This book establishes that normativity has necessary characteristics explicable only through the natural law formulation developed by Aquinas and based on loving God and neighbor, albeit understood in terms other than Christian charity and updated according to the personalism of John Paul II. The resulting personalist natural law can counter objections rising from classical and contemporary metaethics, moral diversity, undeserved suffering, antithetical interpretations of Aquinas's natural law, and alternative ethical theories, e.g., atheistic eudaimonism. Also established are the virtues of love; the nature of indefeasibility, moral objectivity, human flourishing, and Thomistic self-evidence; the relationship between the Bonum Precept (good is to be done and pursued; evil is to be avoided) and the love precepts (God is to be loved above all; neighbors are to be loved as oneself) as well as specific moral and legal obligations. These specifications update the nature of the common good, Just War Theory, the warrant for capital punishment, environmental obligations, and the basis for universal, unalienable rights, including religious liberty. The Appendix sketches the history of natural law from its origins in ancient Greek philosophy and Roman law, through developments during the Enlightenment and the American revolution, to contemporary incarnations. Overall, the book's scope and detailed arguments make it a comprehensive resource for those interested in normative foundations, justifying morality's objectivity and universality, global jurisprudence, and recasting Thomistic natural law in terms of personalist love.
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About the Author
Rose Mary Hayden Lemmons is associate professor of philosophy at the University of St. Thomas in Saint Paul, Minnesota.
Table of ContentsChapter 1 Preface Chapter 2 Introduction Part 3 Part One. Problematic Sources of Normativity Chapter 4 Chapter One. Rational Intuitionism: Ross or Maritain Chapter 5 Chapter Two. Human or Divine Will: Kantianism or Divine Prescriptivism Chapter 6 Chapter Three. Natural Inclinations as a Voluntarist Naturalism Chapter 7 Chapter Four. Indispensable Social Goods Chapter 8 Chapter Five. Autonomous Virtues Chapter 9 Chapter Six. Eudaimonic Pluralism (the GBF Paradigm) Part 10 Part Two. Thomistic Normativity Chapter 11 Chapter Seven. Aquinas on Truth, Goodness, and Eudaimonia Chapter 12 Chapter Eight. Privileging the Love Precepts Part 13 Part Three. Thomistic Puzzles Chapter 14 Chapter Nine. Basic Questions and Responses Chapter 15 Chapter Ten. Whether Personalist Natural Law is a Thomistic Abomination? Part 16 Part Four. Classical and Contemporary Metaethical Challenges Chapter 17 Chapter Eleven. Challenges to Natural Law's Normativity, Objectivity, and Specificity Chapter 18 Chapter Twelve. The Challenges of Agnostic and Athestic Moral Eudaimonism Chapter 19 Chapter Thirteen. The Challenges of Voluntarist Liberty, and the Nietzschean Will to Power Part 20 Part Five. Love Precepts: Their Normativity and Specifications Chapter 21 Chapter Fourteen. Love’s Normativity, and Love’s Virtues Chapter 22 Chapter Fifteen. Neighborly Love: Personalist and Juridical Obligations Chapter 23 Chapter Sixteen. Loving God: Proportional Obligations Chapter 24 Chapter Seventeen. Updating the Parameters of War and Punishment With Love Part 25 Part Six. Global Challenges and Thomistic Responses Chapter 26 Chapter Eighteen. The Reality of Moral Diversity Chapter 27 Chapter Nineteen. The Globe, Feminism, and Aquinas Chapter 28 Chapter Twenty. Personalist Natural Law: Normative Advantages Chapter 29 Conclusion Chapter 30 Appendix. A Historical Sketch of Natural Law