Immanuel Kant's Theory Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) discussed many ethical systems and reasoning’s some were based on a belief that the reason is the final authority for morality. In Kant’s eyes, reason is directly correlated with morals and ideals. Actions of any sort, he believed, must be undertaken from a sense of duty dictated by reason, and no action performed for appropriateness or solely in obedience to law or custom can be regarded as moral. A moral act is an act done for the "right" reasons. Kant would argue that to make a promise for the wrong reason is not moral you might as well not make the promise.
Kant also believes that an action is right or wrong based solely on the reason by which it was performed. However, a Utilitarian, like John Mill, would reject Kant’s reasoning of originating good characters out of actions alone, and instead argue that if an action has bad consequences, then the action was morally wrong. Kant believes that an action has moral worth only if it is done out of respect for our moral code. He names this moral action a ‘duty.’ Kant also believes that in determining the moral worth of an action, we need to look at the maxim by which it was performed. So, we need to look at one’s reason for doing an action to determine if it is a duty.
I will begin with Kant, as he was the first to develop his theory of morality. Kant published the Groundwork for the Metaphysic of Morals in 1785. Kant’s entire hypothesis of morality revolved around the basis of us being motivated by the logic of obligation and having a moral duty to oblige and uphold as good beings. Kant believed that our moral actions were the result of reasoning and ones moral worth was dependent upon motive, not the end or the consequences resulting from ones actions. As rational beings we are expected to act and behave accordingly for the sake of the moral good, but with practical reason.
This is apprehensive to specifically what people do, and totally disregard the consequence of the person's actions. Some specific "duty based ethic's are , Do the right thing, do it because it's the right thing to do, don't do the wrong thing, especially avoid the wrong things because "they are wrong". Realistically you can't validate any person's action by showing that the action showed a good outcome, this is also sometimes call a "non- consequentialist". Immanuel Kant believed that "we have a duty to ourselves and to others to think beyond our own particular situation and to recognize an obligation to life itself" ( Immanuel Kant). Kant's duty to have no worldview is because it's his own way of thought in a realistic way.
According to the CI, it is an absolute necessity, a command that humans should accord with universalizable maxims to treat people as ends in themselves and exercise their will without any concerns ab... ... middle of paper ... ... In conclusion, Kant, Arendt, and Mill hold different moralities. The three philosophers all have different ways to analyze and perceive ethical principles. They all base their views on varying concepts of morality. Kant’s deontological ethics is grounded on concepts of duty, the categorical imperative, and good will.
Hume sees moral judgements as being caused by sentiments of pain or pleasure within an agent as reason alone can never motivate, whereas Kant see the only moral actions as being those caused by reason alone, or the categorical imperative. I think that both theories have a problem with coming up with absolute moral laws - Hume's theory because absolute morality would appear to be impossible if morality is based on an individual's sentiment, and Kant's theory because it cannot prove the existence of the categorical imperative.
However, Kant’s perception of what constitutes morality was highly criticized and often discounted. Kant, perhaps better than any other philosopher attempting to address morality and duty, was able to see past the simplistic interpretation that by doing well for others a person could achieve morality and efficiently commit to their “duties’. According to Younkins, “Kant holds that the pursuit of a person’s own happiness is of no moral worth whatsoever” This is because Kant felt that in order to be truly moral a person’s actions must be absent of personal desire, gain or consideration. In that end, Kant, according to Younkins posited that in order to achieve morality the decisions to act must be 1) not meant to attain
His solution is that people should be guided by the moral law, which can be discovered by pure reason alone, and which says that any action should be judged by whether or not it could serve as a principle in a universal law. However, I argue that Kant’s proposed ethical system fails in two ways. First, it lacks the compelling power that Kant thinks it has. Second, if the moral law is accessible via reason alone, then different cultures should not come up with the radically different ethical systems that they have come up with over history. Kant wants to establish an true basis for ethics.
It would be wrong, for example, to make a promise with the intention of breaking it because if everyone did that, no one would believe anyone's promises. In ethics, Kant tried to show that doing one's duty consisted in following only those principles that one would accept as applying equally to all. Kant objects most of all to the principle that one's own happiness can be the ground of morality. He rejects this possibility because well-being is not always proportionate to virtuous behavior. By this I mean that one manÕs well being is not always universal to all.
If the world did not have goodwill, then one may argue that no good can exist. Because people would not be willing to do good things unless for their own purposes. Harrison claims that,“A Kantian follower would say that the maxims are important because it gives us all a foundation for the differences between being morally good or bad”. If one can do an action in some sort that can be put into a universal maxim. Therefore, you are acting ethically.