Chapter 1. "Conscience Determines What's Right" by Hubbard Winslow

Table of Contents
Ideas of Interest from Moral Philosophy
The Reading Selection from Moral Philosophy
Related Ideas
Topics Worth Investigating

Moral Philosophy, title page

About the author…

Hubbard Winslow (1799-1864) is also the author of a popular 19th century textbook entitled Intellectual Philosophy, 1853, wherein he surveys the history of philosophy and, as well, relates influential thinkers to Christian philosophy in an accessible manner.

About the work…

In his Moral Philosophy; Analytical, Synthetical, and Practical,[1] Hubbard Winslow argues that basing ethics on theoretical philosophy is a "prevailing error." Metaphysics and logic, he argues, are not subservient to everyday consciousness of freedom and responsibility. In this passage from Part II, Chapter I, Winslow argues that philosophy should be used in the service of faith. Faith is a direct "manifestation of the truth" presented to each person's conscience. Winslow points out that just as "[w]e must not wait until we can philosophize upon food before we eat…" so also "[n]either should we wait to learn all the grounds and reasons of duty, before doing what we already know to be right."

Ideas of Interest from Moral Philosophy

  1. According to Winslow, what is "the exclusive dominion of conscience"?

  2. How does Winslow characterize the two elements of conscience? How are these psychological elements related?

  3. What is the distinguishing faculty of conscience according to Winslow?

  4. Discuss Winslow's three main functions of conscience.



Hubbard Winslow. Moral Philosophy; Analytical, Synthetical, and Practical. New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1856.