David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In Craig Paterson & Matthew Pugh (eds.), Analytical Thomism: Traditions in Dialogue. Ashgate (2006)
In this chapter I seek to examine the credibility of Finnis’s basic stance on Aquinas that while many neo-Thomists are meta-ethically naturalistic in their understanding of natural law theory (for example, Heinrich Rommen, Henry Veatch, Ralph McInerny, Russell Hittinger, Benedict Ashley and Anthony Lisska), Aquinas’s own meta-ethical framework avoids the “pitfall” of naturalism. On examination, the short of it is that I find Finnis’s account (while adroit) wanting in the interpretation stakes vis-à-vis other accounts of Aquinas’s meta-ethical foundationalism. I think that the neo-Thomists are basically right to argue that for Aquinas we cannot really understand objective truths about moral standards unless we derive them from our intellective knowledge of natural facts as given to us by the essential human nature that we have. While I find Finnis’s interpretative position on Aquinas wanting, I go on to argue that his own attachment to non-naturalism is justified and should not be jettisoned. Because I think non-naturalism important to the future tenability of a viable natural law ethics (an ethics that is both cognitive and objectivist), I argue that Finnis should, so to speak, “beef up” his “fundamental option” for non-naturalism and more fully avail himself of certain argumentative strategies available in its defense, argumentative strategies that are inspired by the analytical philosophy of G.E. Moore.
|Keywords||Natural Law Ethics John Finnis Thomas Aquinas Non-naturalism Analytical Thomism|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Anthony J. Lisska (1996). Aquinas's Theory of Natural Law: An Analytic Reconstrution. Oxford University Press.
Anthony J. Lisska (2007). On the Revival of Natural Law: Several Books From the Last Half-Decade. American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 81 (4):613-638.
Craig A. Boyd (2005). Participation Metaphysics in Aquinas's Theory of Natural Law. American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 79 (3):431-445.
Timothy A. O. Endicott (2001). How to Speak the Truth. American Journal of Jurisprudence 46 (1):229-248.
Jonathan Crowe (2011). Natural Law Beyond Finnis. Jurisprudence 2 (2):293-308.
John Finnis (2011). Religion and Public Reasons. Oxford University Press.
Eugene F. Rogers Jr (1999). Aquinas on Natural Law and the Virtues in Biblical Context: Homosexuality as a Test Case. Journal of Religious Ethics 27 (1):29 - 56.
Edmund Wall (2010). Toward a Unified Foundation of Natural Law Ethics. American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 84 (4):747-779.
Added to index2010-02-28
Total downloads1,157 ( #218 of 1,793,156 )
Recent downloads (6 months)236 ( #443 of 1,793,156 )
How can I increase my downloads?