Document Type

Journal Article

Department/Unit

Department of Religion and Philosophy

Language

English

Abstract

Kant’s enigmatic term Gesinnung baffles many readers of Religion within the Bounds of Bare Reason. This study clarifies the notion in Kant’s theories of both general moral decision-making and specifically religious conversion. It is argued that Kantian Gesinnung is volitional, referring to a person’s principle-based choice to live a certain way. More specifically, interpreted as principled ‘conviction’, Kantian Gesinnung is a religiously manifested, moral form of Überzeugung (‘convincing’). This is confirmed by a detailed analysis of the 169 occurrences of Gesinnung and cognate words in Religion. It contrasts with what is suggested by translating Gesinnung as ‘disposition’, which reinforces a tendency to interpret the notion more metaphysically, and also with Pluhar’s translation as ‘attitude’, which has too strongly psychological connotations.

Keywords

Immanuel Kant, religious conviction, disposition, attitude, belief

Publication Date

2015

Source Publication Title

Kantian Review

Volume

20

Issue

2

Start Page

235

End Page

264

Publisher

Cambridge University Press

Peer Reviewed

1

Copyright

© Kantian Review 2015

Funder

Research on this project was supported at various stages by a Faculty Research Grant, two Staff Development Grants, and by a major grant from the General Research Fund of the University Grants Committee of the Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong.

DOI

10.1017/S1369415415000035

Link to Publisher's Edition

http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S1369415415000035

ISSN (print)

13694154

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