Axiological Ethics by J. N. Findlay

By J. N. Findlay

. 1970, 94pp

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On Meinong's view, the objective world with which we have commerce is not only peopled with things and facts, but also with dignities and requirements, which latter we can only apprehend by being emotionally or desideratively moved. The purely detached intellect, which will not permit wants or feelings to colour the objective order of things, can never see that order as it completely and truly is: it can at most see a reduced, incomplete world which is a reflex of its own heartlessness. Meinong does not, however, espouse the view that all our feelings and desires reveal authentic dignities and requirements which are part of the structure of real being: only some of them do so.

These are: Psychologisch-ethische Untersuchungen zur Werththeorie (Psychological-Ethical Investigations into Value-Theory) (1894), Uber emotionale Priisentation (On Emotional Presentation) (1917), Zur Grundlegung der allgemeinen Werttheorie (Foundations of General Value-Theory) (1923) and Ethische Bausteine (Ethical BuildingStones) (first published in 1969). As our aim is not to set forth the history of his opinions, we shall study them in their latest stage of development, with a rearward glance at some of the earlier treatments.

G. correctness) and more justification for his remarkable insights. Otherwise we have nothing with which to counter Sade or Nietzsche or one or other of the dark mentors whose shrines have been recently refurbished. If we now turn to Meinong, we have what is probably the most brilliantly elaborated of all theories of the possibility of what may be called 'emotional knowledge', and an interesting application of this theory to many of the main formal questions concerning value and disvalue, merit and demerit, rightness and wrongness· His main writings on axiology are all to be found in the recently published third volume of the new Collected Edition of his works.

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