Aquinas Theory Of Natural Law

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Natural Law roots can be traced to ancient Greco-Roman times mentioned by various renown philosophers such as Cicero, Plato and Aristotle. The advent and rise of Christianity through Medieval Europe has decidedly coloured the theory with a religious flavour, so to speak, in the form of the foremost classical natural law authority, St. Thomas Aquinas. Being heavily influenced by Aristotle , Aquinas views law as “a rule or measure of human acts, whereby a person is induced to act or is restrained from acting” Whether an action is good or bad depends on whether it accords to reason. He introduced the concept of eternal law in which there is an ingrained law within us according to our nature, and that we have the inherent ability to discern…show more content…
He does not hold the view of the content of the law being morally constricted, but there exists certain moral constraints on procedural mechanisms on how laws are made and carried out. He sees his inner morality principles as a procedural version of natural law on how behavioural guides should be created and carried out in order for it to be effective. And while classical naturalists believe on the effect the moral constraints operate on individual laws, Fuller sees morality providing constraint not just on individual laws but on the legal system’s existence. Law is interconnected with, changes and grows in line to reflect the needs of society, The court’s role is not a passive one, it takes an active role in explaining the significance of a shared purpose in a symbiotic relationship with society, with law providing order. He views the law as an activity and the legal system as the product of a sustained purposive effort . To Fuller, the law’s purpose is to “achiev[e] [social] order through subjecting people’s conduct to the guidance of general rules by which they may themselves orient their behavior ”. The revival and evolution of modern natural law concept came about as a form of criticism against H.L.A. Hart, notably by Fuller, Devlin and Dworkin in their rebuttal to Hart’s published lecture . Hart identifying a positivist view espoused the conceptual separation of law and morality and a legal system can function as effectively even if it is neither just
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