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Analysis of the moral act. A proposal

II.c) Decision-action

Once intention exists, other things may be done. A person without intentions does absolutely nothing. Intention is the interior motor for other, successive actions which allow the intended end to be reached. This unitary orientation is what permits one to give continuity and effectiveness to the entirety of those actions which otherwise would remain unconnected. The mode of executing these actions intermediate to the present moment and the desired state (the intended end) consists in deciding to do them and consequently executing them.

As the decision to undertake a specific action is not necessarily required by a specific intention (the intention to be rich does not oblige robbery, even though this procedure is the easiest way much of the time), decisions of the will merit an evaluation apart from the intention (39). Put another way, a good intention does not imply that decisions deriving from it are good.

Thus in order to judge a person's action, it is necessary to see, in addition to examining his foresight and intention, whether the other acts leading to the desired end are good or bad. That is, in addition to foresight and intention, one must examine the decision the person takes.


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