Principles

1.) I believe the most important rule is respect. The older I become the more familiar the word becomes to me and the more i realize how important it is. I choose only this one rule because if it is followed, other rules and principles will fall in its path. For example if you are in a relationship with someone and you respect them, chances are you are going to care about them which means you will be kind and faithful. I learned this trait from my Father. My father and I never really got along until recently, of course I realize why now. I never respected him, and it always had a negative consequence, but then one day I realized I needed to step up to the plate and show some respect, I did and we have been best friends since. Of course my whole life I thought I “hated” him because he was such a hard ass and blah blah, but in reality he sculpted me into who I am today, someone that respects his surroundings. Of course this principle has been challenged in my life, many of times. I used to have some friends that had absolutely no respect for anything, and of course to fit in i had to do similar acts, which got me no where but trouble. I would consider adopting new principles as long as they benefited my life.

2.) I have this problem where I tend to care more about how others feel than myself. I feel obligated to make other people satisfied and happy. I do not know if this is a bad thing or not. For some reason I feel that I am obligated to be in a relationship with someone and be the best boyfriend. This sounds sweet and all but it has not worked for me at all, I think the problem is that I get so tied up in my significant other that i forget who it truly am. I need to learn to feel obligated to not only make others happy but make myself happy as well.

3.) A good person is someone who respects their surroundings and follows the “norm” of the general rules/laws given by an authority. 

4.) Of course it can be both! We are always in search of happiness in our lives, but we use our rules and principles while doing so.

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Elder Suicide

Dear Mr. Anonymous,

Although I know you are not seeking sympathy, I am terribly sorry for the situation you face. As a young individual that has barely experienced life yet it is hard  to grasp any reasoning for wishing to end life, but after reading your letter I have  new insight. I believe that you have the right to feel the way you do, I also believe that you should have the right to end your life peacefully. 

It must be extremely tough to come to terms with what your facing, but clearly by how you held yourself together in your letter you have made peace with it. I respect your for wishing to support your family and do what is best for them over your own well being, I feel like there are not many people like you anymore.  If i had the medical conditions that you are soon to face, I would not want to deal with them either, especially if they would put a burden on my families lives. 

Aside from all that though I think you need not to write to the general public of your dilemma but instead speak to the people who love you. Your family will give you the best insight and maybe change your mind. 

Sincerely, A Caring friend.

 

Lesson 2 – Assignment 1: Rules

 

Selection:In a similar fashion, we may think of a person as free when bound only by her own will and not by the will of another. Her actions then express her own will and not the will of someone or something else. The authority of the principles binding her will is then also not external to her will. It comes from the fact that she willed them. So autonomy, when applied to an individual, ensures that the source of the authority of the principles that bind her is in her own will. Kant’s view can be seen as the view that the moral law is just such a principle. Hence, the ‘moral legitimacy’ of the CI is grounded in its being an expression of each person’s own rational will. It is because each person’s own reason is the legislator and executor of the moral law that it is authoritative for her.”

In My Own Words: A person is morally free when there will is self derived instead of externally created. The easiest way to explain his meaning of free is his example about the laws in our government. We feel as if we have freedom when the laws that are provided are equivalent to our own beliefs. So in the case of what he wrote in the above paragraph the person is free because the moral rule they are bound to is equivalent to their own belief.

Opinions and Interpretation: I chose this paragraph because I like Kant’s outlook on rules through the filter of “freedom” Everyone has their own general moral rules that they follow and i believe, like Kant, that these rules shall not be influenced by others, only by oneself. I believe that Kant is also saying that not only can ones “will” not be derived from another being, but it also can not be derived from external sources. Although there is a part of Kant’s work I am unsure of. The beginning of the slideshow in the Reading Room talks about how Kant believes that moral grounding is beyond “the everyday experience of personal inclinations” O.K. I get that he is looking for a definitive universal law for morality among human kind, but how can that even exist? Aren’t we all influenced by everyday life in such a way that we may change our moral outlook? Is it really nature that defines our will?   I don’t think that I believe so. How can there be a universal moral law for all humans when we all live such different lives, where our “ends” are all completely different. Not only are all of our “ends” different but our processes we perform to achieve such ends differ. Again I chose the above paragraph because I can relate to and agree with it the most because it is very important to develop moral views on yourself and not upon others.

Views On Rules:

  • A hypothetical imperative is an imperative based on inclination or desire where as a categorical imperative is one just based on reason. Basically a hypothetical imperative is when you want to do something and you do something to do it, a categorical imperative is when there is obligation to do such thing rather than just fulfilling desire. I do not agree with Kant that we must follow categorical imperatives when making moral choices because I believe that there should be some charity in our moral. Kant’s ideology, to me at least, is very self centered. Do we always have to be obligated to have a moral value, why can’t we see something morally and try to obtain such morals by doing some act.
  • Intrinsic Value, dignity, and Autonomy all tie together, in my eyes, with the rationality of peoples moral decisions. I do not agree however with his universal outlook on the three, don’t we all have our own intrinsic values and definitive values of dignity.
  • As you can tell through my blog, I completely agree that Kant “overemphasizes abstract principles and rules of justice and rationality over subjective emotions like empathy and love.” I feel like the criticism is very justified. It’s almost like Kant is saying that every day life experiences are irrelevant to our moral choices, and that there is a deeper underlying universal reason and methodology for such moral choices, how is that possible? I don’t believe it is.

Multimedia: Image  I have always liked this flag because to me it represents the strength or people’s personal beliefs and how we won’t let anything take them away.

 

Who Am I?

  • My Name is Brandon Malloy, I am 21 years old, and i can not believe that I am that old already. Honestly though, I feel as if High School was last month, but it was already four years ago! To be honest I believe that I am currently in the process of sculpting who I really am, but I have some ideas. The most important thing in the world to me is my family, its pretty small since I am an only child and my cousins are as well. Aside from family I believe that working hard and keeping busy builds my character. Although I was an only child i was handed nothing, I worked for everything I have today. I believe that working for what you want is extremely important. I love going to new places and  A good quality that I have is that I am laid back and easy to talk to, I can make friends with all kinds of people. A bad quality I have is a problem where just can not relax, when i go on vacation I can’t just sit in the hotel room or lay on the beach I have to go places and move around, and my mind seems to always be running.  I also don’t have patience when it comes to anything, I like things to happen instantaneously.

 

  • My main goal in life is to find happiness, the job I work, the person I’m with, and where I live are all pieces of a puzzle that portray my future. I truthfully don’t want to be rich, I just want enough money to support my family and have fun from time to time. As far as my immediate future I hope to graduate from Worcester State next winter with a degree in Mathematics, and enjoy my life while I am still young!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IL6quWwTiRk (Aaron Lewis-Endless Summer)

I chose this music video for a couple reasons, one Aaron Lewis is my favorite artist, and secondly because I believe it compliments my idea of happiness.

 

Happiness via an “Extreme Makeover”?

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Opinion and Interpretation:

  • After reading the Extreme Makeover excerpt, I was pretty much disgusted with today’s moral view on physical appearance. O.K. so going to the gym and eating healthy to lose weight is builds character, having liposuction does not. Having a beautiful personality to make up for any “flaws” builds character, getting plastic surgery does not.  How does one keep there self-identity if there appearance is artificially sculpted?
  • A lot of face lift surgeries are performed to conceal the signs of aging. Unfortunately we all age and there is nothing we can do about it, and with aging comes huge physical changes in the body. Haven’t we known this will happen our whole lives? Why conceal our age? Will it really feel that much better to look ten years younger? In order to be happy one must accept themselves for who they are, not what they could be, and if not all there time will be wasted trying to be something they’re not.
  • I believe that both vanity and nature are responsible for our strive to improve,  it is simply the method in which we choose to improve ourselves that is the differentiator. If someone is going to physically work hard to better themselves then I believe that is human nature, but paying money to change our physical appearance, that is pure vanity.
  • Of course Extreme Makeover is exploiting its participants! I highly doubt that ABC would pay large amounts of money to give people a makeover simply because they want people to feel better. I think they do it to advertise the endless possibilities of plastic surgery and advertise the business.
  • Put this article right next to one talking about famine and poverty, talk about a divide! It is utterly disgusting because it shows that no matter what some people have they can not be happy.

What Aristotle Would Say:

  • I believe that Aristotle would completely rip the Extreme Makeover show apart. He is all about taking what life gives you and making the best of it, not taking what you have and shaping it into something else.
  • Yes Aristotle, in my opinion, would say that Extreme Makeover exploit there participants, for the same reasons I stated above.
  • I think Aristotle would define the want to improve ourselves artificially as a weakness, and exposing weakness can not lead to happiness.

How Anyone Can Be Happy

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Selected Paragraph:

 

If activities are, as we said, what gives life its character, no happy man can become miserable; for he will never do the acts that are hateful and mean. For the man who is truly good and wise, we think, bears all the chances life becomingly and always makes the best of circumstances, as a good general makes the best military use of the army at his command and a good shoemaker makes the best shoes out of the hides that are given him; and so with all other craftsmen. And if this is the case, the happy man can never become miserable; though he will not reach blessedness, if he meet with fortunes like those of Priam.

In My Own Words

In this paragraph i believe that Aristotle is trying to say that in order for a man to be happy he will need to live a complete life in which he takes all that life throws at him and makes the best of each and every situation. If such man follows these guidelines with utmost respect toward the objects he pursues, he shall never become unhappy.

My Opinion and Interpretation

I chose this paragraph because I think that this is how one truly can obtain happiness, although unfortunately I am not a person that is well practiced with this idea. I like how Aristotle says that a man can not be miserable if he were to follow his idea. I do not understand however what he means by “though he will not reach blessedness”, nor do i understand why this is even part of the paragraph.

Views on Happiness

  • I do agree with Aristotle that the ultimate goal for all people is to strive for happiness. I personally believe that a short lived happy life is better than a long lived miserable life. What would the point of life be if we were to not seek happiness? I believe that the strive for happiness is everyone’s personal motivation in life, and without motivation one would not be able to progress through vital stages of their life. I have seen cases in my life where one’s strive for happiness is lost due to tragedy or drugs, and comparable to others their age they are far less established. Thus it is vital that we all keep striving for happiness no matter how hard times get, and believe me i know this is hard, I just came out of a two year relationship Monday.
  • Nobody lives the exact same life as another being, whether it be the way they were brought up or the people they surround themselves with, therefore people have all sorts of different outlooks on life.  If this is true then how can everyone have the same “happiness goals”? They can’t of course. I believe Individual happiness is based off of the sum of all values instilled into a person relevant to the life they live.
  • My concept of happiness is very similar to Aristotle’s. Of course my idea of happiness is different from everyone else as explained above, but as long as I make the best of what life gives me and I always strive for something more, i will be happy.
  • I do think that Aristotle’s definition of happiness is useful to understand the moral motivation of others. I have stated my reasoning for this above.

Hello Everybody, Welcome to my blog!

 My Name is Brandon, I live about five miles from Worcester State University in Cherry Valley, MA.  I am a currently a Junior and majoring Math! I love building and working on cars, I have my own shop in Holden where i am restoring an old Chevy pickup! I currently work as a Massachusetts Vehicle State Inspector, so if anyone needs a sticker let me know! Have a great semester everyone!