Ethics and Religion: Two Kantian Arguments


Yale Divinity School 409 Prospect Street New Haven, CT 06511, USA


This paper describes and defends two arguments connecting ethics and religion that Kant makes in Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason. The first argument is that the moral demand is too high for us in our natural capacities, and God's assistance is required to bridge the resulting moral gap. The second argument is that because humans desire to be happy as well as to be morally good, morality will be rationally unstable without belief in a God who can bring happiness and virtue together. The paper states and replies to three objections to each argument.