The original position OP , often referred to as the veil of ignorance , is a thought experiment developed by American philosopher John Rawls to discover the principles that should structure a society of free, equal and moral people. In the original position, you are asked to consider which principles you would select for the basic structure of society, but you must select as if you had no knowledge ahead of time what position you would end up having in that society. This choice is made from behind a "veil of ignorance", which prevents you from knowing your ethnicity, social status, gender and, crucially, your individual idea of how to lead a good life. Ideally, this would force participants to select principles impartially and rationally. In Rawls's theory the original position plays the same role that the "state of nature" does in the social contract tradition of Thomas Hobbes , Jean-Jacques Rousseau , and John Locke. The original position figures prominently in Rawls's book, A Theory of Justice.
Ansem, Seeker of Darkness
John Rawls - Wikipedia
In this essay, it will be argued that the veil of ignorance is an important feature of the original position. First, the essay will describe what the veil of ignorance is. Secondly, it will look at what Rawls means by the original position. Thirdly, it will look at why the veil of ignorance is an important feature of the original position. Finally, the essay will present a criticism to the veil of.
Political liberalism is thought to have two central values -- autonomy and equality, both essential to reinforcing the value of the individual in society. To add on, tolerance is generally thought to go hand in hand with equality. The idea is that in order for every individual to have equal civil liberties and be treated as political equals, others that strongly disagree with their beliefs or lifestyles must at least be tolerant of them. However, the idea of tolerance in itself seems paradoxical. The general statement made by Elie Wiesel in his speech, The Perils of Indifference, is that indifference is sinful.
In: Philosophy and Psychology. However, the lack of knowledge provided behind the veil of ignorance seems to do more harm than good to the decision maker. For example, if one behind the veil were to choose their economic system for their society; they might have a hard time selecting between a free market or socialized economy based off of simple facts.