where does our sense of morality come from?

where did the sense of wrongness and rightness in each person come about? Why is it wrong to kill a person? because of the law, but where does the law come from? from our forefathers, but how did they think of what to stamp as "wrong" and what to stamp as "right"?

13 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Many years ago, I had the opportunity in college to study philosophy. It was very enlighening to listen to real philosophers teach about these kinds of issues, and I would encourage you to take some courses.

    For one thing, you are asking important questions that perhaps too many people take for granted. Religeous teachings, although I'm sure are well-meaning, they kind of pre-process all the thinking for people.

    In the philosophy courses, they stressed the difference between "ethics" and "morality." Ethics was the philosophy that distinguishing between "Right" and Wrong," while morality was whether people actually lived their lives according to those ethical beliefs and values.

    Then there is the question of "good" and "bad," and what constitues a crime and its punishment.

    I could have taken more advanced courses and gone on to be a PHD scholar, but I chose to do other things. But I can tell you that those who did choose to become PHD philosophy professors don't agree with each other!

    They are good questions. But there are no simple answers.

    Good Luck!

  • 1 decade ago

    This is a great question, thank you for asking.

    I honestly think that the history of our morals or ethics comes from what we liked and didn't like, simple as that.

    For example, if we go all the way back to pre-civilization (not really cave-men per se, but close) and we were forming small groups for survival purposes, we could simply say that it wasn't best for the survival of the group if someone in the group killed another in the group. It may have also come from a strong leader who liked their group and felt that anyone who took any of their group away was bad/wrong and thus killing in their group/tribe/clan was considered wrong.

    Any group can be considered, in an of itself, a living entity. The larger the group, the easier it might be to see this in action, but if you look closely enough, you'll note it in smaller groups as well.

    Since a group is a living entity, it has to look out for it's own survival, it's own wants, it's own needs. It may also have it's own fears or dislikes and may push those away or destroy them as necessary.

    Given enough time, you start to apply names to these things, you start to expect certain aspects as the norm and that anything going against the norm is a challenge and thus, perhaps wrong or illegal.

    Um, well that was rather long winded, but I think that covers my general thoughts on this answer.

    Love as always,


  • 1 decade ago

    Because we are created in the image of our Maker, we have an inherent sense of right and wrong.

    We also have the free will to pursue one or the other, the result being either a seared conscious, or taking after our Creator, as we were meant to do.

    That is the only way I find true contentment and peace even in the midst of strife- to take him at His Word for what is right and wrong.

    See the book of John in the Bible for what Christmas has to do with this, and Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year to you!

    Source(s): Bible, experience, observation of people and societies
  • 1 decade ago

    Honestly I believe it to be a matter of conformity. From youth we learn what is good to do and what is wrong to do. It's not good to do if it is dangerous, rude, or any other socially unacceptable behavior. While otherwise, we usually can get away with things other people have done before or would not find a problem with. This is very strong conformity but from the most part I believe it's our need for social acceptance, not to mention how such seems to define our view of ourselves within how others would view of us. Speaking on how if enough other people tell you you're worthless, some people may very well believe that they are, and the same with if they tell them they are great, for example royalty. I'm sure the social acceptance matter came fairly innately, otherwise the rest simply fell into place with that social line of behavior.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    People always refer to learning wrong from right.I as one although I have Christian beliefs I also have what I know in my heart to be true and even books of the bible were hidden and never published about life before life..But we were all born with a since of morality and what is right for us maybe wrong for someone else,but we were born with this knowledge but killing is a no no for everyone ..and every creature..other than animals that are predators killing for food..

  • duque
    Lv 4
    3 years ago

    i admire questions like that, and that i ask your self approximately it lots besides. i could desire to believe good morals and values come from human nature. in case you question me, the totally do no longer come from faith or one in demand e book referred to as... hmm... the Bible. yet regrettably i do no longer thoroughly believe interior the human nature ingredient the two. i think of being human isn't inevitably being ethical the way you're able to define ethical. there are a number of "undesirable" aspects to individual, yet that's what makes us so interesting in my opinion. yet what you reported approximately all international locations having a similar morals isn't precisely actual. it sort of feels to us like this is how this is at the instant in our globalized international, yet there are nonetheless some cultures residing via standards distinctive than ours thoroughly. i'm constructive interior the previous, while each and every continent grew to become into remoted, issues have been much extra distinctive. in short, my answer could be society. we can by no skill know the place it began, yet in actual certainty, if we've been asked to define "morality" maximum persons could define it a similar way as our mom and dad, educators, or basically the folk we are surrounded via.

  • 1 decade ago

    Much of it is actually innate, our own personal sense of fairness and justice. Our religion (if any) plays a large part. Our parents values play a large part. Our collective societal values influence us, especially due to their inculcation at school.

  • 1 decade ago

    laws and order come from God..he gave us our laws in the 10 comandments. but we are born with free choice...we can either follow the laws or not. God gave us this, too.

    inside each of us, there is a feeling of right and wrong. there is a feeling of goodness of love of sharing. we have only to listen to ourselves...those who break the law know they are wrong. they refuse to admit it or to listen to their inner voices.

    as a living human, you would know it is wrong to kill...why would you take life away from someone when you know what it is to live? if you think of all basic laws of man, you can see if comes back to the old rule of doing unto others as you would have them do unto you...

  • 1 decade ago

    It exists within us, and it is known as our intuition, common sense or understanding. Without it, we couldn't know the truth of falsehood of anything.

    Many liberals apparently have lost touch with it.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Our upbringing. Parental, religious influences.

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