Already liking where this thread is going! In my class, we're discussing different theories on why to be more, essentially. Some older philosophers say that we should be moral in order to please the Gods. Others say that acting morally produces social harmony. Others say that if you don't act morally, there are consequences, so it's in your best interest to be moral.
We have to discuss opinions on whether or not you'd be moral without any chance of reprocussion. Kakno, I hear you. But there is still the chance that you can get caught for being immoral (breaking laws, etc). My scenario involves absolutely ZERO chance of getting caught. If you were wearing an invisibility cloak, and absolutely nobody could see you...If you were, and you saw something you really wanted, would you take it if you knew you could not get caught? Or would you act 'morally' and not take it? I think the point in this question - other than getting an insight into other peoples' psychologies - is that people are usually moral in order to appear moral. Would we REALLY be moral/ethical behind truly closed doors?
Another question that arose was that of the State of Nature. Like I mentioned, Hobbes stated that in the State of Nature, people are anticipatory, nasty, brutish, and fight over limited resources. Hobbes gave 2 separate ideas.
1) People fight over the limited resources. Life is nasty, and people do whatever they can to get by. You can't make contracts with people, b/c there is nobody to make sure that the other party does their share of the work. Basically, life sucks
2) People realize that it's in their best interest to be moral. Although there is better 'short term benefit' in beign immoral - ie breaking laws to yield quick results - people think to the future...If you break laws, people will see you as a lawbreaker, and once you're labeled a lawbreaker, nobody will do business with you, etc.
Both of these ideas still maintain that morality is a form of self-interest, but they're both very different. Any thoughts?
- PS I'm very tired and am probably not making too much sense right now. Either way, I'm going to be writing a bunch of papers on similar stuff pretty soon, and I genuinely LOVE talking philosophy with anybody who will indulge me! So please, chime in peeps.