Essay about Categorical Imperative

1517 Words 7 Pages
Kant thinks that the basic moral principles of our society come from people’s rationality, and people must follow these principles unconditionally. These moral principles are the Categorical Imperative. Meanwhile, its common rules have different directions in society. To conclude these directions, it can be reflected from three different formulations. Among the three formulations, the first formulation of universal law has standout features in the maxim and the constraints about people’s behaviors. With combined analysis of examples, the drawbacks of universal law also appear out. For evaluating and explaining to prove the flaws of the universal law, the specific understanding about the meaning of maxim is essential because it is the …show more content…
It states that “Act only according to that maxim whereby you can at the same time [rationally] will that it become a universal law” (Bergeron and Tramel 239). In this definition, the maxim is the objective principle. People need to act in accordance to the objective maxim, and the maxim has become the universal law through the judgments of will. The key point of this formulation is whether the maxim is universalizable or not. If the maxim is universalizable, it is the objective principle. People need to act and obey this objective maxim in moral life. Otherwise, the maxim is only the subjective principle, and people should not apply their subjective maxims into the moral life. People will betray the universal law only by means of their subjective maxims, and this behavior is not allowed in Categorical Imperative. The formulation of universal law is the basis of Categorical Imperative. However, everything has advantages and disadvantages, even the formulation of universal law. The outstanding point of universal law stresses that people’s moral behaviors should have objectivity. Whether the maxim could be universalizable depends on if the subjective maxim could become an objective maxim. Thus, when the subjective maxim could pass the standard of the objective maxim, it will be the moral maxim indeed. People need to act in accordance with universal law, or people will make moral mistakes. As for the weak points, there are two perspectives. This
Open Document