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Examine Situation, Relativism, and Conscience as They Appear in the Theory of Situation Ethics

  • Date Submitted: 02/10/2015 04:49 PM
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In Situation Ethics a situation is approached by disregarding the rules to it if love seems to lead to a better ending. Every situation is different and so should be treated uniquely and needs moral decisions, and good morals always lay within love. Fletcher says that a Situationist should follow a moral law or even disobey it a depending on love’s need. Decisions depend on another thing being correct so the ethical value of this action relies on if the use of love is being maximised. E.g. if an insane murderer asks you the whereabouts of his next victim, the best thing to do following Situation Ethics would be to lie even though lying is usually seen as something immoral to do because it is the most loving thing to do in the situation. Consequences should be assessed before the action is taken so that it produces the most amount of love is determined.  

Fletcher’s believes that conscience in Situation Ethics is that it is a verb and not a noun; it’s not a thing but it is the process where a moral decision is made. It isn’t an internalised value of your culture, a faculty of God, or intuition. When your conscience is used, you think through potential actions that can be taken to produce love in any situation. Your conscience is not used to make up your mind but only you are the decision maker. This means that when you make a moral decision you’re acting unreservedly and from your own choice, so, you’re in control of your own fate and you’re evidently given true moral responsibility. In order to ensure that you perform the correct moral action you must give yourself into love, and let it lead your path.
Relativism in the theory of situation ethics means that rules (absolutes) don not always valid, and they depend on the situation.   Rules may be useful, but they may need to be ignored in order to do the most loving thing, which is in the best interests of the people who are affected by the action. Absolutes like ‘Always’ and ‘Do not steal’ become dependent on...


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