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Author Topic: Kant and the Categorical Imperative  (Read 1229 times) Average Rating: 0
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orthonorm
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« on: December 27, 2011, 06:58:41 PM »

Philippians 1:6
"..being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."

I don't see this confidence in Orthodoxy. I see guilt, unworthiness and a burden that crushes people not a liberating freedom which causes people to rejoice in the work of the cross.

The cost and total of sin when it is full grown being death itself. Death is the result of sin and Christ dealt with them both. That i should be able to continue in sin knowing i can do so freely? Not at all! There may not be the same consequences but there are still consequences to myself spiritually in that i fail to grow as i should and i fail to mature. I stumble myself and could cause my foolish heart to be darkened.

To someone who is not really regenerated, transformed and enlightened in their heart, yes it would mean they could abuse that idea and continue to sin without much thought. To those who have been, the desire to sin becomes less and less as they make choices from their new nature. 2 Corinthians 5:17 "....a new creation" - Galatians 2:20 "....it is no longer i that live but Christ in me"


The problem is, you don't know you're really regenerated. You can say, "I probably am," but at the end of the day no one can say with absolute, 100% certainty that in their heart of hearts they really believe and they really bare the fruits of salvation.

Any hope for "assurance" of the kind preached by the Reformers was killed off by Herr Immanuel Kant.

And that's no reason to despair, trust me.

Nice. Care to expound?

Which part of Kant are you referring to?

Yes, this is a test.

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orthonorm
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« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2011, 07:28:53 PM »

I'm spotty on his epistemology, but it seems to me that the point about mediated sensory knowledge with the analogy of the ideological spectacles functions as a neat refutation of the Puritan reflex action whether one conceives of it in terms of fruits of obedience or in some sort of "inner witness."

So you haven't read his Critiques per se?

Here is something that I find interesting.

Everyone, like everyone, knows about Kant's Categorical Imperative.

The thing is, is why does such a great thinker end up with what seems like such a silly and absurd notion of ethical behavior?

And forget the arguments given in the Groundwork.

I often suspect that most students even in analytical programs forgo reading all the Critiques, frankly the "third" being the crown of them all.

People go on about the deontological nature of the Imperative, but I think fail to grasp the powerful and striking context surrounding the reasons for Kant's ethical formulation, yes I mean that emphasis.

And by people, I mean moderately educated folks who probably got rushed through a survey philosophy series.



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« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2011, 07:41:40 PM »

I'm spotty on his epistemology, but it seems to me that the point about mediated sensory knowledge with the analogy of the ideological spectacles functions as a neat refutation of the Puritan reflex action whether one conceives of it in terms of fruits of obedience or in some sort of "inner witness."

So you haven't read his Critiques per se?
Nope, just gleaning from other sources, my ethics survey course included.  Embarrassed

Here is something that I find interesting.

Everyone, like everyone, knows about Kant's Categorical Imperative.

The thing is, is why does such a great thinker end up with what seems like such a silly and absurd notion of ethical behavior?

And forget the arguments given in the Groundwork.

I often suspect that most students even in analytical programs forgo reading all the Critiques, frankly the "third" being the crown of them all.

People go on about the deontological nature of the Imperative, but I think fail to grasp the powerful and striking context surrounding the reasons for Kant's ethical formulation, yes I mean that emphasis.

And by people, I mean moderately educated folks who probably got rushed through a survey philosophy series.




Well, I've only looked at the Groundwork. laugh From what I picked up, he considers human autonomy and moral equality to be true by definition because if everyone took advantage of everyone else then they would be using their own autonomy to ensure nobody has anymore autonomy (for Kant a logical contradiction, autonomy can't cancel itself out).

Therefore one cannot give himself a privilege (for example, life) which he would deny to anybody else, hence the need to "will it be a universal law." To murder is to say that your victim's life is dependent on your own desires, he has no autonomy. To commit suicide is to use your autonomy to make sure you never make another choice again.

I hope to read the Critiques one of this days.
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orthonorm
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« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2011, 07:48:21 PM »

I'm spotty on his epistemology, but it seems to me that the point about mediated sensory knowledge with the analogy of the ideological spectacles functions as a neat refutation of the Puritan reflex action whether one conceives of it in terms of fruits of obedience or in some sort of "inner witness."

So you haven't read his Critiques per se?
Nope, just gleaning from other sources, my ethics survey course included.  Embarrassed

Here is something that I find interesting.

Everyone, like everyone, knows about Kant's Categorical Imperative.

The thing is, is why does such a great thinker end up with what seems like such a silly and absurd notion of ethical behavior?

And forget the arguments given in the Groundwork.

I often suspect that most students even in analytical programs forgo reading all the Critiques, frankly the "third" being the crown of them all.

People go on about the deontological nature of the Imperative, but I think fail to grasp the powerful and striking context surrounding the reasons for Kant's ethical formulation, yes I mean that emphasis.

And by people, I mean moderately educated folks who probably got rushed through a survey philosophy series.




Well, I've only looked at the Groundwork. laugh From what I picked up, he considers human autonomy and moral equality to be true by definition because if everyone took advantage of everyone else then they would be using their own autonomy to ensure nobody has anymore autonomy (for Kant a logical contradiction, autonomy can't cancel itself out).

Therefore one cannot give himself a privilege (for example, life) which he would deny to anybody else, hence the need to "will it be a universal law." To murder is to say that your victim's life is dependent on your own desires, he has no autonomy. To commit suicide is to use your autonomy to make sure you never make another choice again.

I hope to read the Critiques one of this days.

This is why the Groundwork IMHO should be tossed in the trash, it decontexualizes Kant's radical turn in Western Thought. People miss the tree for the trees.

So, if you had to describe the method at work here, how would you describe it? See above posts for clues.

And does the method have some relationship to the nature of what is being analyzed thought?

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orthonorm
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« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2011, 07:51:04 PM »

i'm not surprised that people find it hard to tell who is and who isn't saved by looking at people

From Kant to Kierkegaard.

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orthonorm
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« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2011, 08:00:48 PM »


I know He really drew me because any move towards God is good and it's a gift of His grace and every good gift comes from God (James 1:17)

I know i'm not merely lying to myself because if my focus was on myself and how well i was doing then i'm not surprised that people find it hard to tell who is and who isn't saved by looking at people or indeed if we look at ourselves (and ultimately feel bad about our progress as we all might do). I have to trust what Christ has said in His word for my answer not by looking at myself for the answer to that question. The account of the wheat and the tares reminds us not to try and figure out who is and who isn't because we will invariably get it all wrong.

Christ has said that he will complete the work He has started.
You didn't answer my question. All you have is the naked assumption that you're already in. You don't know if Jesus even moved you in the first place.

Now Descartes.

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« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2011, 08:02:37 PM »


I know He really drew me because any move towards God is good and it's a gift of His grace and every good gift comes from God (James 1:17)

I know i'm not merely lying to myself because if my focus was on myself and how well i was doing then i'm not surprised that people find it hard to tell who is and who isn't saved by looking at people or indeed if we look at ourselves (and ultimately feel bad about our progress as we all might do). I have to trust what Christ has said in His word for my answer not by looking at myself for the answer to that question. The account of the wheat and the tares reminds us not to try and figure out who is and who isn't because we will invariably get it all wrong.

Christ has said that he will complete the work He has started.
You didn't answer my question. All you have is the naked assumption that you're already in. You don't know if Jesus even moved you in the first place.

Now Descartes.


Indubitably.
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orthonorm
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« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2011, 08:06:03 PM »

I'm spotty on his epistemology, but it seems to me that the point about mediated sensory knowledge with the analogy of the ideological spectacles functions as a neat refutation of the Puritan reflex action whether one conceives of it in terms of fruits of obedience or in some sort of "inner witness."

So you haven't read his Critiques per se?
Nope, just gleaning from other sources, my ethics survey course included.  Embarrassed

Here is something that I find interesting.

Everyone, like everyone, knows about Kant's Categorical Imperative.

The thing is, is why does such a great thinker end up with what seems like such a silly and absurd notion of ethical behavior?

And forget the arguments given in the Groundwork.

I often suspect that most students even in analytical programs forgo reading all the Critiques, frankly the "third" being the crown of them all.

People go on about the deontological nature of the Imperative, but I think fail to grasp the powerful and striking context surrounding the reasons for Kant's ethical formulation, yes I mean that emphasis.

And by people, I mean moderately educated folks who probably got rushed through a survey philosophy series.




Well, I've only looked at the Groundwork. laugh From what I picked up, he considers human autonomy and moral equality to be true by definition because if everyone took advantage of everyone else then they would be using their own autonomy to ensure nobody has anymore autonomy (for Kant a logical contradiction, autonomy can't cancel itself out).

Therefore one cannot give himself a privilege (for example, life) which he would deny to anybody else, hence the need to "will it be a universal law." To murder is to say that your victim's life is dependent on your own desires, he has no autonomy. To commit suicide is to use your autonomy to make sure you never make another choice again.

I hope to read the Critiques one of this days.

This is why the Groundwork IMHO should be tossed in the trash, it decontexualizes Kant's radical turn in Western Thought. People miss the tree for the trees.

So, if you had to describe the method at work here, how would you describe it? See above posts for clues.

And does the method have some relationship to the nature of what is being analyzed thought?


I suppose the method is something along the lines of interrogating the logical implications of statements such as "I have free will" and and see under what circumstances these possible implications can possibly be made to contradict themselves. Socratic monologue, if you will.

The nature of morality is the description and prescription of human actions, so having a logically consistent set of prescriptions for behavior is very important.

Is that what you're driving toward?

This is what I am talking about. Tree for the trees. Or maybe you already know what I am getting at and ain't as fascinated by this

Can we agree the following is a good enough gloss of the CI:

Quote
Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.

I got it from wikipedia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categorical_imperative

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Posts: 3,712


Holy Russia vs. Soup


« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2011, 08:10:01 PM »

I'm spotty on his epistemology, but it seems to me that the point about mediated sensory knowledge with the analogy of the ideological spectacles functions as a neat refutation of the Puritan reflex action whether one conceives of it in terms of fruits of obedience or in some sort of "inner witness."

So you haven't read his Critiques per se?
Nope, just gleaning from other sources, my ethics survey course included.  Embarrassed

Here is something that I find interesting.

Everyone, like everyone, knows about Kant's Categorical Imperative.

The thing is, is why does such a great thinker end up with what seems like such a silly and absurd notion of ethical behavior?

And forget the arguments given in the Groundwork.

I often suspect that most students even in analytical programs forgo reading all the Critiques, frankly the "third" being the crown of them all.

People go on about the deontological nature of the Imperative, but I think fail to grasp the powerful and striking context surrounding the reasons for Kant's ethical formulation, yes I mean that emphasis.

And by people, I mean moderately educated folks who probably got rushed through a survey philosophy series.




Well, I've only looked at the Groundwork. laugh From what I picked up, he considers human autonomy and moral equality to be true by definition because if everyone took advantage of everyone else then they would be using their own autonomy to ensure nobody has anymore autonomy (for Kant a logical contradiction, autonomy can't cancel itself out).

Therefore one cannot give himself a privilege (for example, life) which he would deny to anybody else, hence the need to "will it be a universal law." To murder is to say that your victim's life is dependent on your own desires, he has no autonomy. To commit suicide is to use your autonomy to make sure you never make another choice again.

I hope to read the Critiques one of this days.

This is why the Groundwork IMHO should be tossed in the trash, it decontexualizes Kant's radical turn in Western Thought. People miss the tree for the trees.

So, if you had to describe the method at work here, how would you describe it? See above posts for clues.

And does the method have some relationship to the nature of what is being analyzed thought?


I suppose the method is something along the lines of interrogating the logical implications of statements such as "I have free will" and and see under what circumstances these possible implications can possibly be made to contradict themselves. Socratic monologue, if you will.

The nature of morality is the description and prescription of human actions, so having a logically consistent set of prescriptions for behavior is very important.

Is that what you're driving toward?

This is what I am talking about. Tree for the trees. Or maybe you already know what I am getting at and ain't as fascinated by this

Can we agree the following is a good enough gloss of the CI:

Quote
Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.

I got it from wikipedia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categorical_imperative


Yes, we can.
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orthonorm
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Hoplitarches
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Posts: 16,670



« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2011, 08:14:04 PM »

I'm spotty on his epistemology, but it seems to me that the point about mediated sensory knowledge with the analogy of the ideological spectacles functions as a neat refutation of the Puritan reflex action whether one conceives of it in terms of fruits of obedience or in some sort of "inner witness."

So you haven't read his Critiques per se?
Nope, just gleaning from other sources, my ethics survey course included.  Embarrassed

Here is something that I find interesting.

Everyone, like everyone, knows about Kant's Categorical Imperative.

The thing is, is why does such a great thinker end up with what seems like such a silly and absurd notion of ethical behavior?

And forget the arguments given in the Groundwork.

I often suspect that most students even in analytical programs forgo reading all the Critiques, frankly the "third" being the crown of them all.

People go on about the deontological nature of the Imperative, but I think fail to grasp the powerful and striking context surrounding the reasons for Kant's ethical formulation, yes I mean that emphasis.

And by people, I mean moderately educated folks who probably got rushed through a survey philosophy series.




Well, I've only looked at the Groundwork. laugh From what I picked up, he considers human autonomy and moral equality to be true by definition because if everyone took advantage of everyone else then they would be using their own autonomy to ensure nobody has anymore autonomy (for Kant a logical contradiction, autonomy can't cancel itself out).

Therefore one cannot give himself a privilege (for example, life) which he would deny to anybody else, hence the need to "will it be a universal law." To murder is to say that your victim's life is dependent on your own desires, he has no autonomy. To commit suicide is to use your autonomy to make sure you never make another choice again.

I hope to read the Critiques one of this days.

This is why the Groundwork IMHO should be tossed in the trash, it decontexualizes Kant's radical turn in Western Thought. People miss the tree for the trees.

So, if you had to describe the method at work here, how would you describe it? See above posts for clues.

And does the method have some relationship to the nature of what is being analyzed thought?


I suppose the method is something along the lines of interrogating the logical implications of statements such as "I have free will" and and see under what circumstances these possible implications can possibly be made to contradict themselves. Socratic monologue, if you will.

The nature of morality is the description and prescription of human actions, so having a logically consistent set of prescriptions for behavior is very important.

Is that what you're driving toward?

This is what I am talking about. Tree for the trees. Or maybe you already know what I am getting at and ain't as fascinated by this

Can we agree the following is a good enough gloss of the CI:

Quote
Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.

I got it from wikipedia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categorical_imperative


Yes, we can.

And can we agree this approximates the Decalog?

Quote from:  Exodus 20:1-17
And God spoke all these words, saying: “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
You shall have no other gods before me.
 
You shall not make for yourself any carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
 
You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
 
Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
 
Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
 
You shall not murder.
 
You shall not commit adultery.
 
You shall not steal.
 
You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
 
You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.

googled from here:

http://www.bible-knowledge.com/10-commandments/

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Volnutt
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Faith: Protestant Universalist
Posts: 3,712


Holy Russia vs. Soup


« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2011, 08:28:18 PM »

I'm spotty on his epistemology, but it seems to me that the point about mediated sensory knowledge with the analogy of the ideological spectacles functions as a neat refutation of the Puritan reflex action whether one conceives of it in terms of fruits of obedience or in some sort of "inner witness."

So you haven't read his Critiques per se?
Nope, just gleaning from other sources, my ethics survey course included.  Embarrassed

Here is something that I find interesting.

Everyone, like everyone, knows about Kant's Categorical Imperative.

The thing is, is why does such a great thinker end up with what seems like such a silly and absurd notion of ethical behavior?

And forget the arguments given in the Groundwork.

I often suspect that most students even in analytical programs forgo reading all the Critiques, frankly the "third" being the crown of them all.

People go on about the deontological nature of the Imperative, but I think fail to grasp the powerful and striking context surrounding the reasons for Kant's ethical formulation, yes I mean that emphasis.

And by people, I mean moderately educated folks who probably got rushed through a survey philosophy series.




Well, I've only looked at the Groundwork. laugh From what I picked up, he considers human autonomy and moral equality to be true by definition because if everyone took advantage of everyone else then they would be using their own autonomy to ensure nobody has anymore autonomy (for Kant a logical contradiction, autonomy can't cancel itself out).

Therefore one cannot give himself a privilege (for example, life) which he would deny to anybody else, hence the need to "will it be a universal law." To murder is to say that your victim's life is dependent on your own desires, he has no autonomy. To commit suicide is to use your autonomy to make sure you never make another choice again.

I hope to read the Critiques one of this days.

This is why the Groundwork IMHO should be tossed in the trash, it decontexualizes Kant's radical turn in Western Thought. People miss the tree for the trees.

So, if you had to describe the method at work here, how would you describe it? See above posts for clues.

And does the method have some relationship to the nature of what is being analyzed thought?


I suppose the method is something along the lines of interrogating the logical implications of statements such as "I have free will" and and see under what circumstances these possible implications can possibly be made to contradict themselves. Socratic monologue, if you will.

The nature of morality is the description and prescription of human actions, so having a logically consistent set of prescriptions for behavior is very important.

Is that what you're driving toward?

This is what I am talking about. Tree for the trees. Or maybe you already know what I am getting at and ain't as fascinated by this

Can we agree the following is a good enough gloss of the CI:

Quote
Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.

I got it from wikipedia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categorical_imperative


Yes, we can.

And can we agree this approximates the Decalog?

Quote from:  Exodus 20:1-17
And God spoke all these words, saying: “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
You shall have no other gods before me.
 
You shall not make for yourself any carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
 
You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
 
Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
 
Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
 
You shall not murder.
 
You shall not commit adultery.
 
You shall not steal.
 
You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
 
You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.

googled from here:

http://www.bible-knowledge.com/10-commandments/


Ya, sir (Arafat).
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« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2011, 08:33:26 PM »

I'm spotty on his epistemology, but it seems to me that the point about mediated sensory knowledge with the analogy of the ideological spectacles functions as a neat refutation of the Puritan reflex action whether one conceives of it in terms of fruits of obedience or in some sort of "inner witness."

So you haven't read his Critiques per se?
Nope, just gleaning from other sources, my ethics survey course included.  Embarrassed

Here is something that I find interesting.

Everyone, like everyone, knows about Kant's Categorical Imperative.

The thing is, is why does such a great thinker end up with what seems like such a silly and absurd notion of ethical behavior?

And forget the arguments given in the Groundwork.

I often suspect that most students even in analytical programs forgo reading all the Critiques, frankly the "third" being the crown of them all.

People go on about the deontological nature of the Imperative, but I think fail to grasp the powerful and striking context surrounding the reasons for Kant's ethical formulation, yes I mean that emphasis.

And by people, I mean moderately educated folks who probably got rushed through a survey philosophy series.




Well, I've only looked at the Groundwork. laugh From what I picked up, he considers human autonomy and moral equality to be true by definition because if everyone took advantage of everyone else then they would be using their own autonomy to ensure nobody has anymore autonomy (for Kant a logical contradiction, autonomy can't cancel itself out).

Therefore one cannot give himself a privilege (for example, life) which he would deny to anybody else, hence the need to "will it be a universal law." To murder is to say that your victim's life is dependent on your own desires, he has no autonomy. To commit suicide is to use your autonomy to make sure you never make another choice again.

I hope to read the Critiques one of this days.

This is why the Groundwork IMHO should be tossed in the trash, it decontexualizes Kant's radical turn in Western Thought. People miss the tree for the trees.

So, if you had to describe the method at work here, how would you describe it? See above posts for clues.

And does the method have some relationship to the nature of what is being analyzed thought?


I suppose the method is something along the lines of interrogating the logical implications of statements such as "I have free will" and and see under what circumstances these possible implications can possibly be made to contradict themselves. Socratic monologue, if you will.

The nature of morality is the description and prescription of human actions, so having a logically consistent set of prescriptions for behavior is very important.

Is that what you're driving toward?

This is what I am talking about. Tree for the trees. Or maybe you already know what I am getting at and ain't as fascinated by this

Can we agree the following is a good enough gloss of the CI:

Quote
Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.

I got it from wikipedia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categorical_imperative


Yes, we can.

And can we agree this approximates the Decalog?

Quote from:  Exodus 20:1-17
And God spoke all these words, saying: “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
You shall have no other gods before me.
 
You shall not make for yourself any carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
 
You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
 
Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
 
Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
 
You shall not murder.
 
You shall not commit adultery.
 
You shall not steal.
 
You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
 
You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.

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Ya, sir (Arafat).

So what is the fundamental difference between the Decalog and the CI?

Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.

Or to speed this up internetwize:

Where does the content of the law lie?

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« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2011, 09:15:59 PM »



So what is the fundamental difference between the Decalog and the CI?

Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.

Or to speed this up internetwize:

Where does the content of the law lie?


The content lies in reason, there is no significant difference between the two as laws.

Obey God because it is only right and good to obey the creator of the universe who knows what's best for us because He designed us.

Obey the CI because it is only right and good to act in accordance with the dictates of reason for man is a rational animal by nature (I imagine that one could here also appeal to Kant's own belief in God, but I'm unclear on what the content of that belief was exactly).
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« Reply #13 on: December 29, 2011, 09:39:35 AM »

Oh well.

Since this is just a back and forth now without the original context, we can just talk about it.

From the times viewed I don't think any care too much about this in and of itself.

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« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2011, 01:18:14 PM »

They probably don't.
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« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2011, 01:50:29 PM »

They probably don't.

Reading his stuff is so boring. Maybe it's not that people don't care about what he's trying to say, but rather that they just can't conjure up the patience to get through the texts?  Wink  Cool
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« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2011, 01:53:15 PM »

I'm surprised Kant doesn't come up more in "Natural Law" arguments.
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« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2011, 04:46:08 PM »

IMHO, the problem with Kant is his underlying assumption that perfect man exists and man can perfect mankind, the siren songs of the Enlightenment that also snare Karl Marx, among many others.
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« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2011, 06:44:40 PM »

Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.
As one of my former professors pointed out, the Categorical Imperative leads to multiple absurdities.

If we must act ONLY according to maxims which we can will should be universalized, how, for example could anyone act to become a doctor? If everyone universally became a doctor, there would be no auto mechanics, elementary school teachers (to train future doctors), or cake decorators (no Cake Boss). But if he or she cannot will it universally he or she should not act according to the CI.

Reductionism to only universals would entail the death of particularity; if it would be inadvisable to will the death of particularity and diversity, it would be inadvisable to advocate the CI as an ethical maxim according to the CI itself.
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« Reply #19 on: December 29, 2011, 08:09:15 PM »

Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.
As one of my former professors pointed out, the Categorical Imperative leads to multiple absurdities.

If we must act ONLY according to maxims which we can will should be universalized, how, for example could anyone act to become a doctor? If everyone universally became a doctor, there would be no auto mechanics, elementary school teachers (to train future doctors), or cake decorators (no Cake Boss). But if he or she cannot will it universally he or she should not act according to the CI.

Reductionism to only universals would entail the death of particularity; if it would be inadvisable to will the death of particularity and diversity, it would be inadvisable to advocate the CI as an ethical maxim according to the CI itself.

I don't think that works.

Becoming a doctor is at best supererogatory. It's not wrong for me to chose not to become a doctor. Becoming a cake decorator is ethically neutral.
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« Reply #20 on: December 29, 2011, 08:09:48 PM »

They probably don't.

Reading his stuff is so boring. Maybe it's not that people don't care about what he's trying to say, but rather that they just can't conjure up the patience to get through the texts?  Wink  Cool
He is difficult, yeah.
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« Reply #21 on: December 30, 2011, 01:48:06 PM »

Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.
As one of my former professors pointed out, the Categorical Imperative leads to multiple absurdities.

If we must act ONLY according to maxims which we can will should be universalized, how, for example could anyone act to become a doctor? If everyone universally became a doctor, there would be no auto mechanics, elementary school teachers (to train future doctors), or cake decorators (no Cake Boss). But if he or she cannot will it universally he or she should not act according to the CI.

Reductionism to only universals would entail the death of particularity; if it would be inadvisable to will the death of particularity and diversity, it would be inadvisable to advocate the CI as an ethical maxim according to the CI itself.

I don't think that works.

Becoming a doctor is at best supererogatory. It's not wrong for me to chose not to become a doctor. Becoming a cake decorator is ethically neutral.
Yes, but my late Medical Ethics professor's point (a Jesuit BTW) was that the CI actually precludes those kinds of actions -unless one amends the CI, and there are consequences for the CI if/when one does this.

Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law

With Barth, Bonhoeffer and others I think Nietzsche was right; rationalistic ethics are empty and unconvincing.
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« Reply #22 on: December 30, 2011, 03:25:08 PM »

My point though is that the CI is a principle of ethics and thus by definition does not apply to actions with do not admit of being right or wrong.

All other things being equal, a question like, "Should I have sugar in my coffee?" or "Should I go to St. Vlad's or St. Tikhon's?" does not have a right or wrong answer and thus doesn't have anything to do with the CI.
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« Reply #23 on: December 30, 2011, 08:10:14 PM »

My point though is that the CI is a principle of ethics and thus by definition does not apply to actions with do not admit of being right or wrong
That's absolutely correct. However my professor's original counterexample to the CI was of the doctor, which you described as supererogation (the cake decorator, which you described as ethically neutral was in my post simply an example of what the doctor was not).

I think we are drifting into two different conversations; you are focused on ethical neutrality whereas I'm responding to your point about supererogation. The latter is controversial (supererogation as modifying or rehabilitating Kant without thereby negating Kant) whereas the former is not.

"[One] can locate a space for the supererogatory only by pressing Kant's ethics into a mold very alien to Kant.. In itself this need not be an objection, since it is certainly valuable to propose a friendly amendment to a major thinker's view, that is, an alteration that improves the view while leaving most of it intact (including, of course, what is central to it). I argue, however, that it is by no means clear either that the proposed modification improves Kant's ethics or that it leaves most of it intact" (Marcia W. Baron, Kantian Ethics Almost Without Apology (Cornell University Press), p. 29).

Or to again reference my late professor,
Quote
my late Medical Ethics professor's point (a Jesuit BTW) was that the CI actually precludes those kinds of actions -unless one amends the CI, and there are consequences for the CI if/when one does this.
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