

Here's a taster:

Those who accept the foregoing points have an obligation to participate in
implementing the necessary changes and to do so peacefully and democratically
Naess proposed that humans should:
o Reduce population
o Abandon plans for economic growth
o Conserve the diversity of species
o Live in small, self-reliant communities
o `touch the earth lightly'
Weaknesses of Deep ecology
Not practical/realistic
Human population is increasing- they have an equal right to reproduce
Richard Sylvan proposed deep green ecology ­ respect but not reverence for the
environment…read more

Page 7

Preview of page 7

Here's a taster:

Michal La Bossiere argues that species should be allowed to die out, as this is a natural part
of evolution. Humans are natural and so species killed by humans become naturally extinct.…read more

Page 8

Preview of page 8

Here's a taster:

I cannot deserve reward or punishment
o I can only be acted upon by the world, there may not even be an I
Reasons for thinking we have free will
Only through our own free will can we decide whether our lives' actions will send us to
heaven or hell
Existence of evil points to human free will straying, as a good God wouldn't create a world in
which there was evil
Biblical teaching `if you love me you will follow my commandments'- moral…read more

Page 9

Preview of page 9

Here's a taster:

M]an does at all times what he wills, and yet he does this necessarily. But this is because he
already is what he wills.' ­ what you do is what you want to do but this is already determined
Ted Honderich
Hard determinism
Brain states are the effect of other physical actions and external factors
States of the brain are embedded in physical causation- not separate from this
`We can only act as in fact we do.…read more

Page 10

Preview of page 10

Here's a taster:

If you do not accept that you cannot control what you will, then by necessity there must be
something within you that can control your will, and this could lead to infinite regress- things
controlling each other and in turn controlling the will- the `homunculus' problem
Soft determinism
If determinism were not true, then our actions would be random and uncaused
However, there remains `space' within deterministic causality for free decision, since,
whenever we have a choice, we could have done something other than we…read more


No comments have yet been made

Similar Religious Studies resources:

See all Religious Studies resources »See all resources »