Every time you turn on the news, you hear someone exclaiming “This is wrong! I want justice!” We march, we protest, we demand our rights. Everyone has a certain sense of how we ought to treat others and be treated in return. We should be fair and kind to others. We shouldn’t steal or kill.
Right living is an important part of Christianity. Jesus taught about caring for the sick and poor. And everyone knows the Golden Rule: Do to others what you would have them do to you (Matthew 7:12). But is religion the only source of morality? I’m sure you know plenty of people who don’t go to church but are still good people (and may even act better than those who do!). After all, there are things we just know are right and wrong.
But did you ever wonder how you know these things? Where did we get our moral impulses from? Were we designed with them built-in? Have we been conditioned to live a certain way by our culture? Are morals just survival instincts resulting from our evolutionary programming? Or do we decide right and wrong for ourselves?
All of these questions and concepts fall under the branch of philosophy known as ethics. There are many ethical systems to examine as well as sub-branches of ethics to explore (for instance, bioethics). We all want to know if there is a right and wrong way to live our lives, if human beings are valuable or if we are just another kind of animal. So join us as we try to answer the question “How should we live?”