A Challenge for Moral Realists
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28-12-2015, 07:58 PM
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
(28-12-2015 05:47 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  So all you're really talking about is societal norms and laws, like I said earlier. You're not talking about what people ought to do, but only what people are pressured and/or influenced to do. No need to even mention the word morality, social and legal pressure is all you need.
Most people don't need to be pressured or influenced to do the right thing. In fact that's why society can codify what the right thing is and sanction the minority of people who do the wrong thing.

Right or wrong is what sustainably promotes a just and civil society that most members of that society already have chosen to live in.

The concept of good and evil superimposed over that creates heat but not light. Right and wrong are not things-in-themselves, they are emergent properties of societal interactions.
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28-12-2015, 08:07 PM
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
(28-12-2015 05:50 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  I would still say no. Even laws don't tell me how to behave, they just tell me what possible consequences might arise from certain behaviors. There is no moral obligation to follow the law.
Nonsense. In my experience most people experience a sense of obligation to follow laws and norms and that sense of obligation increases with how consequential a particular norm or law is. Social reciprocity makes my neighbors mow their lawns and put out their recycling and park their cars in the appropriate places. They do this because they want OTHERS to do the same things in ways that don't annoy or inconvenience THEM. Of course there is always one idiot who lets his place turn to crap and for him we have neighborhood association rules and mechanisms to compel him to take those things seriously and uphold his obligation to the rest of us.

Attaching the adjective "moral" to the noun "obligation" doesn't perform some sort of magic on "obligation", in fact "moral" is largely superfluous and a ruthless editor would remove it. Obligations are mini social contracts, often implicit, and arise organically from social interaction. Collectively we call the thousands of obligations we have to each other "morality" or "mores". It is not the individual obligations but being faithful to the whole set of them that is "moral". We are immoral to the extent we don't live up to all our obligations.
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29-12-2015, 01:37 AM
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
(28-12-2015 05:47 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(27-12-2015 09:31 PM)mordant Wrote:  No, it's true that society disapproves of eating pork.
No, it's true that society disapproves of homosexuals.
Life IS absurd.
There is no objective morality anchored in absolutes. Society decides what it wants to encourage and discourage and you either go along with it or suffer the consequences or change societies.

So all you're really talking about is societal norms and laws, like I said earlier. You're not talking about what people ought to do, but only what people are pressured and/or influenced to do. No need to even mention the word morality, social and legal pressure is all you need.
It's gone on these threads before why that is, morality isn't a singular meaning word of "oughts" like you just revert it to.

Morality is a broader term with multiple philosophical definitions & societal ones. You just keep focused on one side and react when people talk about it in the other essence. There's the nomitive and descriptive meanings.

Yes morals are just social norms or desired and preferred recommendations by biology or culture... in the descriptive sense. And no its not silly to call that morals because it's not what religious oughts good/evil dialogues are about morals. It's both the same term within different scopes.

"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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29-12-2015, 03:08 AM
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
So I had a little time today to go over the posts in this thread.

I'm struggling to see where anyone is actually disagreeing except over semantics.

So that's all good then.

[/thread].

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29-12-2015, 07:12 AM
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
(29-12-2015 03:08 AM)DLJ Wrote:  So I had a little time today to go over the posts in this thread.

I'm struggling to see where anyone is actually disagreeing except over semantics.

So that's all good then.

[/thread].

I have to disagree. I think that some of the atheists here believe that:

moral = promotes civil society/reduces suffering

immoral = promotes uncivil society/increases suffering

And not only that, I think a lot of members believe that it is a fact that people should behave morally instead of immorally (by the above definitions).

Basically, if you think that there are right and wrong ways to navigate through life (as Sam Harris does, (I'm still a big fan of Sam Harris, I just happen to disagree with him on this point)), then you are a moral realist. It all comes back to Hume's - you can't get an ought from and is, or a value from a fact. The word "moral" if it means anything at all, it means what ought to be done, and immoral, what ought to be avoided. The real question is, is there any way to determine what is moral and immoral? Hume says no (and I agree), if you say yes, then there is still much disagreement.

Still all good though! Thumbsup
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29-12-2015, 07:29 AM
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
(29-12-2015 07:12 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(29-12-2015 03:08 AM)DLJ Wrote:  So I had a little time today to go over the posts in this thread.

I'm struggling to see where anyone is actually disagreeing except over semantics.

So that's all good then.

[/thread].

I have to disagree. I think that some of the atheists here believe that:

moral = promotes civil society/reduces suffering

immoral = promotes uncivil society/increases suffering

And not only that, I think a lot of members believe that it is a fact that people should behave morally instead of immorally (by the above definitions).

Basically, if you think that there are right and wrong ways to navigate through life (as Sam Harris does, (I'm still a big fan of Sam Harris, I just happen to disagree with him on this point)), then you are a moral realist. It all comes back to Hume's - you can't get an ought from and is, or a value from a fact. The word "moral" if it means anything at all, it means what ought to be done, and immoral, what ought to be avoided. The real question is, is there any way to determine what is moral and immoral? Hume says no (and I agree), if you say yes, then there is still much disagreement.

Still all good though! Thumbsup


Then explain the Mongol empire and how it made travel and trade safe.

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I will call him a liar and a dog here and now.
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29-12-2015, 07:43 AM
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
(29-12-2015 07:12 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(29-12-2015 03:08 AM)DLJ Wrote:  So I had a little time today to go over the posts in this thread.

I'm struggling to see where anyone is actually disagreeing except over semantics.

So that's all good then.

[/thread].

I have to disagree. I think that some ...

... I think a lot of ...

I have to disagree.

I'm seeing claims about 'most' atheists / theists / people, but broad agreement in this thread (except for labels).

Drinking Beverage

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29-12-2015, 07:47 AM
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
KILL EVERYONE UNTIL ONE PERSON IS LEFT!

NOTE: Member, Tomasia uses this site to slander other individuals. He then later proclaims it a joke, but not in public.
I will call him a liar and a dog here and now.
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29-12-2015, 09:04 AM (This post was last modified: 29-12-2015 09:08 AM by ClydeLee.)
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
(29-12-2015 07:12 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(29-12-2015 03:08 AM)DLJ Wrote:  So I had a little time today to go over the posts in this thread.

I'm struggling to see where anyone is actually disagreeing except over semantics.

So that's all good then.

[/thread].

I have to disagree. I think that some of the atheists here believe that:

moral = promotes civil society/reduces suffering

immoral = promotes uncivil society/increases suffering

And not only that, I think a lot of members believe that it is a fact that people should behave morally instead of immorally (by the above definitions).

Basically, if you think that there are right and wrong ways to navigate through life (as Sam Harris does, (I'm still a big fan of Sam Harris, I just happen to disagree with him on this point)), then you are a moral realist. It all comes back to Hume's - you can't get an ought from and is, or a value from a fact. The word "moral" if it means anything at all, it means what ought to be done, and immoral, what ought to be avoided. The real question is, is there any way to determine what is moral and immoral? Hume says no (and I agree), if you say yes, then there is still much disagreement.

Still all good though! Thumbsup

No. You want the term moral to mean just that.. for whatever reason I don't quite know. Because it suits your view?

If you want to just talk purely about oughts then talk about them that way. Semantically dropping portions of what the term moral currently, historically, and philosophically represents doesn't help communication abide.

Moral is what is moral judged by some value. You have to come to some value stance before you could judge if a societal action was or wasn't moral. That's where some will safe benefiting societies is a positive value therefore actions supporting it are good morals to that view. People make up these values, though not so directly individually, we all influence other humans after all.

"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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29-12-2015, 09:26 AM
RE: A Challenge for Moral Realists
(29-12-2015 07:43 AM)DLJ Wrote:  
(29-12-2015 07:12 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  I have to disagree. I think that some ...

... I think a lot of ...

I have to disagree.

I'm seeing claims about 'most' atheists / theists / people, but broad agreement in this thread (except for labels).

Drinking Beverage

What about the views of Sam Harris vs. Hume? Do you think those viewpoints are compatible?

Don't you think that some members are closer to Sam Harris's viewpoint, while others are closer to Hume's?
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