Sometimes ethics refers only to behavior; then what is meant by it is a code – a code of a certain desirable behavior. Then, of course, you can divide ethics. You can speak of medical ethics, of business ethics, or military ethics. In all these instances you are really speaking of a code of behavior relating to, or valid for, a certain situation. Of course, this is perfectly all right; I prefer people who have a code to those who do not, and I prefer good codes to bad codes.

But if we mean by ethics what was meant by the term in the great philosophical or religious tradition, then ethics is not a code of behavior valid for certain fields. In this tradition, ethics refers to a particular orientation which is rooted in man and which, therefore, is not valid in reference to this or that person or to this or that situation but to all human beings. ― (1963c: Medicine and the Ethical Problem of Modern Man, in E. Fromm, The Dogma of Christ and Other Essays on Religion The Dogma of Christ and Other Essays on Religion, Psychology and Culture, New York (Holt, Rinehart and Winston) 1963, p. 118.)