The knowledge of what is good and bad, right and wrong usually begins from an individuals own understanding. While morality could mean principles, in ethics we refer to moral codes, a branch of moral philosophy which studies moral conduct. Moreover one could argue that these are one and the same. While, atheists rely on the existence of god for morality to prevail, ethics revolves around behaviour, delving into anthropology, psychology, sociology and history to understand beliefs about moral norms. According to Albert Einstein, “The truth is that all religions are a varying blend of both types, with this differentiation: that on the higher levels of social life the religion of morality predominates. (Religion and Science - 1930).
In modern day living this view has even been endorsed by The Dalai Lama who emphasized that "We need these human values. I call these secular ethics, secular beliefs. There’s no relationship with any particular religion. Even without religion, even as nonbelievers, we have the capacity to promote these things."
Continuing the argument that ethics and morality are inseparable from religion, it has been argued that while religion upholds morality via faith from belief in god, atheists provides no moral guidance. Instead they form and adhere to ethics they themselves have decided upon. These moral standards with a code of ethics both in terms of variables and evolving decisions, being moral or its opposite immoral signify their actions.