Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy (3) (2008)
A practical reason is the sort of thing that is supposed to, as it were, “count in favor of” my doing something. That a proposition p is true is reason for me to believe it. In the same way, the fact that some act is, say, morally required, prudentially required, aesthetically beautiful, etc., might be reasons to perform it. Intuitively speaking, if I could save millions from devastating poverty, I have a reason to do it–a reason that, again intuitively speaking, appears decisive. In this way it is proper to say that practical reasons are normative: they appear to answer the question: “how ought I to live?”.
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