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Theology and ethics

Abstract

We are all distinct from one another in the society in terms of the different stands we take, be it political views, economic opinions, and even spiritual or religious beliefs. These differences should not divide us or bring infighting amongst us but rather facilitate cohesion and development amongst us. Theological beliefs and practices are held by religious groups according to their spiritual teachings. These beliefs might be conflicting with what the community sees as being ethical and acceptable. Ethical principles are those moral details and views generally accepted by the society to be right. This paper analyses the confusion made between theological beliefs and ethical principles; critiqued unethical practices and application of fundamental ethical reasoning.

Keywords: theological beliefs, ethical principles, religion

Example of confusion between theological beliefs and ethical principles

A good example of confusion made can be brought out through the contentious concept of sin. Most importantly before we discuss this confusion, it is best to understand that sin is only found in the religious books and not in the society. According to (Paul & Elder, 2006), β€œsin is theologically defined.” Common these days is that religious members often fail to agree that sin is a theological concept. According to the Holy Scriptures it is unlawful to slaughter certain species of animals such as pigs and rabbits. It is regarded as taboo and is greatly condemned in the religious context. However, ethically this has no bearing in the societal context as everyone is free to feed on whatsoever species of animal he desires.

All through the history of mankind, violent acts against humanity have been perpetrated in the name of religion. Discrimination and torture due to differences in faith has been prevalent. Religious groups tend to fight against those that have contrary beliefs to theirs which is much critiqued as being unethical. Different religions constitute in themselves different descriptions of sin which are varied from one religion to another. What is unethical is one dominant religion imposing its definition of sin as the main concept to be used by all the society.

Application of fundamental ethical reasoning

Fundamentals of ethical reasoning dictate that every man regardless of any background is free to have their own perspective. Ethically, no one should be persecuted or discriminated for holding a different stand from all the rest. The constitution provides for rights of individuals and in collaboration with ethical principles, atrocities committed in the name of religion are completely prohibited. Application of fundamental moral reasoning sheds light on the cases of confusion.

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