Ethics and Political Philosophy
Gabriel Benavides Escriva
Hans Jonas, The changed nature of human action
This chapter, which is the subject of our study is the first book The principle of responsibility: ethics test for technological civilization, and is titled, "The changed character of human action."
Hans Jonas studied in this chapter, the changes that have occurred in the history of mankind by emphasizing technological vocation of homo sapiens and what this means from the point of view of the relationship between man and nature and from the viewpoint of relationships among men. Analyzes the characteristics of ethics, old and new challenges and the absence of a future-oriented ethics.
The author, Kantian ethics discussed to demonstrate that the maximum principal targets of the individual logical consistency in their actions, which is insufficient when it has become aware of the importance of the temporal dimension, that is, of the responsibility collectively with the future, with the men of the future.
It recognizes, however Hans Jonas, who has been other modern ethical unethical of contemporary and immediacy, but also point to the future and anticipates that its own ethic of responsibility will have to be measured with these other, both religious and secular, and in particular with those he called, utopian.
Hans Jonas said that the old nature to be manifested as "a whole", with its own laws in equilibrium constant in time, immutable, and hence of any kind unstoppable vital domain contained therein. Nature, therefore, subject to man's everyday survival action, being restricted to their vital needs this. However, the man, different from other species by their capacity for abstraction and memory, as it could be, rationality, devised concrete forms or actions, to circumvent the challenges and limitations which nature tried to subdue him.
The technique, which led to the innumerable gadgets and objects, appears here as a mechanism, such as the constant domain bring nature into the human present. This marked the man as rival rebel transformer utilitarian nature.
The eternal present of nature was abstracted by man, beginning to take shape the history of reason, technology, and memory in terms of tomorrow. Human aspiration born the future, therefore, a projection of the memory capacity, and abstraction of reality in order to survive. Therefore, the objects and elements of nature are subject to the control and transformation by man. In this man's attempt to escape the submission and the limits that nature imposes and creates a space in it, the "city of men".
In the city, the man could give some persistence with the laws that she devised and proposed respected. Therefore, only in the city is no place for ethics and moral development necessary for social order and cultural creation. By contrast, in nature, ethics does not appear to be necessary, it has its own rules and balances to which man himself is gone, so to her, the man only detracts take his intelligence and ingenuity to take advantage on this great work of the cosmos.
The man, despite intervene in nature not compromise its existence as an object, but only limited to the use of it through their technical skills, with the purpose of satisfying their "limited needs" without project onto them final objectives be achieved as humanity, because only interest used to focus on the immediate satisfaction of this.
Moral action of the pre-modern, and rules of behavior on the "eternal" present ethical, begins to fade in the modern age.
While in the West the action between individuals retain the values of the "Christian humanism," society is not impervious to the market and stakeholders from science, which guided by new knowledge, methods, and techniques to the beat of instrumental reason, incorporates different ways of understanding the relationship between these men and with nature, surpassing the explanatory limits of the...
Bibliography: • JONAS, Hans, "The changed character of human action." The principle of responsibility: ethics trial of a technological civilization.
Kraków, November 30, 2012
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