Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
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31-12-2016, 08:10 AM (This post was last modified: 31-12-2016 08:16 AM by Tomasia.)
Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(30-12-2016 12:56 PM)Stevil Wrote:  When are Tomasia and Matt going to agree that people can feel guilty in obviously learned situations (rather than biological) is situations such as having been taught to believe that masturbation is immoral, or sex being immoral when not trying to make babies or working on sabbath being immoral? There is no biological underpinnings to this, it is all cognitive, all learned, you don't even need empathy for these examples.

I agree with you, in fact that's true for pretty much every emotion, you can be conditioned by a variety of social and environmental factors to feel empathy towards certain groups more so, than others, towards whites more so than blacks, towards Christians more so than Muslims. Feel hatred towards gays more so than heterosexuals, to liberals more so than Republicans, etc.

Now what you need to agree with is that people like Matt, whose very much a moral nihilist can feel guilt, even while recognizing that he has done nothing morally wrong.

Perhaps your argument is not that he doesn't feel guilt, the same internal sensation that moralist might feel. But that since he doesn't believe in morality, he can't call that feeling guilt, even if the basic sensation is the same. If so then the arguement is purely about word choice.







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31-12-2016, 10:13 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(31-12-2016 07:51 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(30-12-2016 01:01 PM)Stevil Wrote:  I don't accept that beliefs require language.


Do chimanzees and dolphins believe some things are morally wrong?

Do they believe in the theory of evolution? Do they believe Jesus is the Messiah?

Do they like chocolate ? Facepalm

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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31-12-2016, 12:37 PM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(31-12-2016 07:51 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  Do chimanzees and dolphins believe some things are morally wrong?

Do they believe in the theory of evolution? Do they believe Jesus is the Messiah?
I would think that they believe fish is tasty. I think that they believe that they need to be in water rather than on the beach to survive. I think the trained ones believe that if they do a trick they will get rewarded with a fishy treat.
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31-12-2016, 12:45 PM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(31-12-2016 08:10 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  I agree with you, in fact that's true for pretty much every emotion, you can be conditioned by a variety of social and environmental factors to feel empathy towards certain groups more so, than others, towards whites more so than blacks, towards Christians more so than Muslims. Feel hatred towards gays more so than heterosexuals, to liberals more so than Republicans, etc.
Interesting examples, also that last example is very USA centric. I'm a kiwi by the way.

People also feel empathy more towards people they know than those that they don't and those that they associate with rather than those that they don't.

But empathy is not guilt. We are talking about guilt, which is the belief that you have done something wrong.


(31-12-2016 08:10 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  Now what you need to agree with is that people like Matt, whose very much a moral nihilist can feel guilt, even while recognizing that he has done nothing morally wrong.

With Matt I'm a bit confused as to his definition of guilt, I suspect he is conflating empathy with guilt. Or perhaps he's not 100% convinced that he cannot do anything wrong. Or perhaps he gets an irrational emotional response due to his previous life and conditioning as a moralist. Ghost of the past perhaps. I don't know, but there are other possibilities other than the one that you are assuming to be true.

It is apparent that MAtt believes, if you don't feel guilt then you must be a psycopath so he certainly has an incentive to believe he feels guilt.
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31-12-2016, 12:50 PM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(31-12-2016 04:07 AM)Banjo Wrote:  
(31-12-2016 04:05 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  ... or they could just buy some chocolates. Dodgy

C'mon mate, we're nearly there.

What is the basis of our judgement is the question, right? Experience.
Experience,and beliefs and conditioning

... and arrogance when we are judging others.
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31-12-2016, 01:05 PM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(31-12-2016 05:17 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  I would call it a behavioral preference. There is no question that we all have preferred behavior, both for ourselves and others. It's important to keep in mind that the preferred behavior for others might be very different than preferred behavior for the self. For example, a person might prefer to be aggressive and dominant, but prefer to surround himself with people who are passive and submissive. When you yell at your kids, you recognize that this is not your preferred behavior, and if you feel a negative emotional response, I think we could accurately label that "guilt".
We have different understandings of the word. I would call your "preferred behaviour" to be a moral belief. Especially if you beat yourself up for not behaving that way.

(31-12-2016 05:17 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  Give me a fucking break dude. Think back to when you were a kid in school. Did you ever take part (maliciously) in bullying a kid and then later feel bad about it? Did you ever see a kid get bullied but do nothing about it (neglect) and later feel bad about not telling anyone or trying to help?
When I was at school, I had moral beliefs. I was young and immature and held some very idealistic and black and white judgment positions.



(31-12-2016 05:17 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  War is a bad example because there are lots of reasons one might engage in war. Let's look at the example of Hitler. Do you think it's fair to say that Hitler was probably a psychopath? I don't think it would necessarily be psychopathic to want to stop a psychopath like Hitler though....
I'm not a trained psychologist and I've never met and talked to Hitler, I don't know what was up with that dude.

(31-12-2016 05:17 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  Combat sports is another bad example. Fighters don't want to cause permanent damage to their opponents, and if they do, we still call them a psychopath.
OK, seems you are happy to jump to judgement without any qualifications or without even knowing your subject.

(31-12-2016 05:17 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  Vigilante is another bad example, because it obviously doesn't require a psychopath to want to stop/kill a murderer.
Vigilante isn't self defense, it is cold blooded murder, it's a terrific example.

(31-12-2016 05:17 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(30-12-2016 08:18 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Nice that you are continuing on this silly path of accusing me of being something. You have no idea.

I'm not accusing you of being a psychopath.
OK, then please stop with the innuendo.

(31-12-2016 05:17 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  You mention that sometimes you lose control of your emotions and yell at your kids. Lets suppose that another man loses control of his emotions and beats his child to death. He didn't intend to kill the child, but it happened anyways. If he doesn't feel negative emotional response, we would probably classify him as psychopath.
Define "negative emotional response"? Are you saying that he might be confused as to why the law might want to punish him? Or perhaps he is happy rather than sad?
Perhaps excited that he has killed with his bare hands? Bragging about it perhaps?

(31-12-2016 05:17 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  I think you're mislabeling the emotions you are experiencing, that's what this is all about isn't it?

The thing is, it's not "more suitable", it's simply "what is preferred by stevil."

When a person violates his/her preferred behavior that results in harming another person, and that person also feels accompanying negative emotion, it's guilt. At least Tomasia and I would call it guilt.
Yes, I think you are conflating empathy with guilt.
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01-01-2017, 11:08 PM (This post was last modified: 02-01-2017 12:22 AM by Matt Finney.)
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(31-12-2016 01:05 PM)Stevil Wrote:  We have different understandings of the word. I would call your "preferred behaviour" to be a moral belief. Especially if you beat yourself up for not behaving that way.

I reckon we'll have to agree to disagree here.

As far as I can tell, a guy could beat himself up for not studying enough for a test. This doesn't mean he thinks it's morally wrong to not study for tests. Regret, remorse, and guilt (emotion), don't require moral beliefs.

(31-12-2016 01:05 PM)Stevil Wrote:  When I was at school, I had moral beliefs. I was young and immature and held some very idealistic and black and white judgment positions.

Back to the soldier example. Do you think a moral nihilist soldier could possibly feel guilt for falling asleep on the job and losing 50 fellow soldiers from attack as a result?

(31-12-2016 01:05 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Define "negative emotional response"?

This image isn't mine, and "empathy", depending on how it's defined might be more fitting as neutral or negative, but hopefully this helps.
[Image: negative_emotions1.jpg]

(31-12-2016 01:05 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Are you saying that he might be confused as to why the law might want to punish him? Or perhaps he is happy rather than sad?
Perhaps excited that he has killed with his bare hands? Bragging about it perhaps?

No, I'm saying that if a man kills his own kid and doesn't feel bad, he's probably got some kind of personality disorder, whether it's psychopathy, anti-social PD, etc.

(31-12-2016 01:05 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Yes, I think you are conflating empathy with guilt.

I think guilt is pretty much a combination of empathy and regret.
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02-01-2017, 12:15 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(31-12-2016 12:45 PM)Stevil Wrote:  But empathy is not guilt.

Right, guilt is more like a combination of empathy and regret.

(31-12-2016 12:45 PM)Stevil Wrote:  We are talking about guilt, which is the belief that you have done something wrong.

Guilt is not a belief. You see, we are talking about the emotion of guilt. When we talk about feeling guilt, we are talking about an a emotion, not a belief.

And you don't have to believe you have done something wrong to feel guilt. One can experience guilt simply from recognizing they've violated their own behavior preferences.

"Guilt is a cognitive or an emotional experience that occurs when a person believes or realizes—accurately or notthat he or she has compromised his or her own standards of conduct or has violated a moral standard and bears significant responsibility for that violation. It is closely related to the concept of remorse." (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guilt_(emotion))

(31-12-2016 12:45 PM)Stevil Wrote:  With Matt I'm a bit confused as to his definition of guilt, I suspect he is conflating empathy with guilt.

I would say that guilt is a combination of empathy and regret.

(31-12-2016 12:45 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Or perhaps he's not 100% convinced that he cannot do anything wrong.

I'm 100% convinced that "right and wrong" is a made up concept, and to me it's nonsensical to describe any action or behavior as right or wrong. For me, it's only a matter of preference. I'm also 100% convinced that I sometimes violate my behavior preferences and sometimes feel regret. This emotion is helpful in learning to help people correct mistakes. In case you ask me to define "mistake", for this purpose a mistake is when an action or behavior produces a result that is not preferred by the individual. When I behave in a way that violates my preferred behavior and also hurts someone, I feel regret for violating my preferred behavior, and empathy for the person I've hurt. When I feel both of these emotions together, I call it guilt.

(31-12-2016 12:45 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Or perhaps he gets an irrational emotional response due to his previous life and conditioning as a moralist. Ghost of the past perhaps.

That's certainly possible and I'm certain that I can't fully escape my past conditioning, but it's very easy to see how guilt, which leads to apology, which is good for relationship building, which would be good for survival and thriving, could very plausibly be a naturally occurring emotion preceding any moral beliefs.

(31-12-2016 12:45 PM)Stevil Wrote:  It is apparent that MAtt believes, if you don't feel guilt then you must be a psycopath so he certainly has an incentive to believe he feels guilt.

I believe that if you are unable to feel guilt, then you have some type of personality abnormality, whether it's psychopathy, or anti-social, etc.

And Stevil, I don't think you have a personality disorder, I think you feel guilt. I think you manage it very well with the rational part of our brain that tells us that it does no good to live with regrets and to dwell on the past. I'd be willing to bet that if there was an accident that killed a thousand of your fellow citizens, and you thought you were responsible for it, you'd feel at least a little guilt.
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02-01-2017, 04:11 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(01-01-2017 11:08 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(31-12-2016 01:05 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Yes, I think you are conflating empathy with guilt.

I think guilt is pretty much a combination of empathy and regret.
Empathy is not required. Catholics can feel guilty for things that don't make others sad. e.g. impure thoughts, blaspheme, sex without trying to make a baby, etc.
You can also have regret without feeling guilt. You can regret never practicing hard enough on the guitar when you were younger, perhaps regret not asking a girl out or not approaching her etc.
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02-01-2017, 04:18 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(02-01-2017 12:15 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  And Stevil, I don't think you have a personality disorder, I think you feel guilt. I think you manage it very well with the rational part of our brain that tells us that it does no good to live with regrets and to dwell on the past. I'd be willing to bet that if there was an accident that killed a thousand of your fellow citizens, and you thought you were responsible for it, you'd feel at least a little guilt.
Perhaps,

I don't get tested much on this guilt thing. I mean, I don't often hurt others, I don't do something that leads to some drastic consequence. My life at the moment is quite mundane, and relatively undramatic.

If I were to feel guilt, it could also be ghosts of the past, but I am currently quite accepting of others and quite accepting of mistakes be it, made by others or made by myself.
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