Baseline Requirements for Ethics


Innate Knowledge and Axiom of Ethics, “I feel, therefore I know Ethics.”


Things in Common Things Not in Common
1.  Human beings or more basic – living creature 1.  Religion – Claims of Divine knowledge of ethical truth – termed morals
2.  Members of social systems – families, governments, schools, business, etc. 2.  Culture – Introduces complexity
3.  Biological responses to stimuli 3.  Language – Adds confusion
4.  Emotional responses to stimuli- Same at birth- Culture and religion plays a role to shape our responses over time 4.  Physical differences – sex, race, handicaps, etc. – Can obscure more basic human similarities
5.  Others…. 5.  Others…




Basic Requirements for Ethics


1.  Emotional Intelligence – EQ
A.  The ability to feel emotion – Required to have a knowledge of ethics
B.  The ability to feel another’s emotion (empathy) – Required to have a basic understanding of ethics
C.  The ability to control your own emotions – Required to be effective with ethics
2.  Intellectual Intelligence – IQ
A.  The ability for rational thought – Required to understand ethics
B.  The ability to understand the specific meanings of words or actions – Required to understand ethics
C.  The ability to rationally defend your ethical positions – Required to be effective with ethics


Distribution of EQ & IQ





There exists a baseline of emotional intelligence below which a knowledge of ethics is impossible.  Likewise, there exists a baseline of intellectual intelligence below which an understanding of ethics is impossible.  So long as a person has this baseline of EQ and IQ, ethics is a knowable and understandable proposition.  Generally speaking, everyone has this baseline knowledge and ability for understanding.

With all generalizations there are exceptions.  Only a small fraction of the worlds population lacks the baseline ability to know or understand ethics.  Some sort of severe brain malfunction is typically attributed to such conditions.  Most court systems and laws make special allowance for those who literally do not understand the consequences of their decisions or actions.  Such conditions can be permanent or temporary.


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