What is this Morality Thing Anyway?

morality over legality
 (Photo credit: GoatChild)

A discussion on MUX got me thinking… What /is/ this thing we call morality? What do we mean when we talk about living a moral life? Where do morals come from? I realized that I don’t really have a good working definition for words like “morality” and “ethics.” Many of my personal reactions upon hearing such words come both from a bad religious upbringing and bad experiences in philosophy class in college, so I’d like to start changing how I think about these words.