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Flashcards in Situation Ethics Deck (87)
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1
Q

Teleological

A

A theory of ethics whereby the rightness of an act is determined by its end
Moral goodness is rooted in the consequences of our actions

2
Q

Relativism

A

In fletches system the idea that morality is relative to the situation

We should avoid words like always, never and perfect

Jesus agape love

3
Q

What are fletches three approaches to all thinking

A

Legalistic
Situational
Antinomian 

4
Q

Describe legalistic moral thinking

A

Laws accumulate to cover all eventualities

A legalist must constantly update, develop and add new laws to remain up-to-date

5
Q

Example of legalistic approach

A

So when murder was prohibited, this law then had to consider its ruling over other possibilities
Self defence, abortion, war

6
Q

Describe situational moral thinking

A

The middle ground between legalistic and antinomian

Moral actions depend on the situation

Situationalists will enter a moral dilemma with rules, ethics and principles of community/tradition

However a situationalist is prepared to set aside these rules if love is better served by doing so

Loving people not laws

7
Q

Describe antinomian moral thinking

A

Opposite to legalistic

A person following antinomianism doesn’t apply any kind of law, rule, principle or system of ethics

Every moral decision is unique following no patterns

Sartre was a fan of no rules to follow only your own choices

8
Q

What was the fletches view on legalistic moral thinking

A

“Any web thus woven sooner or later chokes its weavers “

At some point those who completely dedicate to maintaining moral rules realise that these rules are lacking love

Laws can be sadistic for example burning the stake of homosexuals in the Middle Ages a process that was supported by the Old Testament

Blindly following moral rules

9
Q

What does antinomian translate to

A

Against law

10
Q

What is fletchers view on antinomianism

A

Sees it as anarchy

Intellectually irresponsible

11
Q

Saint Paul referred to himself as a what

A

Gnostic

12
Q

What are gnostics

A

People that claim to have special knowledge
They believe that rules were no longer needed – they would just know what is right


13
Q

What did Jean Paul Sartre believe

A

A claim of moral intuition or build in conscience

Philosophy of existentialism - rejects all claims to ethical norms that are valid for everybody

There is no fixed design for how A human should be and there is no god to give us purpose

14
Q

What is fletchers key quote on agape love

A

“Only valid if they happen to serve love in any situation“

15
Q

What would Be the moral thinking of legalism for abortion

A

Maintaining a pregnancy because abortion Is terminating a life and is murder and murder is always wrong

16
Q

What would be the moral thinking of situationalism for abortion

A

Aborting and ectopic pregnancy

17
Q

What would be the more thinking of antinomianism for abortion

A

Abort the pregnancy because the person didn’t realise the pregnancy lasted nine months they thought it be three months

18
Q

In the new Testament Jesus made love Central. What was the quote for this

A

“You shall love God… Love your neighbour… No other commandment greater than these“

Here Jesus is highlighting that there is no absolute situation

19
Q

What did Jesus himself say in the new Testament about laws

A

He criticised laws for laws sake and focuses on love

He wanted to abandon the legalistic nature of morality within jewish society and give the new law, love

20
Q

Some key quotes by Saint Paul and what the show

A

“Greatest of these is love”
“he who loves another fulfill the law”
Love is the main virtue that guides humanity

21
Q

Who else were inspirations for situation ethics

A

William Temple – Archbishop of Canterbury – love is the predominant Christian impulse – love is clearly the supreme value

Paul Tillich – love is the ultimate law

22
Q

Who was Joseph Fletcher

A

American professor
Advocator for abortion, euthanasia, cloning
Argue that having no life at all is better than some of the forms in which ‘life’ is lead
Abandon Christianity and became humanist in 1967

23
Q

What was fletches reassessment of Christian morality

A

Traditional Christian ethics needed a new focus

Believed at focus too much on the legalistic rigid rules within the Bible rather than agape love shown by Jesus in new Testament

Wanted to shift the focus away from deontological roles and duties

24
Q

Why was church membership declining

A

Due to strict deontological systems and legalistic morality under natural law

Rise of science

Freedom from what many regards the repressive social and religious attitudes of the older generation

25
Q

When was situation ethics gaining popularity

A

The 1960s there was rapid change and nuance moral and political landscape

26
Q

What was Fletcher’s anecdote to understand situation ethics

A

A guy in a taxi was driving home during the end of presidential campaign
He said that his father and father before him were Republicans

When asked by the taxi driver you must be a Republican yourself

He said “there are times when a man has to push his principles aside and do the right thing”

Basically just saying how you choose the most loving thing and to be a Democrat in America is more liberal than Republican

27
Q

Is situation ethics controversial

(give evidence using names scholars)

A

John AT Robinson – this approach to ethics it’s only for a man that is mature enough to make ethical decisions on their own

Pope Pius XII – Condemned situationalism as an approach to morality with a warning as such ethics could be used to justify sin and birth control

28
Q

How does Fletcher reply to those that say situationalism at controversial

A

He’s a realist
He says we cannot “do“ morality without making mistakes
Of course we will make mistakes but this is preferable to hiding behind obedience to moral laws

29
Q

What does Fletcher mean when he says it’s better to make mistakes then to hide behind obedience to moral laws

A

It’s ethical cowardice and it stops any kind of moral development that might enrich our lives

For example
My religion says I should not accept this
The priest says I should not
The government says I should

30
Q

Describe the case study for Islamic legalism

A

In 2002 the religious police of Saudi Arabia refused to let a group of girls escape from a burning building because they were wearing inappropriate clothing which was against the will of allah

Three policeman beat young girls to prevent them from leaving the school

15 girls died

31
Q

Was Jesus a situationalists

include an example

A

Jesus frequently put aside the rules, laws and customs of the time to do the most loving thing

Four example
At the time the customers to stone adulterers to death
Jesus said “let the one who is never send throw the first stone into the woman go and sing no more”

Jesus himself as a situationalist

32
Q

How does Fletcher agree with Aquinas

A

That reason is the instrument of judgement

33
Q

What does Fletcher reject from Aquinas

A

Revelation
Except the command to love God by loving one’s neighbour
Rulea are good guidelines but they are breakable
Circumstances alter rules and principles

34
Q

Quote By Saint Paul that is anti- moralistic and anti- legalist

A

“The written code kills, but the spirit gives life”

35
Q

Who is bonhoeffer 

A

German theologian
Opposed Nazi ideology
Helped jews escape Germany
Conspiracy to overthrow Hitler

36
Q

What did Bonhoeffer believe

A

That the end of love, would justify the means of achieving it.
For example the murder of Hitler

37
Q

Why would a situation list support Bonhoeffer

A

The bad act is outweighed by the good consequence – the end of suffering

Sometimes you have to put principles aside to bring about the greater good

The intention was to save hundreds of people

He succeeded with choosing the most agape option

38
Q

Why would somebody who follows legalistic ethical decision-making have reservations about Bonhoeffers actions

A

Goes against the precept of preserving life for Aquinas

Goes against the law that you shouldn’t murder

39
Q

Pragmatic

A

The presupposition That we should do you what is pragmatic, what works in the situation

40
Q

Agape

A

Selfless love
The biblical Christian love – which is sacrificial
Use by Christians to describe Gods unconditional love

41
Q

Best quote for Joseph Fletcher that’s really sums up the situation ethics

A

It all depends on the situation. What is right in one case may be wrong another

42
Q

What are the four different types of love

A

Storge
Eros
Agape
Philia

43
Q

What is storge love

A

Affection - linked to family

44
Q

What is Eros love

A

Passionate sensual love

Usually sexual love

45
Q

What is philia love

A

Friendship

Loyalty to friends family and community

46
Q

What are the four working principles

A

Pragmatism
Relativism
Positivism
Personalism

47
Q

Define the presupposition of pragmatism 

A

What do you propose must work in practice

48
Q

Define the presupposition of relativism 

A

No fixed rules, all decisions relative to the situation

49
Q

Define the presupposition of positivism

A

Value judgement needs to be made, based on love

50
Q

Define the presupposition on personalism

A

People, not rules, come first.
The legalist will ask – what is the law,
The situationalist will ask - Who is to be helped

51
Q

What does William James say on pragmatism

A

A pragmatist turns his back upon fixed principles and pretended absolutes

52
Q

Case study of conjoined twins

A

Both girls were going to die as they had shared organs that Couldn’t support both of them

The Roman Catholic parents believe it was wrong to kill one of the girls so they said both girls should be allowed to die

However the doctors separated the girls killing one to save the other. Situationalists would support this decision

Letting both girls die is not pragmatic. It would be more practical to save one girl at the expense of the other.

Reason is the instrument of moral judgement

53
Q

Discuss relativism with links to

Command do not lie

A

Sometimes it will be right to lie

This does not mean you can always justify the action to lie though

Only love is constant or absolute – everything else is a variable

No is the abstract whereas situations are concrete

54
Q

Explain positivism in detail

A

“God is love“ – free to follow the love he has given us or not

Faith helps to decide most loving thing to do

Practice faith by choosing this lemming thing

Faith comes first

Christian practice their faith by freely choosing to do what is the most loving thing in any situation

55
Q

Positivism quote

A

“Faith working through love”

56
Q

Explain personalism

A

People before rules – centre of concern

Jesus came to serve not to be served – broke the rules because he put his people first

Break rules if it helps a person

57
Q

What did Jesus believe about the commandments

A

Not to be followed slavishly

There to benefit humankind

Fletcher believes that if it helps people to break the rules then they should be broken

58
Q

What are the four theories about conscience

A

That it is an innate faculty

It is the guidance of the holy spirit

It is the internalised values of society

The conscience is Reason making moral judgements

59
Q

What does Fletcher believe about the four theories On the conscience

A

Disagrees with them all

60
Q

What does Fletcher say about the conscience

A

It is not a noun but a verb

It is perspective it is choosing what love demands in the present situation

61
Q

Autonomy

A

The principle of self-determination, that people should be able to decide for themselves what is in their best interest

62
Q

Intrinsic good

A

Something that is ethically good in and of itself

63
Q

What are the six fundamental propositions

A

Formulated by Fletcher as a set of guiding principles in order to determine what is the most loving in any situation

64
Q

List the six fundamental principles

A
Love only is always good
Love is the only norm
Love and justice are the same
Love is not liking
Love justifies it means
Love decides there and then
65
Q

Explain

love only is always good

A

The only intrinsically good thing is love
Love is something we do
Only principle that is good and right in every situation
Love is our telos

66
Q

Give an example of a situation where love Only is always good

A

It is good to lend cash to a father to feed his starving family

It would be wrong if he was a compulsive gambler or alcoholic

67
Q

Explain love is the only norm

A

Love replaces law
Love break any or all the commandments
Love has no equal – expect nothing in return
Agape is the type of love which manifests how God relates to us – forgive those carrying out Christ’s execution

68
Q

For love is the only norm

explain the response to the three situations given

A

Situationalist would conclude that in all three cases that the acts of the persons concerned were both morally good and morally right since in each situation they were motivated by love

69
Q

What is situation one for love is the only norm

A

Bonhoeffer Believe that Christian should do more than comforting the wounded and burying the dead during the Nazi reign
He was involved in a plot to assassinate Hitler who was discovered and executed

70
Q

What is situation two for love is the only norm

A

Hypothetical situation of a man caught hopelessly in the wreckage of a burning plane begging to be shot

Although innocent the most loving thing would be to shoot the man

71
Q

What is situation three for love is the only norm

A

Possibility of self sacrificial death

Mother Maria took the place of a young Jewish girl in the gas chamber

Sacrificial death and model of Christ

72
Q

Explain

Love and justice are the same

A

Love becomes justice. Justice is nothing more than love being distributed

Love is in union management relations

Justice is nothing more than love working out its problems

Justice is Christian love using its head calculating its duties and obligations

73
Q

Love and justice are the same

What is the agape calculation case study

A

President Truman is agape calculation of the effects of dropping in a bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki killed around 200,000 people

His aim was to end Second World War and it was estimated he would save 2 million US servicemen lives as well as those from other countries around the world

74
Q

Do you think the example of President TrumanS choice of dropping m atomic bomb Was an example of an agape calculation

A

In some ways yes more lives are being saved 2 million live while 200,000 die

Not proportionate because why are 2 million US soldiers more important than the 200,000 Japanese civilians

He didn’t murder servicemen he Murdered innocent civilians

In addition long lasting consequences – high cancer rates, PTSD 

75
Q

Explain love is not liking

A

Love is not sentimental

Love is about your will and motivation – you should will yourself to promote other peoples well-being

Love does not seek out the deserving nor does it make judgements about the people at once to serve

Can’t let emotional values get in the way of saving love

76
Q

Give an example of love is not liking

A

If there was a choice between saving your father or or a medical genius with a cure for a lethal disease then if you understand agape you would save the medical genius

77
Q

Explain love justifies the means

A

Natural moral law clings to the idea that the ends do not justify the means

But any action we take is literally meaningless unless some action has an end or purpose

To follow blindly the actions become empty and meaningless – we won’t be thinking about how love is served served

78
Q

Discuss contraception and love justifies the means

A

Birth control is better than an abortion

79
Q

What what the example Fletcher gave about the Indian warfare for love justifies it means

A

The first mother clung onto her child who was ill and crying with the result being that they were all caught and killed

The second mother saw her crying baby would endanger the whole party trail and killed it with her own hands to keep it silent so the group could reach safety

80
Q

For love justifies its means what were the four factors Fletcher outlined when judging the situation

A

What end do we seek

What means will we used to obtain it

What motive is behind our act

What are the forseeable consequences

81
Q

What is the example for love justifies its means

A

I woman named Gisella Perl managed to perform 3000 abortions in concentration camps
Even though human embryos were considered human life

As pregnant women would be incinerated
So three thousand murdered prevents three thousand more

82
Q

Explain love decides there and then 

A

Love decisions are made situation mate not prescriptively

All decisions are situational and not dependent on the law

83
Q

Example on love decides there and then

A

Woman told that she might have a defective baby because she took thalidomide

She asked the court to support her doctor intimidating the pregnancy but the judge refused

Her husband took her Sweden and she received an abortion there

Fletcher argues that the decision was brave loving and right

84
Q

What did Jesus say about sexual practices or ethics

A

Condemned adultery and divorce

He didn’t say anything on masturbation or homosexuality so who are we to then go against it

85
Q

Strengths of situation ethics

A

Flexible and practical – takes into account complexity of human life

God wants us to use a free will to be autonomous – we are not slaves we must make moral decisions ourselves

Teleological system Put humans first and heart of concern

86
Q

Weaknesses of situation ethics

A

It is demanding and places too much pressure on the individual – I think is meant to simplify decision-making but this complicates it

Inconsistent with some teachings in the Bible – the deontological rules which Fletcher ignores

How can we predict loving outcomes the most loving thing now may not be in 10 years
calculations cannot be fully accurate so they only predictions

87
Q

Who came up with situation ethics

A

Fletcher