Kant's Universal Law and Humanity Formulae

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Abstract

Kant's formulae ought to effectively produce the same result when applied to the moral validity of any particular maxim; further, no valid maxim produces contradictory results when applied against Kant's Universal Law and Humanity formulae. Where one uses all formulae in the assessment of a maxim, one gains a more complete understanding of the moral law, thereby bridging principles of reason with intuition within the agent who has undertaken to evaluate the morality of a particular action. These formulae command without regard to any particular interests, but are instead unconditional; further, these formulae effectively limit choice of action and therefore give rise to duty. Kant implies that the structure of all maxims requires different formulae of the same moral law, i.e., all maxims have a ‘form’ and a ‘matter’, which prompt reconfiguring of the categorical imperative into different formulae in order to test the morality of a maxim.

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