eSpiritual: Values, Morals and Ethics


Dr KK Aggarwal    10 April 2018


  1. Values are our fundamental beliefs. They are the principles we use to define that which is right, good and just.
  2. Values provide guidance to determine the right versus the wrong and the good versus the bad.
  3. They are our standards.
  4. When we evaluate anything we compare it to a standard.
  5. Typical values include honesty, integrity, compassion, courage, honor, responsibility, patriotism, respect and fairness.
  6. Ethics are universal.


  1. Morals are values which we attribute to a system of beliefs, typically a religious system, but it could be a political system of some other set of beliefs.
  2. These values get their authority from outside the individual– a higher being or higher authority (e.g. society).
  3. Right as defined by a higher authority.
  4. By that definition one could categorize the values listed above (honesty, integrity, compassion …) as "moral values" – values derived from a higher authority.


  1. Ethics is about our actions and decisions.
  2. When one acts in ways that are consistent with our beliefs (whether secular or derived from a moral authority) we characterize that as acting ethically.
  3. When one’s actions are not congruent with our values – our sense of right, good and just – we view that as acting unethically.
  4. The ethics of our decisions and actions is defined socially, not individually.

(Disclaimer: The views expressed in this write up are my own).

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