E.g. "Do not murder"
Should never conflict
E.g. "Do not steal"
Something is only good when they carry out their duty
We cannot act purely from feelings and emotion
However you are allowed to feel happy when performing a moral action as it is a reward for doing good
The action must be based on reason
The moral law is unchanging and universal as it is based on duty
If you “can”, it means you “ought”
We should not act out of love or compassion
We must do our duty for the sake of duty
Proven true by observation
E.g. "Mary has red hair"
The mind is a blank slate
We gain knowledge of the world using sense experience
Experience is our only knowlege
Locke and Hume
Based on duty
Does not depend on depend on desires or motives
E.g. "Do not murder"
Deontological (Duty based)
Humans have an end (Telos) called the 'Summum bonum'
Morality applies to all rational beings
Based on actions and not consequences
Based on inclination or desire/motive
Are not moral commands as they do not apply to everyone (Universal)
Usually start with "If....Then"
E.g. If you want to stay healthy then you should take exercise regularly
The test of the categorical imperative
It tells us what we ought to do
The formula of the law of nature
"Act only according to the maxim whereby you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law"
Moral laws must be applied to all situations
Maxims must be universal without contradictions
Distinguishes moral maxims from non-moral maxims
The formula of end in itself
"So act as to treat humanity, whether in your own person or in that of any other, never solely as a means but always as an end"
We should not use other rational beings as a means to an end
We should treas other peoples freedom with respect
It is our duty to treat humans as ends in themselves
The formula of a kingdom of ends
"Act as if you live in a kingdom of ends"
We should act for the goodness of society first
Moral judgements should not be based on any empirical consideration
Propositions are known to be true before experience (A priori)
Proven true by definition
Denying the statement would involve a contradiction
E.g. "All bachelors are unmarried men"
The world is knowable a priori
Knowledge can we acquired through logic and reason
Descartes and Leibniz
The only true good is good will
Must be a free choice
A person with good will acts purely out of duty
The highest form of good
Moral acts must be performed freely
Hypothetical imperatives are based o desires that control us meaning we are not free
Humans are free to perform moral choices
We have to be free to perform our duty
Normal and moral statements
"A priori analytic"
Knowable without experience and verifiable through reason"
"A priori synthetic"
Knowable without experience and can be checked with experience