Kants praktischer PlatonismusAbstract
At the centre of discussion lies the reception of Plato’s philosophy, particularly his theory of Ideas, in Kant’s moral philosophy, his ethics and his doctrine of right. Kant saw himself as a follower of Platonism insofar as its anti-empiricist principles of human conduct are concerned, although his own version of practical rationalism differs considerably from Plato’s. This is also true of Kant’s conception of freedom and of human rights. The greatest impact on Kant’s moral philosophy is due to the doctrine of the two worlds, the mundus sensibilis and the mundus intelligibilis, which did not originate in Plato himself, but in the Jewish Platonist Philo of Alexandria. Kant reinterpreted this doctrine by taking the intelligible world as a moral world consisting of free rational agents who ought to transform the empirical world of human society and history according to the norms and standards of moral laws. This was meant to be a programme for a moral reform of the human world, both with regard to individual morality and to the cosmopolitical task of the establishment of an international order of legal institutions. Kant’s practical Platonism insists on the creation of a moral world order through human actions that take their lead from pure practical reason.