Thomas paul and linda elder of the foundation for critical thinking

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THIS EXAM INCLUDES SOME PARTS ALL OF THE QUIZZES I OFFER  BUT YOU MAY PURCHASE SEPARATELY IF DESIRED. Jump to navigation Jump to search Morality and religion is the relationship between religious views and morals. Religion and morality are not synonymous. Morality does not necessarily depend upon religion, though for some, this is “an almost automatic assumption. According to The Westminster Dictionary of Christian Ethics, religion and morality “are to be defined differently and have no definitional connections with each other. Value judgments can vary greatly between religions, past and present. People in various religious traditions, such as Christianity, may derive ideas of right and wrong from the rules and laws set forth in their respective authoritative guides and by their religious leaders.

Within the wide range of ethical traditions, religious traditions co-exist with secular value frameworks such as humanism, utilitarianism, and others. There are many types of religious values. According to Stephen Gaukroger: “It was generally assumed in the 17th century that religion provided the unique basis for morality, and that without religion, there could be no morality. This view slowly shifted over time. Richard Paula and Linda Elder of the Foundation for Critical Thinking assert that, “Most people confuse ethics with behaving in accordance with social conventions, religious beliefs, and the law. The proper role of ethical reasoning is to highlight acts of two kinds: those which enhance the well-being of others—that warrant our praise—and those that harm or diminish the well-being of others—and thus warrant our criticism. Armin Geertz suggests that “the age-old assumption that religion produces morals and values is neither the only, nor the most parsimonious, hypothesis for religion”.

Religions provide different ways of dealing with moral dilemmas. For example, there is no absolute prohibition on killing in Hinduism, which recognizes that it “may be inevitable and indeed necessary” in certain circumstances. According to Thomas Dixon, “Many today  argue that religious beliefs are necessary to provide moral guidance and standards of virtuous conduct in an otherwise corrupt, materialistic, and degenerate world. The study of religion and morality is contentious due to conceptual differences. The ethnocentric views on morality, failure to distinguish between in group and out group altruism, and inconsistent definition of religiosity all contribute to conflicting findings. In line with other findings suggesting that religious humanitarianism is largely directed at in-group members, greater religious identification, greater extrinsic religiosity and greater religious fundamentalism were associated with racial prejudice.

Even for people who were nonreligious, those who said they attended religious services in the past week exhibited more generous behaviors. One study on pro-social sentiments showed that non-religious people were more inclined to show generosity in random acts of kindness, such as lending their possessions and offering a seat on a crowded bus or train. Religious people were less inclined when it came to seeing how much compassion motivated participants to be charitable in other ways, such as in giving money or food to a homeless person and to non-believers. A study by Harvard University professor Robert Putnam found that religious people were more charitable than their irreligious counterparts. The overall relationship between faith and crime is unclear.

A 2001 review of studies on this topic found “The existing evidence surrounding the effect of religion on crime is varied, contested, and inconclusive, and currently no persuasive answer exists as to the empirical relationship between religion and crime. Some works indicate that some societies with lower religiosity have lower crime rates—especially violent crime, compared to some societies with higher religiosity. Modern research in criminology also acknowledges an inverse relationship between religion and crime, with some studies establishing this connection. A Georgia State University study published in the academic journal Theoretical Criminology suggests that religion helps criminals to justify their crimes and might “encourage” it. Religious values can diverge from commonly-held contemporary moral positions, such as those on murder, mass atrocities, and slavery.

Hence it is justly regarded as unsafe to draw any inference in favor of a man’s morals, from the fervor or strictness of his religious exercises, even though he himself believe them sincere. Bertrand Russell said, “There are also, in most religions, specific ethical tenets which do definite harm. The Catholic condemnation of birth control, if it could prevail, would make the mitigation of poverty and the abolition of war impossible. The Hindu beliefs that the cow is a sacred animal and that it is wicked for widows to remarry cause quite needless suffering. You find this curious fact, that the more intense has been the religion of any period and the more profound has been the dogmatic belief, the greater has been the cruelty and the worse has been the state of affairs. According to Paul Copan, Jewish laws in the bible show an evolution of moral standards towards protecting the vulnerable, imposing a death penalty on those pursuing forced slavery and identifying slaves as persons and not property. According to Bertrand Russell, “Clergymen almost necessarily fail in two ways as teachers of morals.