Moral absolutes
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22-03-2016, 06:35 PM
RE: Moral absolutes
(22-03-2016 06:26 PM)jason_delisle Wrote:  
(22-03-2016 06:09 PM)unfogged Wrote:  
You have been warned
Wow! I hope you can trust me when I say that I have never seen that thread before. My experience with the blind girl really happened. I was 15 years old at the time and had no clue about micron ranges and wavelengths. When she asked me that question I had absolutely no clue where to even start.

Given that said thread involves posts from a member by the handle of "Agnostic Shane"... you aren't missing much.

Other than a driving need to be always right/Come out seeming on top? They aren't adding much to the forums.
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22-03-2016, 06:37 PM
RE: Moral absolutes
(22-03-2016 05:11 PM)jason_delisle Wrote:  
(22-03-2016 05:05 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  Well, at least you're honest about it. That puts you miles ahead of most of your competition around here.

For the sake of discussion, however, rather than letting it lie there, I will point out that the reason you can't think of a way to prove that it exists is because the concept is not coherent. It is not properly defined in any way that would allow it to be proven.

No one even has any idea what "objective morality" would look like, how it could be distinguished from subjective morality, or what bearing it would have on human moral decisions, if any. It's not actually a coherent, working concept; it's just two impressive-sounding words mashed together. It's a deliberately hazy idea that only works if you don't think about it for more than thirty seconds, like Lovecraft's concept of "Things Man Was Not Meant To Know" or any number of other fictional entities.

This is the same problem that plagues those who would argue for the existence of the soul. Without a coherent definition, any given "argument" is pretty much a non-starter.
I had a friend in high school who was born blind. I gave her a complement on her blue eyes. She asked me what blue looked like. How do you begin to answer that? I think objective morality is like trying to explain to a blind girl what the color blue looks like.

This is a bad analogy. If you were trying to explain morality to a person without a functioning conceptual faculty, then that would be a proper analogy. But then you wouldn't be able to explain anything because explanation is a conceptual process. Moral principles are a species of knowledge and principles are discovered and integrated by means of concepts. It's no different than discovering the best way to grow a crop, fix a broken pump or land a probe on Mars. Morality is not a mystery. It is a set of general principles to guide a persons actions. It is reason applied to the job of living just as growing crops is reason applied to the job of producing food. I bet if you let her hold a cold objects, cool objects, warm objects and hot objects, and related the various temperatures to colors, she could get at least a rudimentary understanding of color even if she could never see the actual colors.

Do not lose your knowledge that man's proper estate is an upright posture, an intransigent mind and a step that travels unlimited roads. - Ayn Rand.

Don't sacrifice for me, live for yourself! - Me

The only alternative to Objectivism is some form of Subjectivism. - Dawson Bethrick
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23-03-2016, 07:23 AM
RE: Moral absolutes
What about when some atheists claim that their morality is superior? Aren't they also claiming that objective morality exists? Don't they also carry the burden of proof?

I've heard many atheists say things like that on this site without even flinching.
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23-03-2016, 07:55 AM
RE: Moral absolutes
(23-03-2016 07:23 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  What about when some atheists claim that their morality is superior? Aren't they also claiming that objective morality exists? Don't they also carry the burden of proof?

I've heard many atheists say things like that on this site without even flinching.
The problem is that moral principles are discovered and validated by induction. And most people have this strange aversion to induction. So it is very difficult to convince them that moral principles are objective. If a principle is discovered by observing facts and using a method that is in accordance with the primacy of existence, then it is an objective principle.

Another problem I see is that most people can't get much beyond the perceptual level of abstraction and to reach the concept of objective morality requires higher level abstraction. So it is very difficult.

But here is a deductive proof that morality is objective

1. If man qua man is not exempt from the law of identity then his life requires a specific course of action to sustain it.

2. If man's life requires a specific course of action to sustain it, then any other course of action is objectively wrong, so long as he chooses to live.

3. Man qua man is not exempt from the law of identity.

Therefore so long as he chooses to live there is an objectively right course of action he must take in order to sustain his life.

Do not lose your knowledge that man's proper estate is an upright posture, an intransigent mind and a step that travels unlimited roads. - Ayn Rand.

Don't sacrifice for me, live for yourself! - Me

The only alternative to Objectivism is some form of Subjectivism. - Dawson Bethrick
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23-03-2016, 07:56 AM
RE: Moral absolutes
(23-03-2016 07:23 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  What about when some atheists claim that their morality is superior? Aren't they also claiming that objective morality exists?

No. The superiority of one subjective moral standard is an entirely coherent claim; it just requires you to properly define "superior".

In most cases, that definition is "one I find more personally satisfying", which means that it's a rather pointless thing to say, but it is coherent and does not imply the existence of an objective moral standard.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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23-03-2016, 08:02 AM
RE: Moral absolutes
Morality is chemical intelligence. Paramecia use it to fool people like Egor into thinking they're intelligent. Like how it's said when in a maze always turn left. There's your moral absolute. Tongue

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23-03-2016, 08:03 AM
RE: Moral absolutes
(22-03-2016 04:13 PM)Szuchow Wrote:  
(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  you tell me?

I'm asking you.

(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  where do you get your answer?

Not from bloody and horrible book called bible.

(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  from others? flawed soul-less people?

Sense of empathy developed through evolution would be a good starting point.
Evolution is a theory.

(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  why do you get to tell me what is right and wrong?

You're believer right? If so why your god get to tell me how I should led my life? He isn't depicted like someone that I would be willing to follow.

(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  you are one of billions of people who have passed through life and will cease to exist at the end, no?

And your point is?
You're insignificant. I don't have to follow your rules just because you think they're good rules.

(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  Society's view on right and wrong tends to change over time,

Would you prefer this view to be unchangeable? Slavery wasn't so bad I guess Rolleyes
Who says it was bad, you? (no I do not advocate slavery)

(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  does that mean what use to be wrong is suddenly right because we say so?

Possibility of humans developing empathy with other does not cross your mind?
absolutely, doesn't mean we created empathy. we can choose to be without empathy, prison is full of folks who have

(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  not with any weight behind it..

That's the point dude.
So, you honestly can't see a connection between 10 commandments and rule of law?

(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  I believe. You want me to prove God exists? Why am I on the hook to prove God's existance?

Cause your "argument" depends on god?
Not an argument here, and I'm not going to prove God's existence. No one ever has.

Aren't those your words I believe we know in our hearts what is wrong, because God (i'm asking for it now) made us that way.?

(22-03-2016 04:02 PM)ScottD Wrote:  I believe God is evident in everything. No one can prove it. Prove he doesn't exist. You can't

Pathetic. It is you who must prove existence of space wizard if you want to use him in your arguments.

You keep saying that. I think you "must" convince me God doesn't exist. you can't.
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23-03-2016, 08:06 AM
RE: Moral absolutes
(23-03-2016 07:55 AM)true scotsman Wrote:  But here is a deductive proof that morality is objective

1. If man qua man is not exempt from the law of identity then his life requires a specific course of action to sustain it.

2. If man's life requires a specific course of action to sustain it, then any other course of action is objectively wrong, so long as he chooses to live.

3. Man qua man is not exempt from the law of identity.

Therefore so long as he chooses to live there is an objectively right course of action he must take in order to sustain his life.

This is not a valid proof of objective morality. It equivocates between actions that will sustain one's life and actions which are morally correct - but the belief that the preservation of one's life is the highest moral imperative is itself a subjective value judgment.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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23-03-2016, 08:08 AM
RE: Moral absolutes
ScottD, your current formatting method makes it almost impossible to read your posts. Putting your responses outside the quote tags will make your statements much more legible. As it is, it's quite confusing.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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23-03-2016, 08:17 AM
RE: Moral absolutes
(23-03-2016 08:08 AM)Unbeliever Wrote:  ScottD, your current formatting method makes it almost impossible to read your posts. Putting your responses outside the quote tags will make your statements much more legible. As it is, it's quite confusing.

Thanks, I was wondering about that.
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