compare Immanuel Kant and Karl Marx's philosophy on religion, freedom and immoralitybe specific

gopikrishna | Student

Marx was very influenced by the teleological view of history expounded by Kant in his essay "Idea for a Universal History with a cosmopolitan purpose". Kant explains how there is an end to history, which consists in an equal amount of freedom for all. This is achieved through the interplay of super-personal forces which individual people embody, but are largely unaware of. This surfaces in the idea of communism, and the sense of class struggle being played out dialectically, regardless of what individuals think of it. Also Marx's belief that we need to rid from society any rule or institution which causes people to believe that they are sinners, and are immoral, enslaved beings, has connections with Kant's work in his Critique of Practical reason concerning the basic principle of the categorical imperative. Kant had also used the metaphor of opium before when describing religion in his work "Religion within the limits of mere reason", from which Marx coined the phrase, "religion as the opium of the people".Kant rejects a number of obvious answers such as achieving good results, conforming to moral principles, as being too qualified or restricted. Instead, he argues that a “good will” is “good in itself,” that is, good even if it has no or even negative consequences. To support this claim that a good will is unconditionally good, Kant turns to the function of reason. Reason produces a will that allows the individual to act morally good for “the sake of duty.” Rather than acting according to inclinations or to achieve a specific purpose, a rational being is able to act out of a “reverence” for the law. This good will is unconditioned by any specific or individual interests, and therefore its principle can be restated in more universal terms:

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