The assume that rational beings think of themselves as

The
philosophical/ metaphysical problem of freedom is insoluble. Freedom is the
perspective of action/ judgement. In morality humans treat freedom as a crucial
value. Freedom and morality involve one another. Freedom is a presupposition of
rational action and morality is a moral obligation, an interest in following
moral rules. Freedom can’t be proven. Since freedom is a presupposition of rational
action then we can already assume that rational beings think of themselves as
being free. Moral law and the categorical imperative also follow this same
concept of freedom. Morality serves as a law for humans only insofar as we are
rational beings. As Kant wrote “since morality must be derived solely from the
property of the will of rational beings”. Throughout this paper I will evaluate
why we should justify ourselves as free, why being free is important to Kant,
why does he think that if this argument fails, morality is merely “chimerical”,
why doesn’t this article have the same importance to Hume, Mill, or Aristotle,
and how does Kant proceed in answering the question about being free and how
successful is his answer.  

            To Kant there are two sides of the
human being, sensible and intelligible worlds and they are not option able. The
sensible world is the way we experience things, on the other hand, the
intelligible world is the way things really are. The intelligible world is the
ground for the sensible world and its laws. Human beings experience morality by
the intelligible part the mind, which leads to the sensible part. I think the
argument of freedom is so important to Kant because as rational beings we think
we already have free will, it’s just that it is separate from the forces of
nature that govern the sensible side of humans. Freedom is sort of the
foundation for the concept of autonomy. Autonomy is a rule for oneself.

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“Now the idea of freedom is inseparably connected with
the concept of autonomy, and this is in turn with the universal principle of
morality, which ideally is the ground of all actions of rational beings, just
as natural law is the ground of all appearances.” (Pg. 54)  

From
reading Grounding for the Metaphysics of
Morals, I see that Kant thinks that the perception of freedom does not simply
depend on the conception of morality, but it actually comes from human being involvement
in the intelligible world. “Therefore a
rational being must regard himself qua intelligence (and hence not from the
side of his lower powers) as belonging not to the world of sense but to the
world of understanding.” (Pg. 53) Intelligible cause points directly to a
rational being. When comparing the sensible and intelligible worlds rational
beings live more in the intelligible world. Like I said before, it is the
foundation for the sensible world. To be free we have to position ourselves in
the intelligible world as a dedicated participant.

“But now we see that when we think of ourselves
as free, we transfer ourselves into the intelligible world as members and know
the autonomy of the will together with its consequence, morality; whereas when
we think of ourselves as obligated, we consider ourselves as belonging to the
world of sense and yet at the same time to the intelligible world.” (Pg. 54)

The
categorical imperative uses the form “ought”. For example, “I ought to do X”. Categorical
imperatives are possible because of the idea of freedom. It makes rational
beings a “member” of the intelligible world, said by Kant.

“This better person he believes himself to
be when he transfers himself to the standpoint of a member of the intelligible
world, to which he is involuntarily forced by the idea of freedom, i.e., of
being independent of determination by causes of the world of sense.” (Pg. 55)  

I
suppose that Kant thinks that if the argument fails then morality is purely “chimerical”
because, morality is what makes us free. Morality is the distinction between
right and wrong or good and bad behavior. Morally we are accountable for all of
our actions because of free will. We have free will because of the world we
live in. Honestly, we can’t really prove that we are free or that morality is existent,
but because of the sensible world, the way we experience things make it real. Kant
illustrates that the conceptualization of freedom makes a basis for the
conception of morality that he has established.

With
philosophers like Aristotle, Mill, and Hume freedom isn’t an important topic
for them as it is for Kant. For Aristotle, true happiness and virtue were his
importance. Happiness or eudaemonia are the highest or most completed good.
Aristotle was big on virtuous activity, which happiness is activity of the soul
in accordance with virtue. He analogized virtue to the soul as health is to the
body. Aristotle’s three main focal points were the final good, the function of
the human being, and happiness (eudaemonia). One point that Kant and Aristotle
have the same was rational being. Aristotle version of rational is appetite and
legislative beings. On the other hand, Hume has an argument about freedom,
however, his argument is that morality doesn’t exist, there is no such thing
has right and wrong. He says, right or wrong should be rational. As Kant would
say, if we don’t have morality then we don’t have free will. Like Aristotle,
Hume has his main points. For Hume, being benevolent was very important to him.
Benevolence is the highest virtue and it is universal, kind of like a universal
law to be benevolent. To Hume, benevolence is a form of virtue. Mill’s
arguments are based on utility and pleasures. Utility explains what makes an
action right or wrong, it also is defined in terms of pleasure and plain.

            The basis of Mill’s whole argument
is that pleasure and pain rules are supposed to serve utility. Moral rules are
useful, they are a “property right”, however, free will is not part of the
argument. Like how happiness or eudaemonia are the highest or most completed
good for Aristotle and benevolence is for Hume, pleasure and pain are the ultimate
good for Mill. My answer to why freedom isn’t important to Mill, Hume, and Aristotle
has it is to Kant, because each of them have different inclinations of what is
important and what is not. All four philosophers wrote in different time
periods, so they would have different views. At the time that Aristotle was
writing, I don’t think freedom was an important thought for him, the same is
for Mill and Hume.

            In answering the question, are we
justified in regarding ourselves as free, I think Kant answered the question successfully.
First, he breaks down the title of the book, by telling the three categories philosophy
can be divided into and also telling what metaphysics is; which is the study of
the conceptions as they relate to morals or just simply experiencing a situation.
Secondly, he then speaks about ones maxim. Rational beings should show action
in such a manner that we want our maxim of our actions to turn out to be a
universal law, which is the formula for universal law. The same would go for
categorical imperatives. Morally, rational beings act only in ways that treat
them as an ends in themselves, and never as more means. Morality is a moral
obligation, by obeying the principle of universal law, this may lead us to
knowing if we are really free or not. He even described how both freedom and determinism
are both legitimate perspectives on human action, however, they are two separate
perspectives, which they contradict each other, but are equally valid. Freedom
and determinism can be compatible and incompatible. Freedom is the perspective
of action/ judgment, on the other hand, determinism is the perspective of explanation
and prediction. Overall, Kant gave great evidence to back up his answer on
being free. He thoroughly explained what makes free and that we are rational if
we are free.

            In conclusion, freedom and morality
go hand and hand. As I stated before, we as rational beings treat freedom as a fundamental
value in morality. In that being said, our intelligible and sensible sides come
into effect. We experience morality by the intelligible part of ourselves, which
leads to the sensible part. Intelligible causes make us a rational beings. The philosophical/
metaphysical problem of freedom is inexplicable. Morality is the difference
between right and wrong or good and bad behavior. As rational beings, we are held
responsible for all of our actions because we have free will, that’s why we
only should act in ways that can be made into universal law. It helps to
promote the greater happiness. Kant clearly stated that we are rational beings
and we all will our own ends. Our freedom cannot be proven, it must be
presupposed of our actions. There is a correlation between freedom and human
action, by which the spectator is determinism. Morality is our moral
obligation, it is our interest in following moral rules. By obeying the
principle of universal law, we are really free. Freedom makes categorical
imperatives an idea. Throughout this paper, I have evaluated why we should
justify ourselves as free, why being free is important to Kant, why does he
think that if this argument fails, morality is merely “chimerical”, why doesn’t
this article have the same importance to Hume, Mill, or Aristotle, and how does
Kant proceed in answering the question about being free and how successful is
his answer.