Ethics and Natural Law: A Reconstructive Review of Moral Philosophy Applied to the Rational Art of Living

Ethics and Natural Law: A Reconstructive Review of Moral Philosophy Applied to the Rational Art of Living

Read FREE!

Ethics and Natural Law: A Reconstructive Review of Moral Philosophy Applied to the Rational Art of Living

Ethics and Natural Law: A Reconstructive Review of Moral Philosophy Applied to the Rational Art of Living

Read FREE!

Excerpt

The principles of ethics have been discussed in many comprehensive volumes. A new discussion cannot be attempted without causing the intelligent reader to ask why it is needed. Without referring to other reasons, a sufficient answer to this may be found in the fact that the war just closing has directed attention, as, perhaps, nothing before ever has, to the influence upon public sentiment and private character of certain ethical theories; and, in connection with this, to the importance of making, if possible, a more careful study than has hitherto been attempted of the practical effects of all such theories. It has come to be recognized more universally than up to this time has been the case, that none of these can be supposed to have merely a speculative or philosophic value. A reconstructive review of them, therefore, in accordance with this conception of their influence seems necessarily suggested, if not demanded.

To recall the facts with reference to the origin and development of the conception, the reader needs merely to be reminded that there has been no charitable way of explaining the alarming innovations in warfare and government which have been adopted in Germany and Russia except by attributing them less to the inherent nature of their inhabitants than to false opinions inculcated among them for many years through educational training and popular literature. Through only such agencies could whole communities have been induced to believe that the state is the source of moral authority, and that, in case of conflict between it and individual opinion and conscience, the latter must invariably be made to yield, even if this involve such clear violations of the principles of individual moral sense as are manifested in the worst results of warfare.

In Germany, the extent to which the theory that a man's . . .

Author Advanced search

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.