AS OCR Philosophy- The Moral Argument

A detailed mindmap on the Moral Argument. 

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  • The Moral Argument
    • Immanuel Kant
      • Duty
        • Innate duty
          • Kant argued that we all have an innate sense of duty. Duty is universal, found in all beings throughout the world.
            • It is from this awareness of duty that we are obliged to be virtuous.
              • True virtue should be rewarded with happiness. But, this is not possible in this life.
        • The best possible 'duty'
          • It is not enough to just use our sense of duty, it is too 'average', Hence, we must pursue to achieve the highest possible standard of virtue.
            • Hence, there must be an ultimate standard with whom is used for this measurement.
              • This ultimate standard must be God.
      • Summum Bonum
        • For Kant, this is the place where happiness and virtue are re-united. It is this place where there is moral fulfilment for the completion of our duty.
          • True virtue should be rewarded with happiness. But, this is not possible in this life.
      • Moral statements
        • Moral statements are prescriptive. ''Ought'' implies ''can''.
          • Humans can achieve virtue in their lifetime, but true virtue (with happiness) is beyond us to ensure this.
            • It is , therefore, necessary for the existence of God.
              • It is God that controls and sustains the Summum Bonum. God has the power to ensure that happiness and virtue coincide.
                • For Kant, this is the place where happiness and virtue are re-united. It is this place where there is moral fulfilment for the completion of our duty.
                • God is not directly needed for morality, but is needed to ensure that morality can achieve its end.
                  • There shouldn't be a need for a God  to ensure that morality is fulfilled.
                    • It can easily be done by a 'pantheon of angels' instead.
      • Sigmund Freud
        • Theories on the Mind
          • Id
            • The unconscious self, the part of us that is not obvious. It is made up of memories that might be forgotten or repressed/unconscious desires.
          • Super-ego
            • The driving moral force/internal force that tells us what we should do
              • Equatable to the conscience.
                • We learn right and wrong from our environment. For example, our parents, siblings, friends, society.
                  • We internalise these moral imperatives until it feels like an 'inner voice.'
                    • There is no moral-law giver, there is no God.
                      • For Newman, the existence of conscience implies a moral law-giver whom we are answerable to – God.
          • Ego
            • The part of the mind that is obvious. It represents our thoughts, our opinions, tastes, instincts, etc.
        • Religion and Freud
          • Freud was influenced by Hume who said that religion was a distortion of human reasoning.
          • The origin of religion is psychological. Religious experiences,beliefs, and impulses come only from the mind.
          • Oedipus Complex
            • The idea that men wants their mothers for themselves, and women, their fathers.
              • People know that is socially unacceptableto kill their fathers, and thus, this is translated in the mind on a consicous level.
                • They then have to love and care for their fathers, which is really, their desire to kill their fathers.
      • St Thomas Aquinas
        • 4th Way- Gradation of Being (ex gradu)
          • It is evident in the world that we are able to compare things to fit a specific standard
            • Something which is perceived as 'good', may be improved to be 'better'
              • Hence, there must be an ultimate standard with whom is used for this measurement.
                • This ultimate standard must be God.
      • Cardinal John Henry Newman
        • Conscience
          • “We feel responsibility, are ashamed, are frightened at transgressing the voice of conscience, this implies that there is one to whom we are responsible.”
            • The existence of a conscience implies God exists.
              • It is from this that we feel guilty, or ashamed.
                • Who do we feel ashamed to?
                  • God
                    • For Newman, the existence of conscience implies a moral law-giver whom we are answerable to – God.
      • Brian Davies
        • A Pantheon of Angels
          • There shouldn't be a need for a God  to ensure that morality is fulfilled.
            • It can easily be done by a 'pantheon of angels' instead.
    • Humans can achieve virtue in their lifetime, but true virtue (with happiness) is beyond us to ensure this.
      • It is , therefore, necessary for the existence of God.
        • It is God that controls and sustains the Summum Bonum. God has the power to ensure that happiness and virtue coincide.
          • God is not directly needed for morality, but is needed to ensure that morality can achieve its end.

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