Single Idea 2360

[catalogued under 22. Metaethics / A. Ethics Foundations / 2. Source of Ethics / h. Expressivism]

Full Idea

Whatsoever is the object of any man's appetite or desire, that is it which he for his part calleth 'Good'; and the object of his hate or aversion 'Evil'.

Gist of Idea

'Good' is just what we desire, and 'Evil' what we hate


Thomas Hobbes (Leviathan [1651], 1.06)

Book Reference

Hobbes,Thomas: 'Leviathan', ed/tr. Macpherson,C.B. [Penguin 1981], p.120

A Reaction

This meets the Frege-Geach Problem - that we can have these feelings while reading ancient history, but we can't possibly 'desire' any of that. This is better on evil than on good.