In modern society, there exists a standard for moral conduct that seems to reign universal over many societies of people. Pinpointing the origins of morality, however, can become problematic because of how one approaches what morality is and what its purpose is in society. Psychologists may point out the social constructs and norms that allow for morality to unfold. Evolutionary biologists may give evidence of human-related species that have developed similar behavioral standards. A Christian theologian may look to scripture in explaining a Creator who ordained that all abide by the standards of conduct most pleasing to this deity. Which one of these explains the origins of morality matters in discerning what exactly prompts humans to consciously choose to do “what is right” even when that doesn’t always prove to be evolutionarily advantageous. Whether these human principles originated from a transcendental force or can be empirically measured is crucial in understanding how humans as a species could be shaped in the future. Is there any way of finding harmony in the variety of explanations for morals provided by each school of thought? This paper will evaluate some of the common philosophical, biological and psychological explanations for the origins of the moral codes of conduct that govern human society.
"The Origins of Morality,"
Dialogue & Nexus: Vol. 4
, Article 6.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.acu.edu/dialogue/vol4/iss1/6
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