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Freedom, Necessity and Duty in the Phenomenal and Noumenal Worlds in M. Luther’s Teaching and I. Kant’s Ethics. P. 122–131

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Section: Philosophy, Sociology, Politology

UDC

123:(17.025+265.39)

Authors

Natal’ya V. Eremeeva
Saint Petersburg State University; Mendeleevskaya liniya 5, St. Petersburg, 199034, Russian Federation;
e-mail: luthersocietyspb@yandex.ru

Abstract

This paper analyses the concept of duty in the works by Martin Luther and Immanuel Kant. There is a widespread opinion in the Russian historical and philosophical tradition that Kant’s philosophy is nonreligious. However, when it comes to the issues of duty, necessity and freedom, Luther’s reformation teaching and Kant’s ethics should not be set in opposition, as it would only complicate the understanding of the heart of the matter. On the contrary, if we look at the history of the formation of Protestant ethics, we can find a line of continuity between Luther and Kant. It is obvious that their moral views are based on the anthropological ideas of Aurelius Augustine, and the purpose of this article is to shed some light on the line of continuity stretching from Apostle Paul’s antinomic theology to Saint Augustine and Luther and, indirectly, to Kant in the framework of the doctrine of freedom and will. Applying textual analysis as the scientific method in this paper, the author identifies similarities, including contextual ones, in Luther’s and Kant’s use of the concept of duty and concludes that in its development from Luther to Kant this concept has been a marker of Protestant ethics and, to a certain extent, a common place for any spiritual and cultural space whose moral tenets are determined by Protestantism. In terms of theory, this paper contributes to the development of ideas about the relationship between Protestantism and German classical philosophy. In practice, its results can be used in elaborating problems of religious studies, history of philosophy and ethics, as well as in compiling and teaching general and special courses on the history of philosophy, ethics and religious studies at universities.

Keywords

Martin Luther, Immanuel Kant, concept of duty, phenomenal world, noumenal world
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