1887

n Koers : Bulletin for Christian Scholarship = Koers : Bulletin vir Christelike Wetenskap - Struggle in the ethics of technology : research article

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Abstract

The advantages as well as the disadvantages of modern technology, especially in combination with the development of the natural sciences, call in general for philosophical reflection. There is a struggle going on between the various philosophical movements. What is the content of Christian-philosophical thinking about technology and its problems? And what are the consequences in relation to the ethics of technology?


Such questions are very unusual among Christians. Nevertheless, the potentially disastrous effects of technology require an ethics of technology. Such an ethics must concern itself with man's good and responsible conduct in and through technology.
Generally speaking, since modern times there has been a technological control mentality. All questions relating to spiritual reflection and religious problems are ruled out. The world view has been transformed to a technological worldview. Motives, values and norms are derived from it. This implies a technological ethics which is the cause of many threats and problems. It is characterised by a cosmological deficit and an ethical deficit. It is only possible to overcome these deficits by a reorientation in culture and in ethics. The "Enlightenment" ought to be enlightened itself by the God-given revelation. The cosmology of the reality as God's creation and the commandments of love give a possibility for the redirection of an ethics of technology.
A responsible cultural and technological development evokes a representation of culture that depicts earth as a garden tended by humans. Technology must be developed within the perspective of the earth as one large garden-city. Technology ought to serve life and not to threaten it.
Besides, in an ethics of responsibility attention is given to the central motive of love against the central motive of power of the technological worldview. For a justified, responsible technology the ethical challenge is finding not only true motives, but also environment values, technological values and social values. Furthermore, technology has to obey a large number of normative principles and related norms.
At the end of the article attention is paid to the consequences for praxis of this ethical-philosophical view and to the differences from those views which are currently held. The perspective of an ethics of technology ought not to be on doing things right, but on doing the right things.


Die voor- sowel as die nadele van moderne tegnologie, in kombinasie met die ontwikkeling van die Natuurwetenskappe, skep die aanvraag na filosofiese denke. Daar is tans onenigheid tussen die verskeie filosofiese bewegings. Wat is die inhoud van Christelik-filosofiese denke oor tegnologie en tegnologies verwante probleme?
Christene vind hierdie tipe vrae ongewoon. Nietemin, die potensieel verwoestende gevolge wat tegnologie inhou, vra vir 'n goeie etiek van die tegnologie. Hierdie etiek moet die mens se verantwoordelike gedrag verwoord.
Vanaf die moderne tyd is daar 'n algemeen tegnologies-gekontroleerde mentaliteit. Alle vrae rondom spirituele inkeer en religieuse probleme word uitgeskakel. Daar is geen plek vir waardes, norme en motiewe nie. Hierdie tipe tegnologiese etiek impliseer vele probleme en bedreigings. Dit word gekenmerk deur 'n kosmologiese sowel as 'n etiese tekort. 'n Reoriëntasie van kultuur en etiek blyk die enigste oplossing vir hierdie probleem te wees. Die "Verligting" moet self verlig word deur 'n godgegewe openbaring. 'n Kosmologie van die werklikheidas God se skepping en die gebod van liefde, mag moontlik dien om die etiek van tegnologie te rig.
Verantwoordelike kulturele en tegnologiese ontwikkeling verwoord 'n kultuur wat die aarde as 'n tuin voorstel wat deur die mens versorg moet word. Die perspektief van die aarde as 'n reuse tuinstad moet dus gehandhaaf word waar tegnologiese ontwikkeling ter sprake kom. Tegnologie moet die menslike lewe dien en bevoordeel en dit nie bedreig nie.
In 'n etiek wat gekenmerk word deur verantwoordelikheid, word aandag gegee aan die sentrale motief van liefde, teenoor die sentrale motief van mag van die tegnologiese lewensvisie. Om regverdige en verantwoordelike tegnologie te bewerkstellig, is die etiese uitdaging om ware motiewe, omgewingswaardes, tegnologiese en sosiale waardes in praktyk te bring. Tegnologie moet ook heelwat ander normatiewe beginsels en verwante norme gehoorsaam.
Aan die einde van die artikel word aandag gegee aan die gevolge vir die praktyk van hierdie eties-filosofiese perspektief, en aan die verskille daarvan met huidige perspektiewe. Die perspektief vir 'n etiek van tegnologie moet dus nie wees om die dinge reg te doen nie, maar om die regte dinge te doen.

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/content/koers/71/1/EJC59238
2006-01-01
2016-12-03
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