Virtue Theory: What Should I Do?

Superior Essays
All the ethical views that we have studied thus far strive to answer questions about moral duties such as, “What should I do?” Virtue theory, on the other hand, takes a different approach in asking the question, “What kind of person should I be?” This view focuses less on moral actions and more on the character traits essential to a thriving life. Virtue theory states that, “An act is morally right just because it is one that a virtuous person, acting in character, would do in that situation” (page 253). In other words, a virtue theorist looks at a role model of some sort, who sets a good example for others. This role model is called a moral exemplar. However, this general rule of “do what a moral exemplar would do” is not specific …show more content…
One problem is tragic dilemmas, such as the “Sophie’s Choice” example in the book, where there is no right choice and either decision would be considered evil in a normal situation. There is also a question of whether virtue theory really provides adequate moral guidance or not. However, it does not really need to if we are to decide for ourselves what is moral, based on our personal mean. Furthermore, virtue theory is far too demanding at times. We cannot always do exactly what our moral exemplars do. Lastly, even moral exemplars will make different choices in different situations, so how do we know which one is right? As one can clearly see, virtue ethics is no perfect theory and is still in need of some …show more content…
Therefore, I would not make a decision about this situation in the same manner as I just described. Personally, I would not plug into that machine for numerous reasons. First of all, what is the purpose of my life if I am just floating in a tank? Sure, I may think or feel like I am experiencing something amazing. But what is the point if it’s fake? It may seem like a thrill in the beginning, but it would get old quickly. I don’t believe that I could be satisfied living in a world of my own imagination, knowing that my real life was wasting away. Secondly, I highly value life’s real experiences and relationships, even the ones that are difficult. Trials make us who we are, and if I never had anything hard happen in my life, I would be a completely different person, and it probably would not be a change for the better. Also, it would be boring to know every single event that is going to take place in my life and when it is going to happen. Where’s the adventure in that? One of my favorite things about life is that I don’t know what is going to happen next and that my plans could change at any moment. I wouldn’t want to give that up. The last and most important reason is that I am a Christian and my purpose in life is to glorify God and lead others to Him. This goal is impossible to achieve in a world where everything around me is imagined. If I were to plug in to that machine for life, my purpose would be lost; therefore, that

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