Natural Law

  • Created by: IsabelleW
  • Created on: 28-04-19 16:14

Natural Law


  • Acting in line is true to human nature
  • Primary precepts are common to all
  • Natural Law appeals to common sense
  • Judges the intrinsic value of actions
  • Doctrine of double effect allows for contradictions
  • Encourages virtuous behavior such as love, wisdom, justice and temperance which are valuable in any society


  • Naturalistic fallacy - unreasonable to expect someone who doesn't believe in God to accept what exists as human nature has moral authority
  • Defining "natural" acts, individuality struggle
  • Is there common human nature? Spartan nature was to kill weak and defective children - this is not universal. Human nature is subject to change meaning many would deny there was one applicable to all. How have humans gone wrong so many times eg. slavery and holocaust
  • Legalism of NL contradicts normal Christian view point - action centered rather than people or consequence centred
  • Issues of intention and real and apparent goods


Just as with any system there are key strengths and weaknesses. There are more modern and consequentialist systems which could be deemed more applicable to modern society than Natural Law which are more flexible and suited to today's world.


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