Most of the features of modern Russian business are transient, determined by the transitional character of the Russian economy and drastic changes in the social structure, ideology, and consciousness of Russian society in general. There are three main normative experiences in the traditions of Russian business: a) the experience of pre-Revolutionary business, specifically developed and practiced by the merchants of the old-believers extraction; b) the experience of socialist economy, which was more or less oriented to the public good and presupposed (...) selfless aspirations by the economic agents; c) the experience of legally and administratively constrained private business and illegal shadow business, which expected businessmen to be vigorous, industrious and enterprising. The process of privatization was developed under the aegis of state, specifically the state bureaucracy. The influence of changes in the social-economic system has been ambivalent for social morals. However, the reforms could stimulate their improvement. The recent development in the cultural environment of business testify to the emerging space of civilized business, which manifests that it is practically useful for businessmen to be ethical. (shrink)
The idea of sociability - a person’s disposition and ability to communicate and live in the community - goes through the whole history of philosophy. Due to the peculiarity of translations, this term and the whole tradition related to it have been lost to the Russian reader. The article discusses some tendencies in comprehending the idea of sociability in early modern moral philosophy. The key to this consideration is F. Hutcheson’s essay On the Natural Sociability of Mankind, the title of (...) which contains the very term “sociability” and which presents the main essential points in a discussion of the issue in the first third of the 18 th century. One can distinguish two main approaches to the problem. According to one of them, sociability determined by various human natural needs is the basis of social relations, and a person becomes a moral agent as a social being (H. Grotius, T. Hobbes, S. Pufen-dorf, B. Mandeville). According to another approach, sociability is a manifestation of a person’s natural tendency to care for the good of others, and its consistent implementation leads to the formation of community and supports its stability (Cambridge Platonists, Shaftesbury, Hutcheson, J. Butler, D. Hume, A. Smith). Representatives of both approaches recognized contradiction in manifestations of sociability or in its nature. I. Kant theoretically overcame the confrontation between these approaches and conceptualized the contradiction and associated it with the human nature. According to Kant, the “unsociable sociability” is given in the fact that a person has a tendency to sociability but also a tendency to self-assertion at the expense of others. However, despite the presence of asocial features (evil principle), Kant considered the person’s inherent sociability (good principle) as a prerequisite for culture and as one of the most important conditions of possibility of morality. (shrink)
In opposition to the absolutist ethics of non-violence, the author argues that in response to aggression and violence one has to use every means possible to prevent them. To resist violence is a moral duty of the individual. It would be desirable for violence to be prevented by strength of mind, but if strength of mind is not enough or the aggressor is insensitive to intellectual, spiritual and psychological impacts, one has to employ by accretion all necessary means. Ethics is (...) called upon to set limits to the employment of the means of countering violence. (shrink)
The author questions the validity of Kant's insistence on the absoluteness of the requirement "Do not lie" as well as the very possibility of absolute moral principles in general. He argues for applied ethics, the object of which would be individual-situational behavior and the rules and requirements of which have a concrete situational character. He points out that Kant's insistence on the absoluteness contradicts the humanity imperative, especially its requirement to treat others as an end in itself. He stresses that (...) the requirement of the unconditional impermissibility of lying leads to a concealed justification of treachery, which should be considered another type of lying. (shrink)
By placing Jesus's commandment not to "resist evil" in its textual and religious context, the author demonstrates that it should not be interpreted in an absolute sense. Christianity does not condemn vengeance as such but makes it a divine prerogative. A critique is presented of Tolstoy's doctrine of nonviolence.
Although Aristotle did not use the formula of the Golden Rule in his texts, in his intellectual constructions he often presented interpretations of the virtuous character and virtuous relationships that are clearly related to the Golden Rule. Furthermore, Aristotle’s considerations of shame, social interaction, and friendship show that his ethics is saturated with the content and spirit of the Golden Rule.