Last modified on May 28, 2021, at 14:11


Gedankenexperiment or thought experiment is a scientific device of imagination used to investigate the nature of things.[1]

In many cases, in order to design a scientific experiment, the investigator will think through the experiment and consider possible results or outcomes. If the only outcome is obvious, there is no need to perform that experiment, and it can be redesigned to better test the investigator's hypothesis. In some fields, such as theoretical physics, thought experiments are impossible to perform as actual experiments. For example, when Einstein asked what would happen if someone could chase a light wave, he developed the theory of special relativity, which was later verified by other physical measurements.

Thought Experiments in Ethics

In ethics, thought experiments are often used to exclude irrelevant details in order to effectively isolate the particular responses elicited by principles or ideas under scrutiny that should help to guide the behavior of human beings. The obtained implications can readily be applied to situations in real world.[2]


Marriage vs. Homosexual Life-style

The Roman Law[note 1] (namely jurist Modestinus) defined marriage (Latin: Matrimonium) as a union between man and woman, an association for the whole life, a community of humane and divine life.[note 2][note 3] The main aim of the marriage was a procreation of legitimate children.[5][6]

The notion of objective truth and reality about humans as two equal and complementary sexes —male and female — was recognized also by modern-day scientists in the form of pictorial message consisting in figures of a man and a woman engraveded onto gold-anodized plaques, which were placed on board the 1972 Pioneer 10 and 1973 Pioneer 11 spacecrafts, respectively.[7] It is also present in many cultural expressions such as Swedish musical ensemble ABBA’s song “One Man One Woman.”[8]

Taking into account all known aspects and arguments, it makes sense to formulate the following postulate related to human beings and their institution of marriage:

Humans consist of two equal and complementary sexesmale and female, meant for mutual married relationships that would promote childbearing. That does not necessarily mean that every person will be married, or that every married couple will have children, but that this is the normative, typologically functional, natural and proper setting for human sexual relationships.[9]

Now the new question, subject to evaluation by the thought experiment, i.e. scientific device used for evaluating the nature of things, is whether, taking into account also the theory of law, the institution of marriage could be possibly extended to cover also same-sex couples or also so called same-sex multi-partner unions promoted by LGBTI activists.[10]

Normativity and Integrity of Society.[11]
According to the Theory of State and Law, the set of normative requirements towards an individual in relation to other individual or group, or such requirements towards a group in relation to an individual, represents a social network of relationships between individuals, as well as groups, that can be called a social normativity.[note 4] Within a group, individuals are inter-related by a set of requirements, standards, expectations, values and codes of conduct, respecting, observing and implementation of which ensures the integrity of the society, its survival, and development, and thus the integrity, survival, and development of an individual. A group (or society as a whole) cannot exist and develop without integrity, which is then secured by values and normativity. These values and norms represent glue that holds the group and society together. Normativity is a prerequisite for integrity of a group or society, and forms the way for accomplishing the needs of social life. It is a group or society that decides which values and norms are good and important for its integrity, existence and development, and, on the other hand, which ones must be kept under the control, because when practising them, they act in counter-direction and in effect disintegrate the society. The primary role of normative systems in a society is, based on its societal values, to regulate the behaviour of people in effort to maintan the society's very existence. Without the required degree of integration, the society as a whole would be in constant danger of disintegration, collaps, or ultimately extinction. Thus, the law and normative systems integrate the society by expressing and protecting certain values and needs, without which it is not possible for society to exist, develop, or prosper.
Evaluating paths of life
“Paths of life should not be scrutinized based on evaluation whether they are momentarily pleasurable or not, but by looking at what ends and aims they are leading to.”
Normal only in abnormal society

According to Erich Fromm, there are hopeless victims of mental illness who are normal only in relation to a profoundly abnormal society. Their human voice has been silenced so early in their lives, that they do not even struggle or develop symptoms as the neurotic does. Their perfect adjustment to that abnormal society is a measure of their mental sickness.[14]

The actual thought experiment aiming to resolve this question consists in imagining a group of people, a pattern subject of research, that would consider as normal and normative solely the homosexual behavior. If such norm would be applied onto all members of the tested group, so that all of them would be "normalized" accordingly, the society that would adopt such twisted normative approach would simply die out or depend on unnatural methods of reproduction.[15] The result of this experiment is predictable with absolute degree of certainty beyond any doubt. Same-sex relations are essentially sterile, intrinsically unfit for generation, while compatible opposite-sex relations are intrinsically generative and only accidentally infertile. There is nothing a same-sex couple could do at any time or in any way that would render their relations fertile. The opposite is true of the vast majority of compatible opposite-sex couples, who would actively have to do something to render their relations infertile.[16][note 5] Therefore, the conclusive statement inevitably must be that not only the same-sex relationships do not secure the integrity of the society, but also act in counter-direction, endanger its very existence and disintegrate it. In order to maintain the sustainability of society, they must be left devoid of legal support with respect to any form of marriage, i.e. institution with a special status arranging i.a. the sexual relationships of humans and representing the conceptual framework for the family unit that is the basic building block of civilized society. Sodomites cannot make a society, nor keep ours going for very long. The legal disadvantages against sodomitical and other partnerships are there for the purpose of shaping behavior in a certain way to the general benefit of society and for discouraging behavior that undermines it.[16] According to Nazi resister Dietrich Bonhoeffer, state should regard for necessary to apply restrictions in the realms of marriage. These restrictions are not an act of arbitrariness or self-will, but rather outcome of fact that natural boundaries and choices are not sufficient safeguard against various blunders and errors that may cause serious harm to society and state. Thus, in order to maintain the Natural order, it is inevitable to restrict and regulate the choices of citizens by positive state law.[18] Homosexual unions are totally lacking in the biological and anthropological elements of marriage and family, on the basis of which it would be possible to reasonably justify the legal recognition of such unions.[19] These findings are consistent with Mosaic Law, whose categorization of homosexual behavior as contrary to nature was adopted with particular vehemence by Hellenistic Jewish writers such as Josephus (Ap. 2.199).[20] He wrote that Mosaic Law "about marriage ... owns no other mixture of sexes but that which nature hath appointed, of a man with his wife, and that this be used only for the procreation of children" and that "it abhors the mixture of a male with a male".[21]


  1. The terms, concepts and principles of Roman law became the basis that grown into the contemporary Western and European legal culture with its generally recognized international terminology.[3]
  2. cf. "Homosexuals do not see marriage as an essentially divine institution." in Gnostic traits in LGBT Ideology
  3. ”Latin: Nuptiae sunt coniunctio maris et feminae et consortium omnis vitae, divini et humani iuris communicatio” (D.23.,2,1)[4]
  4. cf. Latin: Est modus in rebus, sunt certi denique fines. (Roughly: There is a good measure in all things, or there are fixed limits beyond which and short of which right is not able to find a place) Horatius alias Horace I, 1, 106[12]
  5. Privations such as infertility, blindness, a missing arm. leg. etc. are accidental properties, not substantial. Accidental properties, such as privations, do not change the formal aspect of the subject. Just because a man is blind does not change the fact that he is a man, nor does it change the fact that the primary intelligible end of the eye is color and light. ... When a part fails to function properly we attempt to correct it rather than change our conceptualization of what it is altogether.[16][17]


  1. Thought Experiments. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Jul 29, 2011). Retrieved on Mar 03, 2013.
  2. Ben Dupré (2013). 50 ethics ideas. Quercus Editions Ltd.. ISBN 978-1-78087-827-0. 
  3. Základy práva, potreba práva, podstata práva, spätosť práva zo štátom, vzťah štát – sloboda – moc. (The Law Fundamentals etc.) (Slovak). Gymnázium Martina Kukučína v Revúcej. Retrieved on October 26, 2014. “Pojmy a princípy rímskeho práva sa stali základom, z ktorého vyrástla európska právna kultúra so všeobecne uznávanou medzinárodnou terminológiou.”
  4. Karol Rebro, Peter Blaho. Rímske Právo (The Roman Law) (in Slovak, Latin). IURA Edition, 67, 170. ISBN 978-80-8078-352-5. “Nemožno prehliadať, že rímskoprávna terminológia sa stala prevažne medzinárodnou právnou terminológiou a že až dodnes sa v právnickej literatúre a vyjadrovaní používajú ako odborná výzbroj rôzne rímskoprávne definície, maximy, sentencie a aforizmy. Faktom je že nejeden pojem z rímskeho práva sa stal súčasťou európskej právnej kultúry, dokonca aj právnych poriadkov, ...Manželstvo (matrimonium) 1. Tak agnátska, ako aj kognátska rodina zásadne predpokladali manželstvo (matrimonium alebo nuptiae). Právnik modestinus definoval rímske manželstvo ako "zväzok muža a ženy aceloživotné spoločenstvo, spoločenstvo podľa božského i ľudského práva" - Nuptiae sunt coniunctio maris et feminae et consortium omnis vitae, divini et humani iuris communicatio (D.23,2,1) Rimania nepokladali manželstvo ani za sviatosť, ani za zmluvný vzťah alebo za vzťah podobný zmluvnému vzťahu, ale jednoducho za spoločnskú skutočnosť, ktorej priznávali právne účinky. V dôsledku toho bolo manželstvo skutočným životným spoločenstvom muža a ženy s manželským povedomím a náklonnosťou (affectio maritalis). Toto manželské povedomie, totiž vôľa byť si navzájom manželom a manželkou, nebolo iba predpokladom vzniku, ale bolo trvalo podmienkou existencie manželstva.” 
  5. Adolf Berger (1968). Encyclopedic Dictionary of Roman Law. American Philosophical Society. ISBN 9780871694324. 
  6. William Alexander Hunter (1803). A Systematic and Historical Exposition of Roman Law in the Order of a Code. Sweet & Maxwell. 
  7. Sagan C., Sagan L. S. and Drake F.. A Message from Earth. Retrieved on October 26, 2014.
  8. ABBA. One Man One Woman. Retrieved on October 26, 2014.
  9. Jonathan D Sarfati (June 30, 2012). Gay ‘marriage’ and the consistent outcome of Genesis compromise.
  10. BREAKING: Obama Champions Gay Task Force’s ‘Creating Change’ Conference – Which Promotes ‘Kinky Sex’ (Sadomasochism) and Multi-Partner Unions. Americans for Truth. Retrieved on 9 Jul 2016. “The Task Force will present its “Leather Leadership” award to Race Bannon, a “kinky sex” (BDSM) activist who led the way in pressuring the American Psychiatric Association (APA) to de-stigmatize sadomasochism. Bannon lives in San Francisco in a three-way (“triad”) sexual relationship with two other men, according to his bio found on page 38 of the Creating Change program (see graphic at right): “Race lives in San Francisco where he’s been in a triad (poly) relationship with his two partners, Jim and Mike, for over 16 years.” ... Gay Task Force “Creating Change” program announces “Leather Leadership” award for sadomasochism activist Race Bannon. It reads in part: “Kinky sex has been one of Race Bannon’s passions…Race is a co-founder of Kink Awareness Professionals; a leader of The DSM Project that led to a beneficial change in the way the psychotherapy profession views kink; author of the best-sellier “The Ropes: A Basic Guide to Safe and Fun BDSM Lovemaking”;…and a member of Chicago Hellfire Club….Race lives in San Francisco where he’s been in a triad (poly) relationship with his two partners, Jim and Mike, for over 16 year.””
  11. Jozef Prusák. Teória Práva (Theory of Law) (Slovak). Retrieved on October 26, 2014.
  12. Karol Rebro (1995). Latiské právnicke výrazy a výroky (Latin legal expressions and verdicts) (in Latin, Slovak). IuraEdition. ISBN 80-88715-20-2. 
  13. Ján Grešo (2013). in Libor Bednár: Sila lásky premieňa: Výber z kázní (The power of love brings change: Selection of sermons) (in Slovak). CZ ECAV, 119. ISBN 978-80-971525-7-4. “Životné cesty treba hodnotiť nie podľa toho, či sú momentálne príjemné alebo nepríjemné, ale podľa toho, k akým koncom vedú, k akým cieľom vedú.” 
  14. Aldous Huxley (1994 (First: 1959)). "III. Over-organization", Brave New World Revisited. Vintage Classics (First published by: Chatto & Windus), 27–8. ISBN 978-00994-58234. 
  15. Arkady Mamontov. SODOM (documentary) 18min:14sec. Retrieved on 14 Feb 2016. “The Fertility Institute in L.A., this is the first clinic that offered the surrogacy to sodmites.”
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 Robert R. Reilly. Making Gay Okay: How Rationalizing Homosexual Behavior is Changing Everything. Ignatius Press, 95, 100, 128. ISBN 978-1-58617-833-8. 
  17. Ryan Sorba (30 Sep 2010). The Essence of Marriage: Rational-Charitable Marriage versus Hedonistic Prideful-Marriage. Conservative Author, Activist, and TV News Personality. Retrieved on 14 Feb 2016.
  18. Dietrich Bonhoeffer (2007). "Přirozené (Natural)", Etika (Ethics, in the German original 'Ethik') (in Czech). Kalich, 176–7. 
  19. Stanislav Zvolenský (16 Jan 2018). Predseda KBS k pojmu “manželský partner”: Súdny dvor EÚ nemôže zmeniť zmýšľanie spoločnosti (The president of Episcopal Conference of Slovakia on the term "married partner": The Court of Justice of the European Union cannot change the mindset of society) (Slovak). HS. Retrieved on 19 Jan 2018. “V homosexuálnych zväzkoch predovšetkým úplne chýbajú biologické a antropologické prvky manželstva a rodiny, na základe ktorých by bolo možné rozumne odôvodniť právne uznanie týchto zväzkov”
  20. Richard B. Hays (Spring 1986). "Relations Natural and Unnatural: A Response to John Boswell's Exegesis of Romans 1". The Journal of Religious Ethics (Blackwell Publishing Ltd) 14 (1): 193. Retrieved 24 Nov 2018. 
  21. Flavius Josephus. Against Apion 2.199. Retrieved on 24 Nov 2018.

See also