In this essay, I will show that Immanuel Kant is wrong to think that the only good without limitation is the good will. My first step in defending this thesis will be to review Kant’s argument about how the good will is intrinsically good. I will then try to undermine his view by showing it supports implausible claims. For example, the premise of Kant’s claim is that good will is unconditioned. However, the good will may depend on outside factors to bring about good in a person.
Different from consequentialism, people who tend to have the mind set of a deontologist believe that you should do your ethical duty, regardless of the outcome. Immanuel Kant designed ‘The Categorical Imperative’ theory which was associated with the fact that it was commanding us to practice our morals and desires in a specific way which was exercised through two rules. Kamm (2000) claims that these components were to ‘(1) treat persons as ends in themselves and (2) do not treat them as mere means’. Kamm is basically suggesting that we seek happiness of others, as that is morally right, however fulfill capacities of one’s own intellect. From following both of these we arrive at an imperative and it is categorical.
Kant emphasizes the role of the moral philosopher to reveal the ambiguity about what it is moral to be crystal clear, and humans are rational beings who should strive for moral maxims motivated by the good will. Furthermore, he argues that human don not need a moral philosopher to show which action is right, we already know what he calls the common human reason. Kant favours to endeavor to do the right actions over the good actions as his attempts to portray the ideal world or the moral utopia. Kantian Deontology theory and the Categorical Imperatives frameworks urge decision-makers to strive for beneficence as a mean to resolve the challenging ethical dilemmas they face, obligating the decision-maker to act ethically and morally motivated by duty. The categorical imperatives are impartial, autonomous, and strict by which tackle respecting others and their dignity, universalize the maxims of our actions, and targeting the Kingdom of
Duty as in that we are morally obligated to act in accordance with a certain set of principles and rules regardless of outcome. This theory asserts that an action is considered 'morally good ' because of some characteristic of the action itself, not because the result of the action is good. Expressions such as "virtue is its own reward" and Duty for duty 's sake" are used to attest to the believe that in deontological ethics, some acts are morally obligatory regardless of their consequences for human welfare. Since utilitarian 's believe that all actions must seek to produce the greatest good for the greatest number of people, this would still apply even if that act harms an innocent person. A simple example would be that if a surgeon could save three lives by harvesting the organs of one healthy person, then this is entirely acceptable as it 's helping the greater number.
Plato’s republic aims to describe a just state, and in turn a just individual consistently throughout the text. By analogising the justice of the state and the justice of the individual, Plato attempts to demonstrate that a just society will breed just individuals. However, there are certain loop holes within his thought process that can lead one to wonder whether or not his ideas are pragmatic, and could function within a real societal structure- and if human beings given their inherently selfish nature, can adopt the traits necessary in order to achieve justice and the ideal state described in the Republic. Plato described the human soul as a “tripartite soul” where three main qualities seen in the human being, will also be reflected in the three classes of the ideal state. Reason is the highest of the three main qualities, and it forms the class of rulers and guardians.
In the Groundwork, the notion of the good does not rely on feeling or sensation; rather than it derives from the rational directly. Kant points out that every motive has an intended effect on the world. When desire drives us, we first examine the possibilities that the world leaves open to us, selecting some effect at which we wish to aim. But, if we act in accord with practical moral law, we encounter a significant difference since the only possible object of the practical law is the Good, since the Good is always an appropriate object for the practical law. Viewing the Good as rational consolidates
Instead of focusing on consequences, deontological ethics focus on duties and obligation: things we ought to do regardless of the consequences. While utilitarian ethics focuses on producing the greatest happiness for the greatest number, deontological ethics focuses on what makes us worthy of happiness. For Kant, as for the Stocis and other who emphasize duty, we are worthy of happiness only when we do our duty. As Kant explained, morality “is not properly the doctrine of how we are to make ourselves happy but of how we are to become worthy of happiness.” For Kant, morality is not a “doctrine of happiness” or set of instructions on how to become happy. Rather, morality is the “rational condition of happiness”
He analyzes the moral obligations that exist and states that if someone performs a moral duty but also acts on one of the four natural inclinations then the meaning behind their actions are weaker and therefore less important. An action performed for moral duty without any tendency towards natural inclination hold the truest form of moral duty that we should all strive to perform for others in order to become a better society that is more understanding and respectful of the people around us. With Immanuel Kant’s ideas on moral duty and inclination we can continue to further analyze our actions and the actions of others that we see to gain the best perspective possible. Teaching moral duties without reason may be simple but I believe it to be detrimental in the long run as these types of actions are the glue that holds us all together with our social interactions, pursuit of knowledge and desire to
Immanuel Kant who was a moral philosopher came up with the theory of duty for the sake of duty where he states that one should do good for the sake of doing good, not because there is something to gain from it but for the will of doing good, this is not the same with human rights because human rights are there to govern people from doing what is wrong and unjust, they involve the emotional state of the person and they also have exceptions whereas Kant’s moral theory leaves no room for
(Hunter, 2001, p.306) There is no exception for rational individuals in the world to escape from the law of categorical imperative. The presentation of categorical imperative is somehow like a test of morality (Hunter, 2001, p.306), rather than just a moral concept. Moral maxim is of vital necessity in the determination of morality for an action. From Kant’s view, an action can be treated as moral when it is motivated by one’s maxim, while it also suits the universal law. (Hunter, 2001, p.306) Therefore, it can be concluded that moral maxim is the standard of deciding whether an action is moral or not.