Let's Play Make Believe
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29-09-2010, 10:25 AM
 
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
(29-09-2010 09:51 AM)athnostic Wrote:  
(28-09-2010 07:49 AM)BarleyMcFlexo Wrote:  1) If there is no God, then I believe that morals are arbitrary, and come from wherever I please. They could not stand, because I could not say with absolute certainty that my morals were right and someone else's were wrong. ...

This is a common view among christians in regard to atheists.

I urge you to consider the following:

1) If morals are truly arbitrary, morality would differ greatly between humans with differing cultures and belief systems. Anthropological studies indicate that this is overwhelmingly false. Humans of all religions and cultures share strikingly similar moral values.

2) Morals are simply evolved survival strategies. You point to the fact that animals don't have morality that tells them not to kill other animals, setting them apart from humans, but what you overlooked is that animals rarely predate those of their own species, just like humans do this relatively rarely. In this way, the animal tendency to kill members of other species is shared among all animals, including humans.

3) The bible doesn't contain a system of absolute morality. The Bible promotes morality that is situational, or changeable regarding specific circumstances. Thou shalt not murder is followed swiftly by an "unless" clause. Rape of women is wrong "unless" it prevents homosexual rape of a man. Self-mutilation (even hypothetical) is wrong "unless" it prevents sin.

Morals go deeper than religion. Humans are large-brained animals. (Why do humans consider this such an insult, I wonder?) Biblical morals are more situational than non-religious morals.

I agree, well said! My reactions:

1) I think you just agreed with me. I am saying that there is a God, and thus morals are absolute because they come from him and he is the standard. You just showed proof that morals are not arbitrary. You may not agree that that is because there is a God, but at least we agree that morals are not arbitrary. So please tell me why you think morals are not arbitrary?

2) Agree. I see that as proof that animals and humans have a common creator, who is a creator of order.

3) Again I agree. God does give conditions for morality, but why is that bad. Those conditions still come from him and thus I believe are absolute. And most people would agree with his conditions (most people would agree that it is not right to kill unless in self-defense, for instance).

I may be wrong, but I think we agree on the effect, just not the cause. Comments?

Thanks Athnostic!
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29-09-2010, 10:25 PM
 
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
(29-09-2010 10:25 AM)BarleyMcFlexo Wrote:  I agree, well said! My reactions:

1) I think you just agreed with me. I am saying that there is a God, and thus morals are absolute because they come from him and he is the standard. You just showed proof that morals are not arbitrary. You may not agree that that is because there is a God, but at least we agree that morals are not arbitrary. So please tell me why you think morals are not arbitrary?

2) Agree. I see that as proof that animals and humans have a common creator, who is a creator of order.

3) Again I agree. God does give conditions for morality, but why is that bad. Those conditions still come from him and thus I believe are absolute. And most people would agree with his conditions (most people would agree that it is not right to kill unless in self-defense, for instance).

I may be wrong, but I think we agree on the effect, just not the cause. Comments?

Thanks Athnostic!

Have I mentioned that I like you, Barley? And not just because you seem to have agreed with me three times in a row. Smile

Here are my responses, enumerated because this thread has made that cool:

1) We agree that morality is largely cross-cultural and cross-religious. That is good. To answer your question: My morals are not arbitrary because they are part of my instinct to preserve and promote my species. If you would like specific answers to questions about my moral values (and why I don't use atheism as free license to do anything) please feel free to ask.

You assert in an earlier post that "If there is no God, then I believe that morals are arbitrary, and come from wherever I please." This is provably false. The mere fact that you and I can agree on what is usually moral seems to indicate that morality does not depend upon god's influence or existence.

I heard it argued often when I was a believer that god instilled moral behavior into mankind at creation. If this were true, you would have no reason to fear the loss of morality if you became an atheist. Yet most christians do greatly fear this. They actively oppose atheism partly because of their belief that society would fall into anarchy without religion to define morality. If the moral code is written on my heart by god, why should they fear that I might lose any sense of right and wrong by becoming an atheist? It can't be true both ways.

2) Or we share a common ancestor with the rest of the members of the animal kingdom. Which is more empirically provable?

3) This is where it all goes to hell, Barley. Smile You said,

"God does give conditions for morality, but why is that bad. Those conditions still come from him and thus I believe are absolute. And most people would agree with his conditions (most people would agree that it is not right to kill unless in self-defense, for instance)."

It's bad because these exceptions to god's morality allow people to justify what in other situations would be unjustifiable, such as:

genocide
infanticide
rape
incest
racism
slavery
violence against homosexuals


But it was okay for the Jews to kill, rape, and enslave the residents of Jericho because this lead to the salvation of their souls? (Jihad, anyone?) In what other context would this be okay?

Offering your daughters up to a horny mob served a greater purpose? (The city was still destroyed if I remember right.)

Remember how people used to use the "offspring of Cain" designation for African Americans as an excuse to deny them basic human rights?

Most people would not agree with these conditions because they are immoral. If Zeus said them, they would be immoral. If Allah says them, they're immoral. If Yahweh says them, guess what. Still immoral.

This is why conditional morality from god is so bad.

BTW, My scripture is a little rusty, but I don't remember any passages of the bible that actually clearly allow for killing in self-defense, even though this seems like the most rational condition that could possibly exist.
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29-09-2010, 11:34 PM
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
(29-09-2010 10:25 AM)BarleyMcFlexo Wrote:  1) I think you just agreed with me. I am saying that there is a God, and thus morals are absolute because they come from him and he is the standard. You just showed proof that morals are not arbitrary. You may not agree that that is because there is a God, but at least we agree that morals are not arbitrary. So please tell me why you think morals are not arbitrary?

2) Agree. I see that as proof that animals and humans have a common creator, who is a creator of order.

3) Again I agree. God does give conditions for morality, but why is that bad. Those conditions still come from him and thus I believe are absolute. And most people would agree with his conditions (most people would agree that it is not right to kill unless in self-defense, for instance).

This is god colored glasses to the max.

If morality comes from god how could christains do these things? http://www.truthbeknown.com/victims.htm
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30-09-2010, 08:28 AM
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
Oh my this thread has gone way off topic Tongue Interesting debate to read though. However, I'm going to answer the original question posed:

(27-09-2010 04:46 PM)BarleyMcFlexo Wrote:  My question is...let's just say that there is a God, and eternal life (in either heaven or hell), and you die as an atheist:

1) Where do you think you'd go? and;
2) What do you think it would be like?

My first response is to say that the presence of a god(dess) does not equate the presence of a soul and/or eternal life. However, since your question is presuming an eternal life, my answer would be as follows:

1. I think I would be reincarnated. The idea of going to either heaven or hell for all eternity just doesn't make much sense. God would have to keep creating new souls every day in order to keep life going. It makes more sense to simply recycle souls. And this seems more like an eternal life to me, since sitting around in heaven or hell doesn't sound like much of a life Undecided

2. Depending on who/what I am reincarnated as would depend on my view of life, but I'm assuming it would be very similar to this life.

"Remember, my friend, that knowledge is stronger than memory, and we should not trust the weaker." - Dr. Van Helsing, Dracula
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30-09-2010, 08:35 PM
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
I'm coming back as a house cat. Free food, no job, no taxes, no religion and I can lounge in the sun all day.
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02-10-2010, 03:42 PM
 
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
Never ending Justin beiber concert, thats my own persnol hell >.>
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02-10-2010, 05:19 PM
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
(02-10-2010 03:42 PM)thecajunathiest Wrote:  Never ending Justin beiber concert, thats my own persnol hell >.>

For me, Justin Beiber would be very irritating. Eminem would be pure unadulterated hell.
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02-10-2010, 09:02 PM
 
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
(02-10-2010 05:19 PM)No J. Wrote:  
(02-10-2010 03:42 PM)thecajunathiest Wrote:  Never ending Justin beiber concert, thats my own persnol hell >.>

For me, Justin Beiber would be very irritating. Eminem would be pure unadulterated hell.

Three words...

Insane. Clown. Posse.
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04-10-2010, 07:22 AM
 
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
(02-10-2010 09:02 PM)inkracer Wrote:  
(02-10-2010 05:19 PM)No J. Wrote:  
(02-10-2010 03:42 PM)thecajunathiest Wrote:  Never ending Justin beiber concert, thats my own persnol hell >.>

For me, Justin Beiber would be very irritating. Eminem would be pure unadulterated hell.

Three words...

Insane. Clown. Posse.
WHAT IS A JUGGALLOOOOOOO!!!Tongue
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06-10-2010, 11:20 PM
 
RE: Let's Play Make Believe
(04-10-2010 07:22 AM)thecajunathiest Wrote:  
(02-10-2010 09:02 PM)inkracer Wrote:  
(02-10-2010 05:19 PM)No J. Wrote:  
(02-10-2010 03:42 PM)thecajunathiest Wrote:  Never ending Justin beiber concert, thats my own persnol hell >.>

For me, Justin Beiber would be very irritating. Eminem would be pure unadulterated hell.

Three words...

Insane. Clown. Posse.
WHAT IS A JUGGALLOOOOOOO!!!Tongue

Magnets. How do they work?
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