0
   

Kant's Good and Bad

 
 
Reply Fri 8 Apr, 2011 01:06 am
Does Kant say that everything, EVERY imaginable human act can be categorized as either good or bad? For example, the act of turning the lights on when its gets dark. How does Kant classify that? I don't see how you could see such an act as either good or bad. If its good, how does Kant see the 'a priori' contributing to it? Furthermore, how would Kant phrase the maxim for such an act?

What if I thought that the presence of light in darkness (night time) could lead to permanent blindness? Lets say I had been made to think in such a way because of what my parents and teachers taught me.
  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Question • Score: 0 • Views: 1,843 • Replies: 3
No top replies

 
G H
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Apr, 2011 10:13 am
@Jahangir,
To be universally and absolutely good, something must be good in every instance of its occurrence. What people consider good by habit or custom could become extremely bad and mischievous if the will which is to make use of them...is not good.

Thus, only one good-in-itself according to Kant: "Nothing can possibly be conceived in the world, or even out of it, which can be called good without qualification, except a good will."

"Good will" = acting out of a sense of moral obligation or "duty", by reasoning recognizing it is the right thing to do (globally applicable) rather than being swayed or manipulated by personal or local consequences (what's good or bad for me, or good or bad for those just here, this place and time).
0 Replies
 
MrSandman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Apr, 2011 10:24 am
@Jahangir,
Jahangir wrote:

Does Kant say that everything, EVERY imaginable human act can be categorized as either good or bad? For example, the act of turning the lights on when its gets dark. How does Kant classify that? I don't see how you could see such an act as either good or bad. If its good, how does Kant see the 'a priori' contributing to it? Furthermore, how would Kant phrase the maxim for such an act?

What if I thought that the presence of light in darkness (night time) could lead to permanent blindness? Lets say I had been made to think in such a way because of what my parents and teachers taught me.


I think you're taking him a little too literally. I don't remember reading him saying every act as being classified as good or bad. I remember him putting differences on context of perception making laws and some laws being innate or was it immutable? Such as, killing is a contextual law while the need to turn the lights on are innate to all. "It's dark, I can't see; I need light." Actually, that's probably contextual too, since we'd only know about light if we experienced it.

Well, it was a long time ago when I studied him and it was only two writings. Critique of Pure Reason and Critique of Practical Reason. I remember them both being challenging and humbling to read. They say brilliance is borderline crazy. Knowing the little I do about Kant's life, I think he's a good argument for that!
0 Replies
 
amist
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 May, 2011 07:44 am
@Jahangir,
Jahangir wrote:

Does Kant say that everything, EVERY imaginable human act can be categorized as either good or bad? For example, the act of turning the lights on when its gets dark. How does Kant classify that? I don't see how you could see such an act as either good or bad. If its good, how does Kant see the 'a priori' contributing to it? Furthermore, how would Kant phrase the maxim for such an act?

What if I thought that the presence of light in darkness (night time) could lead to permanent blindness? Lets say I had been made to think in such a way because of what my parents and teachers taught me.


No, Kant does not say that every imaginable human act is either good or bad. Turning the lights on when it gets dark does not violate the Categorical Imperative (so it's not bad), nor does the Categorical Imperative obligate you to turn on the lights when it gets dark. It's an action that is simply permissable but has no moral worth.
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

How can we be sure? - Discussion by Raishu-tensho
Proof of nonexistence of free will - Discussion by litewave
morals and ethics, how are they different? - Question by existential potential
Destroy My Belief System, Please! - Discussion by Thomas
Star Wars in Philosophy. - Discussion by Logicus
Existence of Everything. - Discussion by Logicus
Is it better to be feared or loved? - Discussion by Black King
 
  1. Forums
  2. » Kant's Good and Bad
Copyright © 2021 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.05 seconds on 09/23/2021 at 03:09:30