Philosophy of values & ethics w/ Nigel Warburton: How to choose the right ethics

(APPROX. 1 MIN READ / 7 MIN VIDEO)

Nigel Warburton is a consquentialist (ends justify the means) who has dedicated much of his life to exploring philosophy, lecturing at The Open University, sharing his findings through books and his popular website, Philosophy Bites.

Regarding ethics, I asked Nigel if he believed in universal good. In this post-postmodern western world, one popular paradigm is that different opinions and lifestyles should be accepted. However, should we be all-accepting and avoid judging others, even if their definition of good is our definition of bad? What about judging those that judge others?

To investigate the philosophy of ethics, listen to Nigel explain how to form one’s own values and ethics:

At the 4:45min mark I asked Nigel what he wants to be remembered for, what good he wants to leave behind:

“You are assuming I want to be remembered… That is a strange way of living (concerned about how we will be viewed in the future). John Stuart Mill said that ‘one of the best ways of being happy is being immersed in something else.’ As soon as you start reflecting on the types of things that make you happy, you lose the possibility of happiness. I dont think we should be living constantly with a view on how we will be judged in the future. I think we should be immersed in the causes that matter to us in the present.”

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  • Clayton Ashcraft

    “I dont think we should be living constantly with a view on how we will be judged in the future. I think we should be immersed in the causes that matter to us in the present.” This is so money right here! I love his view on life, not living in the past and not living in the future. I think moral philosophy is situational at times in our compass of life and how we view it. We should seek to live in the present so we don't give the future any ideas of how to control us.

  • Clayton Ashcraft

    “I dont think we should be living constantly with a view on how we will be judged in the future. I think we should be immersed in the causes that matter to us in the present.” This is so money right here! I love his view on life, not living in the past and not living in the future. I think moral philosophy is situational at times in our compass of life and how we view it. We should seek to live in the present so we don't give the future any ideas of how to control us.

  • http://standstrong.tv/ Filip Matous

    Thanks dude. Sometimes I get caught up with living too much for the future and forgetting the now. It makes me think that I need to start asking people what their main philosophy to life is… the foundation on what they structure their life around. A “My Philosophy” type question. The current question I ask seems to be future centered – a similar response came from Justin Dillon – needs to be balanced with a NOW question. Any ideas?

  • Antonius

    Where do you place the past? Of course in the past … but what if you are being “judged” by said past?

  • http://standstrong.tv/ Filip Matous

    Antonius, are you saying you want to change the past?

    Personally, some parts of my past I'm not proud of, but try as I may, there's no going back. No matter how people judge me, what I think about my past, no matter what, it's not changing at all.

    Of the energy I have in me I like to focus on what I can affect and prepare for the future, since yearning for the past is a total waste of resource. Sure, I learn from all the mistakes I made in the past but realize many of them were necessary to make me who I am today. No matter what, all I can affect is the now, to live in the present and perhaps prepare for the future. Zen has pretty good philosophy on this.

    Can you address the “judging” that is happening to you now?

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