Essentially, it may be identified as placing emphasis on the virtues and moral character as opposed to deontology which places emphasis on rules and duties, or consequentialism whereby emphasis is placed on consequences as a result of certain actions. However, this is not to say that each of the above approaches cannot all make room for virtues, consequences, and/or rules and duties. In fact, any plausible normative ethics approach will have something to say about all three. Essentially, virtue ethics can be distinguished from consequentialism and deontology as the importance of virtue within the theory itself. Unlike the alternative ethical theories mentioned above, virtue ethics is not associated with a moral imperative.
The theory of deontology states we are morally obligated to act in accordance with obvious set of principles and rules regardless of results. Deontological ethics focuses on duties, and rights. The term deontological was coined by the utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham, who described it as “knowledge of what is right or proper” Bentham thought that deontology points in the direction of principle of utility. But contemporary philosophers use the term deontological to indicate a contrast with the utilitarian focus on the consequences of action. Instead of focusing on consequences, deontological ethics focus on duties and obligation: things we ought to do regardless of the consequences.
The voice of conscience acts as a moral sensor, which is triggered whenever we face an ethical behaviour and fires the alarm once the morality is breached. Utterly, It is up to our will whether to listen irresistibly to the voice that is what Kant calls it “moral predisposition” or mute it which consequently leading to immoral behaviour. The previous argument explains the moral law imposed by Kant. Furthermore, he emphasised that people are rational beings act according to their morals, he considers people as a moral agent and ought to act morally and willingly motivated by the
MORAL PERCEPTIONS Moral perception is a term used in ethics to denote the discernment of the morally salient qualities in particular situations. In order to understand this, we must understand what ethics is all about. Ethics, also known as moral philosophy is the branch of philosophy that involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong conduct. It talks about what the best way for living is. It teaches us what conduct is right and wrong and under what circumstances.
Different from consequentialism, people who tend to have the mind set of a deontologist believe that you should do your ethical duty, regardless of the outcome. Immanuel Kant designed ‘The Categorical Imperative’ theory which was associated with the fact that it was commanding us to practice our morals and desires in a specific way which was exercised through two rules. Kamm (2000) claims that these components were to ‘(1) treat persons as ends in themselves and (2) do not treat them as mere means’. Kamm is basically suggesting that we seek happiness of others, as that is morally right, however fulfill capacities of one’s own intellect. From following both of these we arrive at an imperative and it is categorical.
Ethics is that part of philosophy that deals with the good and bad or the right and the wrong in human conduct. Many questions come to our mind about morality, why should I be moral? What is morality? Should I be moral? Or should morality be relative or absolute?
Deontology which is derived from the Greek words Deon (meaning obligation/duty) and logia (science/study) combined to be also known as duty or rule-based ethics or the study of duties or obligations. It is a branch of ethical theories that deals with ethics of conduct, which theories are based on the sort of actions people must perform. It is based on non-consequentialism where the ends do not justify the means and thus deontology is an approach to ethics in which a sense of duty or principle prescribes the ethical decision (Preston, 2007). Deontology affirms duties must be obeyed regardless of the consequences. The theory of Deontology has its flaws as well and this essay will present three criticisms of deontology namely that deontology relies on moral absolutes, allows acts that make the world a worse place, two permissible duties that are right can conflict with each other and will demonstrate these flaws with relevant case studies and dilemmas.
Duty as in that we are morally obligated to act in accordance with a certain set of principles and rules regardless of outcome. This theory asserts that an action is considered 'morally good ' because of some characteristic of the action itself, not because the result of the action is good. Expressions such as "virtue is its own reward" and Duty for duty 's sake" are used to attest to the believe that in deontological ethics, some acts are morally obligatory regardless of their consequences for human welfare. Since utilitarian 's believe that all actions must seek to produce the greatest good for the greatest number of people, this would still apply even if that act harms an innocent person. A simple example would be that if a surgeon could save three lives by harvesting the organs of one healthy person, then this is entirely acceptable as it 's helping the greater number.
You can see, ethics only show what should be done. Therefore, unlike law, ethics cannot be compelled and hence they cannot be enforced. They need not be universal too. This is mainly because ethics are created by a society. What is accepted in one society as good behavior may not be considered with such value in another.
Ethical reflection is established upon questioning the meaning behind, or source of, various concepts of morality, as well as assessing their different functions. In Nietzsche’s Genealogy of Morals, ethical reflection can be seen in the form of questioning the origin of established values. This is particularly important in relation to my own concept of ethical reflection because it shows that Nietzsche is attempting to study deeper into the heart of what makes our values moral or immoral (innately good, or externally motivated). Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics does well at considering the intent behind our actions. In this text, Aristotle establishes that happiness is the ultimate end which we all seek.