I just need to vent
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05-05-2014, 10:07 PM (This post was last modified: 05-05-2014 10:16 PM by djhall.)
RE: I just need to vent
(05-05-2014 09:43 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  If morality is objective then you have to explain how it is possible for rational individuals to perceive objective morality two different ways.
I think we can say rape is immoral in the same way we can say diabetes is unhealthy. Sure, if you're psychotic and think pain and suffering and death are good, and life and energy and joy are bad, then you can be the inevitable contrarian that tries to argue diabetes is healthy. If someone just likes to argue they could offer the scenario that if the diabetes caused high blood sugar, and that blood sugar fed a bacteria that eats HIV viruses, and that kept the person from dying of AIDS, then diabetes is healthy so we can't truly say diabetes isn't healthy. Well, yay, bully for them. For the rest of us, the lack of an all knowing god to settle the debate about whether or not diabetes is healthy isn't really necessary, and we can figure it out on our own.

That said, there have been times in human history when we have done horrible things while believing to the best of our knowledge at the time that they were healthy or moral. That doesn't mean the concepts are less valid or worthless. There are times when we aren't certain which course of action is the healthier or more moral option. There are times when leaders in the field disagree on the health benefits and detriments of something like all vegan diets or the degree to which community needs outweigh the needs of an individual member of the community. That still doesn't make the concepts less real, accurate, or useful. Yet, no one in their right mind argues that we can't know what healthy is unless god tells us, so why do we so readily accept that claim about morality?

If the tribe explained to me that infection was a curse from their gods and rape was okay because women were community property, should I only teach them about what we've figured out about antibiotics and forget teaching them what we've also learned about moral reasoning, the golden rule, the ends principle, individual rights, individual liberty, etc? Do those concepts not also lead to better observable outcomes in the human condition every bit as clear in hindsight as the benefits of antibiotics?
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05-05-2014, 10:22 PM
RE: I just need to vent
(05-05-2014 08:32 PM)Jeremy E Walker Wrote:  Simple. You think raping young women is wrong even if rapists think it is right. In thinking this you admit that just because they think it is right does not actually make it so.

Didn't you get the memo? Rape isn't okay because the rapist thinks it is, its okay because the rapist's God says it is.



http://www.cbsnews.com/news/nigeria-says...n-thought/

As you approach a town to attack it, first offer its people terms for peace. If they accept your terms and open the gates to you, then all the people inside will serve you in forced labor. But if they refuse to make peace and prepare to fight, you must attack the town. When the LORD your God hands it over to you, kill every man in the town. But you may keep for yourselves all the women, children, livestock, and other plunder. You may enjoy the spoils of your enemies that the LORD your God has given you. (Deuteronomy 20:10-14)


They must be dividing the spoils they took: there must be a damsel or two for each man, Spoils of dyed cloth as Sisera's spoil, an ornate shawl or two for me in the spoil. (Judges 5:30 NAB)


"When you go out to war against your enemies and the LORD, your God, delivers them into your hand, so that you take captives, if you see a comely woman among the captives and become so enamored of her that you wish to have her as wife, you may take her home to your house. But before she may live there, she must shave her head and pare her nails and lay aside her captive's garb. After she has mourned her father and mother for a full month, you may have relations with her, and you shall be her husband and she shall be your wife. However, if later on you lose your liking for her, you shall give her her freedom, if she wishes it; but you shall not sell her or enslave her, since she was married to you under compulsion." (Deuteronomy 21:10-14 NAB)


Lo, a day shall come for the Lord when the spoils shall be divided in your midst. And I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem for battle: the city shall be taken, houses plundered, women ravished; half of the city shall go into exile, but the rest of the people shall not be removed from the city. (Zechariah 14:1-2 NAB)

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05-05-2014, 11:33 PM
RE: I just need to vent
(05-05-2014 10:07 PM)djhall Wrote:  
(05-05-2014 09:43 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  If morality is objective then you have to explain how it is possible for rational individuals to perceive objective morality two different ways.
I think we can say rape is immoral in the same way we can say diabetes is unhealthy. Sure, if you're psychotic and think pain and suffering and death are good, and life and energy and joy are bad, then you can be the inevitable contrarian that tries to argue diabetes is healthy. If someone just likes to argue they could offer the scenario that if the diabetes caused high blood sugar, and that blood sugar fed a bacteria that eats HIV viruses, and that kept the person from dying of AIDS, then diabetes is healthy so we can't truly say diabetes isn't healthy. Well, yay, bully for them. For the rest of us, the lack of an all knowing god to settle the debate about whether or not diabetes is healthy isn't really necessary, and we can figure it out on our own.

That said, there have been times in human history when we have done horrible things while believing to the best of our knowledge at the time that they were healthy or moral. That doesn't mean the concepts are less valid or worthless. There are times when we aren't certain which course of action is the healthier or more moral option. There are times when leaders in the field disagree on the health benefits and detriments of something like all vegan diets or the degree to which community needs outweigh the needs of an individual member of the community. That still doesn't make the concepts less real, accurate, or useful. Yet, no one in their right mind argues that we can't know what healthy is unless god tells us, so why do we so readily accept that claim about morality?

If the tribe explained to me that infection was a curse from their gods and rape was okay because women were community property, should I only teach them about what we've figured out about antibiotics and forget teaching them what we've also learned about moral reasoning, the golden rule, the ends principle, individual rights, individual liberty, etc? Do those concepts not also lead to better observable outcomes in the human condition every bit as clear in hindsight as the benefits of antibiotics?

Yeah, djhall and I are pretty much of the same opinion I think, good points made. Eagerly awaiting your response jeremy.
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06-05-2014, 04:08 AM
RE: I just need to vent
(05-05-2014 08:33 PM)djhall Wrote:  
(05-05-2014 05:53 PM)Jeremy E Walker Wrote:  But I must ask...ignorant of what?

You seem to be insinuating that there is a moral law that exists which states that young women should not be raped just because men think it is a manly thing to do, and that these elders and fifteen year old have broken this law, either out of ignorance or willful disregard.....

Very interesting.....

Is this what you are saying?

As someone raised with heavy indoctrination in the christian faith, this was one of the greatest challenges of my life, and one I spent more than 20 years agonizing over and searching to answer. I must know god to know good from bad, but I must know good and bad to know the truth of god.

Consider the following chain of scripture from Matthew 7:

"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened."
...
"So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets."
...
“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them."
...
“Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’"

What are we to make of this chain of scripture? Many false prophets will claim to have prophesied and driven out demons and performed miracles in Gods name, yet they are still false prophets, they are wolves in sheep's clothing. How are we to know which are false and which are true? Well, a good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit, and by judging their fruits good or bad you will know truth.

To know good from bad is to know the true prophet from the many false prophets. How can we know the true god if we don't know good and bad? How can we know good and bad if we don't know the true god? Are we not trapped in an endless circle? Prophesies, expelling demons, and miracles are clearly unreliable indicators of the true god and prophets, so supernatural "proof" is clearly just a distraction. Are we not stuck with the only advice being, "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened." Ask WHO? Ask god? I need the answer to know the true god to ask? If not god then WHO?

But the final piece is right there... One tiny little sentence that is the key to everything. So small, so unassuming, so easy to overlook. "So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets."

Do you see my argument? Does it help that is in your own bible in the very words of your own god? From you comes the truth of good and bad. If you ask yourself, "What does it mean to 'in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you?", if you truly seek the answers to that one fundamental key, if you keep knocking on that door.... you will find right and wrong, you will find morality, and from that moral judgement you will know how to identify false prophets by judging their fruits against what you know to be good and bad.

Forget the miracles, forget the prophets, forget people who claim to peddle god.... use compassion, empathy, reason, to seek the answer to what it means to treat others as you would have them treat you, and you will find right and wrong, and from there you will know the truth or false prophesy of those who claim to be or know god.

Is it presumptuous to think man knows the truth of good and bad? God is the standard of good and bad, man is a sinner, and we need god to tell is right from wrong. Perhaps. But then it would be strange that Jesus would tell us to find the answer in how we want to be treated, isn't it.... And then there is that little story of Adam and Eve.....

"but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die." Wait, say what? A tree that gives mankind knowledge of good and evil? Nah... that can't be. 'And the Lord God said, “Man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.”

Say what? Man has become like god, knowing good and evil. We seek that knowledge with the golden rule as a hint, as a guide. And with that knowledge we have in us we will know the truth from false prophecy?!?!?!?

Still want to tell us we can't know morality unless we know god? Do you still think you found god first and then he told you good and bad? Remember when you admitted that even if it was proven that the Allah of the 9/11 hijackers and suicide bombers and throat slitters spreading Islam by the sword were absolutely conclusively proven to be the true god you still wouldn't worship him? Why not? Shouldn't you just accept that good and bad are whatever that god tells you they are? Or do we already know right and wrong, do we find morality within us, and THEN we know god from false prophets? Is it not possible that you already know this from within, and you know Allah isn't right, and that is why you wouldn't worship him no matter the proof that he was god?

And yes, I realize I just used scripture to make an argument as an atheist on an atheist forum. Just because we don't agree it is the literal word of god doesn't mean we can't acknowledge good ideas that were incorporated into it.

I never said you can't know right from wrong unless you believe on God.

Sorry but you just wasted your time in writing what you did. I have repeatedly said this is not about epistemology but rather ontology.

I am not concerned with how we KNOW (epistemology) what is right and wrong, but rather, what IS (ontology) right and wrong.
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06-05-2014, 04:18 AM
RE: I just need to vent
(06-05-2014 04:08 AM)Jeremy E Walker Wrote:  I am not concerned with how we KNOW (epistemology) what is right and wrong, but rather, what IS (ontology) right and wrong.

The two are dependent dumbfuck. Someone who's epistemology is divine command theory is a-okay with murder and rape so long as it's commanded by the one emotionally stunted sycophantic pan-dimensional space wizard that they believe in. Someone who doesn't rely on divine command theory will arrive at a much different conclusion to what is right and wrong because they use a different metric. Epistemology informs ontology. Facepalm

This was literately the whole point of the Harris/Craig debate.

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06-05-2014, 04:23 AM
RE: I just need to vent
(06-05-2014 04:08 AM)Jeremy E Walker Wrote:  Sorry but you just wasted your time in writing what you did. I have repeatedly said this is not about epistemology but rather ontology.

It is never a waste. I don't participate and discuss things with people to try to change their minds. I do it to clarify, refine, evaluate, and improve my own ideas, beliefs, and reasoning.
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06-05-2014, 04:25 AM
RE: I just need to vent
(05-05-2014 09:43 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  
(05-05-2014 08:32 PM)Jeremy E Walker Wrote:  Simple. You think raping young women is wrong even if rapists think it is right. In thinking this you admit that just because they think it is right does not actually make it so.

In order for that to be true morality would have to exist separate from the individual passing the moral judgement. It wouldn't be me interpreting morality then, just reporting on it. The same rational observer would perceive the same moral state, "wrong" in this case, regardless of who it is doing the observing, providing that the method by which they use to perceive morality (empathy and intellect right) was not impaired. The same way that if you and I examine the tree we both would report it to have the same dimensions and color. In this hypothetical example, this would produce a paradox. If the rapist and I are rational observers of morality, how would it be possible for me to perceive a moral wrong and for him to perceive a moral right then? For the sake of argument, lets say the rapist was in no way impaired, and therefore perfectly capable of perceiving moral right and wrong, and was telling the truth, in that he really did perceive no moral wrong. How would it be possible then for him to interpret morality differently from how I do? If indeed morality is objective, and both of us are rational observers without impediment, this shouldn't be possible.

If the rapist argument is too cut and dry, imagine the following scenario:

You have just found out your spouse has been unfaithful. You come to learn the person they have slept with is also married. Are you morally obligated to tell their lover's spouse aboout the affair?

You might say no, that their relationship doesn't concern you, and that your motivation to tell them is motivated at least in part in revenge.

You might also say yes, that you were deceived and would have wanted someone else to tell you if they knew, and they may feel the same way.

If morality is objective, there would have to be one clearly right answer and one clearly wrong answer. I think we can agree that two rational, moral people might come to to very different conclusions. The conclusions they come to would be based on their subjective principles and how they subjectively interpret the application of those principles to the problem at hand.

My view is consistent, in that so far as the rapist is concerned the rape is not wrong, so far as I am concerned the rape is wrong. I don't fetter myself with objective morality and so I am not burdened with the task of resolving the conflicting views. If morality is objective then you have to explain how it is possible for rational individuals to perceive objective morality two different ways.

A much more difficult task, if morality is objective and we agree that it is objective (for the purpose of argument) how does the bible provide objective moral truth? Is everything in the bible objectivly moral, or just some of it, and if just some of it, how do you distinguish between what is objectively moral and what isn't?

What two possibilities could explain why when a teacher tells twenty students to solve an algebra equation, she gets twenty different answers when only one answer is right?
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06-05-2014, 04:39 AM
RE: I just need to vent
(06-05-2014 04:23 AM)djhall Wrote:  
(06-05-2014 04:08 AM)Jeremy E Walker Wrote:  Sorry but you just wasted your time in writing what you did. I have repeatedly said this is not about epistemology but rather ontology.

It is never a waste. I don't participate and discuss things with people to try to change their minds. I do it to clarify, refine, evaluate, and improve my own ideas, beliefs, and reasoning.

Do you understand that the issue in discussion is not an epistemological one?
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06-05-2014, 04:42 AM
RE: I just need to vent
(06-05-2014 04:18 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(06-05-2014 04:08 AM)Jeremy E Walker Wrote:  I am not concerned with how we KNOW (epistemology) what is right and wrong, but rather, what IS (ontology) right and wrong.

The two are dependent dumbfuck. Someone who's epistemology is divine command theory is a-okay with murder and rape so long as it's commanded by the one emotionally stunted sycophantic pan-dimensional space wizard that they believe in. Someone who doesn't rely on divine command theory will arrive at a much different conclusion to what is right and wrong because they use a different metric. Epistemology informs ontology. Facepalm

This was literately the whole point of the Harris/Craig debate.

I am never okay with murder or rape. Murder by definition is the WRONGFUL taking of life. We all know what rape is. It is the WRONGFUL abuse of a person by forced sexual intercourse.

So no I am not okay with it. Ever.

Nor has God ever murdered anyone or ordered anyone to be raped.
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06-05-2014, 04:56 AM (This post was last modified: 06-05-2014 05:00 AM by Jeremy E Walker.)
RE: I just need to vent
(05-05-2014 11:33 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  
(05-05-2014 10:07 PM)djhall Wrote:  I think we can say rape is immoral in the same way we can say diabetes is unhealthy. Sure, if you're psychotic and think pain and suffering and death are good, and life and energy and joy are bad, then you can be the inevitable contrarian that tries to argue diabetes is healthy. If someone just likes to argue they could offer the scenario that if the diabetes caused high blood sugar, and that blood sugar fed a bacteria that eats HIV viruses, and that kept the person from dying of AIDS, then diabetes is healthy so we can't truly say diabetes isn't healthy. Well, yay, bully for them. For the rest of us, the lack of an all knowing god to settle the debate about whether or not diabetes is healthy isn't really necessary, and we can figure it out on our own.

That said, there have been times in human history when we have done horrible things while believing to the best of our knowledge at the time that they were healthy or moral. That doesn't mean the concepts are less valid or worthless. There are times when we aren't certain which course of action is the healthier or more moral option. There are times when leaders in the field disagree on the health benefits and detriments of something like all vegan diets or the degree to which community needs outweigh the needs of an individual member of the community. That still doesn't make the concepts less real, accurate, or useful. Yet, no one in their right mind argues that we can't know what healthy is unless god tells us, so why do we so readily accept that claim about morality?

If the tribe explained to me that infection was a curse from their gods and rape was okay because women were community property, should I only teach them about what we've figured out about antibiotics and forget teaching them what we've also learned about moral reasoning, the golden rule, the ends principle, individual rights, individual liberty, etc? Do those concepts not also lead to better observable outcomes in the human condition every bit as clear in hindsight as the benefits of antibiotics?

Yeah, djhall and I are pretty much of the same opinion I think, good points made. Eagerly awaiting your response jeremy.

The point he made is that humans should so order their lives as to produce the best observable outcome as it relates to the human condition. He thinks this is a moral obligation i.e. that if some person or people group does not live in such a way then they need to be corrected for not meeting this obligation.

The only problem Michael is that you agree with him and also at the same time say no one has any moral obligations because they do not exist.

God has so ordered the world and us that we know by intuition that we are obligated to Him and to each other to do certain things. Even in trying to deny this, you affirm it for the aforementioned reason.

On your view, there is no such thing as moral progress. Or moral reform. For there is nothing to progress to. There is no ideal that we should aim for. One opinion is no closer to some independently existing ideal of morality than the next because no such objective ideal about how we ought to live exists.

You need to come to terms with the full range of implications and ramifications of your untenable view on morality.
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