Note on Gandhi’s Understanding of Means & End | Exposures of a Nomad
6 days ago PDF | While it is clear that all educational undertakings consist of ends and means, the relationship between the two is far from straightforward. In philosophy, the term "means to an end" refers to any action (the means) carried out for the sole purpose of achieving something else (an end). It can be. That to me is the most basic point to learn about The Means/Ends relationship. The means ought to be compatible with the ends desired.
The progress towards the goal will be in exact proportion to the purity of the means.
Means and Ends | Stand to Reason
The pursuit of satya leads to the recognition of the need for ahimsa to a point where we hold to ahimsa as the immediate, tangible part of the ultimate Truth. Gandhi sometimes also equated satya with ahimsa — they are like two sides of a coin, he said — for they are intertwined and it is impossible to disentangle and separate them. But at other times, Gandhi clearly distinguished between the two.
Gandhi emphasized mostly on ahimsa — for it is within our reach it is the means — but he constantly maintained that satya is superior to ahimsa, if a comparison must be instituted between inseparable concepts.
He, in fact, distinguished between the positive and negative meanings of ahimsa and satya, but regarded ahimsa as negative in relation to satya; this because of his identification of satya with reality — the derivation of satya from Sat. To better understand the relation between these two concept we can formulate three propositions.
Means to an end
The pursuit of satya gives us the humility to accept the need for ahimsa in our relationship with other fellow men. That is, satya implies ahimsa. Secondly, the pursuit of ahimsa shows that himsa is rooted in fear which can only be removed by the strength which comes from satya. So, ahimsa presupposes satya.
In that circumstance you hear the statement "the end never justifies the means. It's an attempt to bring clarity to moral decision making, but as it's stated it's problematic. It's an impossible statement.
If we want to think clearly in an ethical fashion about issues, we can't get away with this slogan because it ultimately means nothing. If the end never justifies the means, then no means would ever be justifiable.
If no means are ever justifiable then you'd never be able to do anything at all. Dennis Prager brought this to my attention first and I got thinking about it. Every single thing that you strive to do involves a means and an end.
As I mentioned before, the goal might be to get money for your church and the means could be to work for it. But if the statement is true, then no matter what your end or goal is no means would ever be justifiable. You could never do whatever you wanted to do.
Say you want to go buy some groceries. To drive the car. But if the end never justifies the means, then the means is not justified to go buy groceries.
The point I'm making is that this phrase is simplistic. If you want to talk about the relationship of means and ends then you're going to have to do a little bit more work and think more clearly about this issue.
The fact is that there's always a relationship between means and ends. Is it okay to scream harshly at someone? Most of you would probably say no.
Means to an end - Wikipedia
My response is that it depends. If you want the salt and you screamed at the person at the table with you to pass it to you, that would be rude.
So the end there doesn't justify the means. But what if a person was on the highway and the cars were about to hit them? Would it be justified to scream at them then?
- Philosophy Forum
There the end does justify the means. To save the person's life you must scream at them. I think what is usually the concern expressed in this phrase is that the particular end does not justify the means. That's why we have to look at both of those things when we make decisions. Utilitarianism is a way of doing ethics that say you're goal is the thing that's primary.