Altruism - Philosophy

Philosophy

There exists a wide range of philosophical views on man's obligations or motivations to act altruistically. Proponents of ethical altruism maintain that individuals are morally obligated to act altruistically. The opposing view is ethical egoism, which maintains that moral agents should always act in their own self-interest. Both ethical altruism and ethical egoism contrast with utilitarianism, which is the view that every individual's well-being (including one's own) is of equal moral importance.

A related concept in descriptive ethics is psychological egoism, the thesis that humans always act in their own self-interest and that true altruism is impossible. Rational egoism is the view that rationality consists in acting in one's self-interest (without specifying how this affects one's moral obligations).

Read more about this topic:  Altruism

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Famous quotes containing the word philosophy:

    And truly Philosophy is but sophisticated poetry. Whence do those ancient writers derive all their authority but from the poets?
    Michel de Montaigne (1533–1592)

    What makes philosophy so tedious is not the profundity of philosophers, but their lack of art; they are like physicians who sought to cure a slight hyperacidity by prescribing a carload of burned oyster-shells.
    —H.L. (Henry Lewis)

    When a bachelor of philosophy from the Antilles refuses to apply for certification as a teacher on the grounds of his color I say that philosophy has never saved anyone. When someone else strives and strains to prove to me that black men are as intelligent as white men I say that intelligence has never saved anyone: and that is true, for, if philosophy and intelligence are invoked to proclaim the equality of men, they have also been employed to justify the extermination of men.
    Frantz Fanon (1925–1961)