So, I'm trying to tackle Kantian Ethics, and I would like to think that I know the most of it but I have some confusions
So, what I understand of Kants ethical system is that a) We are rational beings, and b) We have free will, and by free will he means that we have the freedom to make choices - even choices disconnected from our personal desires and thrusted by rationality alone. So to Kant, this rationality paired with a complete autonomy is the source of moral truths, and to be moral we must a) Not make choices that would result in a contradiction if that maxim was made universal (Which seems to result in absurd things such as "Keep all of your promises throughout your life except for one") and b) Never merely treat people as a means, but always as an end.
So I may be missing out on something but many things seem convoluted here to me. I do not quite understand why rationality paired with free will entails moral prescription. I'm just not seeing the logical flow there. The way I have always seen it is that rationality is just something employed by the will to pursue our desires more effectively. Another problem I find with this is that if we're making choices that are ENTIRELY detached from our desires, it seems that there is an alien force at work making us do things just for the sake of doing them, because these moral choices are not conditioned by personal values, and therefor I would say it seems as if Kantian ethics collapses free will, effectively making itself untenable. I am a strong believer in psychological egoism. I do not think that it's tenable to say we do things outside of an egoism, otherwise it seems like we're arbitrarily doing things for the sake of doing them.
So in summary I would like for somebody to clear up why Kant believes that rationality + free will = moral prescription, and how anybody could possibly act outside of an egoism without it not really being "them" doing the acting, because in my thoughts if you do something without a self valued reason in mind, it kind of just seems robotic and void of free will. An action performed for the sake of the action - an ought without an if - just seems robotic and void of free will