Moral relativism may be any of several philosophical positions concerned with the differences in moral judgments across different people and cultures. Descriptive moral relativism holds only that some people do in fact disagree about what is moral; meta-ethical moral relativism holds that in such disagreements, nobody is objectively right or wrong; and normative moral relativism holds that because nobody is right or wrong, we ought to tolerate the behavior of others even when we disagree about the morality of it.
Not all descriptive relativists adopt meta-ethical relativism, and moreover, not all meta-ethical relativists adopt normative relativism. Richard Rorty, for example, argued that relativist philosophers believe "that the grounds for choosing between such opinions is less algorithmic than had been thought," but not that any belief is equally as valid as any other.
Moral relativism has been espoused, criticized, and debated for thousands of years, from ancient Greece and India down to the present day, in diverse fields including philosophy, science, and religion.
Read more about Moral Relativism: History
Famous quotes containing the word moral:
“We shall make mistakes, but they must never be mistakes which result from faintness of heart or abandonment of moral principles. I remember that my old school master Dr. Peabody said in days that seemed to us then to be secure and untroubled, he said things in life will not always run smoothly, sometimes we will be rising toward the heights and all will seem to reverse itself and start downward. The great thing to remember is that the trend of civilization itself is forever upward.”
—Franklin D. Roosevelt (18821945)