Theist Morality
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30-08-2014, 09:24 AM
Theist Morality
First a question:

Is there any of the major christian sects, a situation in which, if one is a believer that they can be sent to hell? I've done a lot of web searches and can find no sin they could commit that would send them to hell. Even suicide for some of these sects doesn't send them to hell.

If the answer is yes, that there are sins they could commit to be sent to hell, what follows is irrelevant.

If the answer is no, that as long as they are a believer, they will go to heaven, please read on.

I tired of theists asking, "If you don't believe in god, where do you get your morals from". But if all that is required to get to heaven is the "belief" in god, no matter what horrific things you might do, because believers are forgiven, What keeps believers from raping and murdering? What is the "fear of god" that I always hear theists talk about. Why fear when all is forgiven?

Striper
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30-08-2014, 09:31 AM
RE: Theist Morality
Damned good point!

Welcome to the forum.

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30-08-2014, 09:43 AM
RE: Theist Morality
(30-08-2014 09:24 AM)striper Wrote:  First a question:

Is there any of the major christian sects, a situation in which, if one is a believer that they can be sent to hell? I've done a lot of web searches and can find no sin they could commit that would send them to hell. Even suicide for some of these sects doesn't send them to hell.

If the answer is yes, that there are sins they could commit to be sent to hell, what follows is irrelevant.

If the answer is no, that as long as they are a believer, they will go to heaven, please read on.

I tired of theists asking, "If you don't believe in god, where do you get your morals from". But if all that is required to get to heaven is the "belief" in god, no matter what horrific things you might do, because believers are forgiven, What keeps believers from raping and murdering? What is the "fear of god" that I always hear theists talk about. Why fear when all is forgiven?

Striper

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Christianity: Convincing you that you are sick, then selling you a never ending supply of the cure.




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30-08-2014, 05:00 PM
RE: Theist Morality
Does purgatory count? It's like hell, only it's temporary so we escape the injustice of "infinite punisent for finite crime" thing.
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30-08-2014, 06:55 PM
RE: Theist Morality
I hate reposting my spam, but a lot of this is covered in a short paper I wrote..

Moral Theology is the study of how persons live in response to what God has done for them (Mueller 221).

Morality is concerned with human conduct but goes to a deeper level of personhood, such that our conduct is a reflection of who we are, a reflection of our character (Mueller 221).

Ethics can be defined as a discussion of the formation of human conduct… How responsible human beings capable of critical judgment should live using reflection on fundamental issues in description of concrete cases (Mueller 221).

Conscience is the voice of God written in our hearts, in accordance with the second Vatican Council. Natural law is considered one of the major sources of moral theology and answers the question: how do I know what is good or evil? Christians believe that natural law has been a factor in our decisions of what is morally right and wrong, good and evil (Mueller 222 – 227).

“This people who may personally and individually be moral and good people and have no intention of conflict and harm on others often share a Christian theory called the collective guilt “social sin.” (Mueller 257). The depths that theists go to fabricate the conception of sin knows no bounds, here you can be a good person yet you still have “social sin”. John Paul II said that social sins are “collective behavior of certain social groups, big or small, or even of whole nations or blocks of nations” (Mueller 258). Social sin becomes personal sin of individuals through complicity, indifference, or reluctance of those in a position to exert influence for change who do not do so (Mueller 258).

Catholic social teaching looks to gospel teaching to form the moral foundation the Catholic approach to questions of social justice. And assist the disciple in the ongoing task of reflecting on the challenge of Jesus in the sermon on the Mount and in discerning what it means in a consumer, technological, and globalized society to be poor in spirit and to embrace a sorrowing and the lowly (Mueller 260).


Secular morality is the aspect of philosophy that deals with morality outside of religious traditions. Modern examples include humanism, freethinking, and most versions of consequentialism. Additional philosophies with ancient roots include those such as skepticism and virtue ethics. Greg M. Epstein states that, "much of ancient Far Eastern thought is deeply concerned with human goodness without placing much if any stock in the importance of gods or spirits. Other philosophers have proposed various ideas about how to determine right and wrong actions. An example is Immanuel Kant's categorical imperative: "The idea that actions can only be considered moral if they could be imitated by anyone else and produce good results."

A variety of positions are apparent regarding the relationship between religion and morality. Some believe that religion is necessary as a guide to a moral life. This idea has been with us for nearly 2,000 years. There are various thoughts regarding how this idea has arisen. For example, Greg Epstein suggests that this idea is connected to a concerted effort by theists to question nonreligious ideas: "conservative authorities have, since ancient days, had a clever counter strategy against religious skepticism—convincing people that atheism is evil, and then accusing their enemies of being atheists.

Others eschew the idea that religion is required to provide a guide to right and wrong behavior, such as the Westminster Dictionary of Christian Ethics which states that religion and morality "are to be defined differently and have no definitional connections with each other". Some believe that religions provide poor guides to moral behavior.

Popular atheist author and biologist Richard Dawkins, writing in The God Delusion, has stated that religious people have committed a wide variety of acts and held certain beliefs through history that are considered today to be morally repugnant. He has stated that Adolf Hitler and the Nazis held broadly Christian religious beliefs that inspired the Holocaust on account of antisemitic Christian doctrine, that Christians have traditionally imposed unfair restrictions on the legal and civil rights of women, and that Christians have condoned slavery of some form or description throughout most of Christianity's history. Dawkins insists that, since Jewish and Christian interpretations of the Bible have changed over the span of history so that what was formerly seen as permissible is now seen as impermissible, it is intellectually dishonest for them to believe theism provides an absolute moral foundation apart from secular intuition. In addition, he argued that since Christians and other religious groups do not acknowledge the binding authority of all parts of their holy texts (e.g., The books of Exodus and Leviticus state that those who work on the Sabbath and those caught performing acts of homosexuality, respectively, were to be put to death.), they are already capable of distinguishing "right" from "wrong." (Boghossian 248).

The well-known passage from Dostoyevsky's The Brothers Karamazov, "If God is dead, all is permitted," suggests that non-believers would not hold moral lives without the possibility of punishment by a God. This is absurd as all one has to do is look at Scandinavian countries to see that this largely atheist area enjoys being at the top tier of civilization.

Phil Zuckerman, associate professor of sociology at Pitzer College in California, in his article, "Is Faith Good For Us" states the following: "A comparison of highly irreligious countries with highly religious countries, however, reveals a very different state of affairs. In reality, the most secular countries-those with the highest proportion of atheists and agnostics-are among the most stable, peaceful, free, wealthy, and healthy societies. And the most religious nations-wherein worship of God is in abundance-are among the most unstable, violent, oppressive, poor, and destitute."

A study by Gregory S. Paul, entitled "Cross-National Correlations of Quantifiable Societal Health with Popular Religiosity and Secularism in the Prosperous Democracies: A First Look," was done and the study's conclusion was that there was an inverse relationship between religion and poor societal health rates. What that means is that the higher the level of religious belief in a country, the lower the level of societal health (more violent crimes, suicides, teen pregnancies, etc.).

So it seems that a plethora of evidence exists to show that not only do we not need religion in our lives to be good humans, but that having it in our lives can be counter-productive and unhealthy.

Works cited


Mueller, J.J., Theological Foundations: Concepts and Methods for Understanding the Christian Faith. Winona: Anselm Academic, Christian Brothers Publications, 2011. Print.



Boghossian, Peter. A Manual for Creating Atheists. Durham: Pitchstone Publishing, 2013. Print.

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
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30-08-2014, 07:06 PM
RE: Theist Morality
Morality cannot exist if God doesn't exist.

Truth seeker.
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30-08-2014, 07:15 PM
RE: Theist Morality
(30-08-2014 07:06 PM)diddo97 Wrote:  Morality cannot exist if God doesn't exist.

A lot of writing has been done to the contrary. And logically this isn't true. So I get to pull out my favorite phrase when theists say this.

Assertion. Prove it.

If I say that ten more times I get an ice cream cone.
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30-08-2014, 07:16 PM
RE: Theist Morality
(30-08-2014 07:15 PM)natachan Wrote:  
(30-08-2014 07:06 PM)diddo97 Wrote:  Morality cannot exist if God doesn't exist.

A lot of writing has been done to the contrary. And logically this isn't true. So I get to pull out my favorite phrase when theists say this.

Assertion. Prove it.

If I say that ten more times I get an ice cream cone.

Then where the fuck did it come from? It cannot come from the natural world, because it is supernatural.

Truth seeker.
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30-08-2014, 07:17 PM
RE: Theist Morality
(30-08-2014 07:06 PM)diddo97 Wrote:  Morality cannot exist if God doesn't exist.

And as gods are highly likely to not exist, we therefore need to re-think whether morality exists as anything other than a social construct.

That's kinda why we use the term ethics, rather than morality in everything other than philosophical / theological discourse.

Wink

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30-08-2014, 07:17 PM
RE: Theist Morality
You assert that morality is supernatural. Prove it. Because all evidence seems to indicate otherwise.
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