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Categorical Imperative
(704 words)

[German Version]

According to I. Kant, the categorical imperative stands for the unconditionally valid moral commandment to heed the general appropriateness of one's actions: “Act only according to that maxim that you could also want to become a universal law” (Grundlegung zur Metaphysik der Sitten [1785], Akademie-Ausgabe [AA] IV, 421; ET: Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals, 1997). As early as the 1760s, Kant had already put forward the idea (crucial for his ethics of autonomy) that the free will of a rational being is subject only to the law that it imposes upon…

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Recki, Birgit, “Categorical Imperative”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 21 October 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1877-5888_rpp_SIM_11394>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013



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