AXIOLOGY & VALUE
Axiology is the philosophical study of value. It is either the collective term for ethics and
aesthetics- philosophical fields that depend crucially on notions of value or the foundation for
these fields, and thus similar to value theory and meta-ehics. The term was first used by Paul
Lapie in 1902 and Edward Von Hartman in 1908.
MEANING OF AXIOLOGY:
Axiology is the science of value. The word ‘axiology’ derived from two Greek words- ‘axios’
means worth or value and ‘logos’ means logic or theory, means theory of value. The
development of the science makes possible the objective measurement of value as accurately
as a thermometer measures heat.
Axiology is an objective format for measuring intangible attitudes and values. Moreover,
axiology measures the level of development and the types of one’s perceptual biases in one’s
AREA OF AXIOLOGY:
Axiology studies mainly two kinds of values: ethics and aesthetics. Ethics investigates the
concepts of right and good in individual and social conduct. Aesthetics studies the concept of
beauty and harmony.
Ethics also known as moral philosophy, is a branch of philosophy that involves systematizing,
defending and recommending concepts of right and wrong conduct. Ethics is a complement to
aesthetics in the philosophical field of axiology. In philosophy, ethics studies the moral
behaviour in humans and how one should act.
Ethics may be broadly defined as that division of philosophy which deals with questions
concerning the nature of value in matters of human conduct.
While virtually all people are concerned with making ehical judgements and decisions,
philosophers in particular are concerned to
Explicate the nature of such judgements in general and
Provide criteria for determining what is ethically right or wrong, and
Analyze the reasons we have for holding them to be correct.
Those concerned exclusively with telling us what is right or wrong, good or bad, in matters of
human conduct may be termed “moralists”. While philosophers have sometimes been
moralists, as philosophers their primary concern is not so much to provide moral perscriptions
as it is to explain why what we consider to be ‘right’ or ‘good’ is right or good. To do so,
philosophers engaged with such questions have generally sought to formulate and justify
“ethical theories” which are intended to explain the fundamental nature of that which is ‘good’,
why it is ‘good’, and why the ethical priniciples which are most commonly used to evaluate
human conduct follow from this theory of that which is good.
There are two types of ethical theories1. Consequentialist or Teleological Ethical Theory
2. Motivational or Deontological Ethical Theory
1. Teleological Ethical theory: This theory claims that what makes an action right or
wrong are the consequences of the action; quite simply a “right action” is one which has
good consequences and a “wrong action” has bad consequences.
2. Deontological Ethical Theory: This theory holds an opposition to a consequentialist
theory that it is not the consequences but the motivation which prompts the agent to
do an action which makes an action right or wrong. On this type of ehtical theory an
action motivated by the right sort of reasons will be “right” no matter whether its
consequences are desirable or not, whereas an action motivated by the wrong sorts of
reasons will be a wrong action, even if its consequences might be considered desirable.
TYPES OF ETHICS:
Ethics maybe divided into four major areas of study:
1. Meta Ethics: It is about the theoretical meaning and reference of moral propositions
and how their truth values may be determined.
2. Normative Ethics: It is about the practical means of determining a moral course of
3. Applied Ethics: It is about how moral outcomes can be achieved in specific situations.
4. Descriptive Ethics: It is also known as comparative ethics. It is the study of people’s
beliefs about morality.
Aesthetics is a branch of philosophy dealing with the nature of art, beauty and taste, with the
creation and appreciation of beauty. It is more scientifically defined as the study of sensory or
sensory-emotional values, sometimes called judgements of sentiment and taste. More broadly,
scholars in the field define aesthetics as “ critical reflection on art, culture and nature”.
In other words, aesthetics is the inquiry into feelings, judgements or standards concerning the
nature of beauty and related concepts such as the tragic, the sublime or the moving- especially
in the arts; the analysis of the values of sensory experience and the associated feeling or
attitudes in art and nature.
CONCEPT OF AESTHETICS:
Introduced into the philosophical lexicon during the eighteenth century, the term ‘aesthetic’
has come to be used to designate among other things, a kind of object, a kind of judgement, a
kind of attitude, a kind of experience and a kind of value. For the most part, aesthetic theories
have divided over questions particular to one to another of these designations; whether
artworks are necessarily aesthetic objects; how to square the allegedly perceptual basis of
aesthetic judgements with the fact that we give reasons in support of them; how best to
capture the elusive contrast between an aesthetic attitude and a practical one; whether to
define aesthetic experience according to its phenomenological or representational content;
how best to understand the relation between aesthetic value and aesthetic experience.
Broadly speaking, values can be categorized as either material values or spiritual values.
Material values refer to the values of people’s daily necessities, such as commodities; in
contrast, spiritual values refer to the faculties of intellect, emotion and will or the values of
trueness, goodness and beauty.
Values refer to a quality of an object that satisfies a desire of tile subject. That is, when an
object has a certain quality that satisfies a desire or a wish of the subject and which is
recognized as such by the subject, then that special quality of the object is called value.
KINDS OF VALUE:
Value is the quality in the object that satisfies the desire of the subject. Desires can be divided
into Sungsang desire and Hyungsang desire; as a consequence, there are also Sungsang value
and Hyungsang value. Sungsang value is a spiritual value that satisfies the sungsang desire; it
consists of trueness, goodness, beauty and love. Trueness, beauty and goodness are the values
corresponding to the three faculties of the mind, namely, intellect, emotion and will.
On the other hand, Hyungsang value which satisfies the Hyungsang desire, refers to the value of
daily necessities, such as food, clothing and shelter- called material value or commodity value.
Material value is the value necessary for physical life or the value that satisfies the desire of the
physical mind. Physical life is the basis for file growth of the spirit person and for the fulfilment
of the three great blessings. Thus, the Hyungsang value is a requisite for the realisation of
In this way value includes both Sungsang value and Hyungsang value. Axiology, however, is a
philosophical field that deals primarily with sungsang value.
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