Humes argues that people do not choose what is morally right or wrong based on reason. He says that reasoning only helps people to decide the overall outcome of the situation. Therefore, Humes says that people chose what is morality based on sentimentalism. This means that people know their morals through feelings of appreciation and dissatisfaction.
Reasoning plays a prominent role in a person’s moral deliberation. This is because it helps people critically evaluate their options of a situation on whether the action is morally wrong or morally right. Additionally, reasoning leads to decision-making based on moral deliberations.
It is difficult to defend Humes, but it is possible. This is because people make their judgments based on moral relativism. However, this is not entirely true because there are certain feelings that may alter this judgment. Henceforth, Humes was right when he based moral deliberations on sentiments rather than relativism.
The principle of utility states that morals are right of they give joy or pleasure and wrong if they promote grief or pain. Mill strongly defends this doctrine where he says that this defines what is just and what is wrong. What is just makes people happy but what is unjust makes people feel pain, and unhappiness.
Mills is extremely disappointed that scholars will compare pleasure of humans with that of animals. He says that it is like hedonism. He continues to argue that pleasure is more than what people know it; therefore, people should stop comparing pleasure of animals and that of human beings.
Mills describes two types of pleasures, higher and lower pleasure. The criteria to know the quality of pleasure can only be known by the description of the two pleasures. In the higher pleasure, Mills says that they can only be described as mental, moral, and aesthetic pleasures. This pleasure should be taken in kind as compared to the lower pleasures that are taken by degree.
Kant discourages this because people often have motives in whatever action they take. Henceforth, it is not the consequences that matter but the motives. This views insist on intentions because it is based on prior experiences that happened before. In this case, people judge according to the experiences they have had before.
Kant argues that unqualified goodness of valued assets is not morally correct. He argues that if people behave well to other people just because of their own interest then it is not moral. He regards that people should behave basis on their judgment and they have will without considering their selfish gain is morally right.
Kant says that he cannot let other laws or factors like Christianity affect his judgment based on reasoning. However, he says that these laws and factors helps him in reasoning what is morally right and what is morally wrong. Relationship and happiness are related in that when people are reasoning what is just and unjust; they always take the reason that will make people happy.
According to Kant, the Goodwill and ethics are interrelated. This is because for people to be ethical they must act on the basis of goodwill and selfishness. Another way to show this relationship is when people offer goodwill as a means of showing how ethical behavior. This means that people of goodwill are ethical thus showing the relationship.
Kant’s base his argument on that people make their moral judgment based on feelings. He says that despite the fact that people reason out what is right or wrong their judgment is final based on what they feelings they have towards the issue. Therefore, in the case of morality people make their final decisions based on feelings.
Kant establishes a criterion of morality of actions using a formula. In this case, he bases that all the universal law must be based on humanity. If they are, then it is morally right. The act of helping the poor based on natural sympathy is morally right because it based on humanity.
Categorical imperative can be described as moral decision that is conceived from goodwill, and it is compatible to reasoning. A good example is when a child obeys a parent. It is universal, based on reasoning, and it is for the purposes of goodwill. Kant basis moral law should be put first in all decisions thus becoming ethical.
Motives play a significant role in Kant’s ethical theory. He believes that, for a person to be ethical, he must have noble intentions in whatever she is doing. In this instance, a person must not put his or her own selfish gains for the purposes of performing ethical duty. Instead, he should be driven by unselfish motives.
(a) The husband is morally right. This is because he has categorical imperative, which is universal. His reasoning conforms to his judgment.
(b) This is morally wrong. This is because the husband is not happy. Additionally, his motives are diverted from goodwill.
Mills and Bentham argue that ethics or morality is based on the happiness of the other person. However, Kant tends to disagree because one cannot base ethics on happiness because this is selfish. However, doing right makes the other party happy.
The concept of quality of pleasure and pain in Mills is different from that of Bentham. Mills indicate that there is much more to pleasure, and it is not separable from pain. On the contrary, Bentham argues that utility comes before happiness, and that they are separable.
Ethical hedonism can be described as the moral obligation to do the correct thing while psychological hedonism can be described as the desire to be happy and avoid pain. The ethical hedonism cannot do without psychological hedonism because human nature for people to be happy. However, psychological hedonism can do without ethical hedonism.
According to Mills, the role sanctions separate between what is human and what is not human. This means that it elaborates further on what humanity means, that is, if people are performing their duties either ethically or not. Humanity duties are ethical but selfish duties are unethical.
In motive of conduct, Mills explains that motive shows whether a person is ethical or not. On the contrary, the rule of conduct is like an obligation which people are expected to follow, for them, to be ethical. However, motive does not play any part of ethics because people motives or intentions cannot be clearly defined as wrong or right.
According to this statement, Kant disagrees with it because he argues that moral judgment is based on sentiments. On the other hand, Mills says that the reasoning is one of the things that people base when they are making a decision. Therefore, Kant will disagree with Mills.
Question Twenty-Two (a)
The utilitarian theory of Mills is more concerned with happiness rather than anything else. This is where people try to do what is morally right for the purposes of pleasure. The Christian ideal of sacrifice does not concentrate on happiness rather than Good or Evil. In Christianity, the ideal sacrifice might be painful.
This doctrine is not possible because a person cannot obtain happiness for the rest of his or her life despite the fact that he or she is morally right. This is because what makes one happy is different from what other perceives as happiness. Therefore, pain might occur on the way.
I think the utilitarian doctrine by Mills is worth because it helps to explain the distinction of pleasurable and painful. Additionally, it shows that people happiness is among the things that drive people to be ethical.