Phil 251 Long Paper Assignment- Wolf and Moral Saints

Phil 251 Long Paper Assignment- Wolf and Moral Saints -...

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Sharon Kim Phil 251 J. Wood 13 Dec. 2011 Long Paper Assignment- Wolf and Moral Saints According to Wolf, a moral saint is highly motivated by, in fact is driven by, this desire to be as moral as possible. This motivation must override all other considerations for the moral saint. This does not, however, obviously negate the possibility of pursuing other virtues. Other virtues or projects may be pursued provided that they do not interfere with moral excellence and can be given up, or trumped, by the pursuit of moral excellence. Wolf equates moral saintliness with moral perfection and thus defines the moral saint as “a person whose every action is as morally good as possible, a person, that is, who is as morally worthy as can be.” But the first clause is importantly different from the second. We might call the first person a “moral hero” and the second a “moral saint”. Sometimes, being a hero might not require being a saint. Wolf examines a group of characteristics human beings would promote, which leads us to understand the difference between a “moral saint,” and a “moral hero”, in order to get an idea of what it is to be well-rounded. Susan explains that a hero is truly admirable; heroes help to put their label into context assuming that what they are doing is worthy of admiration and emulation. She does not feel that, in being a hero with unusual virtue, integrity, courage, and so on, one is required to go beyond one’s duty; one’s duty might be to do something heroic, which is different from sainthood. Wolf distinguishes between two kinds of moral saints, the Loving Saint and the Rational Saint. Loving Saints are those who derive their happiness from making others happy; they act out of a motive of love. Rational Saints act out of duty; their saintliness comes at the cost of sacrificing their interests for those of others. The two kinds of saints are differently motivated because they are differently situated in respect to morality. The rational saint copes
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This note was uploaded on 03/19/2012 for the course PHILOSOPHY 251 taught by Professor George during the Fall '10 term at Texas A&M.

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Phil 251 Long Paper Assignment- Wolf and Moral Saints -...

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