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Sasha Shivers

on 6 February 2017

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Transcript of NATURAL LAW

Two Models of Natural Purposes:
Efficiency Model: The function of a thing is whatever it does better than anything else.

Fitness Model: The function of a thing is to do whatever enhances fitness or success in survival and reproduction.
Is the key to morality understanding our place in the natural order of things?

The moral law is the natural law:
Moral judgments are dictates of reason
The best thing to do is whatever course of conduct has the best reasons on its side.
Making a responsible moral judgment is a matter of listening to reason.
Human nature is animal nature.
In "Natural Goodness" Foot claims that norms of good/bad are species-dependent.
We can derive moral norms from natural norms.

Human nature is what is innately human.

Human nature is what all humans have in common.

Human nature is our natural purpose.
NLT claims that morality is
...human nature
sets the standard: Morality depends on human nature, not human opinion.

NLT explains why morality is suited for human beings and not for anything else...Only humans are by nature
moral agents: those who bear responsibility for their actions.

NLT offers a clear account of the origins of morality in claiming that morality originated with human nature.

NLT thinks that moral knowledge is
observable through experience.
So What Is Human Nature?
Natural Law Theory:
Good human beings are those who fulfill their
true nature; bad human beings are those who

Just as nature operates in conformity with natural laws - laws of nature - so there are natural laws that govern how we should behave.
What is a human being for?
Aristotle argues that every moral agent acts for an end, happiness (eudaimonia)

What is the best way for man to live?
Happiness is an activity in conformity with virtue
The highest good attainable in this life: eudaimonia
The proper function of man then, is an activity of the soul in conformity with excellence.
Man's function is an activity on the part of the soul that has reason.
The good man is one who performs this function well.
Rationality is the essence of human nature
The moral life is the life lived "according to reason."
There is an unchanging moral reality that is part of the natural world.
Perfect happiness (telos) is only found in God: that supreme and infinite Good.

God is the end of all things, both rational & irrational. Only rational creatures can attain the vision of God.
This is man's natural desire, to know God's essence.
The end of every rational being is to know God through their highest faculty, the intellect.
What is a things function?
What good does it do?
Full transcript