Immanuel Kant
IMMANUEL KANT  Macroknow Library
Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals.

" . . . [Reason's] true function must be to produce a will which is good, not as a means to some further end, but in itself . . . "1a*

"Act as if the maxim of your action were to become through your will a universal law of nature."1b* SOROS

"In the kingdom of ends everything has either a price [market price or fancy price] or a dignity [intrinsic worth]."1c*

Religion Within the Limits of Reason Alone.

" . . . [T]he wickedness . . . or, if you like, the corruption . . . of the human heart is the propensity of the will to maxims which neglect the incentives springing from the moral law in favor of others which are not moral. It may also be called the perversity . . . of the human heart . . . "2a* RICOEUR

"The evil is radical, because it corrupts the grounds of all maxims . . . "2b* RICOEUR

Critique of Pure Reason.

" . . . [T]hough all our knowledge begins with experience, it by no means follows that all arises out of experience."3a

" . . . [B]esides intuition there is no other mode of knowledge, except through concepts . . . "3b

"The possibility of experience is, then, that which gives objective reality to all our a priori knowledge."3c

" . . . [I]t is only because we subject the sequence of appearances, and consequently all change, to the law of causality, that experience itself, that is, empirical knowledge of appearances, becomes possible . . . "3d


Perpetual Peace.

" . . . [A]s an instrument in the struggle among powers, the credit system -- the ingenious invention of a commercial people [England] during this century -- of endlessly growing debts that remain safe against immediate demand (since the demand for payment is not made by all creditors at the same time) is a dangerous financial power. It is a war chest exceeding the treasure of all other nations taken together . . . This ease in making war, combined with the inclination of those in power to do so . . . is a great obstacle to perpetual peace. Thus, forbidding foreign debt must be a preliminary article for perpetual peace . . . "4 JEFFERSON MARX SPENGLER RAND

The Metaphysics of Morals.

"Right is . . . the sum of the conditions under which the choice of one can be united with the choice of another in accordance with a universal law of freedom."5a

" . . . [E]thics is the science of how one is under obligation without regard for any possible external lawgiving."5b

" . . . [A] human being regarded as a person, that is, as the subject of a morally practical reason, is exalted above any price; for as a person (homo noumenon) he is not to be valued merely as a means to the ends of others or even to his own ends, but as as an end in himself; that is, he possesses a dignity (an absolute inner worth) by which he exacts respect for himself from all other rational beings in the world."5c*

Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime.

"Finer feeling . . . is chiefly of two kinds: the feeling of the sublime and that of the beautiful."6a*

"The sublime moves, the beautiful charms."6b*

"The sublime must always be great; the beautiful can also be small. The sublime must be simple; the beautiful can be adorned or ornamented. A great height is just as sublime as a great depth, except that the latter is accompanied with the sensation of shuddering, the former with one of wonder. Hence the latter feeling can be the terrifying sublime, and the former the noble."6c

"Understanding is sublime, wit is beautiful. . . Sublime attributes stimulate esteem, but beautiful ones, love."6d

"Friendship has mainly the character of the sublime, but love between the sexes, that of the beautiful."6e

"Among moral attributes true virtue alone is sublime."6f

" . . . [T]rue virtue can be grafted only upon principles such that the more general they are, the more sublime and noble it becomes. These principles are not speculative rules, but the consciousness of a feeling that lives in every human breast and extends itself much further than over the particular grounds of compassion and complaisance. I believe that I sum it all up when I say that it is the feeling of the beauty and the dignity of human nature. The first is a ground of universal affection, the second of universal esteem . . . "6g SANTAYANA


* Italics in the original.

1 Immanuel Kant (1724-1804). Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals (1785). Translated and Analyzed by H.J. Paton. New York, NY: Harper and Row, Publishers, Incorporated. (Originally published under the title The Moral Law, Hutchinson & Co., Ltd., London, 1948.)
a The function of reason, at 62-64.
b The Formula of the Law of Nature, at 89.
c The dignity of virtue, at 102-103.

2 Immanuel Kant. Religion Within the Limits of Reason Alone (1793). Translated with an Introduction and Notes by Theodore M. Greene and Hoyt H. Hudson, with an essay by John R. Silber. La Salle, IL: The Open Court Publishing Company, 1934. New York, NY: Harper & Brothers, 1960.
a Concerning the Propensity to Evil in Human Nature, at 23-27.
b Man is Evil by Nature, at 27-34.

3 Immanuel Kant. Critique of Pure Reason (1781). A revised and expanded translation based on Meiklejohn. Edited by Vasilis Politis. Introduction and Chronology, J.M. Dent, 1993. London, UK: J.M. Dent, Orion Publishing Group. Rutland, VT: Charles E. Turtle Co. Inc.
a The Difference Between Pure and Empirical Knowledge, at 30.
b Transcendental Clue to the Discovery of all Pure Concepts of the Understanding, at 78.
c System of the Principles of the Pure Understanding, at 152.
d Principle of the Succession in Time According to the Law of Causality, at 173.

4 Immanuel Kant. To Perpetual Peace: A Philosophical Sketch (1795). Essay included in Immanuel Kant, Perpetual Peace and Other Essays on Politics, History, and Moral Practice. Translated with an Introduction by Ted Humphrey. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc., 1983, at 107-143.

5 Immanuel Kant. The Metaphysics of Morals (1797). Translated and edited by Mary Gregor. With an Introduction by Roger J. Sullivan. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1996.
a Introduction to the Doctrine of Right, at 24.
b Introduction to the Doctrine of Virtue, at 168.
c The Doctrine of Virtue, at 186.

6 Immanuel Kant. Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime (1764). Translated by John T. Goldthwait. The Regents of the University of California, 1960. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, Ltd., 2003.
a Section One: Of the Distinct Objects of the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime, at 46.
b Ibid., at 47.
c Ibid., at 48-49.
d Section Two: Of the Attributes of the Beautiful and Sublime in Man in General, at 51.
e Ibid., at 52.
f Ibid., at 57.
g Ibid., at 60.

MK-BOOK-KANT-20000301. Updated 20040414.