Relationship between law and moral values

Theory of Relationship between Law and Morality

relationship between law and moral values

The relation between law and moral values is a very complex one indeed. I would like you to ponder a bit on the ideas of law and moral in society based on. Theory of the Relation Between Law and Morals, in II LAW: A CENTURY OF value of the theory was that it led each jurist to work out ideal standards which. At first there seems to be no distinction between law and morality. there is a very close connection between true justice or morality and human (2) The existence of laws that serve to defend basic values--such as laws.

Three features characterize courts of law: They deal with disputes with the aim of resolving them. They issue authoritative rulings which decides these disputes.

  • Theory of Relationship between Law and Morality

In their activities they are bound to be guided, at least partly, by positivist authoritative consideration. At the highest level of philosophical abstraction the doctrine of the nature of law can and should be concerned with explaining law within the wider context of social and political institutions.

It shows how the inclination to identify the theory of law with a theory of adjudication and legal considerations with all those appropriate for courts is based on a short sighted doctrine overlooking the connection of law with the distinction between executive and deliberative conclusion. Clearly, a theory of adjudication is a moral theory.

Ethics, morality, law – what’s the difference?

It concerns all the considerations affecting reasoning in the courts, both legal and non-legal. When the doctrine of the nature of law is identified with a theory of adjudication it becomes itself a moral theory. The doctrine of the nature of law yields a test for identifying law the use of which requires no resort to moral or any other evaluative argument.

But it does not follow that one can defend the doctrine of the nature of law itself without using evaluative arguments. Its justification is tied to an evaluative judgment about the relative importance of various features of social organizations and these reflect our moral and intellectual interest and concerns. Law and Morality In the modern world, morality and law are almost universally held to be unrelated fields and, where the term "legal ethics" is used, it is taken to refer to the professional honesty of lawyers or judges, but has nothing to do with the possible "rightness" or "wrongness" of particular laws themselves.

This is a consequence of the loss of the sense of any "truth" about man, and of the banishment of the idea of the natural law. It undermines any sense of true human rights, leaves the individual defenseless against unjust laws, and opens the way to different forms of totalitarianism.

relationship between law and moral values

This should be easy enough to see for a person open to the truth; but many people's minds have set into superficial ways of thinking, and they will not react unless they have been led on, step by step, to deeper reflection and awareness.

Relationship between Law and Morality or Ethics Law is an enactment made by the state. It is backed by physical coercion. Its breach is punishable by the courts.

It represents the will of the state and realizes its purpose. Laws reflect the political, social and economic relationships in the society. It determines rights and duties of the citizens towards one another and towards the state. It is through law that the government fulfils its promises to the people. It reflects the sociological need of society.

relationship between law and moral values

Law and morality are intimately related to each other. Laws are generally based on the moral principles of society.

relationship between law and moral values

Both regulate the conduct of the individual in society. They influence each other to a great extent. Laws, to be effective, must represent the moral ideas of the people. But good laws sometimes serve to rouse the moral conscience of the people and create and maintain such conditions as may encourage the growth of morality. Laws regarding prohibition and spread of primary education are examples of this nature.

Morality cannot, as a matter of fact, be divorced from politics. The ultimate end of a state is the promotion of general welfare and moral perfection of man. It is the duty of the state to formulate such laws as will elevate the moral standard of the people. The laws of a state thus conform to the prevailing standard of morality. Earlier writers on Political Science never made any distinction between law and morality.

The Ethics Centre - Ethics, Morality & Law | The Ethics Centre Blog

Plato's Republic is as good a treatise on politics as on ethics. In ancient India, the term Dharma connoted both law and morality. Law, it is pointed out, is not merely the command of the sovereign, it represents the idea of right or wrong based on the prevalent morality of the people.

Laws which are not supported by the moral conscience of the people are liable to become dead letters. For example laws regarding Prohibition in India have not succeeded on account of the fact that full moral conscience of the people has not been aroused in favor of such laws. The total cost of such an attempt may well be greater than the social gain.

Some points of distinction between law and morality may be brought out as follows: The Oxford English Dictionary defines the law as: The central themes of positivism are the contentions: In this essay I will examine the positivist assertion that law is identifiable independently of morality, with a particular focus on the theory of H.

Law regulates and controls the external human conduct. It is not concerned with inner motives. A person may be having an evil intention in his or her mind but law does not care for it. Law will move into action only when this evil intention is translated into action and some harm is actually done to another person.

All the individuals are equally subjected to it. It does not change from man to man. Political laws are precise and definite as there is a regular organ in every state for the formulation of laws. It enjoys the sanction of the state. The fear of punishment acts as a deterrent to the breach of political law.

It is concerned with the whole life of man. The province of law is thus limited as compared with that of morality because law is simply concerned with external actions and docs not take into its fold the inner motives. Morality condemns a person if he or she has some evil intentions but laws are not applicable unless these intentions are manifested externally. It changes from man to man and from age to age.

Every man has his own moral principles. It does not enjoy the support of the state. Morality is studied under a separate branch of knowledge known as Ethics. The state is the supreme condition of the individual moral life, for without the state no moral life is possible.

The state, therefore, regulates other organizations in the common interest. The state, however, has a direct function in relation to morality. Laws are generally based on the moral principles of a particular society. Some points of distinction may be brought out as follows: Law and freedom Both law and morality imply human freedom. Clearly, without freedom one cannot speak of morality.

relationship between law and moral values

But the same holds for law, for if it were automatically and not freely obeyed, men would be mere robots. Law is not a simple indication of what happens, such as the law of physics; it is an admonition to free persons about what they are required to do if they wish to live freely and responsibly in society; and it normally carries with it a sanction or punishment to be imposed on whoever is shown to have acted against given norms of conduct.

Just law, properly understood, appeals to freedom. Nevertheless one of the most generalized liberal ideas is that law is by nature the enemy of freedom. Servais Pinckaers holds that Catholic moralists have gone through many centuries under the influence of this mentality which has led, by reaction, to the anti-law approach of much of contemporary moral theology. In this view, law and freedom were seen as "two opposed poles, law having the effect of limitation and imposing itself on freedom with the force of obligation.

Freedom and law faced each other as two proprietors in dispute over the field of human actions. The moralists commonly said, "Law governs this act, freedom governs that one Today we witness a strong tendency to invert the roles; the moralists now regard themselves as defenders of freedom and of personal conscience" [as against the law].

Law and justice Law cannot attempt to regulate the purely interior sphere of personal conduct; morality can. Human or civil law is connected with external actions, precisely insofar and because they impinge on the rights or lawful actions of others.

Hence the necessary connection of law with justice. For the regulation of interpersonal relations must work from the basic principle of justice: Hence arises the fundamental question of what is due to each one, and from this the further question of human rights. To each his due. Something is due to each. This is the sense of equality before the law. The contrast between what the state demands and what the gods demand is not the only way that this legal v.

We find it also in the important Greek philosophers, who frequently discuss the distinction in terms of appearance and reality, or between what superficially seems or appears to be the case and what a thorough rational investigation reveals. Plato, for example, holds that knowledge of what is just or moral, and the ability to distinguish true justice or morality from what is merely apparently just depends on the full development and use of human reason.

According to Plato, there is a very close connection between true justice or morality and human well-being or flourishing. Legal and political arrangements that depart too far from true justice should, if possible, be replaced by arrangements that better promote justice and thus well-being.

Ethics, therefore, has claimed a right to criticize legal arrangements and recommend changes to them.

relationship between law and moral values

Many debates about the law, when they are not merely debates about how legal precedent mechanically applies in a particular situation, are also ethical debates. Let's summarize the relationship between morality and law. Although law courts do not always ignore a person's intention or state of mind, the law cannot normally govern, at least not in a direct way, what is in your heart your desires.

Because often morality passes judgment on a person's intentions and character, it has a different scope than the law. Morality, when it is internalized, when it has become habit-like or second nature, governs conduct without compulsion.