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AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 07:43 AM
It seems this question has quite a bit of controversy for both Atheist and Christians. Arguments from both sides reject that there can be an objective morality, Christians reject a science of morality without God to define give morals a objective standard. Other atheist and agnostics argue that good is relative and that what is good or moral for one person is different for someone else. I reject both of these claims to argue that morality is based on the suffer vs well-being of conscious individuals that exist on a continuum. Causing unjustified suffering among a conscious individual is the definition of an immoral action.

Cow Poke
09-02-2015, 08:07 AM
Welcome to Tweb, Alec!

jpholding
09-02-2015, 09:41 AM
So why's this in my area? :huh:

AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 09:49 AM
What is your area?

Chrawnus
09-02-2015, 10:51 AM
What is your area?

Tektonics, the sub-section of the forum where you created this thread. A mod is probably going to move this thread to a more appropriate area of the forum.

AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 10:55 AM
Tektonics, the sub-section of the forum where you created this thread. A mod is probably going to move this thread to a more appropriate area of the forum.

How is it different than the law and morality topic under the same sub section?

Chrawnus
09-02-2015, 11:08 AM
How is it different than the law and morality topic under the same sub section?

The Tektonics area of the forum is mainly for stuff regarding Tektonics itself, J.P. Holding's apologetics ministry. Your thread would probably fit better in Philosophy 201 (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/forumdisplay.php?59-Philosophy-201) or Apologetics 301 (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/forumdisplay.php?60-Apologetics-301). Unless you wanted input specifically from Holding himself of course, but since he doesn't involve himself very much in these sorts of topics I don't really know what good it would do you.

You shouldn't create a new thread though, just ask a mod move this one to a more appropriate area (or wait for one to do it of their own accord).

Chrawnus
09-02-2015, 11:11 AM
How is it different than the law and morality topic under the same sub section?

As to your question of how it's different, the Law and Morality thread was created from an off-topic discussion in the screwball thread that threatened to derail the original thread. It's not an original thread in it's own right, but more of an offshoot of an existing one. If it was an original thread it would probably have been started in a more "appropriate" area.

jpholding
09-02-2015, 01:25 PM
Yeah...that. :dizzy:

Bill the Cat
09-02-2015, 03:20 PM
It seems this question has quite a bit of controversy for both Atheist and Christians. Arguments from both sides reject that there can be an objective morality, Christians reject a science of morality without God to define give morals a objective standard. Other atheist and agnostics argue that good is relative and that what is good or moral for one person is different for someone else. I reject both of these claims to argue that morality is based on the suffer vs well-being of conscious individuals that exist on a continuum. Causing unjustified suffering among a conscious individual is the definition of an immoral action.

Why does it matter if we are nothing more than cosmic accidents and coincidences? And what makes our species so different that we can cause unjust suffering among other species, but not our own?

Darth Executor
09-02-2015, 05:14 PM
I reject both of these claims to argue that morality is based on the suffer vs well-being of conscious individuals that exist on a continuum. Causing unjustified suffering among a conscious individual is the definition of an immoral action.

So you claim. How is this "objective"? It looks like it's just your opinion to me.

AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 06:15 PM
I see right on. Ill move it soon if a mod doesn't

AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 06:18 PM
Why does it matter if we are nothing more than cosmic accidents and coincidences? And what makes our species so different that we can cause unjust suffering among other species, but not our own?

It matters because if this is the only life we get how we spend it is all that matters, and any individual should be allowed to experience the only life they have with as much opportunity for well-being as they can get.

AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 06:23 PM
So you claim. How is this "objective"? It looks like it's just your opinion to me.

I am not sure what part is an opinion. Conscious beings suffer. The point of morality is to reduce suffering among conscious beings and that suffering is not an opinion or relative to individuals.

Bill the Cat
09-02-2015, 06:25 PM
It matters because if this is the only life we get how we spend it is all that matters, and any individual should be allowed to experience the only life they have with as much opportunity for well-being as they can get.

Why? As I have said before, walk into a random graveyard and tell me if anyone in that ground matters to you. Does it matter to anyone at all if those people were happy, sad, rich or poor? No. Nothing they did mattered.

AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 06:27 PM
Why? As I have said before, walk into a random graveyard and tell me if anyone in that ground matters to you. Does it matter to anyone at all if those people were happy, sad, rich or poor? No. Nothing they did mattered.

So we should base on our understanding of morality on those who are already dead? That does not make any sense.

AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 06:37 PM
The arguments I make for morality are not generally disagreed by Christians, we come to similar conclusions. The difference is Christians argue it only matters if God exist, or as atheist see it, It only matters if you are rewarded for acting morally or punished for acting immorally.

Bill the Cat
09-02-2015, 07:00 PM
So we should base on our understanding of morality on those who are already dead? That does not make any sense.

No. We should understand that morality is illogical when we remove God. There is no reason to behave morally or not when nothing at all matters in the long run. And there is no reason to treat humans differently than we treat any other species.

AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 07:08 PM
No. We should understand that morality is illogical when we remove God. There is no reason to behave morally or not when nothing at all matters in the long run. And there is no reason to treat humans differently than we treat any other species.

Morality is based not on morals themselves but on what individuals think God's says is moral. So morality doesn't exist it is the will of God. With so many difference religions believing in so many different Gods though all of their claims as equally valid as the next, all coming to different and sometime contradicting morals, what exactly should we believe? We have no reason to believe Christians any more than any other religion.


I disagree with your assertion in the first place. Morality stands on it's own or it doesn't exist. You do not get both.

AlecWelsh
09-02-2015, 07:10 PM
What is the point of morality to you?

Darth Executor
09-02-2015, 09:47 PM
The arguments I make for morality are not generally disagreed by Christians, we come to similar conclusions. The difference is Christians argue it only matters if God exist, or as atheist see it, It only matters if you are rewarded for acting morally or punished for acting immorally.

I'm a Christian and I agree with what you claim is how atheists see it. Of course morality doesn't matter if there are no consequences. Just like everything else that has no consequences doens't matter. It's kinda the definition of "doesn't matter".

Darth Executor
09-02-2015, 09:49 PM
I am not sure what part is an opinion. Conscious beings suffer. The point of morality is to reduce suffering among conscious beings and that suffering is not an opinion or relative to individuals.

Your claim that "the point of morality is to reduce suffering among conscious beings" is an opinion.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 06:30 AM
I'm a Christian and I agree with what you claim is how atheists see it. Of course morality doesn't matter if there are no consequences. Just like everything else that has no consequences doens't matter. It's kinda the definition of "doesn't matter".

So you believe unless you are punished or rewarded for being your moral decisions, they do not matter. There are consequences to Moral decisions regardless of if their is a God to make everything alright. Given that this is the only life we have, the actions we make and the live we influences matters more not less. Based on the atheist premise of no afterlife it increase the value of life, not decrease it.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 06:32 AM
Your claim that "the point of morality is to reduce suffering among conscious beings" is an opinion.

I do not see how it is an opinion any more than the concept of healthy means that someone has the opportunity to eat, drink sleep and have physical and mental health. The discussion of morality would be based on your actions and if they causes unjust suffering on conscious beings. Similar to making the right decisions to be healthy, you would simply make the right decisions to be moral.

seer
09-03-2015, 07:28 AM
The discussion of morality would be based on your actions and if they causes unjust suffering on conscious beings. Similar to making the right decisions to be healthy, you would simply make the right decisions to be moral.

Why? What if causing unjust suffering to my fellow man gains me and my family or tribe more power and wealth?

David Hayward
09-03-2015, 07:32 AM
... what is good or moral for one person is different for someone else ... I ... argue that morality is based on the suffer[ing] vs well-being of conscious individuals that exist[s] on a continuum. Causing unjustified suffering among a conscious individual[s] is the definition of an immoral action.

Hmm, what is it that exists on a continuum: a continuum of suffering/well-being, or a continuum of consciousness?; or are both suffering/well-being and consciousness continuums?

And what is a "conscious individual"? Do you just limit that designation to a (human) person; or do you follow Sam Harris and Michael Shermer (and I note that Jerry Coyne and Richard Dawkins have both used similar ideas and phrasing in passing), for whom the relevant meaning of "conscious individual" is a "sentient being" of any genus and species?

Harris looks like the most prominent modern exponent of the suffering-of-all-sentient-beings view -- a view which is very characteristic of traditional Buddhism, which means that if it is not to be regarded as equivalent to the equally mainstream traditional Buddhist religious views of karma, reincarnation, the motherless birth of the saint Padmasambhava as a youth upon a lotus leaf, and so on, it really needs to be justified as rational rather than merely asserted.

What I have not yet been able to work out so far from Harris' blogs (http://www.samharris.org/blog/full_archive) or his "The Moral Landscape" book (https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CCcQFjAAahUKEwipstrD9trHAhVCa9sKHTPeDtE&url=http%3A%2F%2Fskepdic.ru%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2013%2F05%2FThe_Moral_Landscap e__How_Science_Can_Determine_Human_Values.pdf&usg=AFQjCNGS91qtk4oAkDvza4npLIYGzgZ4vw) is his weighting system: is a foetus as sentient as an adult human, so that abortion is (usually or always) murder; if a fish is half as sentient as a a human adult -- and how does even a neuroscientist evaluate and score sentience levels -- should one human starve so that two fish might live? Should fishing be banned altogether? (http://dilbert.com/strip/1995-01-29) Do you eat meat?

What is your own weighting system to evaluate and score the "suffer[ing] vs well-being of conscious individuals that exist[s] on a continuum", and what's the methodology on which that weighting system is based?

Oh, and there's a whole can of worms in that simple idea of justified versus unjustified. I can justify letting Syrian refugees drown (if I am nasty enough); many in Western societies justify little poor relief or benefits.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 08:50 AM
Why? What if causing unjust suffering to my fellow man gains me and my family or tribe more power and wealth?

It is unlikely that happens without causing conflict. It is easier to work together through trading, economic gain. As social creatures causing enemies would create more problems than solve. You your family or tribe couldn't take from others and then hide yourself in a vacuum immune to retaliation.

seer
09-03-2015, 08:57 AM
It is unlikely that happens without causing conflict. It is easier to work together through trading, economic gain. As social creatures causing enemies would create more problems than solve. You your family or tribe couldn't take from others and then hide yourself in a vacuum immune to retaliation.

Really? Is that not the history of mankind? Some people think the risk is worth it. So again, why is that wrong? The fact is you will be forever reduced to opinion. There is nothing else.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 01:08 PM
Hmm, what is it that exists on a continuum: a continuum of suffering/well-being, or a continuum of consciousness?; or are both suffering/well-being and consciousness continuums?

And what is a "conscious individual"? Do you just limit that designation to a (human) person; or do you follow Sam Harris and Michael Shermer (and I note that Jerry Coyne and Richard Dawkins have both used similar ideas and phrasing in passing), for whom the relevant meaning of "conscious individual" is a "sentient being" of any genus and species?

Harris looks like the most prominent modern exponent of the suffering-of-all-sentient-beings view -- a view which is very characteristic of traditional Buddhism, which means that if it is not to be regarded as equivalent to the equally mainstream traditional Buddhist religious views of karma, reincarnation, the motherless birth of the saint Padmasambhava as a youth upon a lotus leaf, and so on, it really needs to be justified as rational rather than merely asserted.

What I have not yet been able to work out so far from Harris' blogs (http://www.samharris.org/blog/full_archive) or his "The Moral Landscape" book (https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CCcQFjAAahUKEwipstrD9trHAhVCa9sKHTPeDtE&url=http%3A%2F%2Fskepdic.ru%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2013%2F05%2FThe_Moral_Landscap e__How_Science_Can_Determine_Human_Values.pdf&usg=AFQjCNGS91qtk4oAkDvza4npLIYGzgZ4vw) is his weighting system: is a foetus as sentient as an adult human, so that abortion is (usually or always) murder; if a fish is half as sentient as a a human adult -- and how does even a neuroscientist evaluate and score sentience levels -- should one human starve so that two fish might live? Should fishing be banned altogether? (http://dilbert.com/strip/1995-01-29) Do you eat meat?

What is your own weighting system to evaluate and score the "suffer[ing] vs well-being of conscious individuals that exist[s] on a continuum", and what's the methodology on which that weighting system is based?

Oh, and there's a whole can of worms in that simple idea of justified versus unjustified. I can justify letting Syrian refugees drown (if I am nasty enough); many in Western societies justify little poor relief or benefits.


As argued by Michael Shermer in his book the Moral landscape... he discusses studies that show Animals hold similar neurophysiology's as humans do in the context of suffering,

"The Neural pathways of emotions, for examples, are not confined to higher-level cortical structures in the brain, but are found in evolutionary older sub-cortical regions. Artificially stimulating the same regions in humans and non human animals produces the same emotionally reaction in both." For the most part emotionally speaking humans and nonhuman animals have the same physical capabilities and therefore suffer and be included in the moral conversation.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 01:14 PM
Really? Is that not the history of mankind? Some people think the risk is worth it. So again, why is that wrong? The fact is you will be forever reduced to opinion. There is nothing else.

No the history of man kind is that over time we worked together and gained better morals. Scientifically speaking working together is better than working alone. Since we are discussing individuals and not societies and tribes, it is clear that as an individual human working against society man have sort term benefits and even long term seemingly, but it is by definition easier to work with a group than against it. Humans need social cooperation we are biologically dependent on human interaction at birth. If you can make the argument that living alone produces the same quality of life without interacting with society you are free to try. Given that at birth you are dependent on humans you have an uphill battle.

shunyadragon
09-03-2015, 01:50 PM
It seems this question has quite a bit of controversy for both Atheist and Christians. Arguments from both sides reject that there can be an objective morality, Christians reject a science of morality without God to define give morals a objective standard. Other atheist and agnostics argue that good is relative and that what is good or moral for one person is different for someone else. I reject both of these claims to argue that morality is based on the suffer vs well-being of conscious individuals that exist on a continuum. Causing unjustified suffering among a conscious individual is the definition of an immoral action.

I have long objected to morals and ethics being described as objective nor relative. The supposed God's illusive nebulous standard of objective morality has never been adequately defined. The concept of relative morality is equally problematic, because in reality the morals and ethics is not simply what is good for one person and different for someone else. Morals and ethics are the standards of behavior in different cultures and societies, and neither objective nor subjective to the individual. They are relatively uniform with some natural variation from culture to culture, and evolve over time. What was moral and ethical three hundred or 2000 years ago may not be considered moral today. These standards evolved with humanity and can be found in primitive forms in our primate relatives and even other intelligent mammals.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 02:18 PM
I have long objected to morals and ethics being described as objective nor relative. The supposed God's illusive nebulous standard of objective morality has never been adequately defined. The concept of relative morality is equally problematic, because in reality the morals and ethics is not simply what is good for one person and different for someone else. Morals and ethics are the standards of behavior in different cultures and societies, and neither objective nor subjective to the individual. They are relatively uniform with some natural variation from culture to culture, and evolve over time. What was moral and ethical three hundred or 2000 years ago may not be considered moral today. These standards evolved with humanity and can be found in primitive forms in our primate relatives and even other intelligent mammals.

I agree that what people determined as morals back then is different from now, but I would argue that they improved. The point of morality I would argue is no different than the point of good health. There is in fact a healthy standard of living over time we could argue it has improved given that we live longer. Instead of working towards eating healthier, exercising and fighting off illnesses, a moral standard would be based on the equal opportunity for sentient individuals to find well-being, and to not causes unjust suffering.

seer
09-03-2015, 02:33 PM
No the history of man kind is that over time we worked together and gained better morals. Scientifically speaking working together is better than working alone. Since we are discussing individuals and not societies and tribes, it is clear that as an individual human working against society man have sort term benefits and even long term seemingly, but it is by definition easier to work with a group than against it. Humans need social cooperation we are biologically dependent on human interaction at birth. If you can make the argument that living alone produces the same quality of life without interacting with society you are free to try. Given that at birth you are dependent on humans you have an uphill battle.

I have no idea what you are taking about. The Europeans come to North American, displace or kill the Natives - take their lands and prosper greatly. And I'm not just speaking of individuals. I'm speaking of mankind as we find it.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 02:43 PM
I have no idea what you are taking about. The Europeans come to North American, displace or kill the Natives - take their lands and prosper greatly. And I'm not just speaking of individuals. I'm speaking of mankind as we find it.

Around the world slavery has been reduced, Civil rights are growing like among Woman and gays, how long has it been since we have had a nuclear bomb go off? Homicides over time have been reduced using court records, archaeological discoveries, oral accounts that humans are much more moral now that we were in the past. Think about it, the NFL here in America is having a controversy because of the concussions caused by the sport when in the past, sporting events were people fighting animals and other humans to the death as entertainment. We are not perfect, but we have improved our standard of morality.

seer
09-03-2015, 03:16 PM
Around the world slavery has been reduced, Civil rights are growing like among Woman and gays, how long has it been since we have had a nuclear bomb go off? Homicides over time have been reduced using court records, archaeological discoveries, oral accounts that humans are much more moral now that we were in the past. Think about it, the NFL here in America is having a controversy because of the concussions caused by the sport when in the past, sporting events were people fighting animals and other humans to the death as entertainment. We are not perfect, but we have improved our standard of morality.

So what is you point? Yes, in parts of the world morality is changing, in other parts not so much. But who knows what it will be like fifty or one hundred years from now?

shunyadragon
09-03-2015, 03:18 PM
I agree that what people determined as morals back then is different from now, but I would argue that they improved. The point of morality I would argue is no different than the point of good health. There is in fact a healthy standard of living over time we could argue it has improved given that we live longer. Instead of working towards eating healthier, exercising and fighting off illnesses, a moral standard would be based on the equal opportunity for sentient individuals to find well-being, and to not causes unjust suffering.

If you read my post, I argue for almost the same thing, morals and ethics have evolved and improved over time.

shunyadragon
09-03-2015, 03:19 PM
So what is you point? Yes, in parts of the world morality is changing, in other parts not so much. But who knows what it will be like fifty or one hundred years from now?

As with history improved.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 03:26 PM
So what is you point? Yes, in parts of the world morality is changing, in other parts not so much. But who knows what it will be like fifty or one hundred years from now?

Well that your claim was wrong was my point. Hopefully in fifty or one hundred years we have improved even more.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 03:28 PM
If you read my post, I argue for almost the same thing, morals and ethics have evolved and improved over time.


You reject an objective standard to morality but agree it has improved over time. That logically does not fit. They couldn't improve if there was no objective standard

seer
09-03-2015, 03:33 PM
Well that your claim was wrong was my point. Hopefully in fifty or one hundred years we have improved even more.


What was wrong? That we arguably just went through one of the most bloody centuries of human history?

seer
09-03-2015, 03:34 PM
They couldn't improve if there was no objective standard

And where does that standard come from?

shunyadragon
09-03-2015, 03:39 PM
I have no idea what you are taking about. The Europeans come to North American, displace or kill the Natives - take their lands and prosper greatly. And I'm not just speaking of individuals. I'm speaking of mankind as we find it.

Morality changes, what the Europeans did would be morally wrong today by International Law, Morals and ethics. Of course, Israel does this to the Palestinians, The Muslims do this to religious minorities in their countries today, but it is now morally and ethically wrong.

seer
09-03-2015, 03:45 PM
Morality changes, what the Europeans did would be morally wrong today by International Law, Morals and ethics. Of course, Israel does this to the Palestinians, The Muslims do this to religious minorities in their countries today, but it is now morally and ethically wrong.

What an idiot...

shunyadragon
09-03-2015, 03:54 PM
What an idiot...

Idiot answer . . . No response as usual.

seer
09-03-2015, 03:57 PM
Idiot answer . . . No response as usual.

No, you are a typical anti-Semite... And still an idiot...

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 04:04 PM
What was wrong? That we arguably just went through one of the most bloody centuries of human history?

That is not true with proportion to the growing population over time. WE are more moral given how many people die compared to how many people living.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 04:08 PM
And where does that standard come from?

The objectiveness in experiences of conscious individuals. For example regardless of what animal intentionally starving them causes the being to experience suffering in a similar way. It is the feelings of conscious beings and the goals of morality is reducing suffering and increasing the opportunity of well being for individuals.

seer
09-03-2015, 04:20 PM
That is not true with proportion to the growing population over time. WE are more moral given how many people die compared to how many people living.

Well I have no idea if that is true. The point is the last century was very bloody, and this one is staring out no better and with the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction who knows what the future will bring. We may in fact be at our high point right now.

seer
09-03-2015, 04:26 PM
The objectiveness in experiences of conscious individuals. For example regardless of what animal intentionally starving them causes the being to experience suffering in a similar way. It is the feelings of conscious beings and the goals of morality is reducing suffering and increasing the opportunity of well being for individuals.

But that is not objective, that is subjective. Your goal, or my goal, may be to reduce the suffering of others but that goal is not necessarily shared by others. And our opinion would not be any more valid or correct than theirs. Beside, it may just be that certain genetic traits are becoming more predominate which would have nothing to do with objective morals.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 04:44 PM
But that is not objective, that is subjective. Your goal, or my goal, may be to reduce the suffering of others but that goal is not necessarily shared by others. And our opinion would not be any more valid or correct than theirs. Beside, it may just be that certain genetic traits are becoming more predominate which would have nothing to do with objective morals.

How is experiencing hunger subjective? When talking about the subject of morality the point is to be morally sound no different than a Doctors goal is to make their patients healthy. Makes no rational sense to even consider the arguments of someone who is not following the basic premise of morality on a conversation of morality does it?

seer
09-03-2015, 04:59 PM
Makes no rational sense to even consider the arguments of someone who is not following the basic premise of morality on a conversation of morality does it?

But that is where you opinion comes in. A man may believe that it is perfectly moral to help his and his own at the expense of others, to gain wealth and power at the expense of others. You and I may disagree but again our opinion is no moral valid or correct than his.

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 06:50 PM
But that is where you opinion comes in. A man may believe that it is perfectly moral to help his and his own at the expense of others, to gain wealth and power at the expense of others. You and I may disagree but again our opinion is no moral valid or correct than his.

Do you just not understand the concept of having a premise? How about the examples I used, do you understand them? Do you understand how standards work?

AlecWelsh
09-03-2015, 06:51 PM
Can you argue the alternative?

shunyadragon
09-03-2015, 07:05 PM
No, you are a typical anti-Semite... And still an idiot...

Name calling like this will loose what ever respect you had, which was not much.

Idiot answer . . . No response as usual.

seer
09-04-2015, 02:43 AM
Do you just not understand the concept of having a premise? How about the examples I used, do you understand them? Do you understand how standards work?

Alec, yes I understand what a premise is. But that is your premise for morality, there is nothing objective about it. Do you understand history? The Nazis believed it was a moral good to rid the world of Jews. The Stalinists and Maoists thought it was a moral good to eliminate millions of dissenters to maintain the social order.

seer
09-04-2015, 02:44 AM
Name calling like this will loose what ever respect you had, which was not much.

Idiot answer . . . No response as usual.


You are still an uniformed anti-Semite.

AlecWelsh
09-04-2015, 07:15 AM
Alec, yes I understand what a premise is. But that is your premise for morality, there is nothing objective about it. Do you understand history? The Nazis believed it was a moral good to rid the world of Jews. The Stalinists and Maoists thought it was a moral good to eliminate millions of dissenters to maintain the social order.

No, it is objective because the experience of humans an animals are no whims. The point of having a moral code is to reduce suffering and increase well-being. This is not subjective this is the entire point of having a moral standard. It would be subjective if say, morality was based on the whims of a imaginative creator. The issue is you cannot move past the is point because you lose the argument. I see no point in continuing with you Seer until you begin to form your opinions based on facts and not bias. Either argue the alternative, that an individual could live on his own without any help from society or admit that individuals are dependent on humanity.

Bill the Cat
09-04-2015, 08:53 AM
Morality is based not on morals themselves but on what individuals think God's says is moral.

Correct.


So morality doesn't exist it is the will of God.

In a manner of speaking.


With so many difference religions believing in so many different Gods though all of their claims as equally valid as the next,

Simply false. The existence of an opinion does not validate the truthfulness of that opinion.


all coming to different and sometime contradicting morals, what exactly should we believe?

The one that is true. It is your task to discover which is true.


We have no reason to believe Christians any more than any other religion.

Yes we do. You just choose to reject the reason.



I disagree with your assertion in the first place. Morality stands on it's own or it doesn't exist. You do not get both.

Morality does not stand on its own. It is a property of the character of God.

AlecWelsh
09-04-2015, 09:07 AM
Correct.



In a manner of speaking.



Simply false. The existence of an opinion does not validate the truthfulness of that opinion.



The one that is true. It is your task to discover which is true.



Yes we do. You just choose to reject the reason.




Morality does not stand on its own. It is a property of the character of God.
The default position is that it is more likely all religions are wrong rather than one happening to be born right. Each has Faith, scripture, spiritual experiences to justify their beliefs. Of course you do not think so, you happened to be born into the one true religion. But what evidence do you have to offer that another religion cannot claim itself?

Chrawnus
09-04-2015, 09:15 AM
The default position is that it is more likely all religions are wrong rather than one happening to be born right.

I think it's funny how you're conveniently excluding atheism. Why is it that atheism should be considered more likely than any religion by default?

shunyadragon
09-04-2015, 09:18 AM
But that is where you opinion comes in. A man may believe that it is perfectly moral to help his and his own at the expense of others, to gain wealth and power at the expense of others. You and I may disagree but again our opinion is no moral valid or correct than his.

As a fallible individual in any culture or society can justify there own actions whether moral or immoral, but that is not what morality and ethics represent. They are the cultural social norms, and codes of behavior for any given society or culture.

Opinions of individuals do not represent morals and ethics of a society or culture.

shunyadragon
09-04-2015, 09:25 AM
Morality is based not on morals themselves but on what individuals think God's says is moral.

Disagree here, morals and ethics are not based on what individuals thank God(s) say is moral. Morals and ethics are based on what the society or culture determines what they believe what God(s) say is moral. Individuals can make decisions nor opinions as to whether to obey or not, do not represent the morals and ethics of the society or culture they are part of.

Bill the Cat
09-04-2015, 09:25 AM
The default position is that it is more likely all religions are wrong rather than one happening to be born right. Each has Faith, scripture, spiritual experiences to justify their beliefs. Of course you do not think so, you happened to be born into the one true religion. But what evidence do you have to offer that another religion cannot claim itself?

I am convinced by the veracity of the words of the New Testament and the historical evidence of the early church. JP Holding's book "The Impossible Faith" pinpoints many of the things I consider valid evidences of truth.

Plus, I was not born into Christianity. I got saved at 19, baptized at 20.

shunyadragon
09-04-2015, 09:26 AM
I am convinced by the veracity of the words of the New Testament and the historical evidence of the early church. JP Holding's book "The Impossible Faith" pinpoints many of the things I consider valid evidences of truth.

Plus, I was not born into Christianity. I got saved at 19, baptized at 20.

What were you born into?

Bill the Cat
09-04-2015, 09:38 AM
What were you born into?

Apathy. The only thing my birthmother cared about was doing drugs with her friends. My dad was too busy working to bother with church or anything like religion.

AlecWelsh
09-04-2015, 10:21 AM
I think it's funny how you're conveniently excluding atheism. Why is it that atheism should be considered more likely than any religion by default?

Because it is more likely all of you are wrong than all of you being right. All of you have similar conclusions and arrive at them with similar rationalizations. Take that into consideration why should we think we move on to the next life anymore any other biologically evolved being?

AlecWelsh
09-04-2015, 10:23 AM
I am convinced by the veracity of the words of the New Testament and the historical evidence of the early church. JP Holding's book "The Impossible Faith" pinpoints many of the things I consider valid evidences of truth.

Plus, I was not born into Christianity. I got saved at 19, baptized at 20.

There are exceptions to the rules. Have you consider this with historical and scientific analysis of all the many other possible religion in the world that have ever existed? That is a lot of work to be done.

seer
09-04-2015, 01:35 PM
No, it is objective because the experience of humans an animals are no whims. The point of having a moral code is to reduce suffering and increase well-being. This is not subjective this is the entire point of having a moral standard. It would be subjective if say, morality was based on the whims of a imaginative creator. The issue is you cannot move past the is point because you lose the argument. I see no point in continuing with you Seer until you begin to form your opinions based on facts and not bias. Either argue the alternative, that an individual could live on his own without any help from society or admit that individuals are dependent on humanity.

What are you talking about? Animals kill and eat other animals, men kill other men. Take their lands and property. That is also the experience of humans and animals. Your goal, to reduce suffering and increase well-being is subjective. Nothing objective about it.

Bill the Cat
09-04-2015, 01:45 PM
There are exceptions to the rules. Have you consider this with historical and scientific analysis of all the many other possible religion in the world that have ever existed? That is a lot of work to be done.

I've investigated the major ones, yes.

AlecWelsh
09-04-2015, 01:51 PM
What are you talking about? Animals kill and eat other animals, men kill other men. Take their lands and property. That is also the experience of humans and animals. Your goal, to reduce suffering and increase well-being is subjective. Nothing objective about it.

I have no idea that your point is saying the first part of that. Your second part is the issue. I know others disagree that the point of morality is to reduce well being but they are wrong no different than arguing a Doctors goal is to work to reducing the health of their patients. What individual would argue that suffering is the goal in life? What rational individual would argue for more pain and suffering among themselves?

AlecWelsh
09-04-2015, 01:52 PM
I've investigated the major ones, yes.

Well I am quite interested in hearing how you happened choose the right religion while many others chose the wrong one.

Bill the Cat
09-04-2015, 01:59 PM
Well I am quite interested in hearing how you happened choose the right religion while many others chose the wrong one.
Something tells me that comment was less than sincere... :uneasy:

seer
09-04-2015, 02:57 PM
I have no idea that your point is saying the first part of that. Your second part is the issue. I know others disagree that the point of morality is to reduce well being but they are wrong no different than arguing a Doctors goal is to work to reducing the health of their patients. What individual would argue that suffering is the goal in life? What rational individual would argue for more pain and suffering among themselves?

But it doesn't matter. The Nazi may not to personally want to suffer, no animal would. That however does not prevent the Nazi from ushering Jewish children into gas chambers. The bottom line Alex is that the Christian lives in a just and moral universe and the atheist lives in an unjust and amoral universe. And so it will ever be....

AlecWelsh
09-04-2015, 05:09 PM
Something tells me that comment was less than sincere... :uneasy:

I am being serious. What make you personally think out of everyone who has gotten it wrong under the same standard or rationalization you figured it out? Is it the writers of the Bible, did the make that compelling of a case to you? Is it historically scientific, spiritual?

AlecWelsh
09-04-2015, 05:21 PM
But it doesn't matter. The Nazi may not to personally want to suffer, no animal would. That however does not prevent the Nazi from ushering Jewish children into gas chambers. The bottom line Alex is that the Christian lives in a just and moral universe and the atheist lives in an unjust and amoral universe. And so it will ever be....

Any individual arguing against a standard of morality based on not causing unjust suffering would also be including themselves in that argument if they liked it or not since they too are an individual. They would either be a masochist or making a irrational argument. Christians do not have a basis of morality they have many different interpretations of the Bible where they pick and choose which parts to use. I am going to take it that you cannot present a rational argument that it makes sense for an individual to argue for a morality that encourages unjust suffering. Since they too are an individual that also would be subjected to unjust suffering.

Leonhard
09-05-2015, 12:13 AM
No, you are a typical anti-Semite... And still an idiot...

There's nothing anti-semitical about criticizing the immoral actions of Israel. They're not untouchable, and haven't earned any reprieve from criticism because of the horrors of the Holocaust. They're responsible for their actions and should be held responsible.

I can't see what else Shunya has written as he's on ignore for me, but I assume he pointed out nothing more than the fact that in Israel they have a lot of segregated communities, and non-jews are not given the same rights.

David Hayward
09-05-2015, 02:15 AM
What I have not yet been able to work out so far from Harris' blogs (http://www.samharris.org/blog/full_archive) or his "The Moral Landscape" book (https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CCcQFjAAahUKEwipstrD9trHAhVCa9sKHTPeDtE&url=http%3A%2F%2Fskepdic.ru%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2013%2F05%2FThe_Moral_Landscap e__How_Science_Can_Determine_Human_Values.pdf&usg=AFQjCNGS91qtk4oAkDvza4npLIYGzgZ4vw) is his weighting system: is a foetus as sentient as an adult human, so that abortion is (usually or always) murder; if a fish is half as sentient as a a human adult -- and how does even a neuroscientist evaluate and score sentience levels -- should one human starve so that two fish might live? Should fishing be banned altogether? (http://dilbert.com/strip/1995-01-29) Do you eat meat?

What is your own weighting system to evaluate and score the "suffer[ing] vs well-being of conscious individuals that exist[s] on a continuum", and what's the methodology on which that weighting system is based?


As argued by Michael Shermer in his book the Moral landscape... he discusses studies that show Animals hold similar neurophysiology's as humans do in the context of suffering,

"The Neural pathways of emotions, for examples, are not confined to higher-level cortical structures in the brain, but are found in evolutionary older sub-cortical regions. Artificially stimulating the same regions in humans and non human animals produces the same emotionally reaction in both." For the most part emotionally speaking humans and nonhuman animals have the same physical capabilities and therefore suffer and be included in the moral conversation.

Yes, I'm quite happy to accept that emotions and suffering are primitive, evolved early, and are common to species with even a fairly basic brain. My question was, how do you weight the sufferings of different types (or species) of those sentient beings; its a question which I think you have now implicitly answered.

I take it that for you, one human's suffering is weighted the same as one ant's; and that, for example, it is most certainly not morally acceptable to bulldoze and kill an ant nest containing 1,000 ants in order to build a house and home for a family of four; that in this example the pain and suffering of the cruelly dying ants is at least 1,000 times greater than the mere comfort of the four humans, rendering the house-building grossly immoral -- perhaps immoral on a level with the similar ghastly suffering involved in human ethnic cleansing.

seer
09-05-2015, 03:23 AM
Any individual arguing against a standard of morality based on not causing unjust suffering would also be including themselves in that argument if they liked it or not since they too are an individual. They would either be a masochist or making a irrational argument. Christians do not have a basis of morality they have many different interpretations of the Bible where they pick and choose which parts to use. I am going to take it that you cannot present a rational argument that it makes sense for an individual to argue for a morality that encourages unjust suffering. Since they too are an individual that also would be subjected to unjust suffering.

No Alex, I rather look at the big picture. If the atheist is correct we are insignificant creatures, living on an insignificant planet in a purposeless universe. And all your rational or moral musings are about as meaningless as we are.

To quote Shakespeare:

And all our yesterdays have lighted fools. The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more: it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 08:00 AM
Yes, I'm quite happy to accept that emotions and suffering are primitive, evolved early, and are common to species with even a fairly basic brain. My question was, how do you weight the sufferings of different types (or species) of those sentient beings; its a question which I think you have now implicitly answered.

I take it that for you, one human's suffering is weighted the same as one ant's; and that, for example, it is most certainly not morally acceptable to bulldoze and kill an ant nest containing 1,000 ants in order to build a house and home for a family of four; that in this example the pain and suffering of the cruelly dying ants is at least 1,000 times greater than the mere comfort of the four humans, rendering the house-building grossly immoral -- perhaps immoral on a level with the similar ghastly suffering involved in human ethnic cleansing.


Well I think basic priorities would be set to intelligence levels. Given that humans communicate and identify suffering and work to find the cause and fix it, it is clear that humans should hold priorities in some situations. Given that humans depend on a planet that supports life all living things it would be in our best interest to not eliminate or destroy the planet while living here. I do not have a set of detailed prioritizes for you and what I have said does not cover everything you are considering so we can work out a basic standard if you are up to it. I think that weighing the suffering of different sentient beings would start with their mental capacity to strive and solve suffering in the world. Which I think would require a lot more research to be done.

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 08:03 AM
No Alex, I rather look at the big picture. If the atheist is correct we are insignificant creatures, living on an insignificant planet in a purposeless universe. And all your rational or moral musings are about as meaningless as we are.

To quote Shakespeare:

And all our yesterdays have lighted fools. The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more: it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

That argument is not much different than a child pouting because he did not get his way. If this is the only life we have, this is all that matters. It becomes greatly important. At this point you cannot rationally reject my premise. Not causing unjust suffering among sentient individuals is the basis of a morality defined by science. No individual could argue against that without having to rationalize why he/she would want unjust suffering done to them.

You do understand how scary it is you think morality only matters if there is a God. It means you as a person admit to being selfish and that being a good person only matters if you get something out of it.

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 10:40 AM
No Alex, I rather look at the big picture. If the atheist is correct we are insignificant creatures, living on an insignificant planet in a purposeless universe. And all your rational or moral musings are about as meaningless as we are.

To quote Shakespeare:

And all our yesterdays have lighted fools. The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more: it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

You just admitted to rejecting science based morality because it is discomforting to you, and not because you can prove it is flawed. This is not a valid argument.

David Hayward
09-05-2015, 11:09 AM
Given that humans depend on a planet that supports life [for] all living things it would be in our best interest to not eliminate or destroy the planet while living here.

I think few will disagree with that.


I do not have a set of detailed priorities for you and what I have said does not cover everything you are considering so we can work out a basic standard if you are up to it.

I thought you might not, and when I consider how to maximise the well-being (and conversely minimise the suffering) of all sentient beings, it is problem after problem which comes to mind, not solutions. I know that I am floundering when I consider what an appropriate basic standard might be, and I suspect you are, too.

While you and I can probably readily agree on some sweeping generalities -- I'm sure we do -- the difficulty is in settling the details, and in pinning vague ideas down to form definite and clear criteria for moral decision-making and ethical action.

I don't think scientific research will help either, not until someone has decided what needs measuring, how to measure it, how to put numbers to (ie quantify) the results, and how to weight the numbers, both within species and between species, for morality assessment purposes. That research is currently but a pipedream or at best a vague promise for the indefinite future.

Even if the research had been done, the purpose of the research is to enable us to end up with numbers which, for each different alternative in a scientifically moral decision-making scenario, can be compared with the corresponding numbers for the other alternatives, in order to decide scientifically which alternative maximises the well-being of all sentient beings involved, hence is the scientifically moral one.

That is, some poor person or team presumably has the laborious task of compiling a massive spreadsheet before each and every scientifically moral decision can be taken, in order that the suffering and well-being of each and every sentient being affected by the decision can be calculated, and the total well-being/suffering quantified and ranked against that of the decision's alternatives -- which may well be many alternatives, and may well each require separate massive spreadsheets.

If you think about it, when well-being and suffering are scientifically quantified, any but the simplest of scenarios is a nightmare -- or perhaps impossible to decide -- using the 'maximisation of well-being of sentient beings' principle. A properly scientific "moral landscape" decision would involve a bureaucratic and technocratic nightmare.

Looking to the next section, below, I ask who is going to count up the ants? (If it's me, there's 999 ants, definite. And no termites, worms, etc etc etc whatsoever.)


Well I think basic priorities would be set to intelligence levels. Given that humans communicate and identify suffering and work to find the cause and fix it, it is clear that humans should hold priorities in some situations. ... I think that weighing the suffering of different sentient beings would start with their mental capacity to strive and solve suffering in the world. Which I think would require a lot more research to be done.

That seems to say you propose that it is not the amount of a sentient being's suffering or comfort which matters, but the amount of its intelligence.

And it presumably says that if I am, by some well-researched scientific measure, 1,000 times more intelligent than an ant and/or have 1,000 times an ant's capacity to strive and solve suffering in the world, it is more moral to kill me (or you) than 1,000 ants.

seer
09-05-2015, 11:30 AM
You just admitted to rejecting science based morality because it is discomforting to you, and not because you can prove it is flawed. This is not a valid argument.

There is no science based morality, and as far as justifying your position David is doing a fine job of taking it apart. But I would like to know where you disagree with me:

If the atheist is correct we are insignificant creatures, living on an insignificant planet in a purposeless universe. And all your rational or moral musings are about as meaningless as we are.

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 11:35 AM
I think few will disagree with that.



I thought you might not, and when I consider how to maximise the well-being (and conversely minimise the suffering) of all sentient beings, it is problem after problem which comes to mind, not solutions. I know that I am floundering when I consider what an appropriate basic standard might be, and I suspect you are, too.

While you and I can probably readily agree on some sweeping generalities -- I'm sure we do -- the difficulty is in settling the details, and in pinning vague ideas down to form definite and clear criteria for moral decision-making and ethical action.

I don't think scientific research will help either, not until someone has decided what needs measuring, how to measure it, how to put numbers to (ie quantify) the results, and how to weight the numbers, both within species and between species, for morality assessment purposes. That research is currently but a pipedream or at best a vague promise for the indefinite future.

This is where we disagree. Scientific research is the best answer. Suffering is the experiences of conscious beings we can understand these experiences using science, a key part in reducing suffering. What entails suffering, emotional and physical suffering that causes can be identified by science and worked towards reducing. Like the evolution of food and how we grow better crops to provide more food. Currently as our population grows we are discovering that we have to use energy and produce resource more efficiently to sustain our growth. Science is the best standard to use to identify issues and how to solve them.







Even if the research had been done, the purpose of the research is to enable us to end up with numbers which, for each different alternative in a scientifically moral decision-making scenario, can be compared with the corresponding numbers for the other alternatives, in order to decide scientifically which alternative maximises the well-being of all sentient beings involved, hence is the scientifically moral one.

That is, some poor person or team presumably has the laborious task of compiling a massive spreadsheet before each and every scientifically moral decision can be taken, in order that the suffering and well-being of each and every sentient being affected by the decision can be calculated, and the total well-being/suffering quantified and ranked against that of the decision's alternatives -- which may well be many alternatives, and may well each require separate massive spreadsheets.

If you think about it, when well-being and suffering are scientifically quantified, any but the simplest of scenarios is a nightmare -- or perhaps impossible to decide -- using the 'maximisation of well-being of sentient beings' principle. A properly scientific "moral landscape" decision would involve a bureaucratic and technocratic nightmare.

Looking to the next section, below, I ask who is going to count up the ants? (If it's me, there's 999 ants, definite. And no termites, worms, etc etc etc whatsoever.)



The argument that it is not going to be easy is not exactly a good one. Of course making life with fair opportunities for each individual sentient being will take time and be complicated but it is not a argument against the use of science as a standard. The ant thing I think you are getting to hung up on. How much do Ants experience and are they actual individuals or copies working a that the will of their queen?



That seems to say you propose that it is not the amount of a sentient being's suffering or comfort which matters, but the amount of its intelligence.

And it presumably says that if I am, by some well-researched scientific measure, 1,000 times more intelligent than an ant and/or have 1,000 times an ant's capacity to strive and solve suffering in the world, it is more moral to kill me (or you) than 1,000 ants.






I took the situation you were suggest as this: that two species that are suffering equally and we have to determine which one to save despite equal suffering and for some reason cannot save both. I suggest that the species that can identify, understand and reduce suffering would gain priority, thus making reducing suffer and promoting and opportunity for well being still a priority.

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 11:46 AM
There is no science based morality, and as far as justifying your position David is doing a fine job of taking it apart. But I would like to know where you disagree with me:

If the atheist is correct we are insignificant creatures, living on an insignificant planet in a purposeless universe. And all your rational or moral musings are about as meaningless as we are.

Ya though he hasn't. He has brought up complication in defining and enforcing a morality using science but he has not refuted it out right any more than you have. You are wrong in the fact that you rejected the moral standard I am suggesting based on how you interpret that reality, and not because it is a logically invalid argument.

seer
09-05-2015, 12:51 PM
Ya though he hasn't. He has brought up complication in defining and enforcing a morality using science but he has not refuted it out right any more than you have. You are wrong in the fact that you rejected the moral standard I am suggesting based on how you interpret that reality, and not because it is a logically invalid argument.

Well yes, my point is why is the suffering of insignificant, ultimately meaningless creatures objectively wrong. Or to ask it in another way - if an advanced alien race came to earth and began harvesting us for food for their survival - why would that be objectively wrong?

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 01:03 PM
Well yes, my point is why is the suffering of insignificant, ultimately meaningless creatures objectively wrong.

Because they fall under the individuals that suffer. I pretty sure I already made that argument that they have the neurophysiology to experience sufferings like we do.

seer
09-05-2015, 01:21 PM
Because they fall under the individuals that suffer. I pretty sure I already made that argument that they have the neurophysiology to experience sufferings like we do.

Or to ask it in another way - if an advanced alien race came to earth and began harvesting us for food for their survival - why would that be objectively wrong?

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 02:00 PM
Or to ask it in another way - if an advanced alien race came to earth and began harvesting us for food for their survival - why would that be objectively wrong?

Because we are also individuals that suffer and experience well-being and a shot at life.

seer
09-05-2015, 02:39 PM
Because we are also individuals that suffer and experience well-being and a shot at life.

This is where I'm not seeing the connection. Ok, the Nazi can personally suffer, therefore it is morally wrong for him to usher Jewish children into gas chambers. I don't get the leap, neither would the Nazi. And we certainly don't need science to tell us this.

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 04:03 PM
This is where I'm not seeing the connection. Ok, the Nazi can personally suffer, therefore it is morally wrong for him to usher Jewish children into gas chambers. I don't get the leap, neither would the Nazi. And we certainly don't need science to tell us this.

Because if it was the Nazi being pushed into the gas Chamber he would object.

seer
09-05-2015, 05:23 PM
Because if it was the Nazi being pushed into the gas Chamber he would object.

Yes, I understand, but it does not follow that therefore the Nazi should not kill the Jew. Any animal for instance would not want to be killed and eaten, that does not prevent him from killing and eating another animal. I mean that is nature, man killing man for personal gain is nature.

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 05:26 PM
Yes, I understand, but it does not follow that therefore the Nazi should not kill the Jew. Any animal for instance would not want to be killed and eaten, that does not prevent him from killing and eating another animal. I mean that is nature, man killing man for personal gain is nature.

Yes but an animal cannot reason like a human. That is what makes us more moral to begin with. It might not make the Nazi change his mind but then he is a hypocrite and like any discussion his opinion would be invalid. Obviously it took war to make that point but it was made.

Also studies have been done to shown that children younger than a year old can identify fairness naturally prior to being exposed to the values of his/her culture. I can get the studies if you like.

seer
09-05-2015, 05:43 PM
Yes but an animal cannot reason like a human. That is what makes us more moral to begin with. It might not make the Nazi change his mind but then he is a hypocrite and like any discussion his opinion would be invalid. Obviously it took war to make that point but it was made.

Yes but your charge of hypocrisy would be meaningless to him. But it still does not logically follow that he ought not kill the Jew, it only follows that he is a hypocrite.


Also studies have been done to shown that children younger than a year old can identify fairness naturally prior to being exposed to the values of his/her culture. I can get the studies if you like.

Sure, I have raised two boys, and I'm helping to raise two grandchildren - I don't need studies. So we have biological predispositions. Yet, we also find a predisposition to selfishness and even cruelty. That is human nature - and? As a Christian I believe we were designed for certain moral ends, to love God, love our neighbor, follow the golden rule, etc... The forces of nature has no such moral goal,or teleology in view. We have these moral inclinations, in your case, strictly by accident.

AlecWelsh
09-05-2015, 05:55 PM
Yes but your charge of hypocrisy would be meaningless to him. But it still does not logically follow that he ought not kill the Jew, it only follows that he is a hypocrite.

Yes it does logically follow. Just because it would be meaningless to him doesn't matter since he does not get to dictate how logic functions. This is not meant to be convincing to an entire nation in the middle of murdering an entire race. That is why we had to go to war with them, talking was not going to work. This is simply an argument for a morality defined by science since science would be the best tool to do so. Some peoples opinions are invalid and while those people might not change to the logic it does not invalidate the logic.






Sure, I have raised two boys, and I'm helping to raise two grandchildren - I don't need studies. So we have biological predispositions. Yet, we also find a predisposition to selfishness and even cruelty. That is human nature - and? As a Christian I believe we were designed for certain moral ends, to love God, love our neighbor, follow the golden rule, etc... The forces of nature has no such moral goal,or teleology in view. We have these moral inclinations strictly by accident.


I would not say that they are strictly by accident. If anything humans have proven that working together and getting along is easier for our survival than trying to live on our own. You can of course pointed out examples of the contrary but it does not invalidate the majority of the evidence that over time we have improved our morality.

seer
09-06-2015, 05:09 AM
Yes it does logically follow. Just because it would be meaningless to him doesn't matter since he does not get to dictate how logic functions. This is not meant to be convincing to an entire nation in the middle of murdering an entire race. That is why we had to go to war with them, talking was not going to work. This is simply an argument for a morality defined by science since science would be the best tool to do so. Some peoples opinions are invalid and while those people might not change to the logic it does not invalidate the logic.

No Alec, no law of logic is violated here that I can see. Look at it this way, a man and his family are starving so he steals the food from another family that also needs the food to survive. Now the thief may be hypocritical for violating the golden rule, but his acts are not irrational. No rule of logic is violated - as a matter of fact it may be the most rational thing he could do.



I would not say that they are strictly by accident. If anything humans have proven that working together and getting along is easier for our survival than trying to live on our own. You can of course pointed out examples of the contrary but it does not invalidate the majority of the evidence that over time we have improved our morality.

Yes, but the way we developed in the evolutionary sense is completely accidental. Yes, we do better in community but there are a number of species that survive just fine living basically solitary lives. And I'm not sure what you mean by improved morality since there is no moral goal or teleology in nature. Just what works for survival. Of course the Christian would say that there is a moral teleology.

AlecWelsh
09-06-2015, 07:51 AM
No Alec, no law of logic is violated here that I can see. Look at it this way, a man and his family are starving so he steals the food from another family that also needs the food to survive. Now the thief may be hypocritical for violating the golden rule, but his acts are not irrational. No rule of logic is violated - as a matter of fact it may be the most rational thing he could do.



Yes, but the way we developed in the evolutionary sense is completely accidental. Yes, we do better in community but there are a number of species that survive just fine living basically solitary lives. And I'm not sure what you mean by improved morality since there is no moral goal or teleology in nature. Just what works for survival. Of course the Christian would say that there is a moral teleology.

Yes but you would agree that if he had a better solution that did not caused him to steal that would be the morally better decision. I am aware there are circumstances where someone will have to make an immoral decision out of self preservation. But all of these examples of immoral acts only shows that there are moral ones that you can I can agree on. The only difference is that you think God must be part of it because if religious bias, where I think science is the best way to define moral standards and drive to solve moral problems. The world will not be perfect in the sense that everyone will all have equal treatment and fairness. But there is noting logically or rationally wrong about my premise. That man would be able to understand how much it would suck to have that family steal from him, just that understanding is what allows people to be moral and for there to be a moral standard without God. It is simply based on us and our interactions with each other.

What species is as intelligent and advaned as but worked solely as individuals?

seer
09-06-2015, 01:09 PM
Yes but you would agree that if he had a better solution that did not caused him to steal that would be the morally better decision. I am aware there are circumstances where someone will have to make an immoral decision out of self preservation. But all of these examples of immoral acts only shows that there are moral ones that you can I can agree on. The only difference is that you think God must be part of it because if religious bias, where I think science is the best way to define moral standards and drive to solve moral problems. The world will not be perfect in the sense that everyone will all have equal treatment and fairness. But there is noting logically or rationally wrong about my premise. That man would be able to understand how much it would suck to have that family steal from him, just that understanding is what allows people to be moral and for there to be a moral standard without God. It is simply based on us and our interactions with each other.

What species is as intelligent and advaned as but worked solely as individuals?

A couple of points Alec, first, we don't need science to understand this. Mankind has understood the golden rule, in various forms, going back three thousand years across cultures. Second, even if you think what the man did in my example was immoral (saving his family) it was not illogical. It does not violate any law of logic that I know of. But you claimed it did - in some fashion. Man has never been without good moral ideas (science was never necessary here) the problem has always been getting men to follow them. And finally, back to my example - in a godless universe the ultimate good is survival (what would be morally better, and according to whom?) so the man stealing to help his family survive is a moral good - no question.

JimL
09-06-2015, 07:41 PM
A couple of points Alec, first, we don't need science to understand this. Mankind has understood the golden rule, in various forms, going back three thousand years across cultures. Second, even if you think what the man did in my example was immoral (saving his family) it was not illogical. It does not violate any law of logic that I know of. But you claimed it did - in some fashion. Man has never been without good moral ideas (science was never necessary here) the problem has always been getting men to follow them. And finally, back to my example - in a godless universe the ultimate good is survival (what would be morally better, and according to whom?) so the man stealing to help his family survive is a moral good - no question.
Seer, what you seem to constantly overlook is the fact that in a God ruled universe the ultimate good is also survival, eternal survival, and that reward, in either case, comes from the understanding that treating others as you would be treated is the best way to achieve that. There is no need for this moral understanding to be grounded in an objective source since it is relative and applicable to living beings in either case. If you were being honest you would admit that the only difference between God imposed morals and natural morals is that the former extends ones reward of survival beyond what is natural, to eternal survival.

seer
09-07-2015, 02:56 AM
Seer, what you seem to constantly overlook is the fact that in a God ruled universe the ultimate good is also survival, eternal survival, and that reward, in either case, comes from the understanding that treating others as you would be treated is the best way to achieve that. There is no need for this moral understanding to be grounded in an objective source since it is relative and applicable to living beings in either case. If you were being honest you would admit that the only difference between God imposed morals and natural morals is that the former extends ones reward of survival beyond what is natural, to eternal survival.

Except Jim, survival to the Christian involves obeying God. That would include following certain moral principles, or at least trying. Trying to follow the golden rule, the love of ones neighbor, helping the poor etc... Survival in a godless universe would include anything that worked, including cruelty and selfishness. So extending life and justice, rewards and punishments beyond the natural world makes all the difference in the world in how we act here and now. Survival by any means possible is not an option for the Christian, it is for the non-christian.

AlecWelsh
09-07-2015, 12:54 PM
A couple of points Alec, first, we don't need science to understand this. Mankind has understood the golden rule, in various forms, going back three thousand years across cultures. Second, even if you think what the man did in my example was immoral (saving his family) it was not illogical. It does not violate any law of logic that I know of. But you claimed it did - in some fashion. Man has never been without good moral ideas (science was never necessary here) the problem has always been getting men to follow them. And finally, back to my example - in a godless universe the ultimate good is survival (what would be morally better, and according to whom?) so the man stealing to help his family survive is a moral good - no question.

Sure but would it not be morally better if there is no need for him to steal? We would agree on that moral standard. As for getting people to act more morally, that means educating them better. The more people are educated the more moral we are.

seer
09-07-2015, 02:15 PM
Sure but would it not be morally better if there is no need for him to steal? We would agree on that moral standard. As for getting people to act more morally, that means educating them better. The more people are educated the more moral we are.

Really, many of the Nazi hierarchy were very well educated, out of the best Universities of Germany. Same with the Communists and followers of Lenin, who were mostly intellectuals. But the point is, we do not need science to tells us what is moral, and never did. And, again, in a godless survival is the ultimate moral good - no matter how one gets there.

AlecWelsh
09-07-2015, 05:27 PM
Really, many of the Nazi hierarchy were very well educated, out of the best Universities of Germany. Same with the Communists and followers of Lenin, who were mostly intellectuals. But the point is, we do not need science to tells us what is moral, and never did. And, again, in a godless survival is the ultimate moral good - no matter how one gets there.

Sure like I said children could identify morals at very young ages, Science just allows us to define and strive for solutions. For example you have no moral basis to reject gays or claim they are a sin given our understand of gays and that they are born the way they are and it is not a mental health issue. The Christian basis for claiming gays are immoral has been dis-proven by science.

AlecWelsh
09-07-2015, 05:28 PM
Really, many of the Nazi hierarchy were very well educated, out of the best Universities of Germany. Same with the Communists and followers of Lenin, who were mostly intellectuals. But the point is, we do not need science to tells us what is moral, and never did. And, again, in a godless survival is the ultimate moral good - no matter how one gets there.

Yes but when the general population is smarter society is more moral. The more average individual are educated the better moral a society has.

JimL
09-07-2015, 06:38 PM
Except Jim, survival to the Christian involves obeying God. That would include following certain moral principles, or at least trying. Trying to follow the golden rule, the love of ones neighbor, helping the poor etc... Survival in a godless universe would include anything that worked, including cruelty and selfishness. So extending life and justice, rewards and punishments beyond the natural world makes all the difference in the world in how we act here and now. Survival by any means possible is not an option for the Christian, it is for the non-christian.
Accept for the fact that cruelty and selfishness would not work for society any more in your after world than it would in this world. The fact that the golden rule works to safeguard the lives and the peace of society and of the individuals that belong to it is what makes it objective. The point is not whether or not certain individuals disagree with it or transgress it, the point is that morality doesn't need a source, it is an objective truth in and of itself.

AlecWelsh
09-07-2015, 07:42 PM
Accept for the fact that cruelty and selfishness would not work for society any more in your after world than it would in this world. The fact that the golden rule works to safeguard the lives and the peace of society and of the individuals that belong to it is what makes it objective. The point is not whether or not certain individuals disagree with it or transgress it, the point is that morality doesn't need a source, it is an objective truth in and of itself.

Funny enough I just read a part of the Moral Arch that talks about pirates and how they too among each other had a moral code and were not as violent as the narrative goes. The pirates pushed this narrative to instill fear so people would pay themoff out of fear of being attacked and they would at times be violent. They also had to have order on their ship in order to function. Even among criminals there are rules to a certain extent. Just not rules the rest of society plays by or wants too.

Tassman
09-08-2015, 03:14 AM
Except Jim, survival to the Christian involves obeying God. That would include following certain moral principles, or at least trying. Trying to follow the golden rule, the love of ones neighbor, helping the poor etc... Survival in a godless universe would include anything that worked, including cruelty and selfishness. So extending life and justice, rewards and punishments beyond the natural world makes all the difference in the world in how we act here and now. Survival by any means possible is not an option for the Christian, it is for the non-christian.

You have been repeatedly unable to say in any detail what these godly “moral principles” are other than follow the Golden Rule. But the latter is merely the ‘ethic of reciprocity’ which all human beings are genetically predisposed towards anyway, given that we’ve evolved as a social species.

This is why the Golden Rule has been an ethical component throughout human history in such places as Ancient Babylon (The Code of Hammurabi), all the major philosophical schools of ancient China (Mohism, Taoism, and Confucianism etc), in ancient Egypt, ancient Greece and Rome and Persian Zoroastrianism, etc, etc, etc.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Rule

Nothing special about the Golden Rule, it’s simply a part of our heritage as evolved human beings.

It also seems likely that this instinct is shared with other primates as the experiments of Frans de Waal indicate.

http://edition.cnn.com/2013/01/19/health/chimpanzee-fairness-morality/

seer
09-08-2015, 03:26 AM
Sure like I said children could identify morals at very young ages, Science just allows us to define and strive for solutions. For example you have no moral basis to reject gays or claim they are a sin given our understand of gays and that they are born the way they are and it is not a mental health issue. The Christian basis for claiming gays are immoral has been dis-proven by science.

First Alex, child molesters or serial killers may be born that way. Just because something may be natural or inherent does not make it moral. Human are selfish by nature, does it then follow that selfishness is a good and moral thing?

seer
09-08-2015, 04:33 AM
Accept for the fact that cruelty and selfishness would not work for society any more in your after world than it would in this world. The fact that the golden rule works to safeguard the lives and the peace of society and of the individuals that belong to it is what makes it objective. The point is not whether or not certain individuals disagree with it or transgress it, the point is that morality doesn't need a source, it is an objective truth in and of itself.

But the fact is cruelty and selfishness can and do work. You guys are fond of pointing to higher primates - yet there a small ruling class controls the larger population often by very violent means. And they keep the peace. So if you are pointing to what works - totalitarianism works - and has even in human population for centuries.

AlecWelsh
09-08-2015, 06:37 AM
First Alex, child molesters or serial killers may be born that way. Just because something may be natural or inherent does not make it moral. Human are selfish by nature, does it then follow that selfishness is a good and moral thing?

Yes but say I said, given out understanding of gays they are not a mental illness that there is not morally bad understanding of them other than Some guy wrote in down in a book. Child molesters and serial killiners are simply not the same and it is terrifying in a conversation of morality you cannot tell the difference. That whole Christian morality sure does work out

AlecWelsh
09-08-2015, 06:39 AM
But the fact is cruelty and selfishness can and do work. You guys are fond of pointing to higher primates - yet there a small ruling class controls the larger population often by very violent means. And they keep the peace. So if you are pointing to what works - totalitarianism works - and has even in human population for centuries.

It might work but it is not a better method than getting a long and working together. Just because something works does not mean it is the best choice.

Bill the Cat
09-08-2015, 06:43 AM
...sin given our understand of gays and that they are born the way they are ....

I'm sorry, when did this happen?

AlecWelsh
09-08-2015, 06:45 AM
I'm sorry, when did this happen?

When did what happened? Gays are born Gay?

Bill the Cat
09-08-2015, 06:49 AM
When did what happened? Gays are born Gay?

Yes. Where has this been scientifically conclusively proven?

AlecWelsh
09-08-2015, 06:55 AM
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071107170741.htm

I would also like to ask you at what point in your life did you choose to be straight.

tabibito
09-08-2015, 07:08 AM
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071107170741.htm

They found that the posterior part of the corpus callosum is larger in homosexual than heterosexual men.

The size of the corpus callosum is largely inherited suggesting a genetic factor in sexual orientation, said Witelson "Our results do not mean that heredity is destiny but they do indicate that environment is not the only player in the field," she said.

The science is certainly in.

seer
09-08-2015, 07:22 AM
It might work but it is not a better method than getting a long and working together. Just because something works does not mean it is the best choice.

The point Alec is that if you are looking for order in society there are a number of things that may work, totalitarianism being one of them. As a matter of fact it may actually be better at promoting social order than modern democracies which often have competing factions that sow disorder. So is social order the ultimate good?

Bill the Cat
09-08-2015, 07:30 AM
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071107170741.htm

While this is not a litmus test for sexual orientation, Witelson said this finding could prove to be one additional valuable piece of information for physicians and individuals who are trying to determine their sexual orientation.



I would also like to ask you at what point in your life did you choose to be straight.

When I was 14 and I terminated the same-sex relationship I was in.

seer
09-08-2015, 07:32 AM
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071107170741.htm

I would also like to ask you at what point in your life did you choose to be straight.

The question is, if you took this genetic material that is me and gave it a different upbringing or experiences would I be gay today? Let me give you two examples - Ronny and Don, (their real names and two guys I grew up with). They both came out in the early seventies. I found out they were both molested by older males, family members, from early ages into their late teens. Perhaps if they never had these experience they would not be gay today. Well actually Don is no longer with us - AIDs.

Bill the Cat
09-08-2015, 07:32 AM
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071107170741.htm

They found that the posterior part of the corpus callosum is larger in homosexual than heterosexual men.

The size of the corpus callosum is largely inherited suggesting a genetic factor in sexual orientation, said Witelson "Our results do not mean that heredity is destiny but they do indicate that environment is not the only player in the field," she said.

The science is certainly in.

Only in that behavior affects brain development. (http://www.dana.org/Publications/ReportOnProgress/Effects_ofStress_on_the_Developing_Brain/)

seer
09-08-2015, 07:35 AM
Yes but say I said, given out understanding of gays they are not a mental illness that there is not morally bad understanding of them other than Some guy wrote in down in a book. Child molesters and serial killiners are simply not the same and it is terrifying in a conversation of morality you cannot tell the difference. That whole Christian morality sure does work out

Nonsense Alec, you were suggesting that we should accept homosexual behavior because they were "born that way." This is a silly argument, just because one is born with genetic disposition towards a particular behavior tells us nothing about the morality of that behavior.

tabibito
09-08-2015, 07:42 AM
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...1107170741.htm

They found that the posterior part of the corpus callosum is larger in homosexual than heterosexual men.

The size of the corpus callosum is largely inherited suggesting a genetic factor in sexual orientation, said Witelson "Our results do not mean that heredity is destiny but they do indicate that environment is not the only player in the field," she said.


The science is certainly in.


Only in that behavior affects brain development. (http://www.dana.org/Publications/ReportOnProgress/Effects_ofStress_on_the_Developing_Brain/)

:facepalm: The comment was ironic.

However
the development of the corpus callosum is not determined by environment.
the way that the brain functions, not its physical makeup, is determined by environmental factors.

Bill the Cat
09-08-2015, 12:21 PM
:facepalm: The comment was ironic.

However
the development of the corpus callosum is not determined by environment.


We have previously found that sex differences can vary with the rearing environment. Consequently, male and female rats were raised from weaning to 55 days of age in either a complex or an isolated environment. There were no sex differences in the size of the corpus callosum in sagittal cross section in these rats; however, rats of both sexes had a larger posterior third of the corpus callosum if they were raised in the complex environment.

sex differences exist in axonal number and size and the environment influences these differences.


the way that the brain functions, not its physical makeup, is determined by environmental factors.

Um, no.

Animal models have taught us that stressing the mother in pregnancy can alter brain development in the offspring; and that prolonged separation of infant from mother impairs in the newborn other aspects of brain development and function

- See more at: http://www.dana.org/Publications/ReportOnProgress/Effects_ofStress_on_the_Developing_Brain/#sthash.TZQcxU1k.dpuf

AlecWelsh
09-08-2015, 04:41 PM
Nonsense Alec, you were suggesting that we should accept homosexual behavior because they were "born that way." This is a silly argument, just because one is born with genetic disposition towards a particular behavior tells us nothing about the morality of that behavior.

The point of that argument is primarily to refute the by choice argument. But you are correct that alone does not prove that it is immoral. It is the fact that Christians have attempt to eliminate that life style out of those who are born that way and it imposed suffering and psychological harm in attempting do do so. Them being allowed to live their lives has no harmful side effect to the individual or individual around them. It does cause harm to force-ably repress their life style and tell them they are evil or immoral for being who they are. You would think reading history you would know being a bigot is not exactly moral and yet.....

seer
09-08-2015, 05:41 PM
The point of that argument is primarily to refute the by choice argument. But you are correct that alone does not prove that it is immoral. It is the fact that Christians have attempt to eliminate that life style out of those who are born that way and it imposed suffering and psychological harm in attempting do do so. Them being allowed to live their lives has no harmful side effect to the individual or individual around them. It does cause harm to force-ably repress their life style and tell them they are evil or immoral for being who they are. You would think reading history you would know being a bigot is not exactly moral and yet.....

Again Alec, you brought up the born that way argument. I'm glad we agree that that tells us nothing about the morality of a thing. And just a side note - we are all immoral by being who we are - we are all sinners. And I'm not sure what you mean by the bigot thing - if I believe that homosexual behavior is wrong that makes me a bigot? So, if I believe that adultery is wrong does that also make me a bigot concerning adulterers?

AlecWelsh
09-08-2015, 06:22 PM
Again Alec, you brought up the born that way argument. I'm glad we agree that that tells us nothing about the morality of a thing. And just a side note - we are all immoral by being who we are - we are all sinners. And I'm not sure what you mean by the bigot thing - if I believe that homosexual behavior is wrong that makes me a bigot? So, if I believe that adultery is wrong does that also make me a bigot concerning adulterers?

They logically have no connection other than the Bible which is an arbitrary connection. And it depends what you mean by adulterers. Two people who are married and cheat on each other is wrong because of the agreement made between the two people. I do not think those having sex outside of married is wrong as long as it is consensual.

Tassman
09-09-2015, 12:49 AM
First Alex, child molesters or serial killers may be born that way. Just because something may be natural or inherent does not make it moral.

Strawman argument! If this type of antisocial behaviour interferes with the social cohesion of the group or impinges of the rights of individuals within the group, the perpetrators will be removed from the group via incarceration or whatever. End of story!



Humans are selfish by nature, does it then follow that selfishness is a good and moral thing?

People are not this one-dimensional. Humans are also born with socially-bonding instincts such as mutual reciprocity, altruism and the predisposition to follow the rules of the group.


But the fact is cruelty and selfishness can and do work. You guys are fond of pointing to higher primates - yet there a small ruling class controls the larger population often by very violent means. And they keep the peace. So if you are pointing to what works - totalitarianism works - and has even in human population for centuries.

Yes totalitarianism works as per the absolute monarchies of a past era and so does the murderous tribalism as per Moses and his genocides, but there is a better way as demonstrated by the secular democracies of Europe and Scandinavia in the modern era. We’ve grown in our understanding of morality and universal human rights.

Tassman
09-09-2015, 12:53 AM
Nonsense Alec, you were suggesting that we should accept homosexual behavior because they were "born that way." This is a silly argument, just because one is born with genetic disposition towards a particular behavior tells us nothing about the morality of that behavior.

Unless there is good reason to deny anyone equal civil rights then ALL citizens are entitled to them. Equal protection for all citizens is at the very heart of the legal system and central to the consent to be governed. Same-sex couples cannot be denied this privilege without a legally sufficient justification.


Again Alec, you brought up the born that way argument. I'm glad we agree that that tells us nothing about the morality of a thing. And just a side note - we are all immoral by being who we are - we are all sinners. And I'm not sure what you mean by the bigot thing - if I believe that homosexual behavior is wrong that makes me a bigot? So, if I believe that adultery is wrong does that also make me a bigot concerning adulterers?

It makes you wrong in the opinion of many. And if you attempt to enforce your views upon those that disagree with you then you are indeed a bigot.

seer
09-09-2015, 03:31 AM
They logically have no connection other than the Bible which is an arbitrary connection. And it depends what you mean by adulterers. Two people who are married and cheat on each other is wrong because of the agreement made between the two people. I do not think those having sex outside of married is wrong as long as it is consensual.

That was not the point Alec, if I believe that adultery is wrong, that it is wrong for a man to cheat on his wife, does that make me a bigot? Of course not, anymore than I would be a bigot for believing that homosexual behavior is wrong. In any case I think we have dispelled the notion that science can or does tell us anything about morality.

seer
09-09-2015, 04:49 AM
Strawman argument! If this type of antisocial behaviour interferes with the social cohesion of the group or impinges of the rights of individuals within the group, the perpetrators will be removed from the group via incarceration or whatever. End of story!

Not the point Homer, the point being that just because something is "natural" doesn't make it moral. So the whole "born that way" argument is silly.



Yes totalitarianism works as per the absolute monarchies of a past era and so does the murderous tribalism as per Moses and his genocides, but there is a better way as demonstrated by the secular democracies of Europe and Scandinavia in the modern era. We’ve grown in our understanding of morality and universal human rights.

Secular democracies are relatively new in human history so we have no idea if they will be better for the survival of the species in the long run. Besides, as we see in the news everyday, Western Europe, because of their nonsensical liberal policies, are being over run by Muslims. Islam will not need to fire a shot - they will take Europe by demographics. So much for your "secular democracies."

seer
09-09-2015, 05:01 AM
Unless there is good reason to deny anyone equal civil rights then ALL citizens are entitled to them. Equal protection for all citizens is at the very heart of the legal system and central to the consent to be governed. Same-sex couples cannot be denied this privilege without a legally sufficient justification.

But like I said in the past - homosexuals always had exactly the same rights I did - to marry a non-blood relation of the opposite sex. And as far as the consent of the governed, you don't really believe that. When the "people" had the right to vote on gay marriage they shot it down in all cases but two.



It makes you wrong in the opinion of many. And if you attempt to enforce your views upon those that disagree with you then you are indeed a bigot.

Really? So if I believe there should be laws against adultery that makes me a bigot? And what law isn't one group of people forcing their views on another group of people? Like you liberals forcing a Christian baker to bake a cake for a homosexual wedding under threat of law - I guess that makes you a bigot Tass...

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 07:14 AM
That was not the point Alec, if I believe that adultery is wrong, that it is wrong for a man to cheat on his wife, does that make me a bigot? Of course not, anymore than I would be a bigot for believing that homosexual behavior is wrong. In any case I think we have dispelled the notion that science can or does tell us anything about morality.

What standard are you using? The difference is that you think people who are born with a certain sexual orientation should not be allowed to act on that orientation or have equal laws based on that orientation. Who are discriminating against someone for who they are. With adultery you are judging peoples actions and no way the same. You have not really said anything about how you can misspell the notion that science can say anything about morality. You do not even know the difference between bigotry and immoral actions.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 07:20 AM
But like I said in the past - homosexuals always had exactly the same rights I did - to marry a non-blood relation of the opposite sex. And as far as the consent of the governed, you don't really believe that. When the "people" had the right to vote on gay marriage they shot it down in all cases but two.




Really? So if I believe there should be laws against adultery that makes me a bigot? And what law isn't one group of people forcing their views on another group of people? Like you liberals forcing a Christian baker to bake a cake for a homosexual wedding under threat of law - I guess that makes you a bigot Tass...

Ok but part of establishing the US government was to make sure even if there was a great majority on a subject that the minority would not be tossed to the side. Your inability to consider gays for who they are is also not surprising. They did not have equal rights like you because they could not marry someone they love and gain equal rights and recognition under the law. Unless you are gay no they did not have the same right. You and other Christians here seem to interpret things delusionally with your own bias. You know you basically are making the same argument made for slavery right? You are among the same bigots who argued for slvaery and could not see how blacks deserved equal rights. Tell me more about how we need God and Jesus to have morals? It obviously is working out for you :rofl:

seer
09-09-2015, 07:31 AM
What standard are you using? The difference is that you think people who are born with a certain sexual orientation should not be allowed to act on that orientation or have equal laws based on that orientation. Who are discriminating against someone for who they are. With adultery you are judging peoples actions and no way the same. You have not really said anything about how you can misspell the notion that science can say anything about morality. You do not even know the difference between bigotry and immoral actions.

Alec, what are you taking about. You already agree that just because something is "natural" does not tell us if it is moral or not. So nature is not the ethical standard we look to for moral guidance. And FYI adultery may also be a genetically predisposed - so judging that is exactly the same as judging homosexual behavior. And no science tells us nothing about what is moral or not. When you offered an example it was about homosexual behavior and the argument that science tells us that homosexuals are "born that way." That, as I pointed out, is a silly argument since genetic predisposition does not tell us if the resulting behavior is moral or not (many violent behaviors are genetically linked). So that argument failed - do you have another argument where science tells us what is moral or not? I'm all ears.

seer
09-09-2015, 07:33 AM
Ok but part of establishing the US government was to make sure even if there was a great majority on a subject that the minority would not be tossed to the side. Your inability to consider gays for who they are is also not surprising. They did not have equal rights like you because they could not marry someone they love and gain equal rights and recognition under the law. Unless you are gay no they did not have the same right. You and other Christians here seem to interpret things delusionally with your own bias. You know you basically are making the same argument made for slavery right? You are among the same bigots who argued for slvaery and could not see how blacks deserved equal rights. Tell me more about how we need God and Jesus to have morals? It obviously is working out for you :rofl:

Really? That is all you have? And I do consider gays for who they are - sinners, like myself, who need to repent...

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 07:37 AM
Alec, what are you taking about. You already agree that just because something is "natural" does not tell us if it is moral or not. So nature is not the ethical standard we look to for moral guidance. And FYI adultery may also be a genetically predisposed - so judging that is exactly the same as judging homosexual behavior. And no science tells us nothing about what is moral or not. When you offered an example it was about homosexual behavior and the argument that science tells us that homosexuals are "born that way." That, as I pointed out, is a silly argument since genetic predisposition does not tell us if the resulting behavior is moral or not (many violent behaviors are genetically linked). So that argument failed - do you have another argument where science tells us what is moral or not? I'm all ears.

That is because you ignored most of this post here
The point of that argument is primarily to refute the by choice argument. But you are correct that alone does not prove that it is immoral. It is the fact that Christians have attempt to eliminate that life style out of those who are born that way and it imposed suffering and psychological harm in attempting do do so. Them being allowed to live their lives has no harmful side effect to the individual or individual around them. It does cause harm to force-ably repress their life style and tell them they are evil or immoral for being who they are. You would think reading history you would know being a bigot is not exactly moral and yet.....

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 07:39 AM
Really? That is all you have? And I do consider gays for who they are - sinners, like myself, who need to repent...

Because the basis of that belief is not based on anything but what men wrote down in the Bible. It is easy to say we are both sinner we just need to repent. But to a homosexual what you are saying is, I am a sinner through my actions because I am not perfect, but you are a sinner for who you are.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 07:43 AM
Science is the best standard because nothing learns about the Human experiences, human interactions, other animals plant life like we can. We can fine the boundaries of what is moral and what is not by our better understanding of people and the world around us. Science will address global warming a resources shortages. You have to understand the point of morality before how science can help though. You still do not understand a moral standard, your morality based on what men wrote down 2000 years ago and it has been revised many times since.

seer
09-09-2015, 07:48 AM
That is because you ignored most of this post here

Alec, what does this have to do with the "science of morality?" One could make the argument against psychological harm without science. And again, what does being born that way have to do with anything? You keep harping on that - and it is not relevant. What if we found that Gays weren't born that way, that homosexual behavior was simply the result or environment or upbringing? Would it then be OK to label homosexual behavior immoral? I doubt very much if you would accept that. And what is wrong with repressing immoral desires? We all have to, to degrees.

seer
09-09-2015, 07:50 AM
Science is the best standard because nothing learns about the Human experiences, human interactions, other animals plant life like we can. We can fine the boundaries of what is moral and what is not by our better understanding of people and the world around us. Science will address global warming a resources shortages. You have to understand the point of morality before how science can help though. You still do not understand a moral standard, your morality based on what men wrote down 2000 years ago and it has been revised many times since.

Then give me an example of something that science has deemed immoral or moral.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 07:56 AM
Alec, what does this have to do with the "science of morality?" One could make the argument against psychological harm without science. And again, what does being born that way have to do with anything? You keep harping on that - and it is not relevant. What if we found that Gays weren't born that way, that homosexual behavior was simply the result or environment or upbringing? Would it then be OK to label homosexual behavior immoral? I doubt very much if you would accept that. And what is wrong with repressing immoral desires? We all have to, to degrees.

Without science how does one determine what qualifies as psychological harm? You as Christians are willing to abuse Homosexual emotionally because men wrote down in a book that it is wrong. I have already addressed the being born that way part, do you know how to read? You keep bringing it back up after I addressed it. You have to start defining what is immoral. Just because the Bible says it is not good enough. You need to stop trying to refute my argument and work toward understanding it. Stop trying to understand what I say in terms of Christianity and understand for itself.

seer
09-09-2015, 08:11 AM
Without science how does one determine what qualifies as psychological harm? You as Christians are willing to abuse Homosexual emotionally because men wrote down in a book that it is wrong. I have already addressed the being born that way part, do you know how to read? You keep bringing it back up after I addressed it. You have to start defining what is immoral. Just because the Bible says it is not good enough. You need to stop trying to refute my argument and work toward understanding it. Stop trying to understand what I say in terms of Christianity and understand for itself.

Alec, we don't need science to know if someone feels put upon, rejected, or upset because others don't agree with their lifestyle - just ask them. So again, tell me what science has deemed moral or immoral.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 08:20 AM
Alec, we don't need science to know if someone feels put upon, rejected, or upset because others don't agree with their lifestyle - just ask them. So again, tell me what science has deemed moral or immoral.

This is absoutly not true given Christians interactions with the Homosexual community!

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 08:23 AM
Science has not deemed anything moral or immoral since there is not offical field of Science of morality. I would say this is a pre paradigm stage, I am not sure to be honest. This is a slow moving argument that has to make head ways in the scientific community. I guess if you want a answer the equal treatment of homosexuals since it is close to 100% agreed by atheist agnostic non-believer a like that you guys are on the wrong side of history. Like Slavery

seer
09-09-2015, 08:58 AM
This is absoutly not true given Christians interactions with the Homosexual community!

No Alex, that is just silly. We certainly can know that they feel put upon, rejected, or upset - if they relate that. That however doesn't mean that we don't think that they need to repent of their sin.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 09:03 AM
No Alex, that is just silly. We certainly can know that they feel put upon, rejected, or upset - if they relate that. That however doesn't mean that we don't think that they need to repent of their sin.
:doh:
That is the point! You have no moral basis to say the sinned. Saying that they sinned is what is causing them to feel reject and upset!

seer
09-09-2015, 09:15 AM
Science has not deemed anything moral or immoral since there is not offical field of Science of morality. I would say this is a pre paradigm stage, I am not sure to be honest. This is a slow moving argument that has to make head ways in the scientific community. I guess if you want a answer the equal treatment of homosexuals since it is close to 100% agreed by atheist agnostic non-believer a like that you guys are on the wrong side of history. Like Slavery

Well thank you. And you do know that the abolition movement in England and the US was populated largely by Christians - correct? And since when do you speak for all atheist? Do you speak for the atheists in China? North Korea? Cuba?

seer
09-09-2015, 09:16 AM
:doh:
That is the point! You have no moral basis to say the sinned. Saying that they sinned is what is causing them to feel reject and upset!

No, I say that they know that what they are doing is immoral. No matter how they try to justify it.

Bill the Cat
09-09-2015, 09:21 AM
It makes you wrong in the opinion of many. And if you attempt to enforce your views upon those that disagree with you then you are indeed a bigot.

9545




9546

tabibito
09-09-2015, 09:23 AM
Given that sin is defined as transgressing against the express will of God - yes, I'd say that it is justified from the Christian perspective to say that homosexual relationships are sinful. Of course, "sin" is a matter to be dealt with in-house. There's no mandate - and no justification - for imposing Christian rules on people who don't claim to be Christian.

Bill the Cat
09-09-2015, 09:27 AM
Not the point Homer, the point being that just because something is "natural" doesn't make it moral. So the whole "born that way" argument is silly.

It's also completely unproven.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 09:28 AM
Well thank you. And you do know that the abolition movement in England and the US was populated largely by Christians - correct? And since when do you speak for all atheist? Do you speak for the atheists in China? North Korea? Cuba?

I never said I speak for all atheist read that again.

seer
09-09-2015, 09:28 AM
It's also completely unproven.

This is true.

Bill the Cat
09-09-2015, 09:30 AM
Given that sin is defined as transgressing against the express will of God - yes, I'd say that it is justified from the Christian perspective to say that homosexual relationships are sinful. Of course, "sin" is a matter to be dealt with in-house. There's no mandate - and no justification - for imposing Christian rules on people who don't claim to be Christian.

Were they not in a concerted effort to teach OUR children that it isn't sinful, then you may have a point. But when every corner of secular society is hammering the message home, the PARENT ends up looking the fool for teaching biblical truths.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 09:31 AM
No, I say that they know that what they are doing is immoral. No matter how they try to justify it.

Two things:

First, they do not think that they are immoral. As I said earlier Christians have tried hiding the lifestyle of homosexuals to terrible results that are actually immoral themselves if you have any standard of morality.

You have no basis to say they are immoral it is just your opinion. And sadly it is not even your own formulated opinion someone has to tell you what to think.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 09:33 AM
It's also completely unproven.

No this is not true. Your ignorance or refusal to accept evidence and proof does not dictate reality. You simply live with delusional beliefs.

seer
09-09-2015, 09:34 AM
Given that sin is defined as transgressing against the express will of God - yes, I'd say that it is justified from the Christian perspective to say that homosexual relationships are sinful. Of course, "sin" is a matter to be dealt with in-house. There's no mandate - and no justification - for imposing Christian rules on people who don't claim to be Christian.

So in a representative republic we are not allowed to influence the laws of the land according to our beliefs? We should not support laws against murder, rape, theft, fraud, etc... because they spring from our religious beliefs?

tabibito
09-09-2015, 09:36 AM
Were they not in a concerted effort to teach OUR children that it isn't sinful, then you may have a point. But when every corner of secular society is hammering the message home, the PARENT ends up looking the fool for teaching biblical truths.

Children can be taught that Christianity demands a different standard from secular society, and that Christians are expected to adhere to standards that God requires of people who claim to be his disciples. It is a more difficult path than just teaching them that things are wrong - but they should be taught fully anyway.

seer
09-09-2015, 09:37 AM
Two things:

First, they do not think that they are immoral. As I said earlier Christians have tried hiding the lifestyle of homosexuals to terrible results that are actually immoral themselves if you have any standard of morality.

Let's be clear Alex, you have no standard of morality except what you invented in your own mind, or what you borrowed from someone else, so it is completely subjective.


You have no basis to say they are immoral it is just your opinion. And sadly it is not even your own formulated opinion someone has to tell you what to think.

If that is the case then all you have is opinion - so why is your opinion more valid or correct than mine?

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 09:39 AM
So in a representative republic we are not allowed to influence the laws of the land according to our beliefs? We should not support laws against murder, rape, theft, fraud, etc... because they spring from our religious beliefs?

No, religious belief has nothing to do with it. It is the individuals who matter because individuals make up society. America was created so int he eye of the laws everyone is seen as equal regardless of religious belief. Just because most of the people in America are Christian does not mean you get to ignore atheist, Muslims, Jews or anything you do not like based on religious reasons. You are being extremely closed minded. Your are so caught up in Christian privilege and delusion you have no ability to see morality for yourself or outside anyone who does not conform to your beliefs. This should be embarrassing

Bill the Cat
09-09-2015, 09:39 AM
No this is not true.

It IS true. Even the study you cited used words like "could" and "might" and never ONCE claimed that their findings were conclusive evidence of biological causes of homosexuality. I even made the key word in their conclusion large and bold so that you could not miss it. There is no conclusive proof that people are "born that way".


Your ignorance or refusal to accept evidence and proof does not dictate reality. You simply live with delusional beliefs.

Your obtuse refusal to remain skeptical in this matter is rather telling on what your delusions entail.

Bill the Cat
09-09-2015, 09:40 AM
Children can be taught that Christianity demands a different standard from secular society, and that Christians are expected to adhere to standards that God requires of people who claim to be his disciples. It is a more difficult path than just teaching them that things are wrong - but they should be taught fully anyway.

You've obviously never had a child attend public school in the US.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 09:44 AM
Let's be clear Alex, you have no standard of morality except what you invented in your own mind, or what you borrowed from someone else, so it is completely subjective.

You have basically admitted to not understanding anything that has been said here which is not surprising given your limited mental capacity to see anything outside your limited belief.




If that is the case then all you have is opinion - so why is your opinion more valid or correct than mine?

Because mine is based on a standard that not one individual can logical argue they are not a part of. Humans are not equals when it comes to individuals and their intelligence, or athletic abilities, but in the term of individual interaction no one can argue why it is ok to be subject to unjust suffering. It does not mean it doesn't happen or that others will not caused unjust suffering but it does logically mean that they should not cause because they cannot justify upon themselves.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 09:48 AM
Why should a sexually mature individual be treated unfairly because of their perception of attraction to other sexually mature individuals?

tabibito
09-09-2015, 09:49 AM
You've obviously never had a child attend public school in the US.

You got me on that one.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 09:50 AM
It IS true. Even the study you cited used words like "could" and "might" and never ONCE claimed that their findings were conclusive evidence of biological causes of homosexuality. I even made the key word in their conclusion large and bold so that you could not miss it. There is no conclusive proof that people are "born that way".



Your obtuse refusal to remain skeptical in this matter is rather telling on what your delusions entail.
Your comments clearly have no understanding of how science functions. You have nothing but your bigotry backing you we have science. Probability is still better than anything you have presented.

seer
09-09-2015, 09:51 AM
No, religious belief has nothing to do with it. It is the individuals who matter because individuals make up society. America was created so int he eye of the laws everyone is seen as equal regardless of religious belief. Just because most of the people in America are Christian does not mean you get to ignore atheist, Muslims, Jews or anything you do not like based on religious reasons. You are being extremely closed minded. Your are so caught up in Christian privilege and delusion you have no ability to see morality for yourself or outside anyone who does not conform to your beliefs. This should be embarrassing

Are you a complete idiot Alec? I was agnostic until my late 30s. Born in 1953 I was a product of the sexual revolution and rock and roll. An early supporter of gay rights, the feminist movement, NARAL and Planned Parenthood. A secular liberal through and through. I just woke up and realized that they had nothing... It was all straw...

seer
09-09-2015, 09:57 AM
You have basically admitted to not understanding anything that has been said here which is not surprising given your limited mental capacity to see anything outside your limited belief.

Alec, you are really proving yourself to be as stupid as others have claimed. I was trying to give you the benefit of the doubt. Are you like seventeen years old?



Because mine is based on a standard that not one individual can logical argue they are not a part of. Humans are not equals when it comes to individuals and their intelligence, or athletic abilities, but in the term of individual interaction no one can argue why it is ok to be subject to unjust suffering. It does not mean it doesn't happen or that others will not caused unjust suffering but it does logically mean that they should not cause because they cannot justify upon themselves.

Do you realize how silly this sounds coming from an atheist? Of course you can justify unjust suffering, especially if it helps to gain wealth and power for yourself. There is no objective standard for justice in your universe, no ultimate consequences for acting unjustly. The only thing that matters in your godless universe is survival - no matter how one gets there. Really - grow up...

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 09:59 AM
Are you a complete idiot Alec? I was agnostic until my late 30s. Born in 1953 I was a product of the sexual revolution and rock and roll. An early supporter of gay rights, the feminist movement, NARAL and Planned Parenthood. A secular liberal through and through. I just woke up and realized that they had nothing... It was all straw...

Says the guy who is basing his morality on what someone else said and not the perspective of individuals. Just because you failed to understand their arguments does not mean anything.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 10:00 AM
Alec, you are really proving yourself to be as stupid as others have claimed. I was trying to give you the benefit of the doubt. Are you like seventeen years old?




Do you realize how silly this sounds coming from an atheist? Of course you can justify unjust suffering, especially if it helps to gain wealth and power for yourself. There is no objective standard for justice in your universe, no ultimate consequences for acting unjustly. The only thing that matters in your godless universe is survival - no matter how one gets there. Really - grow up...

That has never been the argument. This is exactly why you fail to understand anyone you refuse to address the argument that is so well spelled out for you. Or you really do have an issue with reading comprehension. Not one individual can argue why they would ok with unjust suffering if they are the ones experiencing that suffering. They would be irrational or a masochist.

seer
09-09-2015, 10:04 AM
Says the guy who is basing his morality on what someone else said and not the perspective of individuals. Just because you failed to understand their arguments does not mean anything.

What individuals are you speaking of? Nazis, Maoists? Stalinists?

seer
09-09-2015, 10:07 AM
Not one individual can argue why they would ok with unjust suffering if they are the ones experiencing that suffering. They would be irrational or a masochist.

But that is not what I'm arguing - I'm saying that it would be OK, to cause the suffering of others if it enriches you. There is nothing unjust about that in a godless universe.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 12:48 PM
But that is not what I'm arguing - I'm saying that it would be OK, to cause the suffering of others if it enriches you. There is nothing unjust about that in a godless universe.

Well no be justice is the same concept as fairness just in the context of human interaction and punishment. God has nothing to do with it unless you need him to tell you how to behave and why because you cannot think for yourself.

seer
09-09-2015, 01:09 PM
Well no be justice is the same concept as fairness just in the context of human interaction and punishment. God has nothing to do with it unless you need him to tell you how to behave and why because you cannot think for yourself.

What are you taking about? Again why would it be objectively wrong to use and abuse others if it enriches you? Especially if you can get away with it? Let me try an example - the Europeans came to North America and pretty much wiped out the native population took their lands and prospered. So what did they do wrong? Nothing different than any other animals would do.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 01:38 PM
What are you taking about? Again why would it be objectively wrong to use and abuse others if it enriches you? Especially if you can get away with it? Let me try an example - the Europeans came to North America and pretty much wiped out the native population took their lands and prospered. So what did they do wrong? Nothing different than any other animals would do.

Because they would not want to be the animals or the natives. Just because someone can be a hypocrite does not make them valid that is your issue. Look you are not going to get it because you do not want to. I have explained it as simple as I can. The concept of justice is a standard based on human interaction and punishment. It does not matter if someone makes a profit or benefits from immoral actions, it does not matter that they are hypocrites and refuse to consider or act upon the understanding of justice.

seer
09-09-2015, 03:08 PM
Because they would not want to be the animals or the natives. Just because someone can be a hypocrite does not make them valid that is your issue. Look you are not going to get it because you do not want to. I have explained it as simple as I can. The concept of justice is a standard based on human interaction and punishment. It does not matter if someone makes a profit or benefits from immoral actions, it does not matter that they are hypocrites and refuse to consider or act upon the understanding of justice.

Yet concepts of justice are inventions of men. With no more weight than that of personal opinion. And your opinion of the Europeans is as meaningless as we are as a species. Insignificant creatures, on an insignificant planet in a purposeless universe. Yet, somehow, miracles of miracles, you actually believe that your moral opinion is somehow meaningful or consequential. No, in your godless universe we are no more than transitory piss ants. Bluster as you will brother, you got nothing. But I will leave you with Shakespeare, own it Alec, it is you...

And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 03:17 PM
Yet concepts of justice are inventions of men.
I do not think it is an invention of man it is simply defined by men.



With no more weight than that of personal opinion. And your opinion of the Europeans is as meaningless as we are as a species. Insignificant creatures, on an insignificant planet in a purposeless universe. Yet, somehow, miracles of miracles, you actually believe that your moral opinion is somehow meaningful or consequential. No, in your godless universe we are no more than transitory piss ants. Bluster as you will brother, you got nothing. But I will leave you with Shakespeare, own it Alec, it is you...



And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.


This is simply not true in accordance to what I have argued on this post.

seer
09-09-2015, 04:50 PM
I do not think it is an invention of man it is simply defined by men.

Really? Then what is it?


This is simply not true in accordance to what I have argued on this post.

No this is the logical reality of our condition in a godless universe. Listen little brother, stop smoking reefer, and get your head out of your ass. Your moral intuition is generally aimed true, but what is it tied too? The accidental by product of the biological forces of nature? As fleeting and insignificant as our temporal existence? Or is it tied to something transcendent, something certain and immutable? To an unfaltering goodness? To God? You need to repent Alec, receive Christ as your Lord and Savior, and find the authentic, eternal source of your best moral instincts.

Bill the Cat
09-09-2015, 04:55 PM
Why should a sexually mature individual be treated unfairly because of their perception of attraction to other sexually mature individuals?

You mean like a brother and sister?

Bill the Cat
09-09-2015, 04:57 PM
Your comments clearly have no understanding of how science functions. You have nothing but your bigotry backing you we have science. Probability is still better than anything you have presented.

:rofl: I understand it more than you do apparently. You have declared the matter settled with absolutely NO scientific consensus, or even individual scientific certainty. Every study uses the uncertain terms because they know they can't declare it settled. That's how science works.

JimL
09-09-2015, 05:06 PM
But the fact is cruelty and selfishness can and do work.
No they don't work seer.


You guys are fond of pointing to higher primates - yet there a small ruling class controls the larger population often by very violent means. And they keep the peace. So if you are pointing to what works - totalitarianism works - and has even in human population for centuries.
"Often by very violent means" should enlighten you to the fact that tyranny, or arbitrary rule, does not work. Order, and control over the population of society is not the only purpose of morality. The well being of all the people, not just the ruling class, is the purpose. Tyranny and oppression doesn't accomplish that.

seer
09-09-2015, 05:57 PM
No they don't work seer.

Of course they do - look at North Korea, China and Cuba. Look at Iran and totalitarian nations of Africa.



"Often by very violent means" should enlighten you to the fact that tyranny, or arbitrary rule, does not work. Order, and control over the population of society is not the only purpose of morality. The well being of all the people, not just the ruling class, is the purpose. Tyranny and oppression doesn't accomplish that.

Well higher primates thrive under tyranny and oppression, as did most of mankind for most of history - so I have no idea what you are talking about.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 06:25 PM
Really? Then what is it?



No this is the logical reality of our condition in a godless universe. Listen little brother, stop smoking reefer, and get your head out of your ass. Your moral intuition is generally aimed true, but what is it tied too? The accidental by product of the biological forces of nature? As fleeting and insignificant as our temporal existence? Or is it tied to something transcendent, something certain and immutable? To an unfaltering goodness? To God? You need to repent Alec, receive Christ as your Lord and Savior, and find the authentic, eternal source of your best moral instincts.

Justice is a standard of fairness between individuals and their interaction. The bold is an obvious attack because you cannot refute my point. You have failed to be able to comprehend my argument and not for a lack of making it clear.

Again morality is tied to the survival and well-being of sentient individuals. The issue here is that you do not want to believe that there can be a morality without God because you have be taught this delusional perspective that God must be there for morality to matter. This is not the case.

AlecWelsh
09-09-2015, 06:26 PM
You mean like a brother and sister?

Can you explain why brother and sister sexual interaction is immoral?

JimL
09-09-2015, 06:29 PM
Of course they do - look at North Korea, China and Cuba. Look at Iran and totalitarian nations of Africa.
What about them? You think those societies work to secure the best interests of the people?




Well higher primates thrive under tyranny and oppression, as did most of mankind for most of history - so I have no idea what you are talking about.
Might makes right doesn't last. And, as much as you would like to, we are not talking about uncivilized apes, we're talking human society.

Tassman
09-10-2015, 12:20 AM
Not the point Homer, the point being that just because something is "natural" doesn't make it moral.

Unbelievable! That’s simply not what I said. I said that antisocial behaviour such as child molestation or serial killing impedes social cohesion and impinges upon the rights of individuals within the group. Perpetrators must therefore be removed from the group via incarceration or by some other means.


So the whole "born that way" argument is silly.

Not if those "born that way" are law abiding citizens (e.g. homosexuals), who have every reason to expect the application of full equal rights along with their fellow citizens...including marriage.


Secular democracies are relatively new in human history so we have no idea if they will be better for the survival of the species in the long run. Besides, as we see in the news everyday, Western Europe, because of their nonsensical liberal policies, are being over run by Muslims. Islam will not need to fire a shot - they will take Europe by demographics. So much for your "secular democracies."

Come now, this is mostly speculative scare tactics.

Secular democracies began to evolve several centuries ago at the Renaissance and gained force at The Enlightenment. The incipient secular movements of the Age of Reason are what differentiate the modern West from the Middle-Ages and more ancient eras. And, it’s quite evident that the modern era is preferable in virtually every way to the disease ridden squalor and superstitious ignorance of the medieval period and beyond.

seer
09-10-2015, 04:38 AM
Again morality is tied to the survival and well-being of sentient individuals. The issue here is that you do not want to believe that there can be a morality without God because you have be taught this delusional perspective that God must be there for morality to matter. This is not the case.

Alec, I never said we could not invent moral systems apart from God. Only that they are as meaningless as we as a species are.

seer
09-10-2015, 04:43 AM
Not if those "born that way" are law abiding citizens (e.g. homosexuals), who have every reason to expect the application of full equal rights along with their fellow citizens...including marriage.

Again not the point. Alec was using the born that way argument. Which is silly since we do not get our moral clues from nature. That just because something is natural does make it moral. For that we have to look else where.



Come now, this is mostly speculative scare tactics.

Really? We will see.

seer
09-10-2015, 04:46 AM
What about them? You think those societies work to secure the best interests of the people?

The best interest of the people is your subjective standard not theirs (the leaders).



Might makes right doesn't last. And, as much as you would like to, we are not talking about uncivilized apes, we're talking human society.

The point Jim is that both ape and man has thrived under totalitarian rule. That is a fact.

Bill the Cat
09-10-2015, 06:21 PM
Can you explain why brother and sister sexual interaction is immoral?

Of course I can. The question is... can you?

JimL
09-10-2015, 09:24 PM
The best interest of the people is your subjective standard not theirs (the leaders).
No, it isn't subjective seer, no more so than the perfect world you believe exists in the afterlife would be subjective. Ideas of what that perfect world would be like are subjective, but not the perfect world itself.




The point Jim is that both ape and man has thrived under totalitarian rule. That is a fact.
But we are not talking about thriving in the sense of mere survival as a species. I wouldn't define the state of the N. Korean people as that of thriving.


But the point that I will continue to come back to is that you seer, you, already believe in a world whose perfection is due to the moral principles it is founded upon. Thats all there is to it. So long as the moral principles are adhered to they needn't be grounded in a source other than nature itself. Nature doesn't necessarily apply ultimate justice to transgressors, but that is a different discussion and has nothing to do with whether or not a perfect set of principles exist that if followed would secure the best interests of all the people living together in it.
If god didn't exist but people followed the moral principles that you believe your heaven would be based upon, then that world would still be heaven, correct? It would still be the perfect place in which to exist due to the continued adherence to the principles themselves, correct? God is not necessary then for the existence of the moral principles!

Tassman
09-10-2015, 10:13 PM
Alec, I never said we could not invent moral systems apart from God. Only that they are as meaningless as we as a species are.

But we have invented moral systems and we've attributed them to a deity. And then we have them imposed on us by the servants of said deity, i.e. the priests and pastors etc.

Tassman
09-10-2015, 10:26 PM
Again not the point. Alec was using the born that way argument. Which is silly since we do not get our moral clues from nature. That just because something is natural does make it moral. For that we have to look else where.

Of course we get out “moral clues” from nature; we've evolved as a social species and are genetically predisposed towards reciprocal altruism and community living. Our moral codes are grounded in these basic instincts.


Really? We will see.

We've already seen…over the centuries since secular democracies began to emerge at the Renaissance and The Enlightenment. It’s quite evident that the modern era is preferable in virtually every way to the disease ridden squalor and superstitious ignorance of the medieval period and beyond. Although it’s the latter we continue to see in the violent, religion-saturated countries of Africa and the Middle East.

seer
09-11-2015, 05:17 AM
No, it isn't subjective seer, no more so than the perfect world you believe exists in the afterlife would be subjective. Ideas of what that perfect world would be like are subjective, but not the perfect world itself.

No Jim, you are wrong. If God exists then there is an objective purpose for man, there is an objective moral goal. Apart from this Jim there is no objective ethical goal for human beings any more than there was an objective ethical goal for dinosaurs. There is no objective reason why we as a species should survive in the first place, never mind survive with a particular ethic.



But we are not talking about thriving in the sense of mere survival as a species. I wouldn't define the state of the N. Korean people as that of thriving.

Jim humanity has grown and thrived for pretty much all of history under totalitarian rule, as higher primates still do today. And Jim in your godless universe survival is the ultimate good - no matter how you get there.


But the point that I will continue to come back to is that you seer, you, already believe in a world whose perfection is due to the moral principles it is founded upon. Thats all there is to it. So long as the moral principles are adhered to they needn't be grounded in a source other than nature itself. Nature doesn't necessarily apply ultimate justice to transgressors, but that is a different discussion and has nothing to do with whether or not a perfect set of principles exist that if followed would secure the best interests of all the people living together in it.
If god didn't exist but people followed the moral principles that you believe your heaven would be based upon, then that world would still be heaven, correct? It would still be the perfect place in which to exist due to the continued adherence to the principles themselves, correct? God is not necessary then for the existence of the moral principles!

But that is not the point Jim. There is no objective "perfect set of principles" in your universe, there is no objective right way for humans to interact. Only opinion, you and I may prefer the golden rule, others prefer to control and dominate. And our opinion is no more correct or valid than theirs.

seer
09-11-2015, 05:22 AM
Of course we get out “moral clues” from nature; we've evolved as a social species and are genetically predisposed towards reciprocal altruism and community living. Our moral codes are grounded in these basic instincts.

You mean like our basic instinct for selfishness, greed and dominance? Like the higher primates Tass? They survive and practice community living even when the alpha males take the food and females from the beta males.



We've already seen…over the centuries since secular democracies began to emerge at the Renaissance and The Enlightenment. It’s quite evident that the modern era is preferable in virtually every way to the disease ridden squalor and superstitious ignorance of the medieval period and beyond. Although it’s the latter we continue to see in the violent, religion-saturated countries of Africa and the Middle East.


Hey don't blame us - that is that way the process of evolution created us to think and act...

JimL
09-11-2015, 06:02 PM
No Jim, you are wrong. If God exists then there is an objective purpose for man, there is an objective moral goal. Apart from this Jim there is no objective ethical goal for human beings any more than there was an objective ethical goal for dinosaurs. There is no objective reason why we as a species should survive in the first place, never mind survive with a particular ethic.
Seer, the point keeps going right over your head. If there is a set of morals for humans to live by which would be the basis of a pleasing and happy life for all, then whether they are grounded in an external source or not wouldn't matter in the least. If you and all of your resurrected compadres in heaven adhere to the moral system there, then life there would be no different than life on earth if people here did the same. The morals themselves don't need an objective source in order to work, they just need to be adhered to. Justice is an altogether different matter than morality.




Jim humanity has grown and thrived for pretty much all of history under totalitarian rule, as higher primates still do today. And Jim in your godless universe survival is the ultimate good - no matter how you get there.
You are not responding to what I actually said. Survival of the species itself is not what morality is all about. Thats only part of it. If life is chaotic and miserable, then what good is survival?



But that is not the point Jim. There is no objective "perfect set of principles" in your universe, there is no objective right way for humans to interact. Only opinion, you and I may prefer the golden rule, others prefer to control and dominate. And our opinion is no more correct or valid than theirs.
If there is a right way for humans to act, then there is a right way for humans to act, and that right way would not be dependent upon an objective source. What you are saying is that if people behaved the same way here on earth as you believe they will behave in your after world, that it is somehow different. Its not. Its the same thing. The morals would be the same whether they have an objective source or not. Not sure what you are not getting about that.

Tassman
09-11-2015, 10:05 PM
You mean like our basic instinct for selfishness, greed and dominance? Like the higher primates Tass? They survive and practice community living even when the alpha males take the food and females from the beta males.

The basic instincts are for communal living not “selfishness, greed and dominance”, because opportunities for survival are much better in groups than living alone. But the human primate has demonstrably moved on from the primitive behaviour that characterized human history during the caveman era...as has been pointed out to you about a thousand times.


Hey don't blame us - that is that way the process of evolution created us to think and act...


Correct! The evolution of a larger brain than that of our fellow primates enabled humans to adapt and grow beyond the primitive behaviour we initially shared with our fellow apes leading ultimately to the Renaissance and the Age of Reason, which have transformed our species and enabled us to discard our superstitions.

seer
09-12-2015, 03:08 AM
The basic instincts are for communal living not “selfishness, greed and dominance”, because opportunities for survival are much better in groups than living alone. But the human primate has demonstrably moved on from the primitive behaviour that characterized human history during the caveman era...as has been pointed out to you about a thousand times.

See there you go again - moved on from what to what? There is no higher ethical or moral goal, there is only what works for survival. And I will remind you Tass that a good portion of the human population is still under totalitarian rule, so it is not merely a caveman thing. And totalitarianism with humans, as with apes, still works. And has proven to be beneficial for social cohesion.



Correct! The evolution of a larger brain than that of our fellow primates enabled humans to adapt and grow beyond the primitive behaviour we initially shared with our fellow apes leading ultimately to the Renaissance and the Age of Reason, which have transformed our species and enabled us to discard our superstitions.

Except most of mankind is still "superstitions" and if the Muslims have their way all of mankind with either accept their religion or die. Yes, evolution in action. One world religion - great for universal social cohesion!

seer
09-12-2015, 06:58 AM
Seer, the point keeps going right over your head. If there is a set of morals for humans to live by which would be the basis of a pleasing and happy life for all, then whether they are grounded in an external source or not wouldn't matter in the least. If you and all of your resurrected compadres in heaven adhere to the moral system there, then life there would be no different than life on earth if people here did the same. The morals themselves don't need an objective source in order to work, they just need to be adhered to. Justice is an altogether different matter than morality.

Again who says that the goal is a pleasing and happy life for all? How about a pleasing and happy life for the majority at the expense of a minority or a pleasing and happy life for the powerful minority at the expense of the majority? Which seems pretty must like the history of man. The goal here Jim is what is subjective. And BTW - I do not divorce morality from justice, to me that would make any moral system incoherent. Like yours...



You are not responding to what I actually said. Survival of the species itself is not what morality is all about. Thats only part of it. If life is chaotic and miserable, then what good is survival?

Totalitarian rule is the opposite of chaotic, and the FACT is people survive just fine, just like higher primates, under totalitarian rule.

JimL
09-12-2015, 11:36 AM
Again who says that the goal is a pleasing and happy life for all? How about a pleasing and happy life for the majority at the expense of a minority or a pleasing and happy life for the powerful minority at the expense of the majority? Which seems pretty must like the history of man. The goal here Jim is what is subjective. And BTW - I do not divorce morality from justice, to me that would make any moral system incoherent. Like yours...
What do you mean "who says"? Everyone says. If you disagree then you are saying the opposite to be true, which is that an individuals goal in life is to be miserable. That is how morals work, as a system which responsive to this desire for all the people in general, to society, not just the majority or those in power. This would be the same in your afterworld moral system as it is in the real world, which is what you continue to ignore or to actually respond to. So, it does not matter whether you do not divorce justice from the moral system itself, they are divorced whether you like it or not.




Totalitarian rule is the opposite of chaotic, and the FACT is people survive just fine, just like higher primates, under totalitarian rule.
As I continue to explain to you, survival is not the only thing that morals answer to. Is survival all that is important with regards to the moral system live under in your afterworld? Of course not, its all about eternal joy!

seer
09-12-2015, 05:54 PM
What do you mean "who says"? Everyone says. If you disagree then you are saying the opposite to be true, which is that an individuals goal in life is to be miserable. That is how morals work, as a system which responsive to this desire for all the people in general, to society, not just the majority or those in power. This would be the same in your afterworld moral system as it is in the real world, which is what you continue to ignore or to actually respond to. So, it does not matter whether you do not divorce justice from the moral system itself, they are divorced whether you like it or not.

Jim you are not making sense. Human history is one of the few and the powerful dominating the majority or the majority exploiting the minority. You can prattle all you want about your utopia but it will never happen. Our nature tends towards conflict. And your opinion that the greater good should be served, is just that opinion and one NOT shared by all men, nor has it been since the beginning of time - and your opinion is no more valid or correct than theirs. And yes, in your godless universe your ethical system is justice is divorced from morality - which is why your system is, and will remain, incoherent.



As I continue to explain to you, survival is not the only thing that morals answer to. Is survival all that is important with regards to the moral system live under in your afterworld? Of course not, its all about eternal joy!

Eternal joy? Did you really just say that?

JimL
09-12-2015, 06:42 PM
Jim you are not making sense. Human history is one of the few and the powerful dominating the majority or the majority exploiting the minority. You can prattle all you want about your utopia but it will never happen. Our nature tends towards conflict. And your opinion that the greater good should be served, is just that opinion and one NOT shared by all men, nor has it been since the beginning of time - and your opinion is no more valid or correct than theirs. And yes, in your godless universe your ethical system is justice is divorced from morality - which is why your system is, and will remain, incoherent.
No, you are just not comprehending the main points, else you are just purposely ignoring them in defense of your subjective agenda. This is not about human history or whether or not a utopia on earth would ever happen. All this is about is whether or not an adhered to moral system, laws of behavior, need be rooted in an objective source in order to bring about that Utopia. The unrefutable fact is that it wouldn't need be objectively sourced. You actually believe that as well, you just can't bring yourself to admit it. The reason I say you believe it is because you believe that such a system would be the basis of your Utopian afterworld, your heaven or paradise. So, If you believe that to be the case, then all you do is shift that same moral system, those same laws of behavior, from your heaven, to the earth, and it will have the same result. The laws then themselves needn't have an objective source, because they work in their own right whether objectively sourced or not. Your argument has consistently been, not that morals have to be objective, but that they have to be objectively sourced in an all knowing mind, a mind distinct from the natual world. You give no reason for that, your only argument is the ultimate justice argument, which has nothing to do with whether or not such a system of morals if adhered to would work.




Eternal joy? Did you really just say that?
I did say it, not because I believe it, but because it is what you, and afaict, all christians believe. Are you denying that? If not then why are you implying it to be silly?

Tassman
09-12-2015, 09:59 PM
See there you go again - moved on from what to what? There is no higher ethical or moral goal, there is only what works for survival.

Incorrect! Your distorted version of the survival instinct is simplistic to the point of absurdity. Quality of life is also a necessary part of survival...as witness the flood of refugees currently in Europe seeking a better quality of life. And it’s ironic that you sneer at the survival instinct given that you yearn to “survive” forever.


And I will remind you Tass that a good portion of the human population is still under totalitarian rule, so it is not merely a caveman thing. And totalitarianism with humans, as with apes, still works. And has proven to be beneficial for social cohesion.

The most pervasive form of totalitarian rule is religion, which continues to infest the world. But the most developed countries of the world have moved on from religion and embraced secularism to the overall benefit of all.


Except most of mankind is still "superstitions" and if the Muslims have their way all of mankind with either accept their religion or die. Yes, evolution in action. One world religion - great for universal social cohesion!

Get a mirror seer.

Sadly most of mankind is still "superstitious" to its detriment. Problems occur when the rules of an imaginary deity are given precedence over the needs of society. Just look at the destructive history of religion…ALL religion. This is not "evolution in action" it's superstition in action.

seer
09-13-2015, 05:11 AM
Incorrect! Your distorted version of the survival instinct is simplistic to the point of absurdity. Quality of life is also a necessary part of survival...as witness the flood of refugees currently in Europe seeking a better quality of life. And it’s ironic that you sneer at the survival instinct given that you yearn to “survive” forever.

Yes, but most of these people came from a totalitarian country. And they were doing fine before the war, and had an acceptable quality of life. They are seeking survival at this point. BTW Tass, how many of these refugees is your country going to take? And I don't sneer at the survival instinct, just the fact that if atheism is true then we have no more inherent worth that any other species that has gone instinct. In the big picture it is no big deal if all of humanity doesn't survive.



The most pervasive form of totalitarian rule is religion, which continues to infest the world. But the most developed countries of the world have moved on from religion and embraced secularism to the overall benefit of all.

Nonsense, we have no idea if secularism could or will provide the social cohesion necessary for survival. It is still to early, besides with the birth rates of Muslims in Europe and this latest influx of refugees no doubt, if this continues, Western Europe will be Islamic within a hundred years. Evolution in action Tass...




Sadly most of mankind is still "superstitious" to its detriment. Problems occur when the rules of an imaginary deity are given precedence over the needs of society. Just look at the destructive history of religion…ALL religion. This is not "evolution in action" it's superstition in action.

That is correct Tass, most of mankind past and present have been, or are, religious. Which makes atheism abnormal. Probably a genetic or mental defect. And of course this is evolution in action - it is the evolutionary process that created us to think and act as we do. How many times have you told me that it is all predetermined? No free will.

seer
09-13-2015, 05:18 AM
No, you are just not comprehending the main points, else you are just purposely ignoring them in defense of your subjective agenda. This is not about human history or whether or not a utopia on earth would ever happen. All this is about is whether or not an adhered to moral system, laws of behavior, need be rooted in an objective source in order to bring about that Utopia. The unrefutable fact is that it wouldn't need be objectively sourced. You actually believe that as well, you just can't bring yourself to admit it. The reason I say you believe it is because you believe that such a system would be the basis of your Utopian afterworld, your heaven or paradise. So, If you believe that to be the case, then all you do is shift that same moral system, those same laws of behavior, from your heaven, to the earth, and it will have the same result. The laws then themselves needn't have an objective source, because they work in their own right whether objectively sourced or not. Your argument has consistently been, not that morals have to be objective, but that they have to be objectively sourced in an all knowing mind, a mind distinct from the natual world. You give no reason for that, your only argument is the ultimate justice argument, which has nothing to do with whether or not such a system of morals if adhered to would work.

But Jim, I have said a long time ago that if all men followed the golden rule from their hearts we would have peace on earth. My point, is that there is no good reason to follow the golden rule if breaking it gains one power and wealth. After all if they have the power there are no consequences in this life or after death. Evil wins...

JimL
09-13-2015, 07:38 AM
But Jim, I have said a long time ago that if all men followed the golden rule from their hearts we would have peace on earth. My point, is that there is no good reason to follow the golden rule if breaking it gains one power and wealth. After all if they have the power there are no consequences in this life or after death. Evil wins...
Yes, that is true, but again that is not the point as to whether or not a set of morals if adhered to need be objectively sourced. Whether or not an individual abides them, and whether or not an individual gets away with transgressing them, are different matters. So, there you go. You admit yourself that if all men followed the golden rule the world would be a better place for all humanity in general, and that rule, 'Do unto others" has no need of a supernatural source.

Bill the Cat
09-13-2015, 07:58 AM
Yes, that is true, but again that is not the point as to whether or not a set of morals if adhered to need be objectively sourced. Whether or not an individual abides them, and whether or not an individual gets away with transgressing them, are different matters. So, there you go. You admit yourself that if all men followed the golden rule the world would be a better place for all humanity in general, and that rule, 'Do unto others" has no need of a supernatural source.

What about sadomasochists? They want others to treat them in a violent or humiliating manner. And if they follow the Golden rule, that throws off your "best for the community" subjective standard. You need something outside of that rule to define what is "good" and what is "bad".

seer
09-13-2015, 08:57 AM
Yes, that is true, but again that is not the point as to whether or not a set of morals if adhered to need be objectively sourced. Whether or not an individual abides them, and whether or not an individual gets away with transgressing them, are different matters. So, there you go. You admit yourself that if all men followed the golden rule the world would be a better place for all humanity in general, and that rule, 'Do unto others" has no need of a supernatural source.

Jim you are making a point I have agreed with in the past, more than once. But that has never been the problem or the question.

Tassman
09-14-2015, 12:31 AM
Yes, but most of these people came from a totalitarian country. And they were doing fine before the war, and had an acceptable quality of life. They are seeking survival at this point. BTW Tass, how many of these refugees is your country going to take? And I don't sneer at the survival instinct, just the fact that if atheism is true then we have no more inherent worth that any other species that has gone instinct. In the big picture it is no big deal if all of humanity doesn't survive.

Correct, we have no more inherent worth that any other species that has gone instinct and in the big picture it is no big deal if all of humanity doesn't survive. So what’s your point? Do you really imagine that escapist fantasies will make any difference to these facts? This is just wishful thinking writ large.


Nonsense, we have no idea if secularism could or will provide the social cohesion necessary for survival. It is still to early, besides with the birth rates of Muslims in Europe and this latest influx of refugees no doubt, if this continues, Western Europe will be Islamic within a hundred years. Evolution in action Tass...

This is not evolution in action; you obviously don’t understand evolution to make this ignorant remark.

Social revolutions have always been a part of human history…from Hunter/Gatherers transitioning into Agriculturalists and from there to Industrialized urban civilization etc. The current transition from a religion-oriented society to a secular one is social revolution in action and has been developing over several centuries, especially among the better educated societies. It’s a fact of human history that we change and grow over time.


That is correct Tass, most of mankind past and present have been, or are, religious. Which makes atheism abnormal.

...no more abnormal that Agriculturalist societies were "abnormal" compared to Hunter/Gatherer societies.


Probably a genetic or mental defect. And of course this is evolution in action -

Once again, this is not evolution in action. Evolutionary natural selection is glacially slow; it occurs over tens of thousands of years, not decades or centuries.


it is the evolutionary process that created us to think and act as we do. How many times have you told me that it is all predetermined? No free will.

The evolutionary process “created” nothing, nature doesn't “create”. Natural Selection is the process of incremental changes that occur naturally resulting in the survival of species best adapted to the prevailing environmental conditions and the elimination of those that aren't so adapted.

Tassman
09-14-2015, 12:46 AM
What about sadomasochists? They want others to treat them in a violent or humiliating manner. And if they follow the Golden rule, that throws off your "best for the community" subjective standard. You need something outside of that rule to define what is "good" and what is "bad".

The Golden Rule embodies our evolved natural instinct of altruistic reciprocity necessary for bonding together as a social species. One doesn’t need “something outside of that rule” to inform a community that perversions of this instinct such as sadomasochism do not contribute to this end.

seer
09-14-2015, 03:25 AM
Correct, we have no more inherent worth that any other species that has gone instinct and in the big picture it is no big deal if all of humanity doesn't survive. So what’s your point? Do you really imagine that escapist fantasies will make any difference to these facts? This is just wishful thinking writ large.

Right, then, all your arguing about morality is as meaningless as we are.




This is not evolution in action; you obviously don’t understand evolution to make this ignorant remark.

Social revolutions have always been a part of human history…from Hunter/Gatherers transitioning into Agriculturalists and from there to Industrialized urban civilization etc. The current transition from a religion-oriented society to a secular one is social revolution in action and has been developing over several centuries, especially among the better educated societies. It’s a fact of human history that we change and grow over time.

Of course this is evolution in action - there is nothing else. If Islam takes Europe it is because they reproduced more, were more aggressive and adapted better. Which is a real possibility.




...no more abnormal that Agriculturalist societies were "abnormal" compared to Hunter/Gatherer societies.


Once again, this is not evolution in action. Evolutionary natural selection is glacially slow; it occurs over tens of thousands of years, not decades or centuries.


Perhaps being non-religions is not your fault, perhaps you were "born that way." But we should treat it like any other mental defect and try to find out what is missing. Maybe we could develop a medication?



The evolutionary process “created” nothing, nature doesn't “create”. Natural Selection is the process of incremental changes that occur naturally resulting in the survival of species best adapted to the prevailing environmental conditions and the elimination of those that aren't so adapted.

Oh stop. The only reason why the Muslims are the way they are is because that is the way evolutionary process created them to think and act. So it is with all our violent tendencies. It is all predetermined according to you Tass. There is no free choice or free thought in your universe.

JimL
09-14-2015, 04:35 PM
Jim you are making a point I have agreed with in the past, more than once. But that has never been the problem or the question.

Good, well i am glad you agree then that for moral truths to exist they have no need of an objective source.

seer
09-14-2015, 04:44 PM
Good, well i am glad you agree then that for moral truths to exist they have no need of an objective source.

Yes Jim, moral opinions exist.

JimL
09-14-2015, 05:01 PM
Yes Jim, moral opinions exist.
Well make up your mind seer. You just agreed with me in post #208 that for moral truths to exist they need no ontological ground or distinct source. Do you agree or not? If you disagree, if you think that morals need an objective source for them to be true, then please expain why you think they need a source to be true? Remember, we are not talking about justice as justice is a wholly different matter as to whether or not moral truths themselves exist. Justice is enforcement of morals, not the morals themselves.

Tassman
09-14-2015, 10:47 PM
Right, then, all your arguing about morality is as meaningless as we are.

I’m not arguing that at all. Certainly our lives are meaningless in ultimate terms and apart from your escapist religious fantasies, you have no argument to the contrary. But our lives are not meaningless in terms of our life-spans as sentient creatures and given that we've evolved as a social species our rules of behaviour, i.e. our morality, are grounded in our communal instincts.


Of course this is evolution in action - there is nothing else. If Islam takes Europe it is because they reproduced more, were more aggressive and adapted better.

Social change is not evolution in action. Muslims are biologically identical to everyone else. You obviously don’t know what evolution is.


Which is a real possibility.

Yes it is quite possible that Islam will take Europe. This is the sort of thing religions do…they’re all as bad as each other. Islam did it when they took over all the ancient Christian Patriarchates namely Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem. And the Christians did the same when the Crusaders tried to take it all back again. This is the curse of religion.


Perhaps being non-religions is not your fault, perhaps you were "born that way." But we should treat it like any other mental defect and try to find out what is missing. Maybe we could develop a medication?

:sigh:

Beliefs are socially acculturated, not biologically evolved. Once the culturally reinforced implausibility barrier is removed people cease to believe the social myths for the very good reason that the empirical evidence doesn't support them. It’s already happening in the West…even in the U.S where a third of those under 30 are not interested in organized religion.


Oh stop. The only reason why the Muslims are the way they are is because that is the way evolutionary process created them to think and act.

Nonsense! Muslims are the way they are for the same reason that Christians or Buddhists are the way they are, namely cultural indoctrination from a young age and subsequent cultural reinforcement.


So it is with all our violent tendencies.

Our primary tendency is towards communal living, which is the reason why we proscribe violence and penalize it where necessary, i.e. in order to preserve our social harmony.


It is all predetermined according to you Tass. There is no free choice or free thought in your universe.

This misrepresentation is typical of you and the reason you’re widely condemned for your dishonesty. For the umpteenth time we live in a causally determined universe, not a fatalistic one whereby we just lie back and wait for things to happen. Choice and action are integral parts of the causal stream that is ‘determinism’. Is this dishonesty really what’s required to sell Jesus?

seer
09-15-2015, 03:25 AM
Well make up your mind seer. You just agreed with me in post #208 that for moral truths to exist they need no ontological ground or distinct source. Do you agree or not? If you disagree, if you think that morals need an objective source for them to be true, then please expain why you think they need a source to be true? Remember, we are not talking about justice as justice is a wholly different matter as to whether or not moral truths themselves exist. Justice is enforcement of morals, not the morals themselves.


No Jim that is not what I agreed with. I agreed that if you had a subjective moral goal like the greater good for the greatest number that their are objectively better ways to reach that goal. But the goals are subjective. And I don't think you need God to have these subjective moral goals. And just a side note, any moral system void of justice is not moral in any sense of the word. Morality is about how we as a society order our interpersonal relationships and if you take justice out of the picture you have an incoherent system. Why call a behavior "wrong" if there are no consequences for engaging in the behavior?

JimL
09-15-2015, 04:06 AM
No Jim that is not what I agreed with. I agreed that if you had a subjective moral goal like the greater good for the greatest number that their are objectively better ways to reach that goal. But the goals are subjective. And I don't think you need God to have these subjective moral goals. And just a side note, any moral system void of justice is not moral in any sense of the word. Morality is about how we as a society order our interpersonal relationships and if you take justice out of the picture you have an incoherent system. Why call a behavior "wrong" if there are no consequences for engaging in the behavior?
And if there are better subjective ways to meet that goal then that means that there is a best way to meet that goal and the fact that such ways exist makes them objective. Nobody is taking justice out of the equation, we dole out justice, but justice itself has nothing to do with the existence of the of the moral system itself. You call the behavior wrong because it violates the moral law.

seer
09-15-2015, 04:47 AM
And if there are better subjective ways to meet that goal then that means that there is a best way to meet that goal and the fact that such ways exist makes them objective. Nobody is taking justice out of the equation, we dole out justice, but justice itself has nothing to do with the existence of the of the moral system itself. You call the behavior wrong because it violates the moral law.

Yes Jim, the means to meet the goal can be objective, but the goal itself is subjective. Look, here is a subjective moral goal: I should not let my neighbor starve. Well there is an objective way to meet that goal, feed him. And I disagree, justice is integral to any moral system, if it isn't the system is incoherent. Which is of course the case with all atheistic systems - they are ultimately incoherent.

seer
09-15-2015, 04:56 AM
This misrepresentation is typical of you and the reason you’re widely condemned for your dishonesty. For the umpteenth time we live in a causally determined universe, not a fatalistic one whereby we just lie back and wait for things to happen. Choice and action are integral parts of the causal stream that is ‘determinism’. Is this dishonesty really what’s required to sell Jesus?

Tass, do we have the freedom of will or thought to do other than we do? Do the Muslims have freedom to not think and act as they do? Have the not forces of nature predetermined them to do what they do?

Bill the Cat
09-15-2015, 03:31 PM
The Golden Rule embodies our evolved natural instinct of altruistic reciprocity necessary for bonding together as a social species. One doesn’t need “something outside of that rule” to inform a community that perversions of this instinct such as sadomasochism do not contribute to this end.

The golden rule is individualistic, not communal. And by admitting that social cohesion is the determiner of what rules the GR must follow, you have placed social cohesion above the GR. And that brings into play things like eliminating elders that serve no function in society or that consume resources without contributing. It's nothing more than your preference of what "altruism" includes.

JimL
09-15-2015, 05:29 PM
Yes Jim, the means to meet the goal can be objective, but the goal itself is subjective. Look, here is a subjective moral goal: I should not let my neighbor starve. Well there is an objective way to meet that goal, feed him. And I disagree, justice is integral to any moral system, if it isn't the system is incoherent. Which is of course the case with all atheistic systems - they are ultimately incoherent.
Okay, but now you are moving the goal post. Your original argument was that morals need be objectively sourced, i.e. that without an ontological ground, aka a deity, then morals must needs be subjective. Now you have moved the goal post in order to argue that the goal itself must needs be subjective without an ontological ground. But that doesn't change or help your argument seer. The goal, a best world within which to live, and the morals that support it, are naturally intertwined, so the same argument applies. The moral system and the world that is founded upon it are one and the same thing, so if you agree that morals are objective in and of themselves, then so too is the goal, or the world that they support.

And again, no one is implying that justice is not an integrel part of a moral system, but justice has nothing to do with whether or not the morals that are adjudicated exist. I'll put it in the form of a question for you: 'Do you believe that murder is wrong in itself, or do you believe that murder is only wrong if you get caught?'

seer
09-15-2015, 05:55 PM
Okay, but now you are moving the goal post. Your original argument was that morals need be objectively sourced, i.e. that without an ontological ground, aka a deity, then morals must needs be subjective. Now you have moved the goal post in order to argue that the goal itself must needs be subjective without an ontological ground. But that doesn't change or help your argument seer. The goal, a best world within which to live, and the morals that support it, are naturally intertwined, so the same argument applies. The moral system and the world that is founded upon it are one and the same thing, so if you agree that morals are objective in and of themselves, then so too is the goal, or the world that they support.

Jim, I did not move anything. I have been saying the same thing right along. And no, the goal is subjective, so the means to reach said goal is dependent on the goal. The means to prevent my neighbor from starving is different from the means I would use to take food from my neighbor to feed my family. So the means are always dependent on the subjective goal.



And again, no one is implying that justice is not an integrel part of a moral system, but justice has nothing to do with whether or not the morals that are adjudicated exist.

Sounds like a contradiction. But if justice is an integral part of a moral system then our man made systems are severely lacking - actually incoherent.



I'll put it in the form of a question for you: 'Do you believe that murder is wrong in itself, or do you believe that murder is only wrong if you get caught?'

No, I don't not think that murder could be wrong in itself in a godless universe - how could it be? Of course I think it is wrong because it violates the law of God.

Tassman
09-15-2015, 10:19 PM
Tass, do we have the freedom of will or thought to do other than we do?

Does a chimpanzee have the freedom of will to choose a banana off a tree? The chimp’s free-will may only be an illusion in this determined universe, but this doesn’t stop it acting as though it had free-will and making effective choices…after all, it gets to eat its banana.

The same applies to human primates. You’ll no doubt claim that god granted humans actual free-will (as opposed to the illusion of it) by divine fiat. But this is only a faith position, there’s no substantive evidence that humans are any different to his fellow creatures in this regard...or that god even exists if it comes to that.


Do the Muslims have freedom to not think and act as they do? Have the not forces of nature predetermined them to do what they do?

No more or less than, for example the Fourth Crusade when it sacked the Christian city of Constantinople and raped the women, looted the treasure and placed a naked prostitute upon the patriarch's throne as the supreme insult to fellow Christians.

Tassman
09-15-2015, 10:47 PM
The golden rule is individualistic, not communal. And by admitting that social cohesion is the determiner of what rules the GR must follow, you have placed social cohesion above the GR.

The Golden Rule is based upon the ethic of reciprocity and simply reflects the evolved qualities we have as social creatures to preserve the social cohesion necessary for our survival as a species. This is why variations of it are found in virtually every society in human history…long before Jesus appropriated it for himself.


And that brings into play things like eliminating elders that serve no function in society or that consume resources without contributing. It's nothing more than your preference of what "altruism" includes.

Nonsense! Eliminating elders is hardly going to enhance social cohesion in a community, e.g. the offspring of the elders’ are likely to be quite angry if granddad is put to death…unless of course it can be disguised as god’s will as per the Aztec's offering living human hearts to ensure the sunrise.

JimL
09-16-2015, 04:12 AM
Jim, I did not move anything. I have been saying the same thing right along. And no, the goal is subjective, so the means to reach said goal is dependent on the goal. The means to prevent my neighbor from starving is different from the means I would use to take food from my neighbor to feed my family. So the means are always dependent on the subjective goal.
So, you think that a "best world," based on a best moral system, can be achieved, but only if the moral system it is founded upon is ontologically grounded in a distinct deity? By what reasoning do you arrive at that conclusion seer? Your argument is that if a god did not exist, then a best moral system that you suppose is grounded in god could not exist or be followed either. Please explain how you get there. What difference would the non existence of a deity make in your after world paradise if the moral system were adhered to by its inhabitants? It would still be paradise, correct? The only argument you have is the "ultimate justice" argument, and justice itself has nothing to do with whether that moral system itself exists.




Sounds like a contradiction. But if justice is an integral part of a moral system then our man made systems are severely lacking - actually incoherent.
No, no contradiction. Justice is distinct from the laws it adjudicates. Justice is only necessary should the moral system be violated, so it is distinct from the existence moral system itself.




No, I don't not think that murder could be wrong in itself in a godless universe - how could it be? Of course I think it is wrong because it violates the law of God.
And why do you suppose that it violates Gods law? Did god just make it up, did he just arbitrarily decide that murder is wrong? Could it be otherwise?

seer
09-16-2015, 04:55 AM
So, you think that a "best world," based on a best moral system, can be achieved, but only if the moral system it is founded upon is ontologically grounded in a distinct deity? By what reasoning do you arrive at that conclusion seer? Your argument is that if a god did not exist, then a best moral system that you suppose is grounded in god could not exist or be followed either. Please explain how you get there. What difference would the non existence of a deity make in your after world paradise if the moral system were adhered to by its inhabitants? It would still be paradise, correct? The only argument you have is the "ultimate justice" argument, and justice itself has nothing to do with whether that moral system itself exists.

Jim you are just repeating yourself, again. How many times do I have to say that if all men followed the golden rule we would have heaven on earth? With or without God. But the golden rule is a subjective moral position and no more objectively true or valid than the other golden rule; he with the most gold rules. And to the larger picture - that all our moral musing are just a meaningless as we are as a species.



No, no contradiction. Justice is distinct from the laws it adjudicates. Justice is only necessary should the moral system be violated, so it is distinct from the existence moral system itself.

And since many or most violations of moral law can not be adjudicated in man made systems, it is incoherent. If there are no consequences for wrongful moral acts then you have lawlessness, and lawlessness is incoherent when we speak of ethics.



And why do you suppose that it violates Gods law? Did god just make it up, did he just arbitrarily decide that murder is wrong? Could it be otherwise?

Jim, you already know the answer to this. God's law if grounded in His immutable more character - so it is not arbitrary. It is certain, unchanging and eternal. Unlike the laws of man. But you did not answer my point: how could murder could be wrong in itself in a godless universe? What makes it wrong apart from personal or collective opinion?

seer
09-16-2015, 05:01 AM
Does a chimpanzee have the freedom of will to choose a banana off a tree? The chimp’s free-will may only be an illusion in this determined universe, but this doesn’t stop it acting as though it had free-will and making effective choices…after all, it gets to eat its banana.

The same applies to human primates. You’ll no doubt claim that god granted humans actual free-will (as opposed to the illusion of it) by divine fiat. But this is only a faith position, there’s no substantive evidence that humans are any different to his fellow creatures in this regard...or that god even exists if it comes to that.

No more or less than, for example the Fourth Crusade when it sacked the Christian city of Constantinople and raped the women, looted the treasure and placed a naked prostitute upon the patriarch's throne as the supreme insult to fellow Christians.

Tass you accused me of dishonesty:


This misrepresentation is typical of you and the reason you’re widely condemned for your dishonesty. For the umpteenth time we live in a causally determined universe, not a fatalistic one whereby we just lie back and wait for things to happen. Choice and action are integral parts of the causal stream that is ‘determinism’. Is this dishonesty really what’s required to sell Jesus?

So I will ask again:Tass, do we have the freedom of will or thought to do other than we do? And Do the Muslims have freedom to not think and act as they do? Have the not forces of nature predetermined them to do what they do?

And BTW - I am not widely condemned for dishonesty - I know of two other posters that have suggested such, neither of which do I trust to be objective.

JimL
09-16-2015, 08:51 PM
Jim you are just repeating yourself, again. How many times do I have to say that if all men followed the golden rule we would have heaven on earth? With or without God.

Then that is all you should need to know in order to understand that morality is objective. If the goal is a best world in which to live, a heaven on earth, a paradise or Eden, and there are certain rules of behavior that would, if adhered to, underlie and sustain that world, then those rules of behavior or morals are not subjective. They don't need to be grounded in anything else such as a moral being. The only thing subjective is the personal opinions concerning them. You may subjectively agree with them or disagree with them, but you would only be correct if you agreed with them, and that is what makes them objective.




But the golden rule is a subjective moral position and no more objectively true or valid than the other golden rule; he with the most gold rules. And to the larger picture - that all our moral musing are just a meaningless as we are as a species.
See above. There is nothing subjective about it. Your opinion of the rule is subjective, but the golden rule itself is not subjective. Also, your opinion that a "best world" for you and your family to live in is meaningless, is itself subjective, it is only your opinion, but such a world itself would be objective.




And since many or most violations of moral law can not be adjudicated in man made systems, it is incoherent. If there are no consequences for wrongful moral acts then you have lawlessness, and lawlessness is incoherent when we speak of ethics.
Again, thats a different discussion. Whether or not people adhere to moral law has nothing to do with whether or not moral law is objectively true, and that would be the same in your heavenly world as it is in this earthly one.




Jim, you already know the answer to this. God's law if grounded in His immutable more character - so it is not arbitrary.
And is it grounded in his immutable character because it is true, or is it true because it is grounded in his immutable character? You see, it has to be true in itself seer, otherwise it is arbitrary whether it is grounded in a deity or not, and if it is true in itself, then there is no need to assume it to be grounded anywhere.


It is certain, unchanging and eternal.
But have no need of being objectively grounded in order to be objectively true.


Unlike the laws of man.
That all depends on the laws. They can either be objectively true, or subjectively false.


But you did not answer my point: how could murder could be wrong in itself in a godless universe? What makes it wrong apart from personal or collective opinion?
The world that the law is meant to sustain makes it wrong. If your argument is that God is what makes murder wrong, then murder is not wrong in itself and that it is only wrong because god arbitrarilly chose it to be wrong. Again, murder is either wrong in itself, or it is arbitrarilly decided to be wrong and that goes whether grounded in god or not.

Tassman
09-16-2015, 09:26 PM
Tass you accused me of dishonesty:

Your dishonesty rests in constantly misrepresenting my position, namely ‘causal determinism’ as simplistic ‘fatalism’ despite being frequently corrected and linked to authoritative links on the subject.

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/determinism-causal/

In short your arguments are a strawman fallacy.


So I will ask again:Tass, do we have the freedom of will or thought to do other than we do? And Do the Muslims have freedom to not think and act as they do? Have the not forces of nature predetermined them to do what they do?

Please answer my question and in doing so you will get the answer to your question about my position on human “freedom of thought" and "freedom of will.”

Once again: “Does a chimpanzee have the freedom of will to choose a banana off a tree? The chimp’s free-will may only be an illusion in this determined universe, but this doesn't stop it acting as though it had free-will and making effective choices…after all, it gets to eat a real banana, not an illusory banana.

So, for the umpteenth time, how we are different from our fellow primates in this regard?

You’ll no doubt claim that a deity granted humans actual free-will (as opposed to the illusion of it) by divine fiat. But this is merely a faith position, there’s no substantive evidence that humans are any different to their fellow creatures in this regard...so why should anyone who does not share your faith position take any notice of your argument? It’s totally unsupported and arrogant in that it elevates humans into a completely unique position for no substantive reason other than vanity.

seer
09-17-2015, 04:42 AM
Your dishonesty rests in constantly misrepresenting my position, namely ‘causal determinism’ as simplistic ‘fatalism’ despite being frequently corrected and linked to authoritative links on the subject.

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/determinism-causal/

In short your arguments are a strawman fallacy.

Tass you keep saying this but determinism is determinism. There is zero freedom of will or freedom of thought in your model, whether you use the term casual or not.



Please answer my question and in doing so you will get the answer to your question about my position on human “freedom of thought" and "freedom of will.”

Once again: “Does a chimpanzee have the freedom of will to choose a banana off a tree? The chimp’s free-will may only be an illusion in this determined universe, but this doesn't stop it acting as though it had free-will and making effective choices…after all, it gets to eat a real banana, not an illusory banana.


If you are correct, the Muslims have no choice in how they think or act. And they are no more morally responsible than the rock that rolls down the hill and kills some one - and that is not misrepresenting your position. So when you bring a moral judgement against religionists like this: Yes it is quite possible that Islam will take Europe. This is the sort of thing religions do…they’re all as bad as each other, it is completely meaningless, you might as well bring a moral judgement against the rock. Your position Tass is not rational. It is emotional.



You’ll no doubt claim that a deity granted humans actual free-will (as opposed to the illusion of it) by divine fiat. But this is merely a faith position, there’s no substantive evidence that humans are any different to their fellow creatures in this regard...so why should anyone who does not share your faith position take any notice of your argument? It’s totally unsupported and arrogant in that it elevates humans into a completely unique position for no substantive reason other than vanity.

Yes Tass, you know this is what I believe. Along with the fact, like I said, that I have no good reason to assume that my experience of freedom is an illusion.

seer
09-17-2015, 06:21 AM
Then that is all you should need to know in order to understand that morality is objective. If the goal is a best world in which to live, a heaven on earth, a paradise or Eden, and there are certain rules of behavior that would, if adhered to, underlie and sustain that world, then those rules of behavior or morals are not subjective. They don't need to be grounded in anything else such as a moral being. The only thing subjective is the personal opinions concerning them. You may subjectively agree with them or disagree with them, but you would only be correct if you agreed with them, and that is what makes them objective.

See above. There is nothing subjective about it. Your opinion of the rule is subjective, but the golden rule itself is not subjective. Also, your opinion that a "best world" for you and your family to live in is meaningless, is itself subjective, it is only your opinion, but such a world itself would be objective.

Jim, whether we should or should not follow the golden rule is what is subjective, that is opionion. That is an ethical goal, and goals are what are subjective.



And is it grounded in his immutable character because it is true, or is it true because it is grounded in his immutable character? You see, it has to be true in itself seer, otherwise it is arbitrary whether it is grounded in a deity or not, and if it is true in itself, then there is no need to assume it to be grounded anywhere.

It is true objectively only because it is grounded in God's immutable character. And of course with God you have authority. There are consequences for not following the golden rule. Not necessarily so apart from God.



But have no need of being objectively grounded in order to be objectively true.

Is it objectively true that we should follow the golden rule?



The world that the law is meant to sustain makes it wrong. If your argument is that God is what makes murder wrong, then murder is not wrong in itself and that it is only wrong because god arbitrarilly chose it to be wrong. Again, murder is either wrong in itself, or it is arbitrarilly decided to be wrong and that goes whether grounded in god or not.

Again Jim, God's law would not be arbitrary, and you did not answer the question - why is murder wrong in itself?

shunyadragon
09-17-2015, 05:00 PM
Is it objectively true that we should follow the golden rule?

Objective truth is a myth.


Again Jim, God's law would not be arbitrary, and you did not answer the question - why is murder wrong in itself?

To many murders not enough people. We have o keep wrongful deaths to a normal level.

JimL
09-17-2015, 05:33 PM
Jim, whether we should or should not follow the golden rule is what is subjective, that is opionion. That is an ethical goal, and goals are what are subjective.
I don't think so seer. Our choice as to what is good and what is evil is subjective, but what is good and what is evil in itself is objective. If murder is objectively wrong, then it is objectively wrong whether god exists or not. If it is only objectively wrong because god exists, then its objective wrongness must needs be arbitrarily decided upon and not objectively wrong in and of itself. Thats just basic logic.




It is true objectively only because it is grounded in God's immutable character. And of course with God you have authority. There are consequences for not following the golden rule. Not necessarily so apart from God.
Then you don't believe that murder is wrong in and of itself, which means that you only believe murder to be wrong because god arbitrarily decided it to be wrong. And there are consequences for not following the golden rule even if it is not grounded in god. Thats why the rule ends in "as you would have done unto you." It also has consequences for society as a whole, a society of which you are a part and so are effected by the transgressing of it. You would have to live in that immoral world.




Is it objectively true that we should follow the golden rule?
Yes! for the same reason that murder is objectively wrong in and of itself.




Again Jim, God's law would not be arbitrary,
I think I explained why it would logically need be arbitrary in the above reply. If murder is not wrong in and of itself, if it is not wrong even if god did not exist, then logically speaking, the fact that it is wrong would be dependent, and whatever is dependent is arbitrary.



and you did not answer the question - why is murder wrong in itself?
You have been given the answer to that many times over seer in this very thread, but the fact is that you just don't believe that murder is wrong.

Tassman
09-17-2015, 09:58 PM
Tass you keep saying this but determinism is determinism. There is zero freedom of will or freedom of thought in your model, whether you use the term casual or not.

‘Determinism’ is NOT ‘fatalism’…you seem unable to distinguish between the two.


If you are correct, the Muslims have no choice in how they think or act. And they are no more morally responsible than the rock that rolls down the hill and kills some one - and that is not misrepresenting your position.

Strawman argument! Of course there is “choice”. This is a ridiculous caricature of my position.

Now how about answering the question: Does a chimpanzee have the freedom of will to choose a banana off a tree OR, as I’m arguing, is the chimp’s free-will merely an illusion in this determined universe? Obviously it’s the latter but this doesn't stop it acting as though it had free-will and making an effective choice…and it gets to eat a real banana as a consequence of its choice.

Please explain how this decision-making process is any different for Muslims, to use your example, or for you or for me making decisions.


So when you bring a moral judgement against religionists like this: Yes it is quite possible that Islam will take Europe. This is the sort of thing religions do…they’re all as bad as each other, it is completely meaningless, you might as well bring a moral judgement against the rock. Your position Tass is not rational. It is emotional.

See above re making effective choices.


Yes Tass, you know this is what I believe. Along with the fact, like I said, that I have no good reason to assume that my experience of freedom is an illusion.

You have very good reason for not believing what I've bolded above, namely that there’s no evidence supporting your position, it’s a meaningless faith statement. Your position seer is not rational. It is emotional…to borrow your phrase above.

Of course you won’t assume that your “experience of freedom is an illusion” because that’s precisely what “illusion” means, namely: “a perception that represents what’s perceived in a way different from the way it is in reality”. Oxford Dictionary.

How could you possibly have actual free-will any more than the chimp choosing its banana off a tree, in a universe wherein “every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions together with the laws of nature?” (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy).

Tassman
09-17-2015, 10:25 PM
Jim, whether we should or should not follow the golden rule is what is subjective, that is opionion. That is an ethical goal, and goals are what are subjective.

It's an ethic we're predisposed to follow by our very nature.


It is true objectively only because it is grounded in God's immutable character. And of course with God you have authority. There are consequences for not following the golden rule. Not necessarily so apart from God.

The moment you start interpreting the supposed demands arising from "God's immutable character" as contained in God's alleged holy word, his supposed absolute qualities become subjective, i.e. they become the opinion of the interpreter and thus subjective.


Is it objectively true that we should follow the golden rule?

What is true is that we are genetically predisposed to follow the Golden Rule. This is how we've evolved as a social species. And this is why we can find variations of the Golden Rule in virtually every human society throughout history. And this is why, when the ancients were developing the concept of God, such qualities were attributed to him...i.e. because they arise naturally in us.


Again Jim, God's law would not be arbitrary, and you did not answer the question - why is murder wrong in itself?

"Murder" is generally held to be wrong because it damages the fabric of society, not because it is necessarily wrong in and of itself...after all we kill people in war or in self defence or in those countries that still practice capital punishment.

seer
09-18-2015, 04:50 AM
I don't think so seer. Our choice as to what is good and what is evil is subjective, but what is good and what is evil in itself is objective. If murder is objectively wrong, then it is objectively wrong whether god exists or not. If it is only objectively wrong because god exists, then its objective wrongness must needs be arbitrarily decided upon and not objectively wrong in and of itself. Thats just basic logic.

You are not making sense Jim. In a godless universe nothing is objectively right or wrong in itself. You have to demonstrate how that could be. And no if God's law is grounded in His immutable character then it can be in no way arbitrary. It would be the most non-arbitrary thing possible.




Then you don't believe that murder is wrong in and of itself, which means that you only believe murder to be wrong because god arbitrarily decided it to be wrong. And there are consequences for not following the golden rule even if it is not grounded in god. Thats why the rule ends in "as you would have done unto you." It also has consequences for society as a whole, a society of which you are a part and so are effected by the transgressing of it. You would have to live in that immoral world.

Jim, of course murder is not wrong in and of itself - how could it be? And I'm not arguing for or against what kind of world that would produce, only that you can not demonstrate that things like murder in a godless universe are inherently wrong.



Yes! for the same reason that murder is objectively wrong in and of itself.

OK, prove it.



I think I explained why it would logically need be arbitrary in the above reply. If murder is not wrong in and of itself, if it is not wrong even if god did not exist, then logically speaking, the fact that it is wrong would be dependent, and whatever is dependent is arbitrary.

That is just silly, why would a dependent moral truth necessarily be arbitrary? God's moral moral character is not arbitrary - it is eternal, fixed and certain. The most non-arbitrary thing possible.




You have been given the answer to that many times over seer in this very thread, but the fact is that you just don't believe that murder is wrong.

First Jim, even if I wasn't a Christian I would subjectively believe that murder is wrong. But no, you have not given a coherent reason for why murder would be wrong in and of itself. You say, that it would make the world less livable - but that tells us nothing about whether your theory is true or not. But even that doesn't follow - a man does not have to believe that murder is objectively wrong to believe that it is subjectively wrong. Believing in "objective" moral facts doesn't change a thing.

seer
09-18-2015, 04:58 AM
Strawman argument! Of course there is “choice”. This is a ridiculous caricature of my position.

Now how about answering the question: Does a chimpanzee have the freedom of will to choose a banana off a tree OR, as I’m arguing, is the chimp’s free-will merely an illusion in this determined universe? Obviously it’s the latter but this doesn't stop it acting as though it had free-will and making an effective choice…and it gets to eat a real banana as a consequence of its choice.

Please explain how this decision-making process is any different for Muslims, to use your example, or for you or for me making decisions.

Tass please give me a direct answer. Do the Muslims or the monkey have the freedom to do otherwise? Are either of them morally responsible? Are are their behaviors predetermined?



How could you possibly have actual free-will any more than the chimp choosing its banana off a tree, in a universe wherein “every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions together with the laws of nature?” (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy).

Ok then Muslims are no more morally responsible than the ape.

seer
09-18-2015, 05:04 AM
It's an ethic we're predisposed to follow by our very nature.

Just as we are genetically predisposed to be selfish and violent.

JimL
09-18-2015, 05:40 PM
You are not making sense Jim. In a godless universe nothing is objectively right or wrong in itself. You have to demonstrate how that could be. And no if God's law is grounded in His immutable character then it can be in no way arbitrary. It would be the most non-arbitrary thing possible.
To argue that gods law, morals, are grounded in his immutable nature, tells us nothing about the nature of morality itself. If murder is only wrong because god exists, if it isn't wrong in itself, then that fact tells us that murder being wrong is arbitrary and dependent. Thats all there is to it seer. I understand that you will argue against that point until the cows come home, but you can't defeat that logic. Its like your kid believing that eating ice cream is immoral, not because there is anything evil about eating ice cream in and of itself, but because its being evil is just an eternal fact based on nothing. Morality is based on reason.





Jim, of course murder is not wrong in and of itself - how could it be? And I'm not arguing for or against what kind of world that would produce, only that you can not demonstrate that things like murder in a godless universe are inherently wrong.
I think I can, but again being right or wrong has nothing to do with punishment or reward. Morality has to do with human beings, and what is in best interests of human society, and that has nothing to do with whether an external source exists. There is no need of an external source of morality to exist in order to determine that.




OK, prove it.
Its not proof, its plain logic. You are the one asserting the existence and necessity of an external source of morality, so it is for you to prove it. What I proved logically is that there is no need of an external source in order to dtermine right and wrong, or what is good and what is evil.




That is just silly, why would a dependent moral truth necessarily be arbitrary? God's moral moral character is not arbitrary - it is eternal, fixed and certain. The most non-arbitrary thing possible.

Again, it is just plain logic seer. If a thing is neither good or evil in itself, then its goodness or evilness is arbitrary.





First Jim, even if I wasn't a Christian I would subjectively believe that murder is wrong.
Why?


Thats whats silly seer. But no, you have not given a coherent reason for why murder would be wrong in and of itself. You say, that it would make the world less livable - but that tells us nothing about whether your theory is true or not. But even that doesn't follow - a man does not have to believe that murder is objectively wrong to believe that it is subjectively wrong. Believing in "objective" moral facts doesn't change a thing.
Thats whats silly seer. Believing something to be wrong means nothing, if it isn't actually wrong. When it comes to morality what is right and what is wrong is what is in the best interests of of human life and human society, and that is based on reason and sound logic. But that doesn't mean that we actually know what that is, which is why, just as in the case of your idea of a distinct and objective standard, we don't actually know it.

Tassman
09-18-2015, 10:40 PM
Tass please give me a direct answer. Do the Muslims or the monkey have the freedom to do otherwise? Are either of them morally responsible? Are are their behaviors predetermined?

You keep evading my request for an answer to the question of whether the apparent free-will exercised by sentient creatures such as us is real or an illusion. If you claim it is real and actual then you need to explain how, in a universe where every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions together with the laws of nature this occurs. To assert, without a shred of credible evidence that ‘god-did-it’ just for the human animal, his favourite creatures, is unacceptable…especially when we see non-human creatures such as chimpanzees, also exercising apparent free-choice.

“It is hard to imagine how free will can operate if our behavior is determined by physical law, so it seems that we are no more than biological machines and that free will is just an illusion.”

http://amiquote.tumblr.com/post/2318471636/stephen-hawking-on-free-will-do-people-have-free

There’s no argument against this unless you introduce the superseded notion of supernatural gods.


Ok then Muslims are no more morally responsible than the ape.

Now, now you’re not Donald Trump. :ahem:

We’re all instinctively and morally responsible to each other consequent to having evolved as a social species. If you disagree then you must say why…something you’ve conspicuously not done other than assert, with no supporting evidence, that god inserted free will into humans at some unknown point in human history…but this is no more than an unverified folk-tale dating from a more ignorant era.


Just as we are genetically predisposed to be selfish and violent.

We are primarily predisposed to be reciprocal creatures that are genetically conditioned to accept the rules of the group. This is why we proscribe selfishness and violence within the group and have developed methods of restraining individual selfishness and building more cooperative communities.

seer
09-19-2015, 07:33 AM
I think I can, but again being right or wrong has nothing to do with punishment or reward. Morality has to do with human beings, and what is in best interests of human society, and that has nothing to do with whether an external source exists. There is no need of an external source of morality to exist in order to determine that.

Then make your case - why is the best interest of humanity an objective good, rather than a subjective good? What makes it objective? If all of mankind was destroyed tomorrow by an an alien race, would that be an objectively moral evil? Why? I mean really Jim, even Tass is not buying your argument.


Its not proof, its plain logic. You are the one asserting the existence and necessity of an external source of morality, so it is for you to prove it. What I proved logically is that there is no need of an external source in order to dtermine right and wrong, or what is good and what is evil.

No Jim, I said God is necessary for objective ethics. Objective to humankind, that is not dependent on the whims of men.



Again, it is just plain logic seer. If a thing is neither good or evil in itself, then its goodness or evilness is arbitrary.

Then in your world it is all arbitrary.



Why?

Because that is the way I was brought up and prefer to stay out of prison?



Thats whats silly seer. Believing something to be wrong means nothing, if it isn't actually wrong. When it comes to morality what is right and what is wrong is what is in the best interests of of human life and human society, and that is based on reason and sound logic. But that doesn't mean that we actually know what that is, which is why, just as in the case of your idea of a distinct and objective standard, we don't actually know it.

If objective moral facts do actually exist Jim (and they don't) but if they did - what good are they? What authority do they have? Why do men have an obligation to follow them? What happens if we ignore them?

seer
09-19-2015, 07:43 AM
Now, now you’re not Donald Trump. :ahem:

We’re all instinctively and morally responsible to each other consequent to having evolved as a social species. If you disagree then you must say why…something you’ve conspicuously not done other than assert, with no supporting evidence, that god inserted free will into humans at some unknown point in human history…but this is no more than an unverified folk-tale dating from a more ignorant era.

Yes, but this makes no sense. How, in reality, is the Jihadist any more, morally responsible, than the ape? Again, to quote Dawkins:


Concepts like blame and responsibility are bandied about freely where human wrongdoers are concerned. When a child robs an old lady, should we blame the child himself or his parents? Or his school? Negligent social workers? In a court of law, feeble-mindedness is an accepted defence, as is insanity. Diminished responsibility is argued by the defence lawyer, who may also try to absolve his client of blame by pointing to his unhappy childhood, abuse by his father, or even unpropitious genes (not, so far as I am aware, unpropitious planetary conjunctions, though it wouldn't surprise me).

But doesn't a truly scientific, mechanistic view of the nervous system make nonsense of the very idea of responsibility, whether diminished or not? Any crime, however heinous, is in principle to be blamed on antecedent conditions acting through the accused's physiology, heredity and environment.

http://edge.org/q2006/q06_9.html#dawkins

So do you agree with Dawkins that the very idea of responsibility is nonsense?

JimL
09-19-2015, 12:53 PM
Then make your case - why is the best interest of humanity an objective good, rather than a subjective good? What makes it objective? If all of mankind was destroyed tomorrow by an an alien race, would that be an objectively moral evil? Why? I mean really Jim, even Tass is not buying your argument.
What is in the best interests of humanity is an objective good for the same reason that what is not in the best interests of humanity is an objective evil. What makes morality objective is the fact that it is either in the best interest of humanity, or it is not. For instance, the moral against murder, theft, rape etc etc. is in the best intersts of all human beings and so in the best intersts of society as a whole. Thats what makes it objective, not that morals exist in themselves, but they are objective and independent of human subjective belief.

If all of mankind was destroyed tommorow by an alien race, would that be an objectively moral evil?
We are talking about morality with respect to human society and interpersonal relationships within that society. An alien race though, the leaders of which, that would destroy life for its own benefit would destroy their own citizens as well, they could also be destroyed by other aliens, and so on and so on, so they would be immoral to begin with. By adding aliens to the equation, you are simply enlarging the spectrum within which morality applies.

No Jim, I said God is necessary for objective ethics. Objective to humankind, that is not dependent on the whims of men.
Objective ethics are not dependent on the whims of man in the first place, so an authoritative god is not necessary. What is in the best interest of human life and survival is in the best interests of human life and survival independent of what anyone, including a deity, has in their mind.




Then in your world it is all arbitrary.
No, in my world morals are not arbitrary. Morals are just not things that exist in and of themselves, their existence is dependent, but their objectivity is not dependent, upon man. Again, what is in the best interest of life and survival is not dependent upon the subjective beliefs of man, what is in the best interests of life, is in the best interests of life regardless of what anyone might subjectively believe is in the best interests of life. Thats why morality is objective and such objectivity is not dependent on anything or anyone.




Because that is the way I was brought up and prefer to stay out of prison?
So, you only believe things to be true because that is the way you were brought up, or taught to believe.? You don't rely on critical reasoning to come to believe what you believe?




If objective moral facts do actually exist Jim (and they don't) but if they did - what good are they? What authority do they have? Why do men have an obligation to follow them? What happens if we ignore them?
Morals are not things that exist in themselves, they are objective facts not objective existing things, and their existence as facts are dependent upon the existence of living beings. If we ignore them, then we get to live in the world that we deserve.

seer
09-19-2015, 01:34 PM
What is in the best interests of humanity is an objective good for the same reason that what is not in the best interests of humanity is an objective evil.

Jim that is a circular justification. It is not rational.


What makes morality objective is the fact that it is either in the best interest of humanity, or it is not. For instance, the moral against murder, theft, rape etc etc. is in the best intersts of all human beings and so in the best intersts of society as a whole. Thats what makes it objective, not that morals exist in themselves, but they are objective and independent of human subjective belief.

Again, why is the best interest of humanity an objective good? What you are offering Jim is the subjective view that the general good is somehow an objective moral truth.


We are talking about morality with respect to human society and interpersonal relationships within that society. An alien race though, the leaders of which, that would destroy life for its own benefit would destroy their own citizens as well, they could also be destroyed by other aliens, and so on and so on, so they would be immoral to begin with. By adding aliens to the equation, you are simply enlarging the spectrum within which morality applies.

What? Why, if this alien race harvested us for food to benefit its own race, would that be immoral? Kind of like us killing and eating cows. They would be helping their own citizens not harming them.



Morals are not things that exist in themselves, they are objective facts not objective existing things, and their existence as facts are dependent upon the existence of living beings. If we ignore them, then we get to live in the world that we deserve.

Right the exact world we have. So objective morals facts makes no difference, they do no better than subjective ethics. They change nothing. Thanks...

JimL
09-19-2015, 02:55 PM
Jim that is a circular justification. It is not rational.
No it isn't, you cherry picked the quote.



Again, why is the best interest of humanity an objective good?
Because what is good for humanity and what is bad for humanity is not dependent upon the subjective beliefs of humans. That makes it objective!


What you are offering Jim is the subjective view that the general good is somehow an objective moral truth.
No, my argument is that what the general good is, is not dependent upon a subjective viewpoint of what the general good is. That being the case, the moral system underlying the general good, the morals that would sustain the general good, are also objective and independent of subjective perspectives.



What? Why, if this alien race harvested us for food to benefit its own race, would that be immoral? Kind of like us killing and eating cows. They would be helping their own citizens not harming them.
Seer, we are talking about human morality, morality with respect to the best interests of and within human society. The objectivity of human morality, and it is objective, is understood only with respect to humanity. In other words what is the best moral system under which human beings should behave towards each other in order to insure the best world within which they can survive and live their lives together in peace and dignity. It has nothing to do with cows or aliens who may want to destroy them.



Right the exact world we have. So objective morals facts makes no difference, they do no better than subjective ethics. They change nothing. Thanks...
Thats correct, we are resposible for our own behavior and the world we make.

So objective moral facts makes no difference, they do no better than subjective ethics. They change nothing. Thanks...
Objective moral facts don't do anything seer, they are just facts whether naturally or supernaturally grounded, so to speak. We can find them and follow them or not, but they are only facts which do nothing other than being facts.

seer
09-19-2015, 03:23 PM
Because what is good for humanity and what is bad for humanity is not dependent upon the subjective beliefs of humans. That makes it objective!

Jim I understand this is your belief. But again why is what is good for humanity an objective good? Why is it an objective good that we as a species survive?



Seer, we are talking about human morality, morality with respect to the best interests of and within human society. The objectivity of human morality, and it is objective, is understood only with respect to humanity. In other words what is the best moral system under which human beings should behave towards each other in order to insure the best world within which they can survive and live their lives together in peace and dignity. It has nothing to do with cows or aliens who may want to destroy them.


The key word here is survive. If the goal of your moral system is the survival of our species then one needs ask why the survival of the species is an objective moral good. If isn't then the moral system that services that goal is just as meaningless as we are.


Thats correct, we are resposible for our own behavior and the world we make.

Right so whether morals are objective or not is meaningless.


Objective moral facts don't do anything seer, they are just facts whether naturally or supernaturally grounded, so to speak. We can find them and follow them or not, but they are only facts which do nothing other than being facts.

OK, so you have been arguing about something that has no power to change anything, or have any real influence on mankind.

JimL
09-19-2015, 06:16 PM
Jim I understand this is your belief. But again why is what is good for humanity an objective good? Why is it an objective good that we as a species survive?
Because goodness is not a thing in itself, morality is not a thing in itself, morals do not exist apart from living beings, so whatever is in the best interests of human life and human society is what we define as good. The problem you are having with this, I think, is that you keep thinking that objective good and evil, i.e. morality, has some kind of existence which is distinct from humanity itself, an ontological ground you call it. It doesn't. Without the existence of living beings, there is no such thing as morality.




The key word here is survive. If the goal of your moral system is the survival of our species then one needs ask why the survival of the species is an objective moral good. If isn't then the moral system that services that goal is just as meaningless as we are.
The obvious purpose of existence is to exist, i.e. to survive, so the moral system that services or sustains that goal is obviously not meaningless, since that is exactly what it does.



Right so whether morals are objective or not is meaningless.
Don't know how you come to that conclusion from anything I said. Morals serve a social purpose, so in what sense are you concluding them to be meaningless?



OK, so you have been arguing about something that has no power to change anything, or have any real influence on mankind.
Right, morals themselves, if thats what your getting at, whether or not they are ontologically and supernaturally grounded, being that they are not existing and actionable things, have no power to do or change anything.
The force of change is in us, not in the morals.

Tassman
09-20-2015, 12:37 AM
Yes, but this makes no sense. How, in reality, is the Jihadist any more, morally responsible, than the ape? Again, to quote Dawkins:

The answer that makes no sense is yours, namely that God at some unidentified point during the evolutionary process inserted ‘free-will’ into the order of primates known as Homo-sapiens. There’s not a shred of credible evidence to support this notion. How could this occur in a universe whereby every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions together with the laws of nature.


So do you agree with Dawkins that the very idea of responsibility is nonsense?

Misleading quote mining again seer…tsk, tsk. :glare:

That’s not what Dawkins was talking about. He was referring to “retribution” as being ineffective in modifying behaviour: “Retribution as a moral principle is incompatible with a scientific view of human behaviour. As scientists, we believe that human brains, though they may not work in the same way as man-made computers, are as surely governed by the laws of physics. When a computer malfunctions, we do not punish it. We track down the problem and fix it, usually by replacing a damaged component, either in hardware or software”.

https://danielmiessler.com/blog/dawkins-on-free-will-and-moral-responsibility/

In short, Dawkins is saying that anti-social behaviour for evolved social animals like us equates to a malfunction of our evolved nature and needs to be rectified, not by retribution and punishments but some other means.

Further to this:

https://danielmiessler.com/blog/free-will-brain-tumor-identical/

seer
09-20-2015, 05:09 AM
T
Misleading quote mining again seer…tsk, tsk. :glare:

That’s not what Dawkins was talking about. He was referring to “retribution” as being ineffective in modifying behaviour: “Retribution as a moral principle is incompatible with a scientific view of human behaviour. As scientists, we believe that human brains, though they may not work in the same way as man-made computers, are as surely governed by the laws of physics. When a computer malfunctions, we do not punish it. We track down the problem and fix it, usually by replacing a damaged component, either in hardware or software”.

https://danielmiessler.com/blog/dawkins-on-free-will-and-moral-responsibility/

In short, Dawkins is saying that anti-social behaviour for evolved social animals like us equates to a malfunction of our evolved nature and needs to be rectified, not by retribution and punishments but some other means.

Further to this:

https://danielmiessler.com/blog/free-will-brain-tumor-identical/

Tass, I did not quote mine, so again do you agree with Dawkins that the very idea of responsibility is nonsense? Those are his words and not mine, and we are speaking of the idea of responsibility here. Whether you want to "fix" a particular behavior is another thing. And Dawkins goes on:


Assigning blame and responsibility is an aspect of the useful fiction of intentional agents that we construct in our brains as a means of short-cutting a truer analysis of what is going on in the world in which we have to live. http://edge.org/q2006/q06_9.html#dawkins

So again do you agree that the idea of responsibility is merely a useful FICTION?

seer
09-20-2015, 09:26 AM
The obvious purpose of existence is to exist, i.e. to survive, so the moral system that services or sustains that goal is obviously not meaningless, since that is exactly what it does.

Jim, in a godless universe humanity is just as insignificant as house flies, so how much less meaningful is any moral system that helps us survive?



Right, morals themselves, if thats what your getting at, whether or not they are ontologically and supernaturally grounded, being that they are not existing and actionable things, have no power to do or change anything.
The force of change is in us, not in the morals.

The point is Jim, even if objective moral facts exist, they don't do a thing. Men can change or not just as well if ethics were subjective. In other words you have spent all this time arguing for a position that makes no difference.