Moral Philosophy Can Desires Research Paper

Pages: 10 (2861 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 8  ·  Level: College Sophomore  ·  Topic: Black Studies - Philosophy

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[. . .] Which type of foundation for such duties do you find more convincing? Why?

Kant deems that certain forms of actions such as theft, lying and murder are extremely prohibited even in situations where such actions would lead to happiness. The wrongness or rightness of activities neither does nor rely on their upshots, but rather on the duty they fulfill. According to Kant, Categorical Imperatives determine moral duties. Imperative refers to a command, and hence categorical imperatives command unconditionally. Categorical imperative is one of the basic struts of Kantian ethics. Kant maintains that imperatives or rule can be categorical or hypothetical. Categorical rules are binding, and they simply suggest that logic would drive the will of all practical beings to accept an imperative. Rules against murders or lying are laws that one can always discharge; things that one can refrain from performing. Such rules are called perfect duties, which should not conflict with each other. Perfect duties are binding on all rational beings at all times. Kant generates categorical imperatives through universal law generation, humanity formation and kingdom of ends formulation. When the three categorical imperatives are followed, perfect duties are realized.

Utilitarianism bases wrongness or rightness on the actual upshot achieved. The rightness or wrongness of an act is judged through the upshots the act or the rule brings. Mills asses the idea of moral duty as applying to actions, which may justifiably be needed by a coercive rule, although coercion may take the form of guilt feelings at the thought of doing the act (West 149). The utility principal specifies the end to be accomplished, which is happiness. Mill's theory is attained through adoption of morality, which is a set of rules laying down duties and rights. Utilitarianism makes actions that either offers maximal good in itself or an activity that conforms to a rule perceived to maximize the good.

Kant's categorical imperative is more convincing than Mill Utilitarianism. This is because utilitarianism gives way for imperfect duties while Categorical rules are binding and simply suggest that logic would drive the will of all practical beings to accept an imperative.

5. Is the source of a given pleasure an important factor in the value of that pleasure? Discuss the answers of Aristotle, Bentham, and Mill to this question, and how they defend their respective answers. Which view do you find most compelling? Why?

According to Aristotle, pleasure is in itself choice-worthy if it does not originate from shameful places. Aristotle positive account of pleasure starts with the assertion that pleasure is complete at any time in its duration. According to Aristotle, pleasure is not a procedure. He asserts that happiness lies within a complete self-sufficient and final end (Aristotle 16). Every human makes every exertion for a final end, and every action started must be because of a push for reaching an ultimate end. He argues human activities s are bound for a particular end . As a result, the source of a given pleasure is an important factor in the value of that pleasure

With respect to the views of John Mill and Jeremy Bentham, the source of a given pleasure is not an important factor in the value of that pleasure. This is because Mills and Bentham moral premises are founded on the presumption that human action's upshots that are considered in assessing their benefits. The type of upshot that matters is avoidance of suffering and attainment of pleasure. Both Mill and Bentham focus on the utilitarian value and they believe that human actions are correct in fraction as they have a tendency of supporting happiness. The moral worth of a given action is established by the resulting outcome, and not the source.

Aristotle view is the most compelling view because, for human, doing something calls for excellence and virtue. Therefore, living well comprises of actions that are caused through logical soul in agreement with excellence and virtue, it does not solely rely on the upshots.

6. Kant holds that his moral system is the only one not founded on what he calls "heteronomy of the will," i.e., the idea that our choices and actions are simply dictated by desires and feelings which we do not control. Compare and contrast Aristotle, Hume, Bentham, and Kant on this issue. Which view do you find most compelling? Why?

Commonsense thoughts from Kant's point-of-view actually commences with the idea that what is good is a good will. The thought of good will is a significant commonsense criterion that Kant employs throughout his work. What causes a person to be good is the will that one has. This will is the only one that establishes or forms what is moral worth. The thought of good will according to Kant leads one to making decisions that he/she thinks contain some moral worthiness (Kant, 15). Good will causes one to take moral contemplations in their inner self, which eventually help in holding reason that guide ones behavior.

Kant's moral theory comes from the idea of moral law, a rule applicable to all humans and it imposes unconditional duties. One must act with respect to a maxim qualified for universal law that allows free will. Free will according to Kant does not need external sources for inspiration, thereby making it possible for people to function out of reason. Kant argues that if people hold no will, then they have no moral choice.

On the contrary, Hume believes that reason helps in unearthing of pleasure or suffering and it is the feelings and not reasoning that makes one to act. Hume moral system is based on idea that reason by itself cannot lead to action, but feelings and desires cause action. Given that reason by itself cannot instigate action, morality according to Hume is founded in the feelings and desires of the human beings. Virtues come from acting on feelings and desires, and not from free will. As a result, Hume's moral premise is a virtue-based morality as opposed to a natural-rule morality.

It calls for a vast compact of work for a person to order his/her life in agreement with reason. Reason is the opening to a peaceful and happy life. A person who is controlled by his desires can never find peace. According to Aristotle, there are three things that make a person virtuous and good; reason, habit and nature (Aristotle 10). Human beings alone have reason and as a result, reason, habit and nature must be in harmony in human individuals for them to be virtuous and good. According to Aristotle, the ultimate goal of human beings is to get involved in active reason. Acting in accordance with reason causes pleasure and engaging active reasoning is the source of greatest pleasure (Hergenhahn 54).

According to Hume, reason handles the connection of concepts or matters of fact. An examination of common moral evils discloses neither links of concepts nor matters of fact, but only sentiment. This implies that the moral rule of reason is subjected to the control of desires, passions, feelings and an appetites.

According to Bentham, moral action is the promotion of a socially felicitous purpose or goal particularly, in attainment of good life and happiness. The Utilitarian perspective to moral action does support any moral obligation, but rather acts on feelings and desires. This is because external interests or cause controls the moral actions

Kant views that actions of human beings are morally correct in good worth of their intention that must obtain more as-of duty than from penchant are more convincing. This is because his views supports moral obligation.

Work Cited

Aristotle. Nicomachean Ethics. Irwin, Hackett, 2nd ed. 1999.

Bentham, Jeremy, John Stuart Mill. Utilitarianism and Other Essay. New York: Penguin 1987.

Hergenhahn, B.R. An introduction to the history of psychology. New York: Cengage Learning, March 30, 2008.

Hume, David. Moral Philosophy. London: Sayre-McCord, Hackett 2006

Kant, Immanuel. Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals. New York: Denis, Broadview Press 2005.

Miller, Jon. The reception of Aristotle's Ethics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012.

Tamborini, Ron. Media and the moral… [END OF PREVIEW]

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