[ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]
.They mightthink that all Kant has denied in the passage above is that because of theuniqueness of the moral incentive it is always impossible to tell whether wehave acted on it.This would not be so for any other incentive, they may say;so free elective choice could well be supposed to explain most other typesof action.Yet it is worth noting that the free-choice solution is in troubleif our actions, in moral cases, could never be explainable by an electivechoice.For in view of the emphasis Kant placed upon the concept of free-dom in moral action, it seems that free choice would have to be explanatoryin a moral choice, if it is explanatory anywhere.Moreover, it seems thateven when we do not recognize any specifically moral justification amongour alternatives, our action is still not explained by an elective free choicebetween two or more non-moral justifications.In these cases, it seems, weare still not able to be certain about the precise justification, or structure ofjustifications, upon which we act.We do not know whether we elect to acton all non-moral justifications we may have for the same action, or only onsome.So as far as the   opacity  of our true intentions goes, it seems not tomatter whether the available justifications for our actions are moral or not.When we recognize two or more alternative justifications for the sameaction, and execute that action, the justification upon which we act remainsunknown, even to us.But this could not be so if our acting upon onejustification rather than another is always under our control, as the free-choice solution implies.So this type of solution does not seem adequatefor solving the problem of justification and explanation.3.10 Another Look at   Willkr In this final section on free choice we return to the interpretation ofKant s term,   Willkr.  For this term he sometimes substituted the Latinequivalent,   arbitrium,  and their most popular English translations todayare   choice,  and   power of choice.  The reason for returning nowto this textual basis for interpreting Kant s views of free choice is the free choice 97following.In many of the preceding arguments we have pointed outconceptual difficulties that arise when we deny that the psychologicalforces of incentives are not explanatory.And some might well agree thatthese arguments pose interesting and serious challenges to the Kantianaccount of freedom of choice.But they might say that, nevertheless,these arguments do not tell us that Kant must actually have believed thatwhenever we choose to act our actions are caused by the psychologicalforces of incentives.Very much of his moral theory, it will be said, dependson the idea that we are truly active, or   autonomous,  when by our ownfree choice, and independently of any psychological forces, we choose toobey the objective moral law.So to say that we are basically passive inour moral actions, because even here we are causally determined to act bypsychological force, is to deny a doctrine that Kant, in his moral theory, atleast, was in no position to deny.I am not convinced this is so, however.I believe that much heredepends upon how we interpret the meaning of Kant s terms   Willkr and   arbitrium.  And I do not believe we are correct in thinking that theseterms are well translated by English   choice,  in the sense of selectionor decision: the mental act that brings deliberation to a close.Let mebegin by noting that in German Kant had available to him another wordcorresponding to English   choice,  and he sometimes used it in referring tomoral choice.Here is a good example of his use of   Whlen  and   Wahl, instead of   Willkr. Autonomy of the will is the property of the will by which it is a law to itself(independently of any property of the objects of volition).The principle ofautonomy is, therefore, to choose [Whlen] only in such a way that the maxims ofyour choice [Wahl] are also included as universal law in the same volition.t tI have pointed out that Kant used   Willkr  in a seemingly peculiar wayin The Metaphysics of Morals, when in defining the concept he contrastedt t Groundwork, 47/4:440.It might be supposed that this passage, from Kant s Groundwork, reflects hisuncertainty or confusion over   choice,  as distinct from   will   a confusion cleared up finally when,in The Metaphysics of Morals, he made a clear distinction between Wille and Willkr.But this line ofthinking perpetuates a myth surrounding Kant s thoughts on the will.The truth is that Kant understoodand employed the concept of Willkr often in his lectures prior to publication of the Groundwork, andsome claims about Willkr found late in The Metaphysics of Morals are also found in the first Critique.Moreover, the distinction between Wille and Willkr was familiar to Kant and his audience alreadyfrom the psychology of Christian Wolff. 98 free choiceit with   wish  (1.7).But this relatively late definition signals no changein Kant s understanding of Willkr, since long before then, in his lectures,he had often contrasted these concepts similarly.The difference betweenWillkr and wish is just that in the latter case one lacks consciousness ofhow to act in order to achieve the object desired.So in contrast with wish,  Willkr  would presumably not translate straightforwardly as   choice, in the sense of selection or decision.As I have indicated previously, Kantsometimes explicitly characterized   Willkr  and wish as different types ofdesire state.The same appears in other contexts, also, even where Kantemphasizes the freedom of moral Willkr; and we shall turn to someexamples momentarily [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]