more from Thomas Reid

Single Idea 23675

[catalogued under 23. Ethics / B. Contract Ethics / 2. Golden Rule]

Full Idea

It is a first principle of morals, that we ought not to do to another what we should think wrong to be done to us in like circumstances.

Gist of Idea

We shouldn't do to others what would be a wrong to us in similar circumstances


Thomas Reid (Essays on Active Powers 3: Princs of action [1788], 6)

Book Reference

Reid,Thomas: 'Inquiry and Essays', ed/tr. Beanblossom /K.Lehrer [Hackett 1983], p.321

A Reaction

This negative form of the rule is more plausible than the positive form, presumably because there is more consensus about what we all dislike than what we all prefer. But presents for people that they would like, not that you like.