Objective Morality
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03-12-2013, 09:18 PM
Objective Morality
I'm new to this side of the glass. I still have no satisfying answer to the question of where an atheist objectively gets its morals from. I have found the religious answer to be fallacious in theism there is NO objective moral, just whatever the deity decides his minions should behave like and the morality is not objective but subjective to the deity's whims. As far as atheism is concerned is there an objective source for morality, or is it purely subjective? Forgive me if you think its a stupid question

“The reason people use a crucifix against vampires is because vampires are allergic to bullshit.” ― Richard Pryor
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03-12-2013, 09:22 PM
RE: Objective Morality
There are probably different opinions among atheists on this. But my morality is based on treating other people as equals.
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03-12-2013, 09:28 PM
RE: Objective Morality
I think we are born with an innate sense of right and wrong (with the exception of psychopaths I believe, correct me if I'm wrong). I love this study that seems to show even eight month olds have a moral compass http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archiv...ng/249931/

After that, it'd be up to upbringing and society to help guide standard morals. I like to think it is nature and nurture working together to create our morals.
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03-12-2013, 09:44 PM
RE: Objective Morality
(03-12-2013 09:22 PM)black_squirrel Wrote:  There are probably different opinions among atheists on this. But my morality is based on treating other people as equals.
Thanks for your input, I whole heartily agree

(03-12-2013 09:28 PM)Smercury44 Wrote:  I think we are born with an innate sense of right and wrong (with the exception of psychopaths I believe, correct me if I'm wrong). I love this study that seems to show even eight month olds have a moral compass http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archiv...ng/249931/

After that, it'd be up to upbringing and society to help guide standard morals. I like to think it is nature and nurture working together to create our morals.
Thanks for your answer.

The question I still have unanswered is a bit different and I've seen debates where the theist and the atheist talk past each other because they're discussing different aspects of morality.
Most christian theists would agree that we're born with innate morality, they even have a verse to say it. The theist question is not whether we have innate morality but where this morality come from in a naturalistic worldview, and perhaps even more importantly is there an objective morality (true regardless of place, time, and situation).
I havent seen a satisfying atheistic answer to this yet.
The theistic answer is in my opinion fallacious because what they offer is not objective morality. It looks objective to us, but its subjective to god.

“The reason people use a crucifix against vampires is because vampires are allergic to bullshit.” ― Richard Pryor
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03-12-2013, 09:48 PM (This post was last modified: 03-12-2013 10:02 PM by sporehux.)
RE: Objective Morality
Environmental programming on top of inherited causality templates (moral persuasion).
Although there is good evidence of conscious and subconscious self adjusting of the programming that and cause and effect events also re-program the morals.
The inherited (genetic) templates may be benign or critical to establishing an individuals moral compass.

That's my guess anyway. Personally ive experienced paradigm shifts in a moral opinions, with no good explanation why a switch was flipped.

A bit like going from Theist to Atheist, sort of think, think, think, BOOM....Can no longer rationally/morally accept Theism.

The reverse could be true, Nazis don't, don't, don't, think of the suffering of the Jews, BOOM Can now rationalize/morally accept genocide.

Objective Morality is the ones hard coded with little chance of reprogramming or erasure with out some catastrophic event.
Theists get certain moral concepts hammered into them, conditioned so they become Objective Morality ideals.

Theism is to believe what other people claim, Atheism is to ask "why should I".
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03-12-2013, 09:50 PM
RE: Objective Morality
Not a stupid question at all.

I've found quite a few atheists who think an objective reality exists. One acquaintance of mine, who has a Ph.d in philosophy, thinks that morality is objective, but not absolute.

There's also a lot who think it's totally subjective. Sometimes I think your thoughts on it come down to how nihilistic you are.
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03-12-2013, 09:50 PM
RE: Objective Morality
Is it also true that babies are little psychopaths and they learn/grow out of it?
I've heard this somewhere but never really checked it out

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03-12-2013, 09:53 PM
RE: Objective Morality
(03-12-2013 09:50 PM)Juv Wrote:  I've found quite a few atheists who think an objective reality exists. One acquaintance of mine, who has a Ph.d in philosophy, thinks that morality is objective, but not absolute.
Thanks for your response.
What is the difference between objective and absolute?
I personally can't stomach morality being entirely subjective for some of the connotations it entails.

“The reason people use a crucifix against vampires is because vampires are allergic to bullshit.” ― Richard Pryor
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03-12-2013, 10:09 PM
RE: Objective Morality
(03-12-2013 09:53 PM)djkamilo Wrote:  
(03-12-2013 09:50 PM)Juv Wrote:  I've found quite a few atheists who think an objective reality exists. One acquaintance of mine, who has a Ph.d in philosophy, thinks that morality is objective, but not absolute.
Thanks for your response.
What is the difference between objective and absolute?
I personally can't stomach morality being entirely subjective for some of the connotations it entails.

Objective would imply that a moral code is somehow part of the universe - e.g. the way electromagnetism is, or light is.

I suppose absolute morality would be a moral code that is unchanging or unchangeable.
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03-12-2013, 10:12 PM
RE: Objective Morality
(03-12-2013 09:53 PM)djkamilo Wrote:  I personally can't stomach morality being entirely subjective for some of the connotations it entails.
Yeah, it's not uncommon for atheists to feel that way.
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