An ideal is a principle or value that an entity actively pursues as a goal and holds above other concerns perceived as being less meaningful. Terms relating to the general belief in ideals include ethical idealism, moral idealism, and principled idealism. An ethical idealist, moral idealist, principled idealist or simply an idealist insists on holding onto ideals even at a considerable cost as ...
Find Jobs Near You - Idealist. Search. logo-idealist. Select listing type. Jobs. Our geolocation provider (Google Maps) did not load correctly. Please reload the page. Search. Social Impact Grad School Fairs.
Nov 9, 2019 - Bedroom details Tagged: Bedroom, Night Stands, and Bed. Lady by idealist studio. Browse inspirational photos of modern bedrooms. Explore new ways to personalize your bedroom retreat with well-designed beds, dressers, night stands, chairs, wardrobes, storage options, and more.
The Idealist, Sanfrancisco, Zulia, Venezuela. 78,929 likes · 260 talking about this. No Matter anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world:)
Idealist connects millions of idealists – people who want to do good – with opportunities for action and collaboration all over the world. Jobs, Volunteering, Grad Schools, and More - Idealist logo-idealist
Browse 196 idealist stock photos and images available or search for vision or idealistic to find more great stock photos and pictures. Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel was a German philosopher, and a major figure in German Idealism. His historicist and idealist account of reality...
Positive thinking concept idealist stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images. Female Silhouette at the Balcony Admiring Sunrise Woman looking forward into the horizon hoping for future accomplishes idealist stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images. Angel Icon for various uses Easy resize.
Positive thinking concept idealist stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images. Female Silhouette at the Balcony Admiring Sunrise Woman looking forward into the horizon hoping for future accomplishes idealist stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images. Angel Icon for various uses Easy resize.
Browse 230 idealists stock photos and images available, or start a new search to explore more stock photos and images. man wearing blue jumper looking up to side. - idealists stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images. angel - idealists stock illustrations. getting ideas - idealists stock illustrations.
Browse 194 idealist stock photos and images available, or search for idealistic or dreamer to find more great stock photos and pictures. Israeli children attend at class at a kindergarten in Israel's oldest kibbutz, Deganya Alef, on the shores of the Sea of Galile on April 1, 2008.
In the case of the third and fourth antinomies, however, Kant argues that the distinction between appearances and things in themselves that is at the heart of transcendental idealism makes it possible for both sides to be considered true, since they concern different objects: in the empirical world of experience, there are only ever indefinitely extending chains of causes and effects, each moment of which is necessary relative to its causal laws the third antithesis but contingent because no antecedent cause is absolutely necessary or necessary considered in itself, but outside of the empirical world there is nothing to prevent there being an absolutely necessary thing in itself God nor acts of absolute spontaneity on the part of that absolutely necessary being or even lesser beings, such as finite agents. The Houston Chronicle. The most considerable Philosophy portal. The news website Vox. This argument clearly seems to imply that all finite substances are ultimately mental in nature and the infinite substance, God, is obviously mental in nature , thus it seems to be a paradigmatic ontological argument for idealism, from which an epistemological argument for idealism would automatically follow, since if there is knowledge of reality at all, which Leibniz hardly seems to doubt, and reality is ultimately mental, then knowledge too must be of the mental. These—as McTaggart himself admits [ f. Such a conception of the knowledge relation proves to be unwarranted because, according to Hegel, it can be shown that the idea of a cognitive relation between totally independent items makes no sense. A variety of different issues in analyzing idealistic ethics exists. All these considerations as to the character or the nature of time, matter, sensa, spirit and cogitations are meant to establish two results. No substance has material or sensal qualities, and all reality is spirit. Categories : Concepts in ethics Philosophy of life Psychological concepts Reasoning. July This claim he also purports to base on observation:. In the arts, similarly, idealism affirms imagination and attempts to realize a mental conception of beauty, a standard of perfection, juxtaposed to aesthetic naturalism and realism. Philosophy Questions. This is so because both Descartes and Spinoza think of cognition as a result of a process in which we become aware of what really is the case independently of us both with respect to the nature of objects and with respect to their conceptual and material relations. For Hegel, a logical system is possible but an existential system is not: "What is rational is actual; and what is actual is rational". According to Fichte, the I possesses, in addition to the capacity for self-positing that is captured in the first principle, the further capacity of positing a non-I freely and simply without any further ground. In general leadership terms, specific national officials known for their sense of personal idealism include American presidents Theodore Roosevelt ,   Ronald Reagan ,   and Barack Obama. This is a metaphysical, in this case theological argument, directed against the occasionalists Nicholas Malebranche and his English follower John Norris rather than against Locke. Although it goes beyond the scope of this article, some hints about the fate of idealism in Germany might be appropriate. The arrangement of given facts into relations and qualities may be necessary in practice, but it is theoretically unintelligible. SW III, What has been most feared, the cause of the most powerful suffering the lust for domination, sexual lust, etc. Please help by moving some material from it into the body of the article. Writing for the Houston Chronicle , columnist Robert Zaretsky has labeled de Gaulle "an idealist who understood the need for pragmatism. The human race as a whole has become wiser as history has moved along. Consequentialism Deontology Virtue. This article is about the metaphysical view in philosophy. Vasubandhu 's works include a refutation of external objects or externality itself and argues that the true nature of reality is beyond subject-object distinctions. It is easy to show that most of the German idealists were strongly attracted by this positive solution. He is best remembered for a lengthy polemic with Hume that he published in the form of an introduction to a collected edition of Hume that he co-edited and for his posthumously published Prolegomena to Ethics , which is a polemic against utilitarianism from the point of view of a perfectionism inspired by Kant as well as by Hegel. Journal of International Affairs. The outcome he wants to have reached so far is this:. Why should a Hegelian citizen be surprised that his belief as to the organic nature of the Absolute does not help him in deciding how to vote? This world is apparent—consequently there is a true world. The perception of this persistent thing is possible only through a thing outside me and not through the mere representation of a thing outside me. Given what they take to be a basic fact that God has endowed us with the capacity to know the truth albeit within certain limits , i. The question of to what extent one can hold to certain ideals practically and how facing resistance will shape them has attracted debate from multiple thinkers. Although insofar as Neo-Kantianism was a reaction mainly to absolute idealism it could not entirely reject epistemological arguments of the kind that had traditionally led to idealism, especially in its Kantian variety. Secondly, the unity presented as resulting from a process of integration of what is taken to be opposed cannot be conceived as representing a real identity of opposites because of its status as a synthetic product. Thus, Kant argues that the antitheses of the third and fourth antinomies are actually true of the world as it appears, while the theses of these two antinomies are possibly true of things in themselves, namely of God as the ground of the entire world of appearance and of ourselves as spontaneous agents grounding our own appearances of action. Springer Publishing. He thinks of these transcendental idealistic demonstrations as a necessary complement to his philosophy of nature cf. Epistemologically , idealism is accompanied by skepticism about the possibility of knowing any mind-independent thing. The problem of the second is to prove that reality is exclusively spirit. Trying to truly satisfy desire is the height of irrationality, but for Schopenhauer there is nothing else we can will—we can at best try to escape from the clutches of will altogether, whether through art, asceticism, or compassion. Charles Scribner's Sons. Actual idealism is the idea that reality is the ongoing act of thinking, or in Italian "pensiero pensante". Arthur Eddington , a British astrophysicist of the early 20th century, wrote in his book The Nature of the Physical World that "The stuff of the world is mind-stuff":. If reason only enables him to do for himself what instinct does for the animal, then it would indicate for man no higher aim or destiny than that of the brute but only a different way of attaining the same end. Smith Goes to Washington and his "backwoods ideals", as Variety put things, in the face of the U. B Substances according to McTaggart are infinitely divisible and therefore cannot have simple parts.
This entry discusses philosophical idealism as a movement chiefly in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, although anticipated by certain aspects of seventeenth century philosophy and continuing into the twentieth century. It revises the standard distinction between epistemological idealism, the view that the contents of human knowledge are ineluctably determined by the structure of human thought, and ontological idealism, the view that epistemological idealism delivers truth because reality itself is a form of thought and human thought participates in it, in favor of a distinction earlier suggested by A. Ewing, between epistemological and metaphysical arguments for idealism as itself a metaphysical position. After discussing precursors, the entry focuses on the eighteenth-century versions of idealism due to Berkeley, Hume, and Kant, the nineteenth-century movements of German idealism and subsequently British and American idealism, and then concludes with an examination of the attack upon idealism by Moore and Russell and the late defense of idealism by Brand Blanshard. With the possible exception of the introduction Section 1 , each of the sections below can be read independently and readers are welcome to focus on the section s of most interest. However, independently of context one can distinguish between a descriptive or classificatory use of these terms and a polemical one, although sometimes these different uses occur together. Within these idealisms one can find further distinctions, such as those between subjective, objective and absolute idealism, and even more obscure characterizations such as speculative idealism and transcendental idealism. Thus, an idealist is someone who is not a realist, not a materialist, not a dogmatist, not an empiricist, and so on. Within modern philosophy there are sometimes taken to be two fundamental conceptions of idealism:. So instead of using Kant as any kind of model for epistemological idealism, in this entry we will distinguish between metaphysical and epistemological arguments for idealism understood as a metaphysical doctrine, namely that everything that exists is in some way mental. We thus agree with A. Ewing, who wrote in that all forms of idealism. Ewing 3. Roughly, the genus comprises theories that attribute ontological priority to the mental, especially the conceptual or ideational, over the non-mental. Metaphysical arguments proceed by identifying some general constraints on existence and arguing that only minds of some sort or other satisfy such conditions; epistemological arguments work by identifying some conditions for knowledge and arguing that only objects that are in some sense or other mental can satisfy the conditions for being known. In particular, epistemological arguments for idealism assume that there is a necessary isomorphism between knowledge and its object that can obtain only if the object of knowledge is itself mental; we propose that this is the difference between epistemologically-motivated idealism and a more neutral position, which might be identified with philosophers such as Rudolf Carnap, W. It is in order to preserve the distinction between traditional idealism and positions such as the latter that we recommend retaining the claim that reality is in some way or other exclusively mental and thinking of epistemological arguments for idealism rather than epistemological idealism as such. Of course these strategies can be combined by a single philosopher. Berkeley does so, and so does Kant in arguing for the transcendental idealist part of his complex position. Others separate them, for example F. Bradley and J. McTaggart constructed metaphysical arguments for idealism, while Josiah Royce and Brand Blanshard offered epistemological arguments. At some points in its complex history, however, above all in the social as well as philosophical movement that dominated British and American universities in the second half of the nineteenth century and through the first World War, idealism in either of its philosophical forms was indeed connected to idealism in the popular sense of progressive and optimistic social thought. This was true for figures such as Bradley and Royce and their predecessors and contemporaries such as Thomas Hill Green and Bernard Bosanquet. Our distinctions between epistemological and ontological idealism, on the one hand, and that between metaphysical and epistemological arguments for idealism, on the other hand, has not always been clearly made. However, the American philosopher Josiah Royce pointed in the direction of our distinction at the end of the nineteenth century. We will argue similarly that while epistemology can entail idealism, on the assumption that the isomorphism between knowledge and the known must be in some sense necessary and that this can be so only if the known as well as knowledge is in some sense mental, this should be distinguished from the more general and extremely widespread view that our knowledge is always formed within our own point of view, conceptual framework, or web of belief. Our distinction between epistemological and metaphysical arguments for idealism can also be associated with a distinction between two major kinds of motives for idealism: those which are grounded in self-conceptions, i. Motives for idealism based on world-convictions can be found in many different attitudes towards objectivity. If one is to believe in science as the best and only way to get an objective subject-independent conception of reality, one might still turn to idealism, at least epistemological idealism, because of the conditions supposed to be necessary in order to make sense of the very concept of a law of nature or of the normativity of logical inferences for nature itself. An inclination toward idealism might even arise from considerations pertaining to the ontological status of aesthetic values is beauty an objective attribute of objects? In short: There are about as many motives and reasons for endorsing idealism as there are different aspects of reality to be known or explained. As already mentioned, Berkeley, the paradigmatic idealist in the British tradition, did not use the name for his own position, which he called rather immaterialism; and Leibniz, at least some versions of whose monadology might be considered idealist, also did not call his position by that name. The skeptic doubts the possibility of knowledge in general and thus refuses to defend any positive claim at all. By contrast, the dogmatist puts forward positive doctrines, and these can be divided into those which posit as fundamental either one single kind of entities [ Art der Dinge ] or two different kinds. This amounts to the division of all dogmatic doctrines, i. This is so because it reflects the main metaphysical disputes in seventeenth- and early eighteenth-century philosophy on the Continent quite well. Although neither dualism, whose main representative was Descartes who asserted the existence of both res cogitans and res extensa , nor monism, allegedly though debatably represented by Spinoza in its materialistic version substantia, deus, natura and by Leibniz in its idealistic form monad, entelechy, simple substance succeeded in finding satisfying answers to this and related questions, in the early modern era these disputes shaped the conception of what the object of metaphysics metaphysica generalis sive ontologia was supposed to be. Prior to Wolff, neither defending nor refuting idealism seems to have been a central issue for rationalist philosophers, and none of them called themselves idealists. Yet what are by later lights idealistic tendencies can nevertheless be found among them. While from a later point of view it may seem surprising that these rationalists were not more concerned with explicitly asserting or refuting one or both versions of idealism, perhaps they were more concerned with theological puzzles about the nature and essence of God, metaphysical questions as to how to reconcile the respective conception of God with views about the interaction of substances of fundamentally different kinds, and epistemological problems as to the possibility of knowledge and cognitive certainty than they were worried about whether the ultimate constituents of reality were mental or material elements. However, if one were to situate their thoughts within the framework provided by Wolff it is not that difficult to find traces of idealism derived from both ontological and epistemological grounds in their respective positions. With respect to their metaphysical or ontological teachings, this claim may seem surprising. Whereas according to Wolff idealists are representatives of a species of metaphysical monism Descartes is one of the most outspoken metaphysical dualists. Consequently, it appears as if already for conceptual reasons there is no basis to burden either Descartes or Spinoza with idealism as defined by Wolff.
According to him, the self-contradictoriness of what is appearance already implies that there is positive knowledge of reality: reality has to be One in the sense that it does not allow discord and it must be such that it can include diversity cf. Philosophical Idealism and Christian Theology. I shall not at present meddle with the physical consideration of the mind; or trouble myself to examine, wherein its essence consists, or by what motions of our spirits, or alterations of our bodies, we come to have any sensation by our organs, or any ideas in our understandings; and whether those ideas do in their formation, any, or all of them, depend on matter or no [emphasis added]: These are speculations, which, however curious and entertaining, I shall decline. However, it is far from clear whether Nietzsche wants us to think of this process of interpretation which leads to a specific perspective as a mind-dependent activity. Looked at from a systematic perspective, this opposition is fundamental because of its apparent unavoidability, already at a descriptive level, when it comes to an assessment of the ultimate characteristics of reality: after all, we want to be able to hold fast to the distinction between what is only in our subjective thought and what is objectively the case. It is suffering that inspires these inferences: at bottom there are wishes that such a world might be; similarly hatred of a world that causes suffering expresses itself through the imagination of another world, one full of value: the ressentiment of the metaphysicians against the actual world is here creative. In general the universe seems to me to be nearer to a great thought than to a great machine. Fading idealism has been cited as a contributor to the serious issue of burnout among medical professionals. Absolute idealism is G. Sarkar , and Sohail Inayatullah. This dissatisfaction shows explicitly for the first time in the preface of the Phenomenology of Spirit. Paul Brunton , a British philosopher, mystic, traveler, and guru, taught a type of idealism called " mentalism ," similar to that of Bishop Berkeley, proposing a master world-image, projected or manifested by a world-mind, and an infinite number of individual minds participating. Thought is always a form of abstraction, and thus not only is pure existence impossible to think, but all forms in existence are unthinkable; thought depends on language, which merely abstracts from experience, thus separating us from lived experience and the living essence of all beings. However, it is not human nature in general that is of interest in this context but the workings of those human powers or faculties that are responsible for our human ability to relate to the world in terms of knowledge-claims. It is interesting to note that McTaggart does not believe that his metaphysical ontological spiritual idealism excludes a realistic stance in epistemology. Qualitative infinity , on the other hand, would be more self-determining and hence more fully real. The world and all beings or souls in it have no separate existence from Brahman, universal consciousness, and the seemingly independent soul jiva  is identical to Brahman. The self that is doubting or asserting, or that is even feeling its private ignorance about an object, and that still, even in consequence of all this, is meaning , is aiming at such an object, is in essence identical with the self for which this object exists in its complete and consciously known truth. Thomas Hill Green —82 was the first of the great Oxford idealists. Given these a priori characteristics of what can exist the task McTaggart tackles in the second volume is to. The images in our head are what comprise the ideal. Thus the primary task of philosophy for these philosophers became that of providing a theory of knowledge based on an adequate assessment of the constitution of human nature, for they were interested in knowledge only as a human achievement. Therefore, the very fact that we take things or substances to be real commits us to the claim that things are ideal entities perceived by the mind of God. Studies have additionally evaluated differences based on varying generations in terms of their ideals. Because reality is conceived thus as a dynamic self-organizing cognitive process that lies at the basis of even the most fundamental opposition between subject and object, Schelling thinks of his ontological monism as a version of idealism. During his seminal speech titled A More Perfect Union , delivered in at the National Constitution Center , then presidential candidate Obama took stock of his particular view of the American experience and his own ethical idealism, commenting,. Although insofar as Neo-Kantianism was a reaction mainly to absolute idealism it could not entirely reject epistemological arguments of the kind that had traditionally led to idealism, especially in its Kantian variety. Tolstoy's idealism led him to abandon the regular living expected of such a prominent figure and to live on a commune in similar practice to the early Christians shortly after the death of Jesus ; in both his fiction and other writings, he's molded the development of not only Christian ethics but other idealistic traditions as well. Bradley and J. At some points in its complex history, however, above all in the social as well as philosophical movement that dominated British and American universities in the second half of the nineteenth century and through the first World War, idealism in either of its philosophical forms was indeed connected to idealism in the popular sense of progressive and optimistic social thought. The latter do not really exist, they just lead to the illusion that they exist. In his words:. Project MUSE There are a range of philosophical schools that place a strong emphasis on idealistic viewpoints, including Christian ethics , Jewish ethics , and Platonist ethics. Between substances and their individual features there obtains a relation of determining correspondence such that each feature determines and is determined by all the other. This means, for Fichte, that the I, so understood, displays all the characteristics which make it an appropriate candidate for the first utterly unconditioned principle of all knowledge. It is the tendency of philosophers to deny the obvious, to neglect surfaces in favor of what is allegedly behind them, out of habitual weakness and anxiety to prefer the stable and immutable over and against change and becoming. In particular, epistemological arguments for idealism assume that there is a necessary isomorphism between knowledge and its object that can obtain only if the object of knowledge is itself mental; we propose that this is the difference between epistemologically-motivated idealism and a more neutral position, which might be identified with philosophers such as Rudolf Carnap, W. But he did take a great interest in the ontology of substances, God the infinite substance and everything else as finite substances in contrast to Spinoza, he rejected monism. So, Kant concludes, in order to be necessarily true throughout their domain, the synthetic a priori propositions about space and time—and this includes not just the specific propositions of geometry or mathematics more generally but also the general propositions derived in the metaphysical expositions, such as that space and time are infinite singular wholes with parts rather than instances—must be true only of the representations on which we impose our own forms of intuition, and cannot be true of things as they are in themselves. The approach Hegel is pursuing in order to arrive at the desired result, i. For the assumption that we have to conceive reality as a distributable plurality, together with the notion that there are real objects possessed of an existence independent of the subject, means that it is necessary, within the Fichtean model of positing, to identify a factor responsible for distributing reality between the I, understood as the knowing subject and not as absolute self-positing ego , and the non-I, understood as the object that it is to be known. With respect to social order, Locke's highly influential writings applied rational principles to governance in support of the doctrine of social contract theory , which permeated Enlightenment discussions about the best form of organizing a country. At the same time, even though when he wrote his main works he was not well-informed on the aporia about subjects and objects about which Hume had ultimately thrown up his arms in the Treatise , which has here been characterized as the tension in Hume between agnosticism and idealism, Kant recognized that we cannot talk about what he called appearances without conceding the real existence of subjects to which objects appear as well as the objects that appear to such subjects. Characters in stories still well known from classical antiquity for their idealistic actions and words include, for instance, Achilles. For him the cognitive procedure is a process of discovery see Discourse on the Method , Part 6, 6 of what already is out there as the real nature of things created by God by finding out the clear and distinct ideas we can have of them Discourse , Part 4, 3 and 7.
An ideal is a principle or value that an entity actively pursues as a goal and holds above other concerns perceived as being less meaningful. There is an inherent relationship between the terms "ideal" and "ethical" in the context of ethics , noted by Philosopher Rushworth Kidder who stated that "standard definitions of ethics have typically included such phrases as 'the science of the ideal human character". There are a range of philosophical schools that place a strong emphasis on idealistic viewpoints, including Christian ethics , Jewish ethics , and Platonist ethics. A variety of different issues in analyzing idealistic ethics exists. Scholar Terry Eagleton has opined that the practical plausibility of particular ideals winds up being inverse to their intellectual legitimacy. American Philosopher Richard Rorty has criticized the concept of unchanging ideals existing somewhat separately from human nature in the first place. In the sense of metaphysical thought , " idealism " is generally described as centering around a particular view of objective reality versus the perception of reality; the question of whether or not potential knowledge exists independently to humanity or whether such knowledge is solely tied to experiences in the mind gets debated. Even within that particular intellectual sphere, the stamp of "idealist" as applied to particular philosophers , with them often possessing rather nuanced views, attracts considerable controversy. The term "ideal" has also been applied to organizations like independent churches to social activist groups to political parties to nation states and more. An entity's ideals usually function as a way to set firm guidelines for decision making , with the possibility of having to sacrifice and undergo loss being in the background. While ideals constitute fuzzy concepts without that clear-cut a definition, they remain an influential part not just of personal choice but of larger, civilization-wide social direction. Ideals as a topic receive both scholarly and layman discussion within a variety of fields including philosophy both historically and more recently. In colloquial language , the term "ideal" is often applied loosely, with varying circumstances getting described as such in highly different contexts. For instance, in cooking the descriptions of certain ingredient portions, heating temperatures, preparation times, and the like are often labeled as "ideal" or otherwise. Such uses of the term are often distinct from the historical and social concept of having an "ethical ideal" as such. American scholar Nicholas Rescher has drawn upon ancient philosophy to state that the metaphysical nature of ideals gives them a particular status as "useful fictions" in terms of their special existence, writing in his book Ethical Idealism: An Inquiry Into the Nature and Function of Ideals ,. The object at issue with an ideal does not, and cannot, exist as such. What does, however, exist is the idea of such an object. Existing, as it must, in thought alone in the manner appropriate to ideas , it exerts a powerful[ly] organizing and motivating force on our thinking, providing at once a standard of appraisal and [also] a stimulus to action. Nonetheless, multiple thinkers have asserted that ideals as such constitute things that ought to be said to exist in the real world, having a substance partly to the same extent as flesh and blood people and similar concrete entities. A prominent example of this certain viewpoint is the iconic Greek philosopher Plato. To him, ideals represent self-contained objects existing in their own domain that humanity discovered through reason rather than invented out of whole cloth for narrow benefit. Thus, while existing in relation to the human mind, ideals still possess a certain kind of metaphysical independence according to Plato. With respect to specific definitions, U. It endeavors to justify the maximum of hope, without compromising or confusing any enlightenment judgement of truth. In this it is, I think, not only consistent with the spirit of a liberal and rational age but also with the primary motive of religion. There can be no religion Focusing on the practical nature of moral choices, recent scholarly analysis in journals such as Academia Revista Latinoamerica de Administracion have framed definitions in terms of social decision making , one study stating,. On one hand, a low idealist assumes that harming others is not always avoidable and that sometimes harm may be necessary to produce good[. In other words, for a high idealist, morality always results from not harming others". Ethical idealism has often defined either in relative comparison to or in direct contradiction to the doctrine of moral relativism. The latter concept has been associated with a philosophical skepticism in which an individual questions the value of commonly held cultural principles. A strongly relativist person will, scholars have stated, judge morality according to particular circumstances. Individuals with stridently idealistic beliefs and little sense of relativism have been known as "absolutists" while those with principles seeking to synthesize those two concepts have been known as "situationists". In the wider context of ethics , the very terms "ethical" and "ideal" have been inherently tied. Philosopher Rushworth Kidder has stated that "standard definitions of ethics have typically included such phrases as 'the science of the ideal human character'". The types of ideals dealt with during the history of philosophy have varied widely over the many centuries, many conceptions existing of what moral idealism actually is and how it gets applied in actual life experiences. From the far distant history to today, multiple philosophers have remarked that human beings appear to, by instinct, behave in a matter with few if any ideals and even general morals of whatever kind. The works of British thinker David Hume , for instance, explicitly declared people to be inherent " slaves " to their passions. Cynics of the ancient world frequently referred to humanity in general as not only not perfectible but fundamentally depraved. The historical Greek figure of Diogenes , while arguing that some individuals could through great effort achieve some kind of a moral dignity, was a prominent example in his dismissal of the values common in his day. He sought his own path based on a particular set of ideals that involved begging on the streets, living in a barrel, and wearing rags. In both Jewish ethics and later Christian ethics , however, advocacy for a stridently idealistic view of the world, in which principles get held over personal convenience and even otherwise perfectly logical expectations, has attracted praise. Golden rule based moral standards have involved restrictions such as holding back the quest for vengeance by the wronged such that punishment only gets applied in a limited, specific fashion, this example being later evaluated as the tit-for-tat strategy in game theory. In terms of Christianity , the teachings of the Gospels have constituted an extension of the golden rule; individuals, under Jesus' example, have gotten called to hold to the ideal of treating other people even better than they rationally expect to be treated back. In the context of the various religious movements of the 1st and 2nd century in the Roman Empire , the ideals of Christian thinking constituted a radical break with the ethical doctrines that had been advocated by those in power. Rejecting views of the upper classes, both during the empire's time and previously in Greco-Roman civilization, the rising Christian community set forth clear-cut principles based on narratives such as the Sermon on the Mount , which was included in the Gospel of Matthew. Specifically, Jesus' exhortations for his followers to " turn the other cheek " as well to "love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" and practice other idealistic behaviors established a general view emphasizing spiritual standards over material concerns. Despite the degree that Christian viewpoints contradicted Roman traditions, early Christianity spread throughout the Empire and became a particularly robust force in the empire's society by the 4th century. Reasons for the appeal included not only the idealistic messages but also the similarity between the belief system and previously popular mystery cults. Finally, emperor Theodosius the Great made Christianity the official religion of the entire realm. While Western nations widely retained the influences of Jewish and Christian morality over multiple centuries, in practical terms a great many powerful rulers and prominent thinkers both before and after the fall of the Roman Empire pushed back on higher notions of idealistic ethics. Many did so based on little other than expediency. However, whether explicitly in words or implicitly through deeds, more cynical figures have counter-argued from points of view that can broadly be labeled as " moral relativism ".