Morality
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26-07-2015, 03:51 AM (This post was last modified: 26-07-2015 04:07 AM by DLJ.)
Morality
Is morality objective (factual) or subjective (preference/opinion)?

If something is objective, then it is factual, that is, it is true/false independent of human taste preference or opinion. It is DISCOVERED. For example, the earth is not flat is an objective truth. It is factual. It is true regardless of human opinion. This was discovered. Even if their were no conscious beings in the universe, the earth would still not be flat, rather, the shape of sphere/ball.

If something is subjective, then its based on personal taste, preference or opinion. These are not factual. They are mind dependent. These include, food, drinks, movies, music, clothes, holiday destinations etc etc etc. There is NO RIGHT or WRONG.

Where is morality? Is it objective or is it subjective?

Lets first put it in the subjective basket. You will notice that when we look at subjective items, they all result in the same conclusion. No right or wrong. For example, if I say I prefer thick crust pizza to thin crust pizza, am I wrong for preferring that or thinking one is better than the other? No. We all know taste in food is subjective, therefore, there is no right or wrong. Its just opinion.
If I say I prefer hip hop R&B to heavy metal music, am I right or wrong to suggest one is better than the other? Neither, because they are just preferences.
These are just 2 examples. But if you put any item in the subjective basket, you will notice the conclusions are the same, that is, their is no right or wrong.

Now, lets put morality in this subjective basket. If I say I prefer to rape and cause harm to others, is this right or wrong? Well, if you are consistent, then its neither right or wrong, just like in the case of food and music.

Lets look at objective items. I gave the example of the flat earth above. Another example is the sun. The claim the sun exists is an objective truth, it is factual. If their are no conscious beings in the universe, it is still true that the sun exists.
If I say the sun doesn't exist OR the earth is flat, then I am WRONG. I am only WRONG because rights and wrongs ONLY exist in relation to objective items/facts.

Now lets put morality in the objective basket. If morality is objective, then rights and wrongs exist morally.
So, if someone says that raping a person for fun is right, then they are wrong. They are only wrong because we can compare their claim to an objective fact, ie, rape is wrong.

So, what is it? Based on experience, it appears to me, that morality is actually objective.

Lets look at an example....ASSUMING i like rape and you don't. IF I say for the past 6 months, I have had a person in my garage whom I have been raping, torturing and treating woefully, then if morality is SUBJECTIVE, then you can only reply in the same way as if you don't like a food that I like. Their is no right or wrong. Just opinion. Is this really how it is based on experience? Would we treat this case the same way as in taste of food? Experience says we don't.

Now, based on the example, if morality is objective, then and ONLY then can you say my actions are wrong, because you are comparing my actions against an objective truth.

So which one is it?

Now, notice I am speaking ontology, not epistemology. This is not about HOW we know. I can discuss that later.

Secondly, how can objective morality exist in a godless world? Remember I said, if something is objective, it is true or false REGARDLESS of human taste preference or opinion. In fact, they are discovered. Therefore, in a godless world that came about by a mindless and unguided blind process, what are moral facts doing in such a world? Don't moral laws or truths come from a law maker or law giver?

My problem is, atheists often claim morality is subjective, but then go and criticise morality in the OT. If morality is subjective, then your claims that the morality in the OT is wrong is not factual, rather, just an opinion...no different to if I said vanilla ice cream is better than chocolate.....

The very fact atheists make moral claims, is testimony that they are claiming moral facts. But in a godless world, where do these facts come from?

Are atheists actually affirming a moral law giver everytime they make a moral claim?
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26-07-2015, 04:02 AM (This post was last modified: 26-07-2015 04:08 AM by DLJ.)
RE: Morality
(26-07-2015 03:51 AM)Hambone Wrote:  Is morality objective (factual) or subjective (preference/opinion)?
...

There are many many threads on this subject and one that's still current. You can join in with that, if you like.

Meanwhile ... Welcome to TTA.

The answer to your question is ... neither.

Oh! and I edited a little to keep you within forum rules. Yes

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26-07-2015, 04:19 AM
RE: Morality
Neither.
1. Define "morality".
2. Act can be either moral or immoral depending on the circumstance. Is taking a human life "moral" ? Depends. In war, and in self-defense : Yes.

Hambone, don't be a bonehead.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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26-07-2015, 04:40 AM
RE: Morality
Based on how you seem to be using the terms, I'd say morality is objective. Personally, I try to avoid using the objective/subjective distinction when talking about morality since it can be both, either, or neither depending on exactly what you mean by those terms and what part of morality we're talking about. But since you're being pretty clear in how you're using it, I'll risk an answer and hope that you aren't going to attach any weird baggage to it.

As far as how this can accounted for in an atheistic worldview, well, there are different ways I can approach this, and I'm not sure which is best. I currently lean towards ethical naturalism, but I haven't landed on a particular flavor yet and am still doing some reading to figure out which is best, but I also need to look into non-naturalism and give it some thought. So I'm not really well-versed enough in the stuff to give you the answers your looking for, but I'm willing to give it a go if there are any specific point you want to delve into. And if you'd like to see a professional delve into this without needing to buy any books, check out philosopher Dan Fincke's blog, Camels with Hammers, in particular his defenses of moral realism and his explanation of his meta-ethical theory, empowerment ethics. He's also pretty approachable if you have any questions.

I'm just thinking out loud.
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26-07-2015, 04:53 AM
RE: Morality
(26-07-2015 04:40 AM)KnowtheSilence Wrote:  And if you'd like to see a professional delve into this without needing to buy any books, check out philosopher Dan Fincke's blog, Camels with Hammers, in particular his defenses of moral realism and his explanation of his meta-ethical theory, empowerment ethics. He's also pretty approachable if you have any questions.

I glanced quickly at the last link (thanks for that) and read:
Quote:I think I can argue in objectively factual terms that there is an overriding good that all humans should be concerned with.

So he, like others (Matt Dilahunty, Michael Shermer etc.) who claim 'objectiveness', is creating objectivity using an axiology (like Sam Harris's 'well-being') from which one can objectively measure comparatively.

Well, ok. But that is not the same as an objective morality that would exist 'out there' if there were no humans.

Smile

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26-07-2015, 05:00 AM
RE: Morality
(26-07-2015 03:51 AM)Hambone Wrote:  Is morality objective (factual) or subjective (preference/opinion)?

If something is objective, then it is factual, that is, it is true/false independent of human taste preference or opinion. It is DISCOVERED. For example, the earth is not flat is an objective truth. It is factual. It is true regardless of human opinion. This was discovered. Even if their were no conscious beings in the universe, the earth would still not be flat, rather, the shape of sphere/ball.

If something is subjective, then its based on personal taste, preference or opinion. These are not factual. They are mind dependent. These include, food, drinks, movies, music, clothes, holiday destinations etc etc etc. There is NO RIGHT or WRONG.

Where is morality? Is it objective or is it subjective?

Lets first put it in the subjective basket. You will notice that when we look at subjective items, they all result in the same conclusion. No right or wrong. For example, if I say I prefer thick crust pizza to thin crust pizza, am I wrong for preferring that or thinking one is better than the other? No. We all know taste in food is subjective, therefore, there is no right or wrong. Its just opinion.
If I say I prefer hip hop R&B to heavy metal music, am I right or wrong to suggest one is better than the other? Neither, because they are just preferences.
These are just 2 examples. But if you put any item in the subjective basket, you will notice the conclusions are the same, that is, their is no right or wrong.

Now, lets put morality in this subjective basket. If I say I prefer to rape and cause harm to others, is this right or wrong? Well, if you are consistent, then its neither right or wrong, just like in the case of food and music.

Lets look at objective items. I gave the example of the flat earth above. Another example is the sun. The claim the sun exists is an objective truth, it is factual. If their are no conscious beings in the universe, it is still true that the sun exists.
If I say the sun doesn't exist OR the earth is flat, then I am WRONG. I am only WRONG because rights and wrongs ONLY exist in relation to objective items/facts.

Now lets put morality in the objective basket. If morality is objective, then rights and wrongs exist morally.
So, if someone says that raping a person for fun is right, then they are wrong. They are only wrong because we can compare their claim to an objective fact, ie, rape is wrong.

So, what is it? Based on experience, it appears to me, that morality is actually objective.

Lets look at an example....ASSUMING i like rape and you don't. IF I say for the past 6 months, I have had a person in my garage whom I have been raping, torturing and treating woefully, then if morality is SUBJECTIVE, then you can only reply in the same way as if you don't like a food that I like. Their is no right or wrong. Just opinion. Is this really how it is based on experience? Would we treat this case the same way as in taste of food? Experience says we don't.

Now, based on the example, if morality is objective, then and ONLY then can you say my actions are wrong, because you are comparing my actions against an objective truth.

So which one is it?

Now, notice I am speaking ontology, not epistemology. This is not about HOW we know. I can discuss that later.

Secondly, how can objective morality exist in a godless world? Remember I said, if something is objective, it is true or false REGARDLESS of human taste preference or opinion. In fact, they are discovered. Therefore, in a godless world that came about by a mindless and unguided blind process, what are moral facts doing in such a world? Don't moral laws or truths come from a law maker or law giver?

My problem is, atheists often claim morality is subjective, but then go and criticise morality in the OT. If morality is subjective, then your claims that the morality in the OT is wrong is not factual, rather, just an opinion...no different to if I said vanilla ice cream is better than chocolate.....

The very fact atheists make moral claims, is testimony that they are claiming moral facts. But in a godless world, where do these facts come from?

Are atheists actually affirming a moral law giver everytime they make a moral claim?

All morality is derived from an evolved sense of empathy.

And fuck off for not doing a search on this lame-ass "objective morality" bullshit before posting yet another stupid thread about this.

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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26-07-2015, 05:01 AM
RE: Morality
(26-07-2015 04:53 AM)DLJ Wrote:  
(26-07-2015 04:40 AM)KnowtheSilence Wrote:  And if you'd like to see a professional delve into this without needing to buy any books, check out philosopher Dan Fincke's blog, Camels with Hammers, in particular his defenses of moral realism and his explanation of his meta-ethical theory, empowerment ethics. He's also pretty approachable if you have any questions.

I glanced quickly at the last link (thanks for that) and read:
Quote:I think I can argue in objectively factual terms that there is an overriding good that all humans should be concerned with.

So he, like others (Matt Dilahunty, Michael Shermer etc.) who claim 'objectiveness', is creating objectivity using an axiology (like Sam Harris's 'well-being') from which one can objectively measure comparatively.

Well, ok. But that is not the same as an objective morality that would exist 'out there' if there were no humans.

Smile

Yep. That's the kind of insidious baggage I'm talking about. To me (and people like Fincke, etc.) even if morality, for humans, is dependent on the kinds of beings we are rather than some sort of hard-and-fast rules that even existed out there somewhere since the Big Bang, morality still isn't a simply a matter of our opinion. The facts about the kinds of beings we are are objective facts, and the facts about what constitutes "good" for humans (the way that Fincke uses the word "good") are objective facts. They are facts about us, so they require an "us" to exist as we do before they become facts, but that is something completely different than them simply being our own subjective opinions.

I'm just thinking out loud.
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26-07-2015, 05:27 AM
RE: Morality
(26-07-2015 05:01 AM)KnowtheSilence Wrote:  
(26-07-2015 04:53 AM)DLJ Wrote:  I glanced quickly at the last link (thanks for that) and read:

So he, like others (Matt Dilahunty, Michael Shermer etc.) who claim 'objectiveness', is creating objectivity using an axiology (like Sam Harris's 'well-being') from which one can objectively measure comparatively.

Well, ok. But that is not the same as an objective morality that would exist 'out there' if there were no humans.

Smile

Yep. That's the kind of insidious baggage I'm talking about. To me (and people like Fincke, etc.) even if morality, for humans, is dependent on the kinds of beings we are rather than some sort of hard-and-fast rules that even existed out there somewhere since the Big Bang, morality still isn't a simply a matter of our opinion. The facts about the kinds of beings we are are objective facts, and the facts about what constitutes "good" for humans (the way that Fincke uses the word "good") are objective facts. They are facts about us, so they require an "us" to exist as we do before they become facts, but that is something completely different than them simply being our own subjective opinions.

Agreed.

Yes

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26-07-2015, 06:27 AM
RE: Morality
(26-07-2015 03:51 AM)Hambone Wrote:  The very fact atheists make moral claims, is testimony that they are claiming moral facts. But in a godless world, where do these facts come from?

I'm an atheist and I don't make moral claims. However, I can punish a rapist even though he didn't do anything objectively wrong.

Moral nihilism is the only way to make sense of morality.

The video below does a fairly good job of explaining it.





Basically, nihilism requires you to "get over yourself." You have to realize that it is not even a fact that humans should exist, let alone behave in any certain way.
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26-07-2015, 07:00 AM
RE: Morality
(26-07-2015 04:02 AM)DLJ Wrote:  
(26-07-2015 03:51 AM)Hambone Wrote:  Is morality objective (factual) or subjective (preference/opinion)?
...

There are many many threads on this subject and one that's still current. You can join in with that, if you like.

Meanwhile ... Welcome to TTA.

The answer to your question is ... neither.

Oh! and I edited a little to keep you within forum rules. Yes

How often do we see pre-censored posts?

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF

We're all mad here. The Cheshire Cat
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