Refinement of Moral Decision/Ethical Decision Making

Recently, I have begun to really consider how I think about ethical or moral decisions, and what traditions/ideas influence me.

When pressed in the past, my personal system for decisions and ethical beliefs went along the lines of something like this:
1. The moral decisions I make are based on the golden rule.
2. My values and ideals are influenced by my faith and communities I am a part of.
3. My ideas on actual practical ideas relating to a moral problem or question are based on a moral collective I construct, usually consisting of my various mentors, religious teachers, and close friendships.

It dawned on me that I am not really answering the question. This system I am describing is merely a descriptor of how I gather my ethical ideas, but not the actual basis for them. Further, I would argue it is impossible to truly and reliably measure the moral goodness of an action, as it depends on what one truly believes is good. That being said, I think the majority of humanity would agree certain ideas or experiences are better or worse than others. But, at the same time, it’s also hard to define absolutes.

Upon reflection, I think my actual values follow this personal construct:
1. My actions toward other beings reflect my actions towards God. That I do unto others, I do unto Christ..and consequently I do unto myself, for Christ lives within me. Therefore, my beliefs require that my actions affirm and respect the humanity and divinity in others and myself. If my actions reliably make me more selfless, and empathetic, then such actions are arguably beneficial.
2. My values of faith and respect of humanity come first when different values are in conflict in regards to ethics surrounding other human beings. My values of faith and respect of humanity require me to consider the values of others in these scenarios.
3. My values of personal identity, personal security, love, loyalty, family, faith, and diversity come first when different values are in conflict in regards to ethics surrounding myself. These values are based on experiences and metrics that I define as goodness in my personal life – and these ethical values are occasionally upheld by empirical data, emotional conscience, or historical and/or personal reasoning for such metrics. Such historical reasoning come from art or spiritual literature and texts. When necessary, I can affirm my own values in a discussion of values and perspectives, respecting my own humanity by knowing that I have something to offer to the table. All my decisions spring forth from reflections on these values and the different texts and constructed information connected to these values and metrics.

Maybe this is how I relate to ethics and morality. I believe there is no perfect system to face an ethical dilemma as most ethical systems fail specific cases. These cases are usually solved by other ethical systems – much like most computer algorithms fail corner-case examples that are better solved by other algorithms. I guess that’s why I value diversity.


Mustapha posted on November 7, 2019 at 4:45 pm


Alfredo avila posted on March 29, 2021 at 5:02 pm

Very close to home..
We believe LIKEWISE..

nyas posted on July 20, 2023 at 9:47 am

What was the golden rule?
I didn’t understand exactly…

One Trackback

[…] oneself through spirituality. A spiritual tendency or character; it can be an intellectual or moral refining process. Quotes: To convey a spiritual meaning to; to take a spiritual perspective rather than literalizing […]

Post a Comment

Your email address is never shared. Required fields are marked *