We explain what moral values are and what kinds of values exist. Examples of moral values. Differences with ethical values.
What are moral values?
Moral values are a set of spiritual, social and even personal norms with which a human community (and each individual within it) decides to be governed, based on what is considered “good” and “bad” in their specific cultural tradition .
Moral values are the result of a complex series of choices that individuals make throughout their lives , based on the lessons received during their childhood and youth, the experiences they have lived and the emotional impact they have had, and the normative speeches , religious, ethical and social context in which they live. That is why moral values are not uniform, nor universal, nor coercive, although breaking them can lead to social rejection and, in some cases, legal punishment.
The moral , in that sense, is a concept of historical construction, as determined by public opinion and the prevailing social model. This means that it changes over time, and what in a given time or culture can be considered immoral or depraved, in another can be perfectly acceptable.
Even so, moral values are usually considered transcendent, so their dynamics of change are slow and complicated . What can vary more quickly is the way of interpreting a moral value and what it translates into when dealing with society . For example, goodness is an absolute moral value, but in what circumstances it translates into real life and how such a concept is relative, they vary according to perspective.
Also: What are the values?
Types of values
The values of a society can be classified according to the cultural framework from which they come, as follows:
- Personal . Those to which a person adheres individually, whether or not they agree with the surrounding society and its historical moment.
- Family . Those that an individual inherits or receives as teaching in the family, whether or not they agree with the rest of society and its historical moment.
- Religious or spiritual . Those that a person and a community profess and preserve through the congregation and the exercise of a specific religion , mysticism or faith.
- Traditional . Those that a given community professes over time and that tends to preserve against the designs of its time.
- Ethics or professionals . Those that a college or group of professionals choose to govern the exercise of their profession, linked in particular to ethics.
- Commercial . Those that concern the commercial field and the healthy exchange of goods.
- Democrats or Republicans . Those values that preserve the democratic or republican political system, such as equality, fraternity and freedom .
Examples of moral values
The moral values are diverse, but a general list implies the following:
- Goodness . Ability to do good selflessly.
- Generosity . The delivery of resources and desires to another, without expecting anything in return.
- Compassion . The ability to feel sorry for another, to feel their pain as their own.
- Virtud . The incorruptibility, the commitment to the supreme good over personal benefits.
- Loyalty . Give back to those who are similar to us or have done us good.
- Tolerance . The ability to live with those who are different or think differently in a peaceful way.
- Honesty . The commitment to truth and integrity.
- Humbleness . Be aware of your own limitations and accept them.
Moral values are distinguished from civic values or ethical values, in that the former are of the absolute type, linked to slightly abstract notions of good and evil. Ethical values, on the other hand, are linked to responsibility in the exercise of a profession , or in behavior linked to specific situations that can be problematic for society considering their moral, religious tradition, etc.
Thus, when we talk about bioethics to think about the dilemmas of contemporary science in the life of the human being , we are not thinking about good and evil, but about the implications that certain decisions may have for society as a whole. The same goes for professional ethical codes, which govern the responsible use of the knowledge imparted to a professional in a subject.