Axiology: Everything You Need to Know

This indicates a branch of philosophy that concerns itself with the study of values and principles. It studies ethics and aesthetics as they are related to value, putting both morality and beauty into consideration as they are the two types of values. While ethics involves the questioning of personal values and morals, aesthetics examines what’s enjoyable, attractive, or tasteful. Thus, in axiology, education is more than mere knowledge as it also includes the quality of life. Often, it’s called the theory of value.

Axiology can be believed to be primarily concerned with categorizing what things are good and to which extent they are good. To consider varieties of goodness, let’s focus on the following sentences:

·         Pleasure is good.

·         It’s good for A to talk to B.

·         It’s good that David came.

·         That’s a good dagger.

Though the term “value” isn’t included anywhere on the list above, words like “good” or even “better” and “best”, and their corresponding terms like “bad,” “worse,” and “worst” can be taken to indicate values. However, all these words are used in different situations and types of constructions. For a better understanding, let’s go to the list above.

In the first sentence, “good” stands for value claims, as it refers to a mass term, which forms a core component of traditional axiology, in which philosophers try to know what things (of which there can be less or more) are good. The second sentence uses “good” to make claims about well-being or welfare. The third sentence makes claims about the type of goodness appealed to by conventional utilitarianism. The last sentence showcases the attributive use of “good” because the word, in this case, works as a predicate modifier instead of being a predicate in its own right.

Several basic issues in axiology start with assumptions or questions about how these different kinds of claims are linked to one another. The early psychological trends in axiology maintained that there’s a link between an object and a desiring subject. However, it was soon superseded by those like Max Scheler, Franz Brentano, Nicolai Hartmann, and others who maintained the objectivity of values. But axiology isn’t emotional. Rather, it aims to be a strict logic. Edmund Husserl drew attention to the possibility of making a formal treatment of mental acts that vary from theoretical judgments. He mentioned how it was extremely significant as it opens up the possibility of expanding the idea of formal logic to include a formal theory of practice and formal axiology.

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