Ehtical Analysis of Kant

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Weekly Analysis: Kant, Duty and Reason 1. What is the author trying to argue? According to Kant, nothing is good because good can always be attached to some bad or used for bad. The only thing that can be called good is good will. Good will is not good because of what it does, although it can make good things happen. Good will’s only purpose is to produce good. Happiness does not come from reason, our ability to reason limits our happiness. Reason is only to help people to produce good will. 2. Examples: a) ”the notion of duty” A good will is a will that is for duty and what you do is only moral if it is done for duty. Doing something with duty being your only reason to act is morally right, and it does not have to be enjoyable only morally right. b) ”I would express thus, Duty is the necessity of acting from respect for the law. I may have an inclination for an object as the effect of my proposed action, but I cannot have respect for it, just for this reason, that it is an effect and not an energy of will. ” What you do out of duty does not include inclinations. Your good will cannot be judged by what you do, but why you did what you did. Inclinations are not respected, only acting out of duty can be respected. c) “Categorical Imperative: Those actions are right that conform to principles one can consistently will to be principles for everyone, and those actions wrong that are based on maxims that a rational creature could not will that all persons should follow” Kant says that an act is only right or moral if it is right for everyone. If an act is based on a generalized rule that a rational person could not will for all people to do than it is wrong. 3. What is the conclusion? The categorical imperative helps us decide what is right and wrong, and because we all acknowledge our ability to reason, this is the only thing that can
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