Free Kant's Categorical Imperative Essay Sample

It often happens that Kant's statement "Act in such a way that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of another, always at the same time as an end and never simply as means" is narrowed by people, who know not too much of his philosophy, to the general rule   "treat others the way, you would like to be treated by them". Meanwhile, the meaning of Kannt's statement, which is widely known as the categorical imperative, is much wider than this. And there are at least a couple of examples, which easily cross the mind, when thinking about this statement. And these examples are especially bright in our days. Probably, the situation was not as serious in the Kant's time.

Get a Price Quote:
- +
Total price:

People nowadays do not see their own selves as the "end", but rather as the "means". They entirely dedicate their own lives to achieving some goals, such as wealth and career, and care very little for their own health, not even mentioning their personal development. They treat themselves as the means of achieving some goal, which, in real fact, is only a means of existence, a means of survival for the end goal - one's personality.

The same, and, probably, even to a larger degree, refers to people around us. A modern person oftentimes tends to treat people around him as material, as means of achieving his goals, not as the goals themselves. Another person is, yet, another world, and our goal should be to understand this universe, to get to know it, and to try to share what we have in our own universe with that other person. Getting as close as possible to another person is a goal. Meanwhile, getting close to one person or another is oftentimes mistakenly taken for the means, which may open yet new opportunities before us. And those opportunities we are seeking so hard often have to do merely with material and highly pragmatic things, which should never be promoted to the level of a goal.

In contemplating Kant's categorical imperative, it becomes evident that the challenges of our modern age have added layers of complexity to its application. The digital era, for instance, has introduced new dimensions to human interaction, where virtual spaces and social media platforms often shape how individuals perceive and treat one another. The risk of reducing people to mere digital representations, further emphasizing their instrumental value, poses a contemporary challenge to Kant's timeless philosophy. Moreover, the global interconnectedness of societies in the 21st century has expanded the scope of our responsibilities. Kant's imperative, when applied globally, urges us to consider humanity as a collective end, transcending borders and cultural differences. The imperative beckons individuals to treat not only those in immediate proximity as ends but to extend this ethical consideration to all members of the global community.

Another pertinent aspect is the evolving nature of work and career pursuits. In the current landscape, where remote work and gig economies are increasingly prevalent, individuals navigate professional realms with a heightened sense of autonomy. However, this autonomy, if not guided by ethical principles, can lead to a further instrumentalization of oneself and others in the pursuit of individual goals. In navigating these complexities, the essence of Kant's imperative remains a guiding beacon, challenging individuals to introspect and recalibrate their perspectives on self-worth, interpersonal relationships, and global interconnectedness. The imperative, though articulated in the 18th century, continues to beckon humanity to elevate the intrinsic value of individuals and relationships, reminding us that the true measure of progress lies not just in material success but in the ethical treatment of ourselves and others as ends in themselves.


Have NO Inspiration
to write your essay?

Ask for Professional help