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.
Kant believed that following ones duty was not measurable by the end means, yet it “is good only through its willing”. This meant that it is good only if it is good in itself. He believes under the categorical imperative, one must only act upon the maxim if it is willable under the universal law. And these maxims must be contradiction free and purposeful to be considered moral. Kant believed that we as hum... ... middle of paper ... ... feel beneath you to uplift ones self.
Kant's Humanity Formula “Few formulas in philosophy have been so widely accepted and variously interpreted as Kant’s injunction to treat humanity as an end in itself”(Hill, 38). Immanuel Kant’s views, as elucidated in his book, Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals, are based on the belief that “people count” by prohibiting actions which exploit other individuals in order for self-prosperity or altruistic ends. Ethics then, are confirmed by the dignity and worth of the rational agency of each person. Since human beings are the only rational beings capable of decision making and reasonable judgement, humanity must be valued. Kant proposes a test that ensures that humanity is treated with respect, and not used merely as an instrument.
When he defines these moral rules, he characterizes them in the form of imperatives – the hypothetical imperative and categorical imperative. While hypothetical imperatives deal with motivations and actions that lead to a particular end, categorical imperatives are a product of rational behavior in human beings. Kant considers such categorical imperatives to be the moral basis for life. As a result, when a person who is “cold and indifferent to the sufferings of others’ does an action that elicits a positive response from someone by helping them, he is more morally worthy according to Kant. Such a person does this action even when he does not want or feel like doing that action.
When a person does an action out of duty, it is because the duty is something a person is ought to do, deeming the action to be morally worthy. This goes the same for the intention of good will. When a person does an action out of good will, it is because the action is simply the right thing to do or good thing to do (85). Kant goes to the ... ... middle of paper ... ...ple given where the complimented individual controls the fate of the situation by reacting offended. This uncontrollable factor can even be explained in a better example that a human cannot control Mother Nature.
Because of this inability to prove our rational perception and thus a moral principle based on that perception, we are unable to demonstrate whether our motives are truly correct. To Kant, these principles can be proven through his transcendental arguments, but there remains the fact that he agreed sensory (and thus transcendental) experience could not be accepted as fact. Because of his lack of definite statement, Kant fails to prove through his arguments that correct thought or action can be universal. People attempt to describe good based on virtuous thought. Virtuous thought supposes that a virtuous person has a fairly explicit concept of what is moral.
An example would be life and death. Wherever there is life, there is always death to oppose it. Kant’s theory of how good must have bad and bad must have good is exactly like what yin and yang is so there is no doubt in why I agree with Kant’s claim. Apart from whether I think his claim is plausible or not, I truly believe that Kant’s theory on morality is the most accurate. I don’t think that a person’s morality is based on the consequences of their actions.
Several other philosophers such as Hannah Arendt discuss Kant’s moral philosophy. In her case study: “The Accused and Duties of a Law-Abiding Citizen”, Arendt examines how Adolf Eichmann’s actions conformed to Kant’s moral precepts but also how they ran of afoul to his conception of duty. In contrast, John Stuart Mill adopts a teleological view of moral philosophy. He exposes his view of consequentialism and utilitarianism to argue that an action is morally right only to the extent that it maximizes the aggregate happiness of all parties involved regardless of the motive. In the present paper, I will expose Kant’s moral precepts and the importance of duty in his Deontological principles.
This is not an ideal situation because placing a slight neglect to a duty or obligation that you might not find appeal in defeats the purpose of completing all of the obligations set for us to go through with. Kant’s thesis has strength in the fact that the universal law seems closely related to the golden rule, which is do on to others as you would have others do on to you. With a statement as such it is awfully arduous to not perform a moral action. The weakness still lies in the fact Kant takes little to no consideration to humans’ natural emotions and feelings. Leading a moral life does not have to be a melancholy life, one in which you are bound to an endless amount of duties that you can seek no joy in.
This includes weighing the pros and cons of decisions that could be made and how they affect others either positively or negatively. This is called rational thought. Kant believed that any human being able to rationalize a decision before it was made had the ability to be a morally just person (Freeman, 2000). There were certain things that made the decision moral, and he called it the “Categorical Imperative” (Johnson, 2008). If someone was immoral they violated this CI and were considered irrational.