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Concepts & GS IV PYQs

Concepts & GS IV PYQs

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The Kantian Principle of Respect-for-Persons: Human Dignity matters

Immanuel Kant's Respect-for-Person Principle remains a cornerstone of ethical philosophy and a guiding light for contemporary governance and public service. This principle, derived from Kant's imperative in the "Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals," commands a universal respect for humanity. It urges us to treat humanity—whether in ourselves or in others—not merely as a means to an end but as an end in itself. 


Understanding Kant's Ethical Imperative

Kant's philosophy illuminates three critical aspects

  1. Humanity as an End: Emphasizing the intrinsic value of human beings, Kant guides us to foster an attitude of respect towards everyone's inherent worth.

  2. Respect Through Action: Kant differentiates between feelings and actions, advocating respect as a deliberate practice of engaging with others in a manner that acknowledges their autonomy.

  3. Autonomy and Respect: Highlighting human rationality and the capacity for self-governance, Kant underlines the importance of respecting individuals' autonomy, the ability to make free and self-directed choices.

Kantian Ethics in Organizational and Public Service

The Kantian principle bears significant implications for organizations and public servants:

  1. Dignity and Impartiality: It calls for treating all individuals with dignity, serving as a moral foundation for ethical governance and leadership.

  2. Condemnation of Exploitation: It morally condemns exploiting others, highlighting the sacredness of human dignity.

  3. Ethical Business Practices: It deems coercive and harmful practices immoral, advocating for informed consent and respect for autonomy.

Discover how this timeless ethical framework can inspire integrity, fairness, and respect in personal conduct, organizational leadership, and public administration. 


Join the Ethics 101 community for more ideas and discussions. 

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