Divine Command Theory
1. Divine Command Theory is an attempt to ground morality through theological
An act is right if and only if God permits it.
An act is wrong if and only if God forbids it.
Problems with Divin
1. Freedom and determinism are compatible. We are both free and determined.
2. Freedom = Moral Freedom (the ability to do what you want).
Problems with Compatibilism
1. Strategy for Challenging Compatibilism-Attack the idea that doing what y
1. Suffering and death from lack of food, shelter, and medical attention are very bad
2. If we can prevent very bad things from happening, without sacrificing something
of comparable (any) moral value, then we are morally require
1. John Locke (1632-1704)
Major thinker in metaphysics, epistemology, and political
Our Lockean Roots-One can see Locke's influence in the US
2. Rejecting Descartes' Rationalism for an Empiricist Picture
Introduction to Epistemology
1. In epistemology, we explore our access to the truth; examine human reason,
perception, and knowledge.
2. We will study three greater philosophers and their different epistemologies:
Descartes, Locke, and Berkeley.
1. Making Philosophy Relevant for our Lives-Many people complain that
philosophy is irrelevant to how we live our lives. In this section of the course, we
will look at a philosophical argument that calls us to a radical change in our
1. John Stuart Mill (1806-1873)
2. From Philosophy Prodigy to Burnout-Mill was an excellent philosopher and
student at a very young age, but he also tired of his studies at a young age.
Formulation of the Doctrine
1. Mill's Formulation-"Actions
Introduction to Ethics
1. The Importance of Careful Reasoning with Respect to Ethics-The consequences
of bad ethical thought can be severe because of what is at stake in many ethical
questions (e.g., abortion, euthanasia).
2. Two Critical Questions:
1. Descartes is seeking a certain foundation for his edifice of knowledge.
2. His assaults on the senses and the apriori show that knowledge from these sources
cannot be known with certainty.
3. Ultimately, the only thing we can know wi