HENRY LEE Z3254567 1. Hedonism or sacrifice.

What is it that drives some to a life of self indulgence and others to a life centred on serving others? The doctrine of Hedonism is based on the belief that pleasure is good and pain is bad. There are two main categories that hedonism can be classified into; motivational hedonism and normative hedonism. Andrew Moore(2004) suggests that motivational hedonism is the claim that only pleasure or pain motivates us compared to normative hedonism which is the claim that all and only pleasure has worth or value and all and only pain has disvalue. The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary defines sacrifice as the destruction or surrender of something for the sake of something else. It is evident that there could be many different levels of sacrifice, i.e. sacrificing something small for something big, sacrificing something of equal value. The term sacrifice is quite broad and in that sense it is clear that there must be distinctions made between individuals and their definitions of sacrifice. Humans were designed to be communal beings and this is further reflected on the values that are universally accepted around the world. One of these values would be communication. Communication was most important to survival which was often just a matter of passing on information of danger or the discovery of food. Sacrifice is of essence in communities and from seeing that pain and suffering must exist, it is also evident that people came to understand that it was a part of life. It is often observed that those of the larger religions such as Christianity, Islam and Buddhism have a large focus on inner peace or external “suffering”. In history much of this suffering was quite extreme, with Catholic Monks practicing self torture in order to remain chaste, or Buddhist monks starving for long periods of time to achieve nirvana. On the contrary there were many other people who would seek their riches and live lives that were fuelled by money and power. The reason for maximising money was to be able to afford anything, which clearly shows that there is a strong concentration on this life that we are living in now. The main reason Christians, Muslims and Buddhists, choose to live lives of suffering is because they believe in life after death, or a chance at a better life. The choice of whether we will live hedonistic lifestyles or that of sacrifice comes down to our ethical stance. There are five factors that affect individual ethics: 1. Family influences 2. Religious Beliefs 3. Culture

Many religions have a similar base framework on universal beliefs that you shouldn’t cause pain to others or you should treat others with respect. Internal Reflection Family influences have direct influences as most children take their initial ethical beliefs through their parents or siblings ethical beliefs through creating ethical boundaries such as lying is bad. Chinese culture which follows a strong Confucian ideal has a lot to do with self-sacrifice and the idea that you must always respect your elders. Some parents may say that lying is ok as long as it is a white lie whereas others may not condone any form of lying. would be considered to be a serious crime and hence the experiences allow for different moral codes to exist. Also they are from a communist nation and their goals as a country differ significantly to that of Australia where we are profit driven. These experiences which can range from being raised in a war-torn country to being to jail all take an effective role in what we think is right and wrong. Due to this it is not uncommon to find differences in attitudes towards life. Many of the frameworks provide us with the necessary skills to find “happiness” in life. Technology has advanced so much that information transfer takes place almost instantly in any form of communication. Like this people can say that much of their initial exposure the ethics comes from their family. Personal Experiences 5. Personal Experiences are one of the most significant factors in what shapes our moral code and ethical code.4. Through this people have more time to absorb information but due to that . Many of these are true however the degree to which people adhere to these even amongst believers vary significantly. The status of the family in society also affects the stance people have in the world. Depending on the zealousness of the individual. The idea of having everything you want from a younger age reflects the lifestyle you choose to live. Internal reflection is one of which many people lack in today’s world. killing others for their personal protection can be viewed as being normal. Many young male children born in Palestine are expected to become the protectors of their families once their father dies and hence for them. Personalising failure and acknowledging success is not personal shows the amount of sacrifice that the Chinese make. In countries such as this it is important to make personal sacrifices in order to not stand out. This however in Australia. their ideas on how much sacrifice they are willing to make will vary. Every individual is considered equal and the equilibrium should not be broken because China is not driven by profit but rather supply. The Taoist view which is also held strongly in China reflects on success is because of the community and failures are personal. Religious beliefs as mentioned earlier also provide you with an moral boundary or framework within which you live your life. Cultural norms and acceptable behaviour varies from not only country to country but also from city to city.

focus we do not spend enough time realising what we have learnt and how this will affect our lives. a middle ground must be established. 2001). “Drink wine by all means. As they reflect on what they have been exposed to they classify what was good and what was bad and develop their ability to decide what action is necessary for future better acts. they merely take a position along this spectrum. Other aspects of human life that come into account are the virtues that are recognised by individual. Some may choose to lean towards either extreme however without enjoying some of the simple things in life and making sacrifices to achieve something bigger. Regardless of this people still find even a small amount of time for internal reflection which can be said that it often follows their religious beliefs. many people would feel an emptiness within themselves.” To maximise happiness which is the ultimate goal of both extremes. It is the human condition that we wish to be acknowledged by others and there are two ways in which we are acknowledged. In both cases it is true that the ultimate goal is happiness. they must make sacrifices so that others may believe that they hold a level of social respect. but do not get drunk. It has come down to moral codes and ethical conduct to shape what way we choose to live our lives. It is either ones goal to be either envied or admired. it became evident that materialists were generally less satisfied with life as a whole (Swineyard et al. Hedonism is a form of happiness which is realised immediately whereas sacrifice leads to a happiness at a later time. Hedonistic people will not realise the virtue of patience as patience requires you to wait until something is worth taking but the smaller happiness’s are enough to satisfy them. It is clear that most people do not take on these extremes of the spectrum. As a person living in sacrifice it is not unusual that they would find that smaller sacrifices must be made for the bigger happiness. In studies done based on the link between materialism and the cognitive aspect of wellbeing. As Confucius says. To be envied it can be generalised that people will try to attain all the material gain they can whereas to be admired. Some may choose to believe that a life of sacrifice is just not enough and they really wish to be able to do what they want while others may decide that all the goods in the world cannot satisfy their hunger for more. . This was based on the fact that there was a lack of healthy social connections.

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