Proporcjonalizm: pokusa utylitaryzmu z teologii moralnej
Proportionalism: The Temptation of Utilitarianism in Moral Theology
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During the post-Conciliar renewal of Catholic moral theology, some theologians worked out a method of moral reasoning called ‘proportionalism’. According to this method, an acting person is obliged to choose the option likely to yield the best proportion between pre-moral good and evil. Proportionalism seems attractive, but it contains some serious flaws. Although its adherents insist that proportionalism is distinct from utilitarianism because of its theory of the good, the two methods share a consequentialist approach from which proportionalists were never able to separate their system. In other words, proportionalists borrowed from utilitarians the principle of utility and tried to combine it with a certain understanding of the objective good. This effort proved fruitless because there is no single universal standard against which one can measure basic human goods in their specific existential realizations. Although proportionalists reject traditional Catholic teaching on intrinsically evil acts, they claim that their understanding of so-called ‘proportionate reason’ is rooted in tradition. Yet a traditional condition of proportionate reason, which is one of the elements of the principle of double effect, requires not that the good effect outweigh the evil one, but that a person aiming for an intended good end should choose a good means that causes as little non-intended evil as possible. Proportionalism was rejected by Pope John Paul II in his encyclical letter Veritatis splendor, 74-75.
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