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  3. naturalistic fallacy
  4. George Edward Moore's Principia Ethica

It is true that some conduct is good as an end; but it would seem that such conduct can always be defended as also a means to good. It may be doubted, however, whether Mr Moore is right in saying that what we ought to do is always what will have the best consequences. If we have no means of knowing that one course will have the best consequences, while all the knowledge we can have points to another course, then, though this other course should in fact prove disastrous, it seems that we do right in adopting it. Mr Moore objects that it can never be a pity for a man to do his duty, and certainly to say that it can is a paradox.

But the paradoxes resulting from his view are apparently still more shocking. Perhaps the best chapter, and certainly the most interesting, is the last, on the Ideal. Mr Moore explains that he means by the Ideal all those things which are good as ends in a high degree. He holds that, of the things we know. Many people would be inclined, perhaps rightly, to place certain virtues, and even certain kinds of virtuous action, quite on a level with the goods which Mr Moore thinks the best.

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It is always difficult, however, in the case of virtuous actions, to separate clearly our admiration of the action from our admiration of the state of mind which it indicates; and the greatest virtues appear to consist of the love of things which are good in themselves. Apart from this objection, it is impossible to praise too highly the subtle and yet lucid analysis of the various elements in the value of the goods discussed.


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According to this principle, the value of a whole is not necessarily the same as the sum of the values of its parts. For example, a beautiful object unseen has little or no value, and admiration of an ugly object, even if the emotion is exactly like admiration of a beautiful one, is on the whole positively bad.

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naturalistic fallacy

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Moore's Open Question

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George Edward Moore's Principia Ethica

Sorry Im low elo. First Class ADC. Inting Trynd OTP. Panayot Butchvarov - - Southern Journal of Philosophy 41 s Moore's Moral Philosophy. Thomas Hurka - - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Book Review:Principia Ethica.

George Edward Moore. Mackenzie - - Ethics 14 3 The Fetishism of Morality. Jonathan Ree - - The Philosophers' Magazine 48 48 Moore in the Middle. Thomas Hurka - - Ethics 3 Ethics: The Nature of Moral Philosophy. Added to PP index Total views 15, of 2,, Recent downloads 6 months 36 21, of 2,, How can I increase my downloads? Sign in to use this feature. Applied ethics. History of Western Philosophy.

Normative ethics.