عنوان مقاله [English]
Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi’s theory about moral oughts came to be known as the theory of relative necessity (al-ḍarūra bi l-qīyās ila l-ghayr), because he explicitly accounts for moral oughts in terms of the notion of relative necessity. Some scholars have objected that moral oughts cannot be conceptualized under relative necessity. In this paper, I seek to delineate Ayatollah Mesbah’s theory and examine the above objection. I examine the theory and its objection in terms of philosophical analysis with reference to conceptual intuitions and practical cases. My conclusion is that Ayatollah Mesbah’s remarks cannot be accurately captured in terms of relative necessity, and in fact, it is incorrect to account for moral oughts in terms of this notion. However, unlike the above objection, this does not lead to the rejection of any causal explanation of moral oughts; rather Ayatollah Mesbah’s view can be taken as capturing a necessity which is inherent in the principle of causation, and in particularly, the principle of homogeneity between causes and effects. In fact, the only problem with Mesbah’s view in this issue is the labeling of his view as “relative necessity”. In order to call his causal explanation of moral oughts into question, a different path should be taken.