History of Modern Philosophy
Azusa Pacific University
Dr. John Culp
March 24, 2004

I.   Important things to know
A.   Principle of Sufficient Reason
1.   Nothing exists with out a reason for its existence
2.   Everything is casually determined
B.   The idea of the world as will
1.   Striving to be alive is the expression of the will
2.   This drive is true reality
3.   Thinking is less important than the will
4.   Actions are objectifications of the will
5.   There are different worlds for everybody because the will is different
II.   Ethics
A.   Consequentialism (aka Teleological)
1.   Definition: This theory states that the moral goodness or badness is determined by the results or consequences of an act or rule.
2.   Form of Consequentialism: Utilitarianism - the morally correct rule was the one that provided the greatest good to the greatest number of people.
3.   Mill's Criticism of Utilitarinism
a.   Critique #1
i.   Anyone who basis their decisions on ethics on pleasure is nothing better than a naked ape
ii.   Mills' Response
a.   There are more kinds of pleasure than just simple, "feel-good" pleasures
b.   Example: intellectual pleasures
b.   Critique #2 (pg 952 - para 3)
i.   Happiness cannot be the goal of human life because it is unattainable
ii.   Mills' Response
a.   It is possible to received pleasure
b.   Even when if we can't attain pleasure we can at least lessen people's pain
c.   We can't just talk about our own pleasure
c.   Critique #3 (pg 958 - para 1)
i.   No one can live up to the standard of always acting to promote the general interests of society
ii.   Mills' Response
a.   Every ethical system makes the distinction between the standards that you uphold and the niceness of the person
b.   Being nice has nothing to do with doing the right thing
c.   Ethics is not concerned with being nice but doing right
d.   Critique #4 - Utilitarianism makes people cold, and calculating and indifferent to individuals
e.   Critique #5 - Utilitarianism is godless
f.   Critique #6 - Utilitarianism is simply the ends justifying the means, or expediency
g.   Critique #7 - There isn't enough time to calculate pleasure
h.   Critique #8 - People use the principle of utility by their own benefit
B.   Deontological (aka Duty Ethics)
1.   Definition: Under this theory you determine if an act or rule is morally right or wrong if it meets a moral standard
2.   Kant was a follower of this idea
III.   Morality: expectations of the social group to which you belong
IV.   Bentham
A.   Principle of Utility is crucial to use regarding both our individual ethical decisions and concerning societal ethics
B.   4 sanctions used to get people to do what they are suppose to do
C.   Pleasure-Calculator
1.   You do what brings you the most amount of pleasure (or least amount of pain)
2.   Benton thinks you can do it in terms of quantity, or amount, of pleasure or pain
D.   Principle of Utility indicates the law of a community should increase the pleasure of the community
1.   If your actions don't cause a problem for the community, then there shouldn't be a law
2.   Kinds and guidelines of punishment that a society is allowed to participate in
E.   Punishment for Bentham is never to be used simply for retribution
V.   Mills
A.   Principle of Liberty - the only purpose for power to be exercised over someone against their will, is to prevent harm to others
B.   The only time someone can make you do something, is when you are harming others
C.   Not a huge supporter of democracy, like Bentham, mainly because he is suspicious of majority
D.   Three Differences from Bentham
1.   In calculating pleasure/pain, Mill recognizes quality as well as quantity
2.   Mill emphasizes altruism as well as pleasure
a.   According to Bentham, the only reason you would be concerned for someone else's pleasure is because it will in turn make you happier
b.   Mill believes that you should be concerned for others simply for their sake
3.   Principle of Utility needs to be applied or used only when there is a conflict of moral standard
VI.   Comte
A.   You can deal with reality best by dealing with what is obvious
B.   Three major concepts
1.   Positivism (facts) is the basis of reality
2.   Law of three stages
3.   Sociology as a science of relationship recognize both the stable and the dynamic components of the social society