“Do Feelings and Morality Mix?”


A philosopher explains how feelings influence right and wrong. “Could using modern scientific tools to separate the soup of moral decision-making—peeking into the brain to see how emotion and reason really operate—shed light on these philosophical questions? The field of moral cognition, an interdisciplinary effort between researchers in social and cognitive psychology, behavioral economics, and neuroscience, has tried to do just that.”

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  1. Isn’t “moral psychologist” something of an oxymoron?

    Furthermore, “neuroscience” enters the discussion, and I would suggest that “moral psychiatrist” is even more of an oxymoron than “moral psychologist”. There’s also that word “bioethics” regarding the ethics of research. I think, quite frankly, that much of the research being conducted in this direction today is, to a certain extent, immoral. I’ve seen these words come up in places where I think personally they were excusing a great many inethical practices.

    I would question, in some regards, the morality of just the type of research being presented here. I’ve seen many unethical things done in the name of ethics.

    Heres this “philosopher” claiming ethics a “gut reaction”, and I go, where’s the “love of wisdom”, reason if you prefer, in that? Last time I looked, that’s not the location of the executive organ of a human organism.

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    • Okay. He challenges actually the initial “gut reaction”. Sorry, that was my rash reading of this piece. In that regard, he makes much sense. Still, I remain leery here. I don’t think my questions though doesn’t hold, particularly when one is philosophizing the morality of reducing certain segments of the human population to a sub-human status. “Bioethics”, to my way of thinking, often licenses the unethical behavior of scientists and academics. The question becomes, in other words, who are you going to exclude from your ethical considerations? “Ethics” is often the stated rationale behind so many social control measures. Self-control is not something that has lent itself to scientific inquiry.

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