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RELIGIOUS STUDIES REVISION
NATURAL MORAL LAW
JAN 2012

Beth Tyson




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PLATO

Plato believed that the objects we see around us such as chairs, tables, trees,
animals ect...are not what is ultimately real.
They are merely shadows or reflections of the truly real objects THE FORMS
EXAMPLE a tree, according to Plato is a reflection of a form the form
of…

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Aristotle was an ancient Greek philosopher who disagreed with Plato's theory
of the forms.
Aristotle was an empiricist the only true knowledge we have is from the real
world/world around us.

Aristotle identified the 4 causes (Example of a chair)

Material Cause
The matter from which a thing is made…

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Aristotle thought that the Prime Move = GOD
God is a final cause in itself all things want to be in the image of God's
perfection and are drawn towards him.




Reason

Aristotle saw the body and soul as united = Monist
He said that the body and soul are…

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Reaching Eudamonia involves reason. This is because reason is completely
unique to humans and Eudamonia is the greatest human achievement.
Eudamonia is of intrinsic value should be desired for its own sake.
Individuals that develop these virtues will not act in a particular way because
they ought to but because…

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does that make them a morally
good person?
Can Eudamonia ever be achieved
or is it an unachievable ideal?




Aquinas was an absolutist and a deontological thinker.
Aquinas took and developed Aristotle's law and added the idea on the "eternal
law of God"
For Aquinas, natural law evaluates what you…

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Secondary precepts

Secondary precepts uphold the primary precepts
Humans are then to use their reason to establish rules that will fulfil the
requirements of the primary precepts
E.G. Do not murder (fulfils the primary precept of preserving the innocent)
Do not abort the unborn (fulfils the primary precepts of preserving…

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Casuistry is the name given to the process of applying Natural Law principles
to specific situations.
Probablism laws are not binding if a solid probable argument exists
Equiprobalism if there are 2 probable options either may be followed
This is where the doctrine of double effect comes into action
Aquinas…

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Natural Moral Law is clear cut & Aquinas took it for granted that
absolutist opinion and God created the world and
preference do not matter. therefore humans for a purpose
It is universal not everybody would agree
It combines faith with reason Equally, Aquinas could be wrong
morality is more…

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7 basic goods/ends

Human Life (every aspect of vitality including health and procreation)
Knowledge
Play
Aesthetic appreciation
Sociability
Practical reasonableness bringing your intelligence into practical moral
decisions
Religion

Like Aquinas, all these have intrinsic value.

9 principles of practical reasonableness

9 ways to help us make the correct moral decisions…

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