In this way, in Rashdall’s opinion pleasure undoubtedly is good but not the ultimate good.

It is right to promote one’s own and other’s good and every person should do this but it is not at all permissible if, in the process moral qualities are destroyed. Moral values become the ultimate aim in Ideal Utilitarianism. Pleasure is secondary to moral values. Thus, in Ideal Utilitarianism greater stress is laid on values. Rashdall holds that is the ultimate value. All other values are subordinate to it on the subject of virtue, Raishdall writes, “That value is the greatest of all values. Accordingly, knowledge, beauty, culture, etc.

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are subordinate to virtue while the ultimate value is an organic whole. In it, all the values have an appropriate place. All these are its parts. A moral life includes all these and all these are synthesized. In this way a moral life is not only an ideal life, it also has pleasure, knowledge and beauty. Here Rashdall confirms to Evolutionism. But the fact that knowledge, beauty and pleasure have a place in a moral life does not mean that their values are equal.

Knowledge and beauty have a high value in the hierarchy of values because they pertain to and satisfy. The intellectual and sentient aspects of man whereas pleasure satisfies only the sensual aspect Rashdall wrote, “We regard knowledge, culture, enjoyment of beauty, intellectual activity of all kinds, as having a higher value than the pleasure arising from die gratification of the mere animal propensities of eating and drinking or the physical exercise or the like.’


As has been pointed out before, Rashdall’s moral theory is a kind of Utilitarianism, it being propounded by the latter that nothing is good of itself but believed good according to its utility.

According to Rashdall’s thinking, moral judgment is the judgment of values but these judgments correspond to the utility of the act. The greater the promotion, afforded by an act, in human welfare or universal welfare, the greater is its value.

Right and Wrong:

In this way, Rashdall does not differ from other utilitarians in looking upon common welfare as good this general welfare includes moral qualities, knowledge, and beauty and is assisted by them. In this way, that which helps in human welfare is right and that whjch hinders it is wrong. Thus, according to Rashdall, the propriety of an action depends upon its results. Right assists good it would be wrong if it were to hinder it. For example, all pleasures cannot be said to be right Pleasures enhancing human welfare are right while those hindering it are wrong.

Reason is the determinant of good and bad:

But who will decide whether a pleasure or activity is assisting human welfare or hindering it? As with Kant, so with Rashdall, practical reason is the determinant of right and wrong.

The aim of man is pleasure. Reason knows intuitively what is going to enhance and which is going to detract from happiness. The ultimate good is known to it by intuition.

Theories of distribution of Pleasure:

When it comes to the distribution of pleasure, Sedgwick supports Butler’s theory. According to Butter, there are three criteria of distribution— (1) Rational Self Love, (2) Benevolence, and (3) Justice. Rashdall also accepts these three criteria for the distribution of pleasure.

(1) Rational Self Love: Rational self love is the criterion for the distribution of good hi the individual’s life. Its aim is the maximum good of the individual’s entire life. Thus, it orders the sacrifice of lesser good in the face of greater good. It is thus the theory of Prudence. (2) Benevolence: Benevolence is the principle of distribution of good and aims at the maximum good of the society. A benevolent person attaches equal importance to his own and others’ good. If another’s benefit exceeds one’s own, the benevolent person will choose the other’s benefit.

(3) Justice: Justice is the principle of equitable distribution of good between individual and society. According to the principle of justice, every person has an equal right to a part in good, but this right increases or decreases as this ability fluctuates. Ability is inclusive of capability relating to happiness and pleasure, knowledge and culture, superlative character. Those people who have an excess of these, will have a corresponding right to good in equal quantity. The maximum human happiness and welfare can b* achieved by the help of these foregoing.

Criteria for the distribution of pleasure.

Evolution of Ideal Utilitarianism:

It transpires from the short account of Ideal Utilitarianism that it is merely a kind of Perfectionism or Eudemonism. It supports, in a way the theory of self.