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Acta Cogitata: A Philosophy Journal

Abstract

The following essay considers the question of how ethical and moral theories are possible in conjunction with the “death of God” as conceptualized by Nietzsche and other continental thinkers. I argue that ethical and moral action become possible through, and require, a deep affective experience of something as having absolute value, and that this kind of experience of absolute value can be found in human beings’ relationship with nature. Using the work of Bernard Williams and John Russon, I argue that the climate crisis facing the planet makes apparent this relationship, and makes possible a particular kind of affective response to nature which, in turn, makes ethical action possible.

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