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Immanuel Kant's "Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals"

by: Yisu

Immanuel Kant's "Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals" 358

Marketplace > University of New Mexico > PHIL-Philosophy > 358 > Immanuel Kant s Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals
GPA 3.7
Ethical Theory
Brent Kalar

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About this Document

Notes on beginning "Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals" by Immanuel Kant after the initial weeks of the course covering Utilitarianism centered around John S. Mill.
Ethical Theory
Brent Kalar
Class Notes
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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Yisu on Saturday September 26, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to 358 at University of New Mexico taught by Brent Kalar in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 47 views. For similar materials see Ethical Theory in PHIL-Philosophy at University of New Mexico.

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Date Created: 09/26/15
Immanuel Kant s Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals In contrast with ideas of the Utilitarian school of thought from earlier in the course Kant advocates that it is not the end results that matter in seeking to perform the moral and right actions in life but only the Will of the person acting being good when he she acts Kant is also not an empiricist meaning he believes values of morality that determines what is good and what isn t eXists independent of what humans decide them to be based on our own experiences and these laws already eXist and can be reached by way of logic 1 Laws here contrast with what is basically generalities arrived by empiricismeXperience since laws are much more absolute than such and such is generally the case that tends to be associated with empiricism Kant is interested in determining what is good without limitationqualificationconditionquot that is what is good unconditionally no matter what and needing no justification other than itself And he determines that it is only the Good Will from which a person can act that can do this 1 He also considers other candidates for the good without qualification such as courage power or self control each of these values are examples of what he calls Talents of the Mind Gifts of Fortune and Virtues of Character respectively But none of them are unconditionally good because they can all be used or possessed without the person necessarily intending to do any good with them they can all be used to evil or amoral ends The Will is akin to a person s intentions or hisher nature It is not merely a wish for good either and requires action and effort in our control to be carried out but whether the person succeeds or not the Good Will is good and cannot be judged by the end result of success or failure Kant determines the function of having a Will as to be good in itself with the reason of the Teleological Principle of Nature everything nature does has a purpose Only human beings have Will and it is a facility of practical reasoning It can either give us Happiness or it is to be good in itself Since we can actually probably be much happier following our instincts eat sleep play and indulge the senses however we can and instinct often con icts With reason the Will practical reasoning is not meant to give us Happiness so it must be for being good in itself 0 Kant also gives 3 propositions about the Good Will 1 The Good Will is the Will to act from duty 2 An action from duty has moral worth not in the purpose to be attained but from the maxim that it is decided upon Maxim is a rule or policy or principle 3 Duty is the necessity of action from respect for laW Law here meaning What is morally right instead of society law


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