Kant first mentions his categorical imperative when talking about it in relation to universal law. He writes, “I should never act except in such a way that I can also will that my maxim should become a universal law” (Kant 14). What he means by this is that he should never act in a way that is harmful to other. His actions must apply to everyone and always result in good.
What he is also saying in this passage is that one’s actions in such a situation should be selfless. One should not do good deeds for his or her own personal benefit. He or she should be doing so because it is his or her own personal duty.
Kant’s first example in which he applies his principle is suicide. He argues that if a man takes his own life, he may be fulfilling his personal duty by taking away his pain, but he would then be inflicting pain on others, and would not be fulfilling his personal duty to those who would have lost him.
Kant’s argument is successful whe...
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...se selflessness and the need to help others derive themselves from it.
In Section One and Section Two of his work. Kant explores his position on his fundamental principle of morality, or his “categorical imperative”, or his idea that all actions are moral and “good” if they are performed as a duty. Such an idea is exemplified when he says, “I should never act except in such a way that I can also will that my maxim should become a universal law” (Kant 14). The philosopher uses examples such as suicide and helping others in distress to apply his principal to possible real life situation. Kant is successful in regards to both issues. As a result, it means that categorical imperative can plausibly be understood as the fundamental principle of all morality. Kant’s reasoning for his categorical imperative is written in a way that makes the theory out to be very plausible.
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