Sacramentum Mundi Online

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Morality - Duty
(2,115 words)

Part of Morality:

1. Concept

2. Moral Law

3. Duty

1. Terminology. The term “duty” is not used in a consistent way in philosophy and ethics and in theology. The more recent terminology tends to use “ought” for moral obligation and “duty” for the various concrete instances of this obligation. This reduction to the concrete comes about by way of an application to individual actions, as a deduction from special circumstances (occupation, social relationships, membership of a community, etc.), or through the li…

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Rudolf Hofmann, “Morality - Duty”, in: Sacramentum Mundi Online, General Editor Karl Rahner, SJ. Consulted online on 29 September 2023 <>
First published online: 2016

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