Categorical Imperative, Common sense, Descartes, ethical, ethics, Golden Rule, Immanuel Kant, No free lunch, Rule of Change, Six Candidate Ethical Principles, Utilitarian Principle, Utilitarianism, Utility
I recently came across these Six Candidate Ethical Principles in the syllabus of one of my business-related subjects I am taking and I thought it was worth sharing. I feel as if these principles ought to be given a thought as they are true. It would be nice if everyone would actually practice these principles.
They are somewhat similar in the sense that they all have the similar theme of being considerate of others. It’s really just the common sense of respecting others so that you would be respected as well.
These are the six principles;
Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.
– Golden Rule
If the action is not right for everyone to take, it is not right for anyone.
– Immanuel Kant’s Categorical Imperative
If the action cannot be taken repeatedly, it is not right to take at all.
– Descartes’ Rule of Change
Take the action that achieves the higher or greater value.
– Utilitarian Principle
Take the action that produces the least harm or least potential risks.
– Risk Aversion Principle
Assume that virtually all tangible and intangible objects are owned by someone unless there is a specific declaration otherwise.
– Ethical “No Free Lunch” Rule
The Utilitarian Principle is a very debatable topic about its effectiveness. You’ve probably heard about the situation of “Would you rather spare the life one very important person in the sacrifice of a million lives, or spare the million lives in the sacrifice of that one very important person?” I know this topic has been debated over and over again many times but everyone has their own opinion on which is better.
Now, what if the action with the highest value has the highest potential risk?
However, I do find the Golden Rule a very important one to live by. Even the littlest things you do for others will eventually have a good effect back at yourself. A little help goes a long way for someone else. It could be the highlight of someone’s day that you took the extra effort to help him or her.
As cliché as these may seem, you cannot deny that it is, in fact true.