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How do you define good and bad, and are those definitions universal?

Basically, just wanted to know where your sources (if any) or reasoning on what makes an act good or bad.

  • Feb 22 2014: I think good and bad behavior is assessed relative to personal values and beliefs relative to inter-personal relationships and general conduct in the various areas of your life. If you are acting in accordance with values and beliefs, your are exhibiting good behavior, if not, bad behavior. This is at a personal level. Your acts will be judged by others as well, comparing them to their own value sets and the laws of behavior accepted by society.

    Learning right from wrong, or establishing your personal values and beliefs is an ever increasing spiral in life. Hopefully, parents can help children achieve the most basic values and beliefs. Schools can help provide some basic initial social structure and teach children how to continually improve and understand their values and beliefs. Once immersed in society as an adult, the learning comes more of a continual application and evaluation for most people. A few actually carry on study in this area through advanced learning in areas like law,philosophy, religion, psychology, and similar subjects. All the while making adjustments to the values and beliefs that are the basis for determining right from wrong, good from bad.
  • Mar 16 2014: Good and bad are symptoms of boredom. It is boring at the top of the food chain. The rest of the food chain gets on with self-perpetuating and self-replicating. Actually, on second thoughts, wild chimpanzees get bored, too. Primates get bored. I bet the ones in zoos are terrible - terribly horrible then terribly nice. I wonder if they would spend more time being nice if they could see themselves, if there were mirrors 'in their face,' if they were self-aware, if they were boredom-aware.
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    Mar 3 2014: Kai, Different cultures have different values, lores, etc ... If one of my student athletes does well we in America rub his head and aclaim his deed. In many cultures that "good" here would be a "bad" there. Further, the the states I would tell you to sit down and put your feet up and get comfortable as being friendly. In many cultures the showing of the bottom of your feet is a great insult. Another "good" here and "bad" there.

    We want the world to have the "human rights" as we understand them in the USA. That is not aligned with other cultures and religions around the world.

    Does that make them either good or bad ... no just different with a different defination of what is "good" and "bad".

    I wish you well. Bob.
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    Mar 3 2014: .
    By common sense:
    (1) Good benefits keeping our DNA alive.
    (2) Bad is the opposite.