Chapter

Is the new natural law theory a substantive form of moral realism?

Rufus Black

in Christian Moral Realism

Published in print March 2001 | ISBN: 9780198270201
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191683947 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198270201.003.0002

Series: Oxford Theological Monographs

Is the new natural law theory a substantive form of moral realism?

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This chapter probes whether the Grisez School is able to find a new means to secure the moorings of ethics to the givenness of reality. It explores the relationship between practical reason and the reality and the role of self-evidence in the Grisez School's theory in three stages. First, it considers the relationship between human nature and the fulfilling objects and objectives towards which practical reason directs people. This provides the opportunity to begin an exploration of the question of self-evidence. Second, the chapter analyses the connections between principles of practical reason (which guide people in their pursuit of those fulfilling objects and objectives) and human nature and the conditions of human existence. Third, it considers the function of knowledge about reality in the actual process of moral deliberation.

Keywords: Grisez School; ethics; practical reason; reality; self-evidence; human nature; human existence; knowledge; moral deliberation

Chapter.  24612 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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