Harald Holz

Some reflections on the relations between theoretical and practical principles (Abstract)

Vollständiger Text in spanischer Sprache: Algunas reflexiones sobre la interdependencia e independencia entre los principios del orden teórico y el fondo de la filosofía práctica-moral (PDF-Datei 118 KB)

Abstract. - I. The topic of this paper is the interrelationship of the theoretical order, e. g. of the principles of understanding and knowledge on the one hand, and the practical life and its principles on the other. The main objection here dealt with is that of the fabulous natural fallacy which means the theoretical order has to be absolutely abstinent of the practical one because otherwise the autonomy of moral decisions will be entirely corrupted by alienating laws. - The refutation is that this may be true on the empirical as well as on the strictly ontological level - if one conceives ontology as a treatise of entities like transempirical atomes - ; however the position held here is of quite a different way. - II. The area on which these reflections are worked out is the realm of absolute theoretical values, better and more correctly: of the validities which enable all our thinking, our way of asking, our modes of being in doubts etc. to be of at least a minimal univocity so that there remains an elementary kind of argumentation possible at all. As the founding principle, a newly conceived mode of non-contradiction resp. identity as self-relationship is outlined of which the internal structure is totally formal so being able to found together the realm of formal logic and of fundamental argumentation of (and on) the principal level of thinking as such. This is called the horizon of a transcendental - not 'transcendentic' (!) - principle. Together this horizon of first principality becomes evident as profoundly relational subsistence. - III. By the logical procedure of critical derivation, several successive levels of validity are traced out. In doing this certain well known old logical principles are sketched in a new way, so e. g. the principle of the excluded third is amplified by that of an excluded fourth, fifth etc. The results are certain principles, in shape of certain fundamental sentences, of a first ranked necessity, apriority, further of the exclusion of formal absurdity as well as of the apriori possibility of plurality as such. In a subsequent step this plurality is worked out mor specifically. Thus, a realm of objectives in their contingency, together with a correspondent one of reflexivity is opened up. At the same time the order of being valid as true, false, or also undetermined, is established. And, subsequently, an outline is also given of fundamental laws and rules of thinking objectively. - IV. The logical possibility at last mentioned, then, is more articulated en detail, that is in a more formalistic way. Together the difference to the traditional, i. e. mathematical, logic of likelihood is shown up. - V. The transition to the order of practical decisions and operations, in particular to moral life, is accomplished by the comparison of the respective propositions of first order which show at the same time a differential correspondence. There appears, on the respective levels of derivation, together a structural parallelism as well as the characteristic difference between theoretical and practical order. This is shown up in certain so-called formulas which make apparent the distance of the two orders. In doing so, the principle of the practical, i. e. at last the moral order, becomes evident as a strictly formal one but at the same time as something in procedure. In subsequent steps, then, the fundamental notions of human autonomy and human dignity are made evident. - VI. Here the next results are worked out, i. e. the possibility of human beings to have, and to act according to, as beings of conscience. Together the rule of being able to decide and to act consequently within the human community is derived in shape of the so-called 'golden rule' which is extended up to the realm of correlatively respected decisions of conscience of every human, i. e. personal, being. Together the fundamental values of morally good and wrong are finished off. Further, the parallelism also to the order of likelihood is sketched out showing that there is a big realm of more or less morally contingent operations. - VII. The systematically interesting consequence is that there is a certain, although totally formal correspondence in the structure of theoretical and practico-moral order although the difference in shape of a principle of processuality of the latter is maintained. However, in being absolute formal this enables exactly the order of moral practice to become extremely flexible. Thus, there is valid together a relationship of dependence and independence. The intermediating formal logic, thus, may be of coincidental character.