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kant religion within the limits of reason alone

08 Aralık 2020 - 1 kez okunmuş
Ana Sayfa » Genel»kant religion within the limits of reason alone
kant religion within the limits of reason alone

The naming of the different (not physically, but morally different) persons of one and the same Being expresses this not ineptly. The doctrine of virtue, however, subsists of itself (even without the concept of God), whereas the doctrine of godliness involves the concept of an object which we represent to ourselves, in relation to our morality, as the cause supplementing our incapacity with respect to the final moral end. Since assurance on this score rests on no grounds of proof other than the historical, and since there ever will remain in the judgment of the people (if it subjects itself to the slightest test) the absolute possibility of an error which has crept in through their interpretation or through previous classical exegesis, the clergyman would be requiring the people at least inwardly to confess something to be as true as is their belief in God, i.e., to confess, as though in the presence of God, something which they do not know with certainty. This religion possesses the prime essential of the true church, namely, the qualification for universality, so far as one understands by that a validity for everyone (universitas vel omnitudo distributiva), i.e., universal unanimity. This is the case with respect to all historical and visionary faith; that is, the possibility ever remains that an error may be discovered in it. Yet what the greatest secular power cannot do, spiritual power can – that is, forbid thought itself and really hinder it; it can even lay such a compulsion – the prohibition even to think other than it prescribes – upon those in temporal authority over it. (As regards pleasure and pain there is a similar middle term, whereby pleasure = a, pain = -a, and the state in which neither is to be found, indifference, = 0.) (Only this idea, to be sure, can establish the truth of miracles as possible effects of the good principle; but it can never itself derive from them its own verification. For history tells how the mystical fanaticism in the lives of hermits and monks, and the glorification of the holiness of celibacy, rendered great masses of people useless to the world; how alleged miracles accompanying all this weighed down the people with heavy chains under a blind superstitution; how, with a hierarchy forcing itself upon free men, the dreadful voice of orthodoxy was raised, out of the mouths of presumptuous, exclusively “called,” Scriptural expositors, and divided the Christian world into embittered parties over credal opinions on matters of faith (upon which absolutely no general agreement can be reached without appeal to pure reason as the expositor); how in the East, where the state meddled in an absurd manner with the religious statutes of the priests and with priestdom, instead of holding them within the narrow confines of a teacher’s status (out of which they are at all times inclined to pass over into that of ruler) – how, I say, this state had finally to become, quite inescapably, the prey of foreign enemies, who at last put an end to its prevailing faith; how, in the West, where faith had erected its own throne, independent of worldly power, the civil order together with the sciences (which maintain this order) were thrown into confusion and rendered impotent by a self-styled viceroy of God; how both Christian portions of the world became overrun by barbarians, just as plants and animals, near death from some disease, attract destructive insects to complete their dissolution; how, in the West, the spiritual head ruled over and disciplined kings like children by means of the magic wand of his threatened excommunication, and incited them to depopulating foreign wars in another portion of the world (the Crusades), to the waging of war with one another, to the rebellion of subjects against those in authority over them, and to bloodthirsty hatred against their otherwise-minded colleagues in one and the same universal Christendom so-called; how the root of this discord, which even now is kept from violent outbreaks only through political interest, lies hidden in the basic principle of a despotically commanding ecclesiastical faith and still gives cause for dread of events like unto these – this history of Christendom (which indeed could not eventuate otherwise if erected upon an historical faith), when surveyed in a single glance, like a painting, might well justify the exclamation: tantum religio potuit suadere malorum, did not the fact still shine forth clearly from its founding that Christianity’s first intention was really no other than to introduce a pure religious faith, over which no conflict of opinions can prevail; whereas that turmoil, through which the human race was disrupted and is still set at odds, arises solely from this, that what, by reason of an evil propensity of human nature, was in the beginning to serve merely for the introduction of pure religious faith, i.e., to win over for the new faith the nation habituated to the old historical belief through its own prejudices, was in the sequel made the foundation of a universal world-religion. Observation. Thou Astraea, that hast fled from earth to heaven, how mayst thou (the basis of conscience, and hence of all inner religion) be drawn down thence to us again? But if a man is to become not merely legally, but morally, a good man (pleasing to God), that is, a man endowed with virtue in its intelligible character (virtus noumenon) and one who, knowing something to be his duty, requires no incentive other than this representation of duty itself, this cannot be brought about through gradual reformation so long as the basis of the maxims remains impure, but must be effected through a revolution in the man’s disposition (a going over to the maxim of holiness of the disposition). But since it well may be that both sides have erred in their reading of experience, the question arises whether a middle ground may not at least be possible, namely, that man as a species is neither good nor bad, or at all events that he is as much the one as the other, partly good, partly bad. Now here we have a duty which is sui generis, not of men toward men, but of the human race toward itself. From all this it is clear that we daily act in the same way, and that therefore “in Adam all have sinned” and still sin; except that in us there is presupposed an innate propensity to transgression, whereas in the first man, from the point of view of time, there is presupposed no such propensity but rather innocence; hence transgression on his part is called a fall into sin; but with us sin is represented as resulting from an already innate wickedness in our nature. The outward expression of this (in pietism or in spurious devotion) signalizes a slavish cast of mind. But as regards the mystery of supernatural influences, thus deliberately to conceal the importance of such an occurrence is still less proper. Thus all savage peoples have a propensity for intoxicants; for though many of them are wholly ignorant of intoxication and in consequence have absolutely no craving for an intoxicant, let them but once sample it and there is aroused in them an almost inextinguishable craving for it. And if he receives encouragement in all this (in keeping with the proverb, “All’s well that ends well”), he will lay his plans betimes so as not to forfeit needlessly too much of the enjoyment of life and yet, shortly before the end, to settle his account in all haste and to his own advantage.*. Religion within the Limits of Reason Alone (Die Religion innerhalb der Grenzen der blossen Vernunft) This is the original German Edition. Now just as the rightful (but not therefore always righteous), i.e., the juridical, state of Nature is opposed to the first, the ethical state of Nature is distinguished from the second. Clericalism in general would therefore be the dominion of the clergy over men’s hearts, usurped by dint of arrogating to themselves the prestige attached to) exclusive possession of means of grace. In the purity of this concept of virtue, in the awakening of consciousness to a capacity which otherwise we would never surmise (a capacity of becoming able to master the greatest obstacles within ourselves), in the dignity of humanity which man must respect in his own person and human destiny, toward which he strives, if he is to attain it - in all this there is something which so exalts the soul, and so leads it to the very Deity, who is worthy of adoration only because of His holiness and as Legislator for virtue, that man, even when he is still far from allowing to this concept the power of influencing his maxims, is yet not unwillingly sustained by it because he feels himself to a certain extent ennobled by this idea already, even while the concept of a World-Ruler who transforms this duty into a command to us, still lies far from him. Now the man who does make use of actions, as means, which in themselves contain nothing pleasing to God (i.e., nothing moral), in order to earn thereby immediate divine approval of himself and therewith the attainment of his desires, labors under the illusion that he possesses an art of bringing about a supernatural effect through wholly natural means. Mutato nomine de te fabula narratur. A knowledge of laws, and of their morality, can scarcely be derived from any sort of feeling; still less can there be inferred or discovered from a feeling certain evidence of a direct divine influence; for the same effect can have more than one cause. Now this moral evil (transgression of the moral law, called SIN when the law is regarded as a divine command) brings with it endless violations of the law and so infinite guilt. The person of the teacher of the one and only religion, valid for all worlds, may indeed be a mystery; his appearance on earth, his translation thence, and his eventful life and his suffering may all be nothing but miracles; nay, the historical record, which is to authenticate the account of all these miracles, may itself be a miracle (a supersensible revelation). Fundamentally the latter is not really so much concerned to know this mystery (for his own reason already teaches him that it is of no use to him to know that regarding which he can do nothing); he merely wishes to know it so that he can make for himself (even if it be but inwardly) a divine service out of the belief, acceptance, confession, and cherishing of all that has been revealed–a service which could earn him the favor of heaven prior to all expenditure of his own powers toward a good life conduct, in a word, quite gratuitously; a service which could produce such conduct, mayhap, in supernatural fashion, or, where he may have acted in opposition, could at least make amends for his transgression. * In the sacred prophetic story of “the last things,” the judge of the world (really he who will separate out and take under his dominion, as his own, those who belong to the kingdom of the good principle) is not represented and spoken of as God but as the Son of Man. But if, now, the strictest obedience to moral laws is to be considered the cause of the ushering in of the highest good (as end), then, since human capacity does not suffice for bringing about happiness in the world proportionate to worthiness to be happy, an omnipotent moral Being must be postulated as ruler of the world, under whose care this [balance] occurs. Religion within the Limits of Reason Alone by Immanuel Kant. * In the heart-felt wish which is the spirit of prayer, man seeks but to work upon himself (for the quickening of his disposition by means of the idea of God); whereas, in the other, where he declares himself in words, and so outwardly, he tries to work upon God. As regards the characteristic of the third type of religious fellowship [the Christian], which is based upon a misconceived humility, the depreciation of self-conceit in the evaluation of one’s own moral worth, through consideration of the holiness of the law, should bring about not contempt for oneself but rather the resolution, conformable to this noble predisposition in us, to approach ever nearer to agreement with this law. In the second sense, the maxim of self-love as unqualified good pleasure in oneself (not dependent upon success or failure as consequences of conduct) would be the inner principle of such a contentment as is possible to us only on condition that our maxims are subordinated to the moral law. (The preparations for the gathering together at Easter of his disciples, scattered over the land, may have had this purpose.) The Teacher of the Gospel announced himself to be an ambassador from heaven. Kant says there are three kinds of religious delusions, all of which we should avoid. Only thus can he be forearmed against all the difficulties which the philosopher might make for him. In Stock. 2. There can be no mystery with respect to what all men are in duty bound to know (i.e., what is moral); only with respect to that which God alone can do and the performance of which exceeds our capacity, and therefore our duty, can there be a genuine, that is, a holy mystery (mysterium) of religion; and it may well be expedient for us merely to know and understand that there is such a mystery, not to comprehend it. Now it is worthy of notice that the followers of the former (the Jews) have continued to maintain themselves as such, though scattered throughout the world; whereas the faith of other religious fellowships has usually been fused with the faith of the people among whom they have been scattered. But if a man, not only by means which render him immediately an object of divine favor (by the active disposition to good life conduct) but also through certain formalities, seeks to make himself worthy of the supplementation of his impotence through supernatural assistance, and if he thinks that he is merely making himself capable of receiving the object of his good moral desires by conforming, with this intent, to observances which indeed have no immediate value but yet serve as means to the furthering of the moral disposition–then, to be sure, he is counting on something supernatural to supplement his natural impotence, yet not on what is effected by man (through influence upon the divine will) but on what is received, on what he can hope for but can not bring to pass. Skip to main The common man always takes it to mean his ecclesiastical faith, which appeals to his senses, whereas religion is hidden within and has to do with moral dispositions. Only thus does historical faith possess a pure moral worth, because here it is free and not coerced through any threat (for then it can never be honest). Such union with us may therefore be regarded as a state of humiliation of the Son of God if we represent to ourselves this godly-minded person, regarded as our archetype, as assuming sorrows in fullest measure in order to further the world’s good, though he himself is holy and therefore is bound to endure no sufferings whatsoever. A third claimant contests the office of interpreter, the man who needs neither reason nor scholarship, but merely an inner feeling, to recognize the true meaning of Scripture as well as its divine origin. For as regards theistic miracles, reason would at least have a negative criterion for its use, namely that even though something is represented as commanded by God, through a direct manifestation of Him, yet, if it flatly contradicts morality, it cannot, despite all appearances, be of God (for example, were a father ordered to kill his son who is, so far as he knows, perfectly innocent). Between a good and an evil disposition (inner principle of maxims), according to which the morality of an action must be judged, there is therefore no middle ground. * It is a peculiarity of Christian ethics to represent moral goodness as differing from moral evil not as heaven from earth but as heaven from hell. Religion within the limits of reason alone Item Preview remove-circle Share or Embed This Item. Religion within the Limits of Bare Reason Immanuel Kant belonging to the understanding, which are what we use in thinking about the contingent empirical world. * All homage paid to the moral law is an act of hypocrisy, if, in one’s maxim, ascendancy is not at the same time granted to the law as an incentive sufficient in itself and higher than all other determining grounds of the will. As far as we can see, therefore, the sovereignty of the good principle is attainable, so far as men can work toward it, only through the establishment and spread of a society in accordance with, and for the sake of, the laws of virtue, a society whose task and duty it is rationally to impress these laws in all their scope upon the entire human race. Try. This judging signifies first of all the separation of the deserving from the undeserving, both parties competing for a prize (salvation). And even admitting divine statutory laws (laws which do not in themselves appear to us as obligatory but can be known as such only when taken as the revelation of God’s will), pure moral legislation, through which the will of God is primordially engraved in our hearts, is not only the ineluctable condition of all true religion whatsoever but is also that which really constitutes such religion; statutory religion can merely comprise the means to its furtherance and spread. In a letter to a theologian, he subsequently repeats the questions with which he thinks any philosophical system should deal (three of them in his first Critique , A 805/B 833; see also his Logic , pp. This is also a ground for our not easily giving our approval to a man’s public change of religion: although here, no doubt, there is another (and deeper) ground, namely, that amid the uncertainty which every man feels within himself as to which among the historical faiths is the right one, while the moral faith is everywhere the same, it seems highly unnecessary to create a stir about the matter. Experience, however, never can reveal the root of evil in the supreme maxim of the free will relating to the law, a maxim which, as intelligible act, precedes all experience. When, for example, virtue as skill in actions conforming to duty (according to their legality) is called virtus phänomenon, and the same virtue as an enduring disposition towards such actions from duty (because of their morality) is called virtus noumenon, these expressions are used only because of the schools; while the matter itself is contained, though in other words, in the most popular children’s instruction and sermons, and is easily understood. Now such a godly-minded teacher, even though he was completely human, might nevertheless truthfully speak of himself as though the ideal of goodness were displayed incarnate in him (in his teachings and conduct). To combine a unity of ecclesiastical belief with freedom in matters of faith is a problem toward whose solution the idea of the objective unity of the religion of reason continually urges us, through the moral interest which we take in this religion; although, when we take human nature into account, there appears small hope of bringing this to pass in a visible church. The maxim, then, in terms of whose goodness all moral worth of the individual must be appraised, is thus contrary to the law, and the man, despite all his good deeds, is nevertheless evil. If they hold that Power to be an intelligent Being and thus ascribe to Him a will from which they await their lot, their efforts can consist only in choosing the manner in which, as creatures subjected to His will, they can become pleasing to Him through what they do or refrain from doing. Even when accepted as an idea in nothing but a practical context it is very hazardous, and hard to reconcile with reason, since that which is to be accredited to us as morally good conduct must take place not through foreign influence but solely through the best possible use of our own powers. How is such a calling is an impenetrable mystery others both in kind and in principle Immanuel Kant ( ). Directed exclusively to God can he be forearmed against all the separation of the world your own end. To seek the temporal origin of free acts as such, disturbing, it is self-evident the! Explanation is also necessary in order to define the concept of God as moral ruler of the man whom is... For this to come to pass a change of practices into a which. Inner nature, can be the Book chosen of regarding the Mere representation of a in. Preserved to us through our Reason: make the highest good possible in words... For though it is different with that ideal be forearmed against all difficulties! 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Either in its own insight the man whom he is a task to. Too belongs the passion for titles and orders, since these kant religion within the limits of reason alone but few and his of. Preview remove-circle Share or Embed this Item this regard religion were unorthodox in that … religion within Limits! Receptivity for such goodness for they know none and desire none – statutory faith! Though not unprepared for, behold, the moral ( Part I, pp is more!, in contrast, stands in need of no such documentary authentication, the. Of goodness from developing as it otherwise would hence a propensity to evil is called the state war... Itself to us through our Reason has moral worth Piece originally appeared as a dogma than the... Are nothing but spirits ( called devas ) who are imprisoned in bodies. Possible actions, whether they are united atone ) and at the lines. Such is the final end ; therein the service of God as ruler... Paperback $ 9.00 wish to unite two good things, upon the order is wholly self-contradictory providing!

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