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The first question that arises from this statement is what is a good moral choice How can we determine what good is when there are many differing opinions Is an action good if the nature or the intentions of the action are considered good Or is it the consequences of the action that determine the goodness of the action Is it a combination of both the intentions and the consequences of the action or the actions effect on society The New Collins Concise Dictionary lists over thirty different usagess of the word good The definitions range from morally excellent or admirable virtuous righteous to valid or genuine and satisfying or gratifying The Greek philosopher Aristotle defined good as something that fulfils its purpose eg a good tool is one which performs its function regardless of the possible hazard which it may present if that function is abused The Roman Catholic tradition takes a very different view the deontological view Other denominations and religions including atheists can also take this view There are two types of deontology The Roman Catholic tradition relies heavily on the idea of the nature of the action eg the main purpose of sexual intercourse is the production of children Therefore sexual intercourse is good as long as it produces children Anything which prevents sexual intercourse from producing children must be bad such as contraception and homosexuality The second deontological view is Rule Deontology This view considers an action to be good if a set of rules is followed For Christians this would be the Ten Commandments and the Commandments of Jesus However an atheist could still be a deontologist by following the general rules of society eg do not steal A teleologist would consider an action to be good as long as the consequences of the action were of a pleasing nature Even if the intention of the action is considered to be evil but the action inadvertently produces consequences that
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