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.
According to Kant, right actions are not done by following inclinations, impulses or obeying the principle of greatest happiness but are done simply and purely from the sense of duty. Kessler says that some ethical truths and norms are appropriate to everyone in the society, and therefore, people should always act morally irrespective of the outcome for their morals. In deontology ethics, actions are done for the sake of duty. The intrinsic moral feature determines the rightness or wrongness of the act taken by individuals. The duty should always be done by taking the right.
Explain the theory of duty in Kantian Ethics (25 marks) Kantian ethics is an absolutist theory as Kant claimed what is morally ‘good’ is constant and unchanging. Because of this, it can be a universal concept applied in different societies and cultures with the idea that an action should only be performed for duty’s sake. His approach was deontological because the idea of right or wrong was based on the action rather than the consequence, he believed that this was the only rational basis for morality and could be proven objectively, independent from emotion and opinion. As humans we have the innate ability to reason, something which we gained prior to any sensory experience in this world. This is an idea which is absolute and according to Kant, the way we decide the morality of an action.
The three postulates namely freedom, God and Immortality though can’t be theoretically proven, is incorporated into the already coherent and meaningful ethical structure of Kant to give more practicability to his ethical theory taking into account the fact that man is not a purely rational being but a creature haunted by inclinations. Freedom, God and Immortality, the three postulates are not theoretical dogmas but are presuppositions having necessary practical reference. The introduction of postulate in Kant’s philosophy can be considered as an attempt to limit the theoretical and extend the practical so as to make them stand together. God as postulate by Kant is not the God of religion. This postulate of God has origin in one’s own reason which would necessarily mean that submitting to will of God is submitting to one’s own reason.
Ethical egoism contrasts with ethical altruism, which holds that moral agents have an obligation to help others. Egoism and altruism both contrast with ethical utilitarianism, which holds that a moral agent should treat one's self with no higher regard than one has for others as egoism does, by elevating self-interests and the self to a status not granted to others, but that one also should not as altruism does sacrifice one's own interests to help others' interests, so long as one's own interests (i.e. one's own desires or well-being) are substantially equivalent to the others' interests and well-being. Egoism, utilitarianism, and altruism are all forms of consequentialism, but egoism and altruism contrast with utilitarianism, in that egoism and altruism are both agent-focused forms of consequentialism (i.e. subject-focused or subjective), but utilitarianism is called agent-neutral (i.e.
If the will of a rational being is not based solely on reason, then the action of that individual is not necessary. An imperative is statement of the command that is in the command of reason. In other words, an imperative can be looked at as a command or general principle that prescribes rational beings the expectations and guidelines for which one should live their life. An imperative is simply the command that means that carrying out or not carrying out of a certain action or thing would be considered good, but it also describes a will of a rational being that does not always carry out an action because it is good (Kant, Immanuel Pg 34). An imperative can either be hypothetical or categorical.
Critique of Kant’s Indiscriminant Use of the “Categorical Imperative” In terms of the discussion of morals, it all comes down to whether one believes the “good” in a morally good action lies in the cause or the effect of the action. For philosopher Immanuel Kant, the answer lies in the cause, or the initial motive of the action, rather than the consequences that arise from it. However, one cannot rely on his system of morals, as the more they get grounded into real life situations, the harder it is to justify certain actions. If one were to accept a higher and definite system of moral law that applies to any and all rational beings, it cannot be morally permissible for people to only consider the beginning motives of an action with blatant disregard for the potentially horrifying consequences that may follow. In “Groundwork for the Metaphysic of Morals” by Immanuel Kant, a general framework is laid out for this idea that the discussion of metaphysics in philosophy has been led astray; that even the common man has a better understanding than most philosophers.
Mill later struggled with the concepts of utilitarianism because it was too unemotional and failed to capture or understand the ‘higher’ pleasure of happiness without pain. Bentham’s theory failed to acknowledge the complexities like emotion. However, Mill did not reject Bentham’s ideas of pleasure fulfillment; he created a more complex version of utilitarianism, yet one that still embraces the most basic premises of Bentham and of his father, James Mill. Mill defines utilitarianism as a theory based on the principle that "actions are right in proportion as they tend to promote happiness, wrong as they tend to produce the reverse of happiness." Mill defines happiness as pleasure and the absence of pain.
Since our intelligence is inherently good it is not possible to take away from something that is good, something that is evil. The line that Aug says that really strikes me is, “Or, if indeed evil is learned, that can only be in the sense that we learn to avoid deeds which ought not to be done. Hence to do evil is nothing but to stray away from education.” (OFW, Book 1, I, section 2.) This applies to the argument very well because we don’t learn to do evil;
On the one hand, one’s prima facie obligation to obey the law remains intact where its injustice is relatively minor and it would be unfair to others if one disregarded the law. On the other hand, a gravely unjust law may provide one with an overriding all-things-considered reason to disobey the law. The [maxim ‘an unjust law is not a law’], then, does not deny the significance of the law’s positivity. Rather, it expresses the conditional nature of the complex relations that hold between moral obligations and the positive law.’ (Ibid. )” (Anon 2011) ------------------------------------------------- Briefly trace the development of natural law theories from their origins in Greek and Roman thought to the birth of Modernity, and in particular the distinction (if any) drawn by theorists between moral validity and systemic validity, and then discuss whether George’s defense of this maxim meets the positivist critique both theoretically and practically.