Bulisik

John Arthur: Religion, Morality and Conscience

Posted on: March 12, 2009

Chapter: 2- John Arthur: Religion, Morality and Conscience

Book: Contemporary Moral Problems

Author: James E. White

Amazon:http://www.amazon.com/Contemporary-Moral-Problems-James

White/dp/0495553204/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1234122156&sr=1-1

Quote: “Morality is Social.”

What I expect to learn:

I’m expecting to learn the difference and the connection between religion and morality.

Chapter Review:

For me, this chapter is all about knowing the relationship between religion and morality. Are the two different with each other or whether the two has some connections with each other?

According to Arthur, morality and religion is different for the reason that morality involves our attitudes toward various forms of behavior, typically expressed using the notions of rules, rights and obligations. On the other hand, religion, typically involves prayer, worship, beliefs about the supernatural, institutional forms and authoritative texts.

Morality and Religion are connected for the reason that without religious motivation people could not be expected to do the right thing; that religion is necessary to provide guidance to people in their search for the correct course of action; and that religion is essential for there even to be a right or wrong.

What I’ve learned:

I’ve learned that religion could truly affect morality. That religion can change immorality.

Integrative Questions:

1. How are morality and religion different?

2. What is moral motivation?

3. What is moral knowledge?

4. Who are the divine command theory?

5. How are morality and religion connected?

Review Questions:

1. According to Arthur, how are morality and religion different?

According to Arthur, morality and religion is different for the reason that morality involves our attitudes toward various forms of behavior, typically expressed using the notions of rules, rights and obligations. On the other hand, religion, typically involves prayer, worship, beliefs about the supernatural, institutional forms and authoritative texts.

2. Why isn’t religion necessary for moral motivation?

Religion isn’t necessary for moral motivation because most of us, in fact, just worry about getting caught, being blamed and being looked down on by others. We also may do what is right just because it’s right, or because we don’t want to hurt others or embarrass family and friends.

3. Why isn’t religion necessary as a source of moral knowledge?

Religion isn’t necessary for moral knowledge for the reason that consider how much we would need to know about religion and revelation in order for religion to provide moral guidance. Besides being aware that there is a God, we’d also have to think about which of the many religions is true.

4. What is the divine command theory? Why does Arthur reject this theory?

The Divine Command Theory means that God has the same sort of relation to moral law as the legislature has to statutes it enacts: without God’s commands there would be no moral rules, just as without a legislature there would be no statutes.

Arthur rejects this theory because of what the divine theory implies. Suppose we were to grant that the divine command theory is correct, so that actions are right just because they are commanded by God. The same, of course, can be said about those deeds that we believe are wrong. If God hadn’t commanded us not to do them, they would not be wrong.

5. According to Arthur, how are morality and religion connected?

Morality and Religion are connected for the reason that without religious motivation people could not be expected to do the right thing; that religion is necessary to provide guidance to people in their search for the correct course of action; and that religion is essential for there even to be a right or wrong.

6. Dewey says that morality is social. What does this mean, according to Arthur?

According to Arthur, this means that if Dewey is correct, then it seems clear there is an important sense in which morality not only can be taught but must be. Besides early moral training, moral thinking depends on our ability to imagine others’ reactions and to imaginatively put ourselves into their shoes.

Discussion Questions:

1. Has Arthur refuted the divine command theory? If not, how can it be defended?
2. If morality is social, as Dewy says, then how can we have any obligations to nonhuman animals?
3. What does Dewey mean by moral education? Does a college ethics class count as moral education?

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