Qualities are approved or disapproved on the basis of their being either useful or pernicious

Qualities are approved or disapproved on the basis of their being either useful or pernicious

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Unformatted text preview: Qualities are approved or disapproved on the basis of their being either useful or pernicious. This, according to Hume, is the sole foundation for all moral distinctions. Vices and virtues according to this criterion will compare most favorably with the one derived from those principles of morality which philosophers have tried to support in so many different ways. Writers in the field of ethics could profit from the example used in the physical sciences, where the same explanation was given to account for the revolutions of the moon and the falling of bodies which are close to the surface of the earth. If the force of gravity is sufficient to account for the wide variety of falling bodies, it should be possible in a similar manner to explain the origin and existence of the principles of morality by referring to a single cause. A few typical illustrations will show how of the principles of morality by referring to a single cause....
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