The Concept of 'Metaphysical Liberalism': On the Philosophical Source of 'Liberal Democracy'

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The Concept of 'Metaphysical Liberalism': On the Philosophical Source of 'Liberal Democracy'

ABSTRACT: There have been many discussions about ‘Liberalism’ in modern political philosophy. In this paper, I want to discuss the liberal principles of political philosophy on the metaphysical level. This includes the liberal mind, the liberal consciousness, and the liberal ethos, all of which are presupposed in our liberal behaviors, and in turn serve as fundamental principles in any multicultural society. I want to emphasize the liberal tendencies of self-criticism and of the critical way of thinking in European traditional metaphysics, such as Plato’s dialectics or Kant’s philosophy of criticism. The latter is also the logic of dialogue
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In these circumstances, it is not easy to answer the following question, even if we live in an idyllic society: "what are the universal standards of social justice which can regulate our different interests and values ? "

However in this context, we are able to illustrate at least the framework of a possible liberal "open society" and its source, against the logic of a ‘closed society’.

Most of the arguments on Liberalism today are subject to actual human behavior, such as the standard of justice or equality of distribution. However, I would rather focus on the philosophical source of our possible desire for liberal social condition, by looking into our mind, attitude and ethos, or by implementing a radical approach to explore the sphere of our self-consciousness or self-decision, instead of searching for the theoretical conditions of our social consensus. Originally, liberalism for ‘open society’ attempted to consider the dignity and the solidarity of individual by means of individually-based voluntary communications.

The individual’s dignity lies in the supposition that every person can make any decision by himself, determining all his personal actions and thoughts. And this freedom of decision is based on the principle of self-control, which means our basic right that we are always ready to take responsibility for all our

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