Psychological egoism is the doctrine that the only thing anyone is capable of desiring or pursuing ultimately is. a. entirely selfish goals. b. his or her own. Psychological egoism is the thesis that we are always deep down motivated by . does not concern oneself, but it is hardly altruistic (Feinberg /, §9, p. Psychological egoism is a universal claim: it is a claim about all human actions; the .. Feinberg doesn’t just critique this argument for hedonistic psychological.

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An updated book-length defense of the existence of altruism in humans. It does not follow that self-interest is for them a normative standard.

A further worry is that it is not clear that having the belief best increases reproductive fitness.

Psychological egoism – Wikipedia

The divergence between ethical egoism and standard moral theories appears in other ways. For this and other worries about Parfit, see BrinkJohnstonHills — Desires for pleasure and the avoidance of pain are paradigmatic ultimate desires, since people often desire these as ends in themselves, not as a mere means to anything else.

Alexander Moseley egiism – Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Natural selection sometimes has my desires caused by affect that is produced by a belief rather than directly by the belief my desire to run away from danger is often caused by my fear, rather than by the mere belief that there is danger. Psychological egoism is supported by our frequent observation of self-interested behavior.


Ethical egoism, then, recommends an impossible state of affairs. Law Political philosophy more Even if all of these desires are self-regarding, the present-aim theory need not coincide with rational egoism.

The problem is that, as the discussion of the cooperation argument shows, it also fails to fit some of the confident moral judgments we make. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. The pluralistic model, however, is comparatively less complicated since it can just deploy an ultimate desire to help: This is supposed to be a psychological fact of human motivations.

In modern philosophy, Jeremy Bentham asserted, like Epicurus, that human behavior is governed by a need to increase pleasure and decrease pain. Feinberg held many major fellowships during his career and lectured by invitation at universities around the world. Perhaps something like utilitarianism is justified as self-evident rather than inferred from some other reasons. Perhaps subjects did not believe that the easy ways of stopping the painful experience Batson provided, such as leaving the viewing room, would stop it.

Say the cost to me of saving a drowning person is getting my shirtsleeve wet. psydhological

Joel Feinberg

Her desire to win makes her anxious during her matches, and thus she does not play well and loses. This requires an argument to show that this particular objective theory gives the psychologixal account of self-interest. The pleasure that accompanies the fulfillment of our desires is often a mere byproduct of our prior desire for the thing that gave psychoogical pleasure.

Unless I desired, for egoidm own sake, to play hockey, I would not derive welfare from playing. The present-aim theory does not. However, evidence for this dependence claim has not been forthcoming.


Thomson Wadsworth However, the developmental evidence still undermines the moral education argument by indicating that our concern for the welfare others is not universally learned from birth by sanctions of reward and punishment.

Psychological Egoism | Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy

So far a number of arguments for ethical egoism have been considered. Feinberg, Reason and Responsibilityseventh edition, Belmont: Beginning with ancient philosophy, Epicureanism claims humans live to maximize pleasure. If so, ethical egoism and standard moralities will diverge in some cases. That is, the premises, even if true, fail to establish the conclusion.

Many of these constraints are met by ethical egoism — the formal constraints, for example, that moral claims must be prescriptive and universalizable.

I may have a duty to help others, and the world might be better if I helped others, but it does not follow that I am better off by helping others. Say a soldier throws himself on a grenade to prevent others from being killed.

Reprinted in part in Raphael Vol. This can be interpreted in various ways Shaver82— Self-Other Merging Another argument for psychological egoism relies on the idea that we often blur our conception of ourselves and others when we are benevolent.

Analytic statements —true by definition here empirical information is irrelevant and superfluous.