Philosophy Ethics

John Stuart mill has remained a father figure in the discourse of philosophy. The philosopher has made a number of contributions ranging from verbal to written works. His authorship of the maximizing utilitarianism works remain a major work in philosophy. In this work, Mills defended the thought of welfare. In Mills view, this maximization was a function of happiness. Mills rebuffed attacks by Bradley and Moore on the pursuit of happiness. Mills also believed that happiness had to be measured in relation to quality as opposed to quantity. In relation to the aspect of coercion, mills feel that the government can use force as it maximizes happiness of the majority (Mautner, 1998).
Aristotle viewed moral virtue as a disposition connected with a lying mean and a choice (Mautner, 1998). On the basis of Aristotles views, virtue is assumed to lie in between two extremes. To cite an example, courage is perceived to lie between cowardice and rashness. It should be noted however that this mean is only relative and never absolute. It is always tended to natural biases. A good percentage of people are never rash. This may wrongly present the mean to a point near rashness. In this view, what constitutes right may be based on moral and societal insight. The doctrine is good as it reminds individuals to avoid the wrongs presented by the two extremes.

Immanuel Kant did a great job by introducing a middle ground between empiricists and rationalists (Mautner, 1998). Kant believed that either side was inadequate. As a result, the philosopher offered to offer a compromise. Kant introduced the notion of using reason while at the same time applying to it the input of experience. On this basis, virtue is informed both by reason and experience.


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