Schematic overview: ethics

StanceEthical eternalismEthical nihilismEthical responsiveness
SummaryThe Cosmic Plan dictates a fixed ethical code according to which we ought to liveEthics is a meaningless human invention and has no real claim on usEthics is centrally important to humans, and is not a matter of choice, but is fluid and has no definite source
What it deniesAmbiguity of ethics; freedom; courage; creativityEthical imperativeness
What it fixatesEthical code (rules/laws)Absence of ethical absolutes
The sales pitchCosmic justice guarantees reward/punishment if you obey/defy the ethical codeDo as thou wilt shall be the whole of the LawEthical anxiety is unnecessary
Emotional appealAvoiding blame; preventing others from harming/offending youTake what you want; don’t let morality get in the way
Pattern of thinkingSelf-righteousnessArroganceLight-hearted concern
Likely next stancesReligiosity, missionSecularism, materialismLight-heartedness, nobility
AccomplishmentRemorseless soldier of GodSociopathyEthical maturity
How it causes sufferingHarmful actions are sometimes required by the supposed rules; beneficial ones may not be promotedWithout ethics, harmful actions are just rational self-interest
Obstacles to maintaining the stanceSituations in which ethical rules are unclear or promote obvious harmNatural concern for othersRequires close attention to particulars; no guarantee of blamelessness
Antidotes; counter-thoughtsAllowing ethical ambiguityRespecting ethical imperatives
Intelligent aspectRecognizes the importance of ethicsRecognizes the ambiguity of ethics
Positive appropriation after resolutionPoints toward nobilityPoints toward ethical maturity


This page is in the section ⚒ Ethics: a new beginning,
      which is in Doing meaning better.

The next page in this section is ⚒ Ethical eternalism.

This page’s topic is Ethics.

General explanation: Meaningness is a hypertext book (in progress), plus a “metablog” that comments on it. The book begins with an appetizer. Alternatively, you might like to look at its table of contents, or some other starting points. Classification of pages by topics supplements the book and metablog structures. Terms with dotted underlining (example: meaningness) show a definition if you click on them. Pages marked with ⚒ are still under construction. Copyright ©2010–2017 David Chapman.