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  A duty (Old French, ‘what is owed’) or obligation (Latin, ‘something which binds’) is, philosophically, something one morally ought or ought not to do. One ought not to inflict suffering on others, which is to say that one has a duty not to inflict suffering on others. One is obliged not to do so. Duties or obligations may conflict. One has a duty not to inflict suffering on others, but one also has a duty to tell the truth. These duties conflict when truthfully answering a question will inflict suffering. AJ  



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