Kantian Ethics

I read that Kant conceived of a heaven to which all loyal deontologists would go.

What is does Kant term his heaven? What exactly is this “world to come”?

“Heaven” and Heaven.

How oddly generic for someone who combined “categorical” with “imperative” and “kingdom” with a preposition and “ends” and numerous words with “duty.”

Rather, there is a final end of all moral striving and that is in the combination of all virtue and all happiness for all human beings. This he calls the ‘highest good’. What is clear is that the highest good does not obtain here on earth.

The obvious next step is to say that justice requires there being what Kant refers to as a ‘Supreme Reason’ which governs according to moral rules and will guarantee appropriate rewards and punishments in a world to come.
In the first part, he’s moving utilitarianism (or even hedonism) up to the level of heaven, and unobtainable in this world. But that’s what will obtain in heaven.

The “Supreme Reason” part, I think it means that we won’t have to debate morality anymore. That will be clear and thus, rewards for good and for evil will be appropriately carried out. (No more: Do you think we did the right thing?
btw, who are you quoting there?


I’m still interested in what exactly Kant terms this “heaven.”

I am also interested in its existence - not its literal existence, of course. I’ve scanned over Wikipedia and I saw no mention of this heaven the above PDF references.

I interpreted your original question as asking something else. You’ve made an error or something in asking it there. You may want to clarify by editing it.

As for what Kant’s heaven is, I think the simplest way to describe it is in what your source said, and how I reworded it. Are there other more specific things you’re wondering about it? God knows, it’s not simple so I’m not sure what to go into.

Try Prometheus…


I haven’t read the whole thing but I will now.

You are right. There is a typo in my original question. My questions is simply:

  1. What does Kant call his “heaven”? Or is there no specific term that he made up?

He calls it “Heaven.” Well, he calls it “heaven” in German: Himmels. Same thing. You’re right that it’s a let-down next to “categorical imperative” and all that. :slight_smile:

Kant was (on most accounts anyway) a Christian. He is talking about the regular Christian heaven. It is not a technical concept peculiar to his philosophical system, it is just the regular heaven that others of his time believed in.