Natural Moral Law

Natural Moral Law

Natural Moral Law
Key people:
Aristotle
St Thomas Aquinas
Key Principles:
Primary precepts
Secondary precepts
Telos
Double effects
Synderesis rule
4 tiers of law
Real and apparent goods

Synderesis rule:
reason directs us to
do good and avoid
evil

Double Effects:
Some acts have two outcomes
One may be good and one may be bad
The intention behind the act must be the good
intention, but a bad outcome may also take place, but
this was unintended

5 Primary Precepts:
P Preserve life
R Reproduce
O Ordered society, have an
W Worship God
L - Learn

Secondary Precepts:
Deduced from primary precepts
Apply primary precepts to different situations
Vary based on application
Real and Apparent Goods:
Evil is not desirable
Evil is sought indirectly disguised as truth
We try to do good but instead commit apparent goods
not real goods
Telos: purpose
or ultimate end

4 Tiers of Law:
1.Eternal Law: part of the mind of
God and his unchanging reason.
2.Divine Law: How God sends out
Eternal Law.
3.Natural Law: can be observed
through using reason upon reflection
of observations made in the world.
4.Human Law: the customs and
practices of society that are our
response to these messages from
God

This theory is:
Deontological

For Aquinas this was closeness
with God, but for Aristotle this was
eudemonia (happiness)

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