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Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy

Volume 10, 2008


Alexander V. Razin
Pages 349-354

The Models of Moral Activity

By analyzing various models of moral behavior, I wanted to show that humanity does not have any universal moral feeling. The positive and negative emotions I have described appear in concrete situations in various ways. The dominant role goes to negative emotions provoked in response to possible or real violations of moral demands. This, by the way, explains the fact that most well-known moral rules have a negative character (don't lie, don't use others solely as a means to your own ends, don't commit adultery, and so on). The positive motivations are mainly represented in situations where shared values influence the process of satisfying highly developed human needs. Traditional approaches to ethics (especially Immanuel Kant's) stressed the separation of moral motives from other socially and naturally caused behavioral stimuli that finally obstruct possibility to explain positive moral motivation. So in order to understand the role of positive motivation in moral we need a new methodology. The basis of this new methodology has to be a complementary principle which allows us to show how different motivations can be combined under one nature without mutually suppressing each other.

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