I don't like the term 'ethics'. Neither do I like the term 'vaules'. Both are soft, squooshy, cuddly terms used in order to give the liberals less chance to cry, "Politically incorrect!" Bah. I prefer 'morals', even if it's not a perfect term itself. 'Virtues' sounds very nice, however...
Morals (or virtues) are not simply something ingrained in your by your family or your culture. They are also something you have chosen, whether consciously or unconsciously, and especially as proved in your actions. I am a Roman Catholic. My morals are not mine simply because the Church teaches them to me or because my parents teach them to me. They are mine also because I have chosen them for myself.
At my First Holy Communion and at my Confirmation, I along with the other kids renounced satan (deliberate decapitalization. he doesn't need the honor of a capitalized name) and all his works and empty promises. I try to take that seriously. My success others may know more than I. Heaven knows I'm not perfect. I'm no plaster saint. I'm just like everyone else. I've got a long way to go. As long as I'm not dead, there's room for improvement.
In Pace Christi,