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 In this subject, we shall

begin our discussion with
ethics and morality taking
into consideration of
human person as our goal
and final step for a holistic
study of Christian Morality.
 Ethics- is the Philosophy of
Action. It is a basic
discipline. It is the
backbone of human
existence that gives
support to the whole life
direction of man.
 Without ethics…
Why do we want to be moral?
 Because it is man’s rational duty (Immanuel
 Because of pleasure and happiness (Mill and
 It depends upon the situation (Joseph Fletcher).
 Because there is God (St. Augustine and St.
Thomas Aquinas).
 For one’s self-image; to refrain from troubles;
because we are persons in relation to others
As believers or Christians,
what make us different
from others?
Because we all know that
moral law cannot be
dissociated from the
Natural Law and the
Eternal/Divine Law of God.
moral law

 Definition of moral law: a general rule of right

living especially : such a rule or group of rules
conceived as universal and unchanging and as
having the sanction of God's will, of
conscience, of man's moral nature, or of natural
justice as revealed to human reason the basic
protection of rights is the moral law based on
man's dignity—
Natural Law

 The term 'natural law' is derived from the belief that

human morality comes from nature. Everything in nature
has a purpose, including humans. Our purpose,
according to natural law theorists, is to live a good,
happy life. Therefore, actions that work against that
purpose -- that is, actions that would prevent a fellow
human from living a good, happy life -- are considered
'unnatural', or 'immoral'.
Eternal/Divine Law of God

 Eternal law is identical to the mind of God

 Divine law is derived from eternal law as it appears
historically to humans, especially through revelation, i.e.,
when it appears to human beings as divine commands.
Divine law is divided into the Old Law and the New Law
(q91, a5). The Old and New Law roughly corresponding
to the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. When he
speaks of the Old Law, Thomas is thinking mainly of the
Ten Commandments. When he speaks of the New Law,
the teachings of Jesus.
ETHICS vis-à-vis Morality

Ethics- derived from the

Greek word ethicos and has
English translation of
“custom” or “character”.
Ethics is a philosophical
science which deals with the
morality of the human acts.
1. Philosophical
science- one of the
many disciplines in
 Philosophy- literally means,
love of wisdom. Hence,
careful thought about the
fundamental nature of the
world, the grounds for
human knowledge, and
the evaluation of human
Four divisions of philosophy

a. Descriptivephilosophy-
answers the question:
what is the nature of
e.g. Metaphysics
b. Normative philosophy- answer
the questions: what is good and
what is bad or what is right
action or wrong action.
e.g. Ethics or Moral Philosophy
c. Practical philosophy- is a
discipline in philosophy which
reflects upon truth in relation to
e.g. Logic
d. Critical Philosophy-
answers the question: .
“what is truth?”
e.g. Epistemology.
2. Science- Ethics is a normative
science because it systematically
establishes standards or norms for
human conduct.
ETHICS, therefore, is a normative
philosophical science that deals
with the goodness or badness, the
rightness or the wrongness of
human acts.
The Difference between Ethics and

1. Etymologically, there is no
difference between ethics
and morality. They both
mean “custom. ” ”Ethics is
also called “moral
1. Ethics (since the term
originates from the Greek
terms ethicos or ethos) is in
the realm of philosophy.
2. Morality (since the term
originates from the Latin
mores) is in the realm of
4. Postulates of Ethics.
 The Existence of God
The Existence of
intellect and
The spirituality
immortality of
the Soul.
C. Human Person

 We shall study the human person

from a different point of view.
 We begin the theological
foundations by presenting and
understanding the human person
according to biblical perspective
and secondly, by describing the
human person to its other
fundamental dimension.
1. The Dignity of the Human Person
a. Man is created in the image and
likeness of God

 Endowed with “a spiritual and

immortal ” soul, the human person is
the “only creature on earth that God
has willed for its own sake.”
 From his conception, he is destined for
eternal beatitude. The human person
participates in the light and power of
the Divine Spirit.
 By his reason, he is capable of
understanding order of things
established by the creator
 By free will, he is capable of
directing himself toward his
true good. He finds his
perfection “in seeking and
loving what is true and good.
 By virtue of his soul and his
spiritual powers of intellect
and will, man is endowed with
 By his reason, man
recognizes the voice
of God, which urges
him “to do what is
good and avoid what
is evil.”
C. Man as REDEEMED Being.

 By His (Jesus Christ)

passion, death and
resurrection, (Paschal
Msytery) Christ
delivered us from Satan
and from Sin. He
merited us the new life
in the Holy Spirit. His
grace restores what sin
had damaged in us..
d. Man as GRACED Being.

 He who believes in Christ

becomes a Son of God. This
filial adoption transforms him
by giving Him the ability to
follow the example of Christ. In
Union with his savior, the
disciple attains the perfection
of charity, which is holliness.
2. The Fundamental Dimension of
Human Person.

 According to Louis Janssens “human

person is adequately considered when
taken as a historical subject in
corporeality who stands in relation to the
world, to the other persons, to social
structures and to God and who is a
uniquely originally within the context of
being fundamentally equal with all other
person.” (Vat II Gaudium et Spes).
a. Man as a RATIONAL Being.

 Man can think which

enables him to achieve
self-awareness. Through
a reflective activity, he
can reach out to his
beginnings and his end,
and thus able to
understand himself.
 Man can think, reflect
and give meaning to
his experiences. He
does not see, feel or
perceive, he also tries
to understand what he
sees, feels and
 His reflective capacity always
with the aid of grace can go
beyond numerous horizons
and bring him into a
realization of God. He can
distinguish what humanizes
and dehumanizes or
diminishes his humanity.
b. Man as a LOVING Being.

 Man is created to love and

this is what sets man apart
from the rest creation. Only
human person can love, he
is called to love. Man is
loving by virtue of his being
an image of God who is
himself is love and perfect
 Christ’s very own act of
limitless self-giving on the
cross that we might live
becomes for us the
pattern of what it truly
means to be an image of
God. So Man therefore is a
loving being.
c. Man is a SOCIAL and a RELATIONAL

 Man is by nature a social being. Each

one of us originated from others and
was born into others. To be human
person is to be essentially directed
toward towards others (communal at
our core) and towards the well being
of others (moral implication). God did
not create man to live in isolation but
to form union with other men (Lumen
Gentium 91).
 Persons are meant to live
with others and to work
for the welfare of one
another. This means that
each person has duties
and responsibilities to
society and that human
rights must be exercised
for the common good.
 Man as created in the image
and likeness of God must live
in a direct relationship with
God thus making man as
God’s representative on earth
with the task of executing
God’s will (Gen:28)
 Man is directly related with the
objective world. God gave him
the earth and all that it
contains. He must subdue the
world responsibly and
creatively. He is God’s steward.
Man shares a common task
and is ordered towards same
 Man shares a
common task and
is ordered towards
the same destiny.
Man acts in service
for others. So man
therefore is a
d. Man is an EMBODIED Subject.

 As a subject, the person is in-

charge of his own life. He has
a certain degree of
autonomy and self-
determination empowered to
act accordingly to his
conscience in freedom and
 The affection of love needs to
be expressed in bodily ways
such as through a gift, or a kiss
or an embrace. God so loved
us as to come to us in bodily
form so that we could know
divine love in the only way
human can know it, in an
embodied form.
 Embodied subject implies that
our bodies and souls are not
accessories. What concerns
the body inevitably concerns
the whole person, for our
bodies are essential to being
human and to relating in
human ways.
e. Man is a HISTORICAL Subject

 Tobe a historical subject

means to be relentlessly
temporal, seizing each
opportunity of the present
moment as part of a
progressive movement
toward our full human
 Much of spiritual theology
today has capitalized on
this characteristic of the
person by using the
metaphors of life as a
journey and of each
person as a pilgrim made
to rest only in God.
 When we integrate our
past into the person we
are becoming, we move
into the future not only
with a sense of integrity
but also with a coherent
sense of direction.
 The moral imperative of
being a historical subject
is to integrate the past
into the person we are
becoming so as to shape
a future rather than to
settle into a static
 Themoral significance of
the personal historical
process is that one’s moral
responsibility is
proportionate to his or her
capacities at each stage
of development.

 These, then are dimensions of the human person

adequately considered. When taken together in an in
integrated way, they form the foundation of
personalistic morality. Louis Janssens has used these
essential dimensions of the human person to form this
criterion; an action is morally right if it is beneficial to
the person adequately considered in himself/herself
and in his relations to others, to social structures, to
the material world and to God.
Kohlberg’s Stages of Moral

 Kohlberg identified
three levels of moral
reasoning: pre-
conventional, and
Stage 1: Obedience-and-Punishment Orientation
Stage 2: Instrumental Orientation
Stage 3: Good Boy, Nice Girl Orientation
Stage 4: Law-and-Order Orientation
Stage 5: Social-Contract Orientation
Stage 6: Universal-Ethical-Principal Orientation

 A child’s sense of morality is externally

controlled. Children accept and believe the
rules of authority figures, such as parents and
teachers. A child with pre-conventional
morality has not yet adopted or internalized
society’s conventions regarding what is right or
wrong, but instead focuses largely on external
consequences that certain actions may bring.
Stage 1: Obedience-and-
Punishment Orientation

 Focuses on the child’s desire to obey rules and

avoid being punished. For example, an action is
perceived as morally wrong because the
perpetrator is punished; the worse the
punishment for the act is, the more “bad” the
act is perceived to be.
Stage 2: Instrumental Orientation

 Expresses the “what’s in it for me?” position, in

which right behavior is defined by whatever the
individual believes to be in their best interest.
Stage two reasoning shows a limited interest in
the needs of others, only to the point where it
might further the individual’s own interests.

 A child’s sense of morality is tied to personal

and societal relationships. Children continue to
accept the rules of authority figures, but this is
now due to their belief that this is necessary to
ensure positive relationships and societal order.
Stage 3: Good Boy, Nice Girl

 Children want the approval of others and act in

ways to avoid disapproval. Emphasis is placed
on good behavior and people being “nice” to
others .
Stage 4: Law-and-Order Orientation

 The child blindly accepts rules and convention

because of their importance in maintaining a
functioning society. Rules are seen as being the
same for everyone, and obeying rules by doing
what one is “supposed” to do is seen as
valuable and important. Moral reasoning in
stage four is beyond the need for individual
approval exhibited in stage three.
Level 3: Postconventional

 A person’s sense of morality is defined in terms of more

abstract principles and values. People now believe that
some laws are unjust and should be changed or
eliminated. Post-conventional moralists live by their
own ethical principles—principles that typically include
such basic human rights as life, liberty, and justice—and
view rules as useful but changeable mechanisms, rather
than absolute dictates that must be obeyed without
question .
Stage 5: Social-Contract Orientation

 The world is viewed as holding different

opinions, rights, and values. Those that do not
promote the general welfare should be
changed when necessary to meet the greatest
good for the greatest number of people. This is
achieved through majority decision and
inevitable compromise. Democratic
government is theoretically based on stage five
Stage 6: Universal-Ethical-Principal

 Laws are valid only insofar as they are

grounded in justice, and a commitment to
justice carries with it an obligation to disobey
unjust laws. People choose the ethical
principles they want to follow, and if they
violate those principles, they feel guilty. In this
way, the individual acts because it is morally
right to do so (and not because he or she wants
to avoid punishment).


What is actus hominis and actus
humanus. An act of man (actus
homanus) deals with a specific act of a
human person that is done without
consciousness or deliberation, that is,
without knowledge or freedom-an
involuntary act.
 Human act (actus
humanus) is one that is
realized with deliberation
that is done with
knowledge, freedom
and voluntariness
(awareness). It is an act
subject to judgment.
 Man differs from animals since he
is the master of his acts. In this
light, only those actions in which
he is the master may be properly
called human acts. Man is the
master of his acts through his
reason and his will by means of
which it is said that choice is the
faculty of the will and reason.
 Therefore,acts
proceeding from
deliberated will are
human acts. Others will
conveniently say they are
actions of men.
Elements of Human Acts

1. Knowledge- Human
act is act done with
knowledge. Doing an
act with knowledge
makes it deliberate.
Human act, then, must
be a deliberate act.
2. Freedom- human
act is done with
freedom .
3. voluntariness- human
act is act done with
Voluntariness derived
from the latin “voluntas”,
requires knowledge and
Classification of Human Acts

1. Inrelation to the voluntas (will)… This

refers to those actions which begin and
are performed by the will and are
completed either by the will itself or
through other faculties under the control
of the will. The former is called elicited
acts and the latter is called commanded
1.1 Elicited Acts

a. Wish- first tendency

of the will towards a
thing whether
realizable or not.
b. Intention- the
tendency of the
will towards a
thing regarded
as realizable,
whether actually
done or not.
c. Consent- the
acceptance by the
will of the means
necessary to carry
out the intention.
d. Choice- the
selection of the will
of the precise
means to be
employed in
carrying out the
e. Use/Command-
employment of the will
of powers (body, mind,
or both) to carry out its
intention by the means
f. Fruition/Satisfaction is the enjoyment of a
thing willed and done : the will’s act of
satisfaction in intention fulfilled
1.2 Commanded Acts

A. Internal Acts- acts done by

internal mental powers under
the command of the will.
 B. External acts- acts done by
the bodily powers under the
control of the will.
 Mixed acts- involved the

employment of mental and

bodily powers under the
control of the will.
2. In Relation to Morality

 This refers to the relation (agreement or

disagreement) of the act with the dictates
of the moral law. On the score of morality,
human acts are:
a. Moral
b. Immoral
c. Amoral
they are in
harmony with
these dictates
(good acts).

when they are in

opposition to these
dictates (evil acts).
Amoral- when they
stand in no positive
relation to these
dictates; they are
neither good nor bad
(indifferent acts).

 What are the Modifiers?

Modifiers… are things or factors that

may affect human acts in the essential
qualities of knowledge, freedom or
voluntariness, and so make them less
perfectly human.

1. Ignorance
2. Concupiscence
3. Fear
4. Violence
5. Habit
 Effects of modifiers to human
1. They
lessen the moral
character of the human agent.
2. Theydiminish the responsibility
of the agent.
What are the modifiers?

1. Ignorance…the
absence of
knowledge. The
absence of
knowledge in man.
 What
is the effect of ignorance upon
human act?
Three things for consideration…
a. Ignorance in its object
b. Ignorance of fact
c. Ignorance of penalty/result
 a. Ignorance in its object…the thing which a
person or agent may be ignorant.
1. Ignorance of law- duty, rule or regulation
2. Ignorance of fact- circumstance
3. Ignorance of penalty- sanction
 B.
Ignorance in its subject… lack of
knowledge in the person or agent in
whom ignorance (law, fact or penalty)
Ignorance of penalty/result… in
reference to the time in which
ignorance occurs in the subject.
2. Concupiscence

(passion)… strong tendencies towards the possession

of something good or avoidance from something evil.
…positive passions: negative passions:
love hatred
joy grief
desire aversion or horror
hope despair
courage or daring fear

 Isthe shrinking back of the mind from

danger. A disturbance of the mind
caused by the thought of a threatening
evil. A passion, in as much as it raises as
an impulsive movement of avoidance
from any danger or evil.
 Principles:
1. An act done from fear, however great, is simply
voluntarily, although it is regularly also
conditionally involuntary.
2. If fear is so great that it takes the agent
temporarily or momentarily insane, the act
done from fear is not voluntary at all (it is an act
of man).
…but as long as the agent uses his reason
though acting from fear his action is simply
voluntary, for the agent effectively chooses
to preform such act rather than undergo
that of which he is afraid of.
 Conclusion:
Fear does not exclude an evil act which
spring from it. An act that is done out of
grave fear makes the agent not bound by
responsibility, because it is against his will
and therefore an invalid act.
4. VIOLENCE (Coaction)

 Isan external force applied by a free

cause, for the purpose of compelling
a person to perform an act which is
against his will.
 Eg.A suspect who is beaten up until he is
forced to tell some lie during a police

A usual way of behaving :

something that a person does
often in a regular and repeated
 Kinds of Habit:
1. Virtue- Good Habit
2. Vice- Bad Habit

In Morality, when we speak about the norm
(s), it means the standard that indicate the
rightfulness or wrongfulness, the goodness
or badness, or the value or disvalue of
certain act.
 Moralitytherefore consists in the relation
of a thing with the norm. The relationship
is one of conformity or non conformity.
Morality may then be defined as “the
quality of thing manifesting their
conformity or non conformity with the
norm criteria”.

1.The Objective Norm :

2.The Subjective Norm:

 Law-as defined by St.

Thomas Aquinas, is an
ordinance of reason
promulgated for the
common good by one who
has charge (authority) of a
 A. Ordinance- a law is an
ordinance, meaning an
active and authoritative
ordering or directing of
human acts in reference
to an end to be attained
by such acts.
 B.
reason- a law is an
ordinance of reason,
meaning such
ordering or directing
comes from man’s
reasonable will.
Promulgation- a law is
promulgated, meaning it is
being made known to
those bound by it,
otherwise its application or
implementation becomes
 D.
Common Good- A
law is promulgated for
the common good.
Common good is the
very purpose of the
 Subjects (society)- a
law is promulgated in
a society. A society is
a community or
group of people who
are subjects or
bound by the law
 Authority-
a law
is promulgated
by one who has
charge of a

a. According to their immediate author:

b. According to their duration:
c. According to the manner of promulgation:
d. According to the manner of prescription or
e. According to the effect of their violation:
According to their immediate author:

1. Divine- comes
directly from God
2. Human- that which is
authored by man. It
be…ecclesiastical or
According to their duration:

1. Temporal- bound by time

2. Eternal- God’s plan and
providence for the
universe (beyond time).
According to the manner of

1. Natural- that which directs creatures to

their end in accordance with their nature. It
is the eternal law as known to man by his
2. Positive-enacted by positive act of a
legislator. A positive law may be… Divine
and human.
According to the manner of
prescription or prohibition:

1. affirmative- binds always, but not at every

Example. Third Commandment
1. Negative- binds always and at every
Example. Fifth Commandment
According to the effect of their

 Moral- a violation of which is a sin (an offense

against the author of moral law-God).
e.g. failure to hear mass on Sunday.
 Penal- an established penalty, but not all the time is
e.g. color-coding violation
 Mixed- both a sin and a penalty.
e.g. Murder
CONSCIENCE: The Subjective Norm of

 What is Conscience? Is the practical

judgment of reason upon an
individual act as good to be
performed, or as evil and to be
 For us Filipinos, conscience is
understood as a kind of inner
voice which guides us in our
moral life.
Roman 21:15 “To obey
conscience is our very dignity;
according to it we will be judged”
a. Judgment of reason
Conscience is a judgment of reason because it is
rooted or based on a moral principle “do good and
avoid evil.’’
Positive- if it is in conformity with the moral principle.
Negative- if it is not in conformity with the moral
Classification of Conscience:

a. According to the order of time:

b. According to the interpretation of the
principles of morality.
a. According to the order of time: antecedent and
1. Antecedent- conscience acting before an act is done.
a. to advice
b. to forbid
c. to permit
d. to command
Consequent- conscience acting after an
act is done.
a. internal peace ( if the acts done is
b. remorse (if the act performed is bad)
B. According to the interpretation of
the principles of morality.
1. Right or True Conscience
2. Erroneous or false Conscience
1. Right or True Conscience- judges
what is really good as good and what
is really evil as evil, according to the
true principles of morality.
2. Erroneous or false Conscience-
Judges what is really bad as good and
what is bad as good, according to the
false interpretation of moral principles.

 Factors affecting the formation of one’s conscience:

• F-
• E-
• S-
• S-
• C-
• E-
 How to form (or educate) one’s
a. By studying moral, civil and church
b. Overcome doubt in moral matters
…by forming good habits of reasoning.
…by consulting prudent virtuous persons.
Chapter 3: human freedom

 Different notions of freedom

a.Notion 1: “Doing what
one wants to do” or
“having the right to say or
do anything.”
B. Notion 2: Karl Marx’s own dream of
“Freedom is to do one thing today
and another tomorrow; to hunt in the
morning, fish in the afternoon, breed
cattle in the evening and criticize
after dinner, just as I please…”
c. Notion 3: Ninoy Aquino’s message of freedom
“But in the depths of my desolation, I discovered
my faith in God. And it was only then that I
realized I’m nothing. I realized that all the fame
and the glory of the senate were ephemeral . I
lost my appetite for power. While I had vowed
never to enter the Political Arena again, I shall
dedicate the last drop of my blood to
dispensation of freedom and the dismantlement
of martial law.”
 Notion 4: Anonymous
“There is real freedom in
the absence of law.”
Notion 5: J. Ratzinger on Truth and Freedom
“Freedom, must orient itself to the truth, since the
human person’s essence consists in the being-
from, being with and being for, human freedom
can exist only in the ordered communion of
f. Notion 6; Pope John Paul II
“Freedom consists not in doing
what we like, but in having the
right to do what we ought.’’
g. Notion 7: Jesus Christ (Jn 8:32)
“Lovers of True Freedom (are those) who
come to decisions on their own judgment
and in the light of truth, and govern their
activities with a sense of responsibility.
 “It was for liberty that Christ freed us. So stand
firm, and do not take on your selves the yoke of
a slavery for a second time! My brothers , that
you have been called to live in freedom-but
not a freedom that gives free rein to the flesh.
Out of love place yourselves at one’s another
service. My point is that you should live in
accord with the spirit and you will not yield to
the cravings of the flesh” (Gal 5:13-16)
3. Authentic Freedom

 Authentic freedom is not “ the right to say

and do anything,” but to “do the good.”
It is not my own individual private
possession, but a shared freedom with
others in community. It is not found in
prejudice, deceit, or ignorance, but in
truth (CFC694))
 St. Peter adds:
“Live as free men, but do not use your
freedom as a cloak for vice. In a word, live
as servants of God.”
1 Pt 2:16
Impediments to Freedom

 InteriorObstacles- ignorance, disordered

passions, fears, personality defects, bad
habits, prejudices or psychological
 Exterior
Forces- violent force or threat of
The impediments to authentic freedom can be
traced to three sources:

1. Biological- which include inherited handicaps

and defects as well as external substance like
2. Psychological- or interior compulsions, including
those originating in the unconscious.
3. Social pressures- such as the many economic,
political, and cultural obstacles which impede
the right to freedom.
 The greatest single obstacle to authentic
freedom is _ _ _.
Authentic freedom is the freedom for growing as
full persons and children of God, sharing in the love
of Christ our liberator as we experienced true
freedom in his authentic love.
 Freedom is a definitive commitment.
Here lies our responsibility. Authentic
freedom always entails responsibility.