What is morality?

  • (noun): Concern with the distinction between good and evil or right and wrong; right or good conduct.
    See also — Additional definitions below


Morality (from the Latin moralitas "manner, character, proper behavior") is the differentiation of intentions, decisions, and actions between those that are "good" (or right) and those that are "bad" (or wrong). The philosophy of morality is ethics. A moral code is a system of morality (according to a particular philosophy, religion, culture, etc.) and a moral is any one practice or teaching within a moral code. Morality may also be specifically synonymous with "goodness" or "rightness." Immorality is the active opposition to morality (i.e. opposition to that which is good or right), while amorality is variously defined as an unawareness of, indifference toward, or disbelief in any set of moral standards or principles. An example of a moral code is the Golden Rule which states that, "One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself."

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Some articles on morality:

Morality Without Religion - Positions On Religion and Morality - Morality Does Not Rely On Religion
... York Times Magazine, 1930 Various commentators have stated that morality does not require religion as a guide ... it is not hard to imagine a society of people that has no religion but has a morality, as well as a legal system, just because it says that people cannot live together without rules against killing ... There have also certainly been people who have had a morality but no religious beliefs." Bernard Williams, an English philosopher, stated that the secular "utilitarian outlook ...
Samatha - Overview
... the Buddhist path of practice is simplified into three divisions, namely Morality (Śīla), Concentration (samadhi) and Wisdom (pañña) ... However, for the mind to be unruffled, a firm basis of morality must be present in the person's life ... Morality is the foundation of all Buddhist spiritual cultivation and of samatha (calm) in particular ...
Societal Views On Intellectual Property - Objectives - Morality
... for private property can be used to argue in favor of the morality of intellectual property, such as Natural Rights/Justice Argument this argument is based on Locke’s idea ...
Morality - Moral Codes
... This section does not cite any references or sources Codified morality is generally distinguished from custom, another way for a community to define appropriate activity, by the former's derivation from natural or ... Such codes may be called laws, as in the Law of Moses, or community morality may be defined through commentary on the texts of revelation, as in Islamic law ... Morality can also be seen as the collection of beliefs as to what constitutes a good life ...

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Famous quotes containing the word morality:

    The essential function of art is moral.... But a passionate, implicit morality, not didactic. A morality which changes the blood, rather than the mind.
    —D.H. (David Herbert)

    But the relationship of morality and power is a very subtle one. Because ultimately power without morality is no longer power.
    James Baldwin (1924–1987)

    Where beauty is worshipped for beauty’s sake as a goddess, independent of and superior to morality and philosophy, the most horrible putrefaction is apt to set in. The lives of the aesthetes are the far from edifying commentary on the religion of beauty.
    Aldous Huxley (1894–1963)