For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
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12-03-2014, 07:48 AM
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
(12-03-2014 07:41 AM)natachan Wrote:  An example of a moral absolute: it is always wrong to initiate the use of physical force against another sentient being.

Even to protect another sentient being that desires to but is unable to protect itself from the physical force being applied by another?

e.g. Would you consider it to be absolutely wrong to intervene with physical force when no other option is available, to save the life of a child from someone who intends to kill them without sufficient justification?

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12-03-2014, 07:50 AM
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
The one who intends to kill the child has initiated the use of physical force.
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12-03-2014, 07:55 AM
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
(12-03-2014 07:50 AM)natachan Wrote:  The one who intends to kill the child has initiated the use of physical force.

So you can't initiate force against anyone who is not using force?
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12-03-2014, 07:58 AM
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
Correct.
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12-03-2014, 07:58 AM
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
(12-03-2014 07:41 AM)natachan Wrote:  
(12-03-2014 07:35 AM)donotwant Wrote:  In a lifeless universe morality doesn't exist because there is nobody to act upon it.
In universe with one creature morality doesn't exist because creature can't impact anyone but itself.
In a universe with 2 or more creatures however morality does exist.

What do you mean always wrong?

As an objectivist I would argue a universe with one sentient being there is morality since it is that beings moral imperative to work towards its own happiness. If its happiness is served by oblivion, it would be moral to end its life. Otherwise its moral duty TO ITSELF is to work to produce and extend itself.

So in a universe where nobody is affected by it's actions, there is morality? If there is nothing else sentient affected by it's actions, how does that work? At that point the singular being's desire for happiness would be neither moral or immoral, as anything it could possibly do in pursuit of this goal would have zero affect on other moral agents (since there are none). Everything is simply null and void. It's suicide would affect noone but itself, it's continued existence would affect noone but itself; any and all possible actions would affect noone but itself. I fail to see how 'morality' has any part to play or any meaning in this system. At this point, 'morality' is essentially just synonymous with 'desire' because the being's actions cannot possibly affect any other moral agents.

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12-03-2014, 07:58 AM
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
I am 58 years old and hold two degrees. I enjoy reading the works of major philosophers whose works are often difficult to read, but I manage. Yet, your topic makes no sense to me at all.

"If you want a happy ending, that depends, of course, on where you stop your story." Orson Welles
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12-03-2014, 08:01 AM
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
(12-03-2014 07:58 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(12-03-2014 07:41 AM)natachan Wrote:  As an objectivist I would argue a universe with one sentient being there is morality since it is that beings moral imperative to work towards its own happiness. If its happiness is served by oblivion, it would be moral to end its life. Otherwise its moral duty TO ITSELF is to work to produce and extend itself.

So in a universe where nobody is affected by it's actions, there is morality? If there is nothing else sentient affected by it's actions, how does that work? At that point the singular being's desire for happiness would be neither moral or immoral, as anything it could possibly do in pursuit of this goal would have zero affect on other moral agents (since there are none). Everything is simply null and void. It's suicide would affect noone but itself, it's continued existence would affect noone but itself; any and all possible actions would affect noone but itself. I fail to see how 'morality' has any part to play or any meaning in this system. At this point, 'morality' is essentially just synonymous with 'desire' because the being's actions cannot possibly affect any other moral agents.

That's if you view morality as an external force between two sentient beings. I view morality as internal, a contract with ones self.
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12-03-2014, 08:03 AM
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
(12-03-2014 07:58 AM)Dee Wrote:  I am 58 years old and hold two degrees. I enjoy reading the works of major philosophers whose works are often difficult to read, but I manage. Yet, your topic makes no sense to me at all.

Sorry Dee, but there a a few different conversation going on here. Was that directed at the OP, someone else specifically, or the thread in general? Huh

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12-03-2014, 08:08 AM (This post was last modified: 12-03-2014 08:33 AM by EvolutionKills.)
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
(12-03-2014 08:01 AM)natachan Wrote:  
(12-03-2014 07:58 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  So in a universe where nobody is affected by it's actions, there is morality? If there is nothing else sentient affected by it's actions, how does that work? At that point the singular being's desire for happiness would be neither moral or immoral, as anything it could possibly do in pursuit of this goal would have zero affect on other moral agents (since there are none). Everything is simply null and void. It's suicide would affect noone but itself, it's continued existence would affect noone but itself; any and all possible actions would affect noone but itself. I fail to see how 'morality' has any part to play or any meaning in this system. At this point, 'morality' is essentially just synonymous with 'desire' because the being's actions cannot possibly affect any other moral agents.

That's if you view morality as an external force between two sentient beings. I view morality as internal, a contract with ones self.

You're right, I simply don't conceptualize morality that way. Oh well, weird hypotheticals are weird for a reason I guess. Without at least one other agent to interact with and to form context, morality appears to be identical to simple desire and fiat in a system with only one being (and hence, why call it 'morality' instead of 'desire'?).

But the true test is how your framework plays out in our reality. So why don't you try giving us another example in a more relatable context? Consider

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12-03-2014, 09:19 AM
RE: For those atheists that believe in objective morality, can you prove it?
Hmm. An example of internal morality? Difficult but I'll try.

Lets say there is a brilliant student who loves his field. It makes him happy. But he fears failure so he gives up and gets a menial job as a clerk while escaping in drink and/or video games. This man is a coward and has betrayed himself. His action is immoral.

Most of what I view as "internal morality" in a situation has to do with motivation. I do not steal not because I respect the shop or its owners but because I value my own integrity.
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