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Morality

What is morality?
Morality is an understanding of the difference between right and wrong by using a set of commonly shared standards of human behaviour.
Why do we think the way we do? How do we arrive at the decisions we make as individuals every day?

The most difficult decisions to make are often moral decisions. Morality is your sense of right and wrong and moral decisions are based on right or wrong actions.
So for example deciding whether or not to steal is a moral decision, where to go on a Friday night is not! There are two types of moral decision making...

Absolute morality... Someone who has absolute morals always follows the rules. These rules may have been set by themselves, their parents or the law. A person with absolute morals will always make the same decision and doesnt consider the situation. In religion both Roman Catholics and Muslims have absolute morals. So for example stealing is wrong, you shouldnt take other peoples possessions the law says so. Therefore with absolute morals even if you were a homeless and hungry person, you would not steal food to survive. Relative morality... Someone with relative morals will consider the situation before they make a decision. This means that sometimes rules are broken but in that situation it seemed the best thing to do. In religion Buddhism and The Church of England both have relative morals. So for example these people still see stealing as wrong but if they were homeless and hungry may say their only option was to steal food. As individuals our moral decision making will vary, this is what makes us individual!! But what is it that makes people arrive at a moral decision? Here are some factors that may influence our decision making... Parents, School, The Law, Your conscience, Friends TV / media, and Role models

Religious people are affected by all of these influences but may also be influenced by other factors in their decision making, for example... Holy books - e.g. the Bible or Quran. These are seen as the word of God and how God would want people to act. Religious leaders e.g. the Pope in the Roman Catholic Church. These people have been specially trained and are often seen as gifted by God. Tradition this is where people act based on what has been previously done. Religious people see tradition as extremely important and many customs go back for many centuries. Judaism pays special attention to tradition. Both the religious and non-religious influences on peoples decision making are not fool proof. For example holy books were written a long time ago and often dont mention modern day problems, sometimes parents do not set a good example to their children. Therefore it is important we get our moral influences from a number of different sources.

Can anyone think of an example of Absolute Morality from the Bible?

Can anyone think of an example of Relative Morality from the Bible?

Questions
1. What is morality? 2. What is a moral decision? 3. Explain absolute morality. 4. Explain relative morality. 5. Make a spider diagram (popplet) to explain the influences which affect everyone making moral decisions e.g. parents, the law, school. 6. Choose three of these influences and explain problems with them. 7. Make a spider diagram (popplet) to explain the extra influences that religious people have when making moral decisions. 8. Choose two of these and explain the problems with them. 9. Some religious people have said that many problems in our society come from the decline in religious believers explain why they might think this is the case.

We should not underestimate the importance of moral decision making, whoever we are. Every moral decision has a consequence and collectively these consequences affect the world we live in.

What point is the quote trying to make?

Absolute morality... Someone who has absolute morals always follows the rules. These rules may have been set by themselves, their parents or the law. A person with absolute morals will always make the same decision and doesnt consider the situation. In religion both Roman Catholics and Muslims have absolute morals. So for example stealing is wrong, you shouldnt take other peoples possessions the law says so. Therefore with absolute morals even if you were a homeless and hungry person, you would not steal food to survive.

Relative morality... Someone with relative morals will consider the situation before they make a decision. This means that sometimes rules are broken but in that situation it seemed the best thing to do. In religion Buddhism and The Church of England both have relative morals. So for example these people still see stealing as wrong but if they were homeless and hungry may say their only option was to steal food. As individuals our moral decision making will vary, this is what makes us individual!! But what is it that makes people arrive at a moral decision? Here are some factors that may influence our decision making...

Parents, School, The Law, Your conscience, Friends TV / media, and Role models

Religious people are affected by all of the above but may also be influenced by other factors in their decision making, for example... Holy books - e.g. the Bible or Quran. These are seen as the word of God and how God would want people to act. Religious leaders e.g. the Pope in the Roman Catholic Church. These people have been specially trained and are often seen as gifted by God. Tradition this is where people act based on what has been previously done. Religious people see tradition as extremely important and many customs go back for many centuries. Judaism pays special attention to tradition. Both the religious and non-religious influences on peoples decision making are not fool proof. For example holy books were written a long time ago and often dont mention modern day problems, sometimes parents do not set a good example to their children. Therefore it is important we get our moral influences from a number of different sources.