The question whether ethical behavior is biologically determined may refer to either one of the following two issues. First, is the capacity for ethics the proclivity to judge human actions as either right or wrong determined by the biological nature of human beings? Second, are the systems or codes of ethical norms accepted by human beings biologically determined? Templeton prize recipient and eminent evolutionary biologist and philosopher Francisco J. Ayala proposes that the moral evaluation of actions emerges from human rationality and thus it is a necessary implication of our biological make-up. But the norms according to which we decide which actions are good and which actions are evil are largely culturally determined, although conditioned by biological predispositions, such as parental care. Recorded on 12/07/2015. (#29977)
CARTA: Francisco Ayala: Evolution of Ethical Behavior and Moral Values: Biology? Culture?
Premiere Date: 2/15/2016; 58 minutes