Augustine defends the god of theism by rejecting the existence of evil as a force or power opposed to god as it would reject the premise that god is omnipotent. Below are the ways in which he justifies moral and natural evil, which respectively mean evil caused by human acts, and evil events caused by the processes of nature. To justify evil, he solves the problem by defining evil as a ‘privation’ – which means when something is ‘evil’, it is not defined to contain bad qualities but is seen to be falling short of perfection, or what it is expected to be. Take a rapist as an example. Adopting Augustine’s idea of ‘evil’, we are to say that he is not living up to standards expected of human beings.
The action of duty must exclude the influence of inclination so it may only be influenced by the objectivity of the law and therefore subjectively respected by us as good. Kant then goes on to confront the claim that moral worth is linked to agreeable condition and the promotion of happiness by stating that the moral worth of an action lies in the principle and not the effect of the action. Kant claimed that agreeable conditions and happiness can be brought about by too many other causes that do not require human rationality, and that human rationality is the only place where the “supreme and unconditional good” (P.2) can
Piscataway (NJ): Transaction Publishers. Kay, R. S. (1998). American constitutionalism. In A. Larry (Ed. ), Constitutionalism, philosophical foundations.
• The only moral rule of agapeistic love – thinking of other before yourself and acting in accordance to that – encourages people to act in regards to the well-being of others than themselves. Surely this makes society a better place? Weaknesses: • Excludes a majority of universal truths. • The idea of love being an absolute moral principle defeats the major point of situation ethics. Situation ethics is a branch of relativism which argues that there are no moral absolutes, so therefore saying that love is the only moral rule is self-contradictory.
Kant argues that any action cannot be moral unless the motives are moral. For each of these philosophies, the question of living the "good life" is an intricate part of the belief system. For the Utilitarians, living a life that benefited as many people as possible, in essence, a life that caused the greatest widespread good results would be considered a life of virtue. For Kant, the only moral action is one that is done entirely because of obligation. He also makes the distinction between motives, saying that an action can be "in accord with duty" and still be immoral.
The Theodicy of Irenaeus has many weaknesses. For example, the Theodicy states that God deliberately created an imperfect world where evil exists to achieve a higher goal (a world where humans can morally develop), however if it is not acceptable to do something bad to achieve something good, then why is it acceptable for God to do this? Another point to consider is that not all suffering leads to moral growth. Some people do not develop as a result of suffering, but instead morally degrade. This contradicts Irenaeus’ Theodicy because it states that moral development is achieved through the experience of pain and suffering.
G.E Moore argued against Ethical Naturalism as he believed that defining concepts such as ‘good’ are impossible and any attempt to define ‘good’ is to commit The Naturalistic Fallacy. The Naturalistic Fallacy is one of the main criticisms of Ethical Naturalism and would therefore suggest that ethical language is not very meaningful as it cannot be correctly defined. Moore believed there are moral properties, so ethical language is not completely devoid of meaning but it is limited as ‘good’ is a non-natural property which cannot be defined. Moore disagreed that ethical language could prove whether something is moral or
There cannot be a wrong unless there is something that is right to compare it to. In the Law of Human Nature, C.S Lewis sets forth the foundational ideas regarding right and wrong. The most basic yet most important concept is that without the knowledge of what is right; humans cannot make the claim that something is wrong. By pointing out that one’s idea is not correct one is inadvertently admitting that he believes in a standard of right and wrong. C.S Lewis points out that all humans have a tendency to quarrel.
Soul-building evils are meant to force human beings to live through adversity and in turn strengthen our characters (Sober, pg. 111). Another criticism that exists to this second premise is called defense, which attempts to explain how evil can exist logically, given the existence of God (an all-PKG God) (“The Problem of Evil”). However, defense does not presuppose the existence of God or the existence of evil. If God and evil can
A person is not morally responsible for his action if it is “the result of unconscious forces” or “drive” of which the person knows nothing (Hospers, pgs 115,119). Hospers goes on to explain that a “lucky few are sometimes able to overcome” such forces (Hospers, pg. 120). These arguments apply to James Fallon’s circumstances. By his own admission, Fallon credits positive parental involvement for shaping his character therefore inhibiting further development of the “unconscious forces” of heredity from manifesting.