I made one of those posters for grasshopper as applied to global warming questions. It seems like the left use Buddhism in their tool kit for environmentalism- yet is that accurate?
I am not sure if it is a Zen Koan. If i interpreted the meaning correctly, for Buddhists reality is illusory. If nothing is more than a temporal illusion, and return to nothingness (nirvana) is best, then killing the puppy is nothing meaningful either. Because so many of the post-industrial left tend to like Buddhism quite a bit, and are environmentalists too (at least nominally), I though I would try to point out the inconsistency in values; if everything is illusory then why concern about global warming and ecosphere decline? I don’t share the viewpoint, yet it is interesting to note that by the turn of the century most people on Earth (if present trends continue) won’t have access to brain growing omega 3s because of over-fishing, ocean warming, habitat loss etc.
I like John Stuart Mill’s work on utilitarianism. It seems to me the debate was always about act and rule based versions. The greatest good for the greatest number as the golden rule for utilitarians for example would, a priori, proscribe mass killings from drunk drivers IMO, or nuking innocent cities to kick off urban renewal. A consequentialist might wait until after the fact to decide if the consequences of the nuking were good or bad.
Today some academic insiders of the east look toward consequentialism as the justification for leftist ethics for grasshoppers of the cognoscenti. In my opinion though, some of the deontological systems that are Bible based work better, yet if one’s idea is to change social moral norms to something that anti-Christians would be comfortable in, then Bible deontological ethics would be problematic. Few people actually study ethics then personally apply them I think.
Ethics aren’t difficult to find-especially in Muslim cultures. All human cultures have social behavior patterns that have set acceptable parameters; even lawful parameters. Sociologists and others study human behavior, and mass human behavior, and the rules of social behavior are fairly well known. Moral behavior is the way people interact in society-what they actually do, and what manner they follow those rules, historical rules, ere applied ethics. Morality are the rules of what is acceptable social behavior, and ethics are the way those rules are used by people. It is a very old custom.
The ten commandments and other deontological systems were moral paradigmata. Thou shalt not kill, steal, perp adultery, etc are as old as human society. One might argue that social rules against bad behavior originated with society as an innate logic for social behavior, and their may be some truth in that. Plainly people are not amoeba or zombies free to consume their neighbor for-themselves without legal, moral or ethical concern.