Utilitarianism and Happiness Essay

August 14, 2017 Music

The philosophical theory that I choose to make is called “utilitarianism” . In a brief sentence. utilitarianism means the greatest good for the greatest figure of people. Basically what this means is. making the right thing is based on how many people your action benefits instead than how much it benefits you. Harmonizing to the Oxford American Dictionary public-service corporation means “the province of being utile. profitable. or beneficial” ( oxford lexicon. 2013 ) . The whole theory is all about how much it benefits and how utile or profitable an action or an thought is.

For illustration: if killing one condemnable brings away happiness to a 100 people. so killing that one felon is non a bad thought. Simply because it makes one 100 people happy. Harmonizing to utilitarian’s the ultimate end or the most of import portion of life is to seek felicity. But the felicity that you seek must non merely profit you. but it has to profit a big amount of the people. This is called the “greatest felicity principle” ( Wikipedia. Feb. 11. 2013 ) . Now this is the chief thought of utilitarianism. but it does ramify out in the different way due to many philosophers that thought of this theory.

Utilitarianism is non discovered by merely one individual. it’s made up of many thoughts from many different philosophers. Although many people believe that utilitarianism started with Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill. there were philosophers that came up with similar thoughts as utilitarianism. Before we talk about the writers of this theory. we must truly understand the history of utilitarianism and how it came to be. Way back in history when worlds invented composing in the Sumerian Civilization of the Old Babylon. the ancient Mesopotamian people wrote a poem/story called the “Epic of Gilgamesh” about a friendly relationship between Gilgamesh and Enkidu.

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In this narrative there’s a character by the name of Siduri that tells Gilgamesh “Fill your belly. Day and dark make merry. Let yearss be full of joy. Dance and do music twenty-four hours and night” ( Wikipedia. Feb. 3. 2013 ) . This quotation mark dates back to the really first protagonism of hedonic doctrine in the human civilisation. It is believed to be written during 2500 – 2000 B. C. A small frontward in clip and we come to run into Aristippus of Cyrene ( 435 – 356 BC ) . Aristippus is a pupil of one of the greatest philosophers to of all time

roll the planet. the male parent of doctrine. Socrates. Though Aristippus didn’t follow in the footfalls of his instructor. he had his ain thoughts and ain theories of doctrine. one of them being hedonism. Aristippus thought of hedonism is that all people have the right to make anything to accomplish the greatest sum of pleasance. For illustration: if imbibing and making drugs bring you the greatest sum of pleasance and felicity. so there is nil incorrect in making so. You may be inquiring yourself. why I am stating you about the history of hedonism.

So allow me explicate. in the 18th – 19th century. The British philosopher’s by the name of Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill came up with the theory of utilitarianism by taking hedonism of Aristippus and adding the “greatest felicity principle” ( Kerby Anderson. 2012 ) . The hedonic theory of making anything to accomplish the greatest sum of pleasance turned into making anything to accomplish the “greatest good for the greatest figure of people” which is now called utilitarianism. this philosophical theory is fundamentally an invention of hedonism.

Though many philosophers had portion in its find. Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill brought utilitarianism to its true glorification. if they didn’t explain their doctrine in the manner they did. Possibly I wouldn’t be composing this essay right now. So the 1s to be credited for utilitarianism is Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill. But its non to state that this theory doesn’t have its advantages and disadvantages. Like all things in life. there are benefits and there are hinderances. The Advantage of utilitarianism is merely the felicity that you gain from making something. whether the felicity is for you or person you care about.

In the terminal. person is happy. If you’re in confusion on a certain determination and don’t know what to make. you can merely use the greatest felicity theory and do your determination based on that. That manner. you don’t look selfish merely believing about your felicity and people will esteem that pick and someday refund your kindness by giving their felicity for yours. By giving your felicity for person else already makes you good human being. Its tantrums to demo that our actions have effects. If person cares merely about his/her actions entirely. he/she wouldn’t have many friends

due to the deficiency to fondness and concerns that he/she shows towards others. Another of import advantage of utilitarianism is when you’re faced with a challenging and hard undertaking ; it gives you the methodological analysis of taking the right way. the 1 that will profit the most people. Alternatively of oppugning how good it will be for you. You begin to value other people’s felicity over your ain. Therefore giving you the best possible option. Though it is good to set other before you. utilitarianism has its disadvantages every bit good.

This peculiar philosophical theory has many disadvantages. but the 1 that matters to me is. Utilitarian’s merely care about felicity. whatever brings the greatest sum of people the greatest sum of felicity. Certain. felicity is good. but what about people who don’t acquire that felicity. For illustration: out of 50 people. 35 of them acquire felicity. What happens to the other 15 people? Are we to merely disregard how they feel? They are worlds excessively. they have feelings every bit good. We can’t abandon them merely because the other 35 people are happy. Second. if we care about others more than we care about ourselves.

How can we perchance be able to populate with ourselves? We can’t ever be looking out for other people. We have to take attention of ourselves every bit good. In the terminal. it’s our life. We have to look out for ourselves and do the determinations based on how good our life is traveling to be. There’s a stating in the celebrated film plagiarist of the Caribbean “Even a good determination if made for the incorrect grounds can be a incorrect decision” ( Jonathan Pryce. 2003 ) So. I strongly believe that when it comes to doing life altering determinations. we must ever set ourselves before others.


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