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Author Topic:   Atheism Cannot Rationally Explain Morals.
Posts: 549
From: Central Florida, USA
Joined: 09-13-2013
Member Rating: 3.9

Message 271 of 274 (799886)
02-17-2017 10:10 AM
Reply to: Message 266 by Pressie
02-17-2017 6:50 AM

Re: sorry for lateness
Again, you still struggle with the basics. Atheism is a disbelieve in the existence of Gods. That's it. Atheism doesn't try to explain morals.
Let's try another way. Atheism is a disbelieve in the existence of Gods. That's it. Atheism doesn't try to explain how an Airbus A380 flies.

Let me see if I can help.

Consider this statement:

"Theism is a belief in the existence of God(s). Theism doesn't try to explain morals."

Someone who is a 'theist' does not yet have any moral frame of reference since theism in and of itself does not say anything about morals or morality. It is a response to a claim. In the same way atheism is a response to the same claim.

People who are 'theists', such Christians, Muslims, Jews, and the various sects within are all responding to the same claim in the same way. Yet they CLEARLY have different views on what is moral. Specific tenets in the Muslim religion, such as how they treat women, are things we find morally inconsistent with our western values. Christians and their dogma around homosexuality also have morals that we consider inconsistent with our values and our constitution.

So within two 'theist' camps, we have differing views on morality. Which leads to the inevitable conclusion that these morals have to be subjective in nature.

To drive the point home further, consider slavery. This was a sanctioned legal practice in our country until the Civil War. It was also sanctioned in the Bible; the supposed word of god. Yet we all now as a society agree that slavery is actually immoral. Our society evolved and our morals evolved accordingly. Once again, proof positive that morals are indeed subjective.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 266 by Pressie, posted 02-17-2017 6:50 AM Pressie has not yet responded

Posts: 12703
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.0

Message 272 of 274 (799893)
02-17-2017 10:58 AM
Reply to: Message 260 by Dawn Bertot
02-17-2017 5:59 AM

Re: Religion Cannot Rationally Explain Morals
Dawn Bertot writes:

My point was that if there is nothing that is good or bad, moral or immoral, then obviously you can't have or explain morals.

There is nothing that is absolutely good or bad, moral or immoral. What we think is good or bad, moral or immoral is made up in our heads. Different people in different situations have different ideas of what is good or bad, moral or immoral.

As I have mentioned before, doing unto others as we would have them do unto us is easy enough to explain - it's good for the group and good for the individual.

Dawn Bertot writes:

To use Modulous example of music. if I were to imagine that musical notes had meaning outside some vague interpretation I gave them, they would still just be, meaningless sounds to the universe, the alleged creator of your biological brain

Exactly. Musical notes have no "meaning" outside our brains and neither do ideas of morality.

Dawn Bertot writes:

You would need to show how it and your entire life has meaning for actual meaning to exist.

Absolute meaning doesn't exist (or if it did, you would have no way of knowing what it was).

Dawn Bertot writes:

The first specific instruction I have is that God is infinite and thus his morality is absolute as a result of that.

That's not an instruction at all. It's just a vague empty statement that isn't even in the Bible.

Dawn Bertot writes:

But if the same source tells me he is infinte in knowledge, then it not required for ME to know what the exact line of what constitutes murder, to understand he does understand

Since you're not omniscient, how do you know the source is accurate?

You keep demonstrating that you DON'T know what absolutely is right or wrong. You can't tell us when it is right to kill another person and when it is wrong. Deciding whether a person had malicious or deceitful intent requires just as much finite wisdom from you as it does from anybody else.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 260 by Dawn Bertot, posted 02-17-2017 5:59 AM Dawn Bertot has not yet responded

Posts: 7204
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005
Member Rating: 3.1

Message 273 of 274 (799898)
02-17-2017 1:20 PM
Reply to: Message 259 by Dawn Bertot
02-17-2017 5:56 AM

Re: Reality and the animal's dilemma
I showed its possible, by showing hopeless inconsistency in even the very words you used to describe morality, in this instance Hatred.

Hatred is not morality. It's an emotion. Hating something is not immoral or moral - it is amoral.

If the Nazis were wrong for thier hatred, then you would have to show why.

I can give reasons why I think what the Nazis did was wrong, immoral etc. But what would be the point? I'm here to explain morality, not provide specific moral arguments for or against specific actions.

Well no, at best this is an explanation of things happening

And - as we both agree - my perspective on morality is that it is certain things happening, that's all that I need to do in order to explain morals and morality.

Again, why is this different than the totality of things as having any real meaning. Certainly there is a way to demonstrate that your alleged meanings as meanings in reality are somehow greater than the whole of everything, which you fellas are found of claiming has no meaning.

This is meaningless. After attempting to parse it into English all I can say is that I don't think my meanings are greater than the whole of everything.

Even if evolution were true, it would not help your delimma

My purpose in this thread is to show that I can explain morality. Evolution can be used to explain morality.

I guess I should not be surprised you actually think there are many definitions of morality. When in actuality, it either exists or it does not.

That you and I differ on how we define morality more or less proves my case. We both agree it exists. I just don't think there is One True Morality.

No I'm not saying you can't explain them because there not objective, I'm saying you can't explain them because reality won't allow it.

Take it up with reality, since I've done it. I can't explain One True Morality, but I don't need to as I don't think it exists. I can explain why people are both kind and mean to one another in varying ways. I can explain why people disagree over moral issues. I can explain morality by rejecting One True Morality as either incoherent or unknowable and instead simply explaining the behaviour and emotions that we have come to call morality.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 259 by Dawn Bertot, posted 02-17-2017 5:56 AM Dawn Bertot has not yet responded

New Cat's Eye
Posts: 11095
From: near St. Louis
Joined: 01-27-2005
Member Rating: 1.9

Message 274 of 274 (799904)
02-17-2017 2:21 PM
Reply to: Message 257 by Dawn Bertot
02-17-2017 5:51 AM

Re: How?
I'm not sure what you mean? Why would something being beautiful to me require assuming that meaning has a purpose in my mind?

I mean: I see it, and I like it. That's beauty in my mind. Where's the "purpose"?

Because it's simply an imagination, it cannot and does no actually exist.

What does that have to do with a purpose? And what do you mean by "actually" existing such that imaginations aren't existing? Are you simply talking about existing "objectively"? Subjective experiences do exist, they just don't exist objectively.

If I imagined I WAS REALITY ITSELF and that I created everything, that would not make it real

The fact that imagining some things does not make them real does not mean that an imagination, itself, is not a real thing.

I can imagine an apple. That imagination exists as a thing in my mind. But it is not a real apple.

Now, where's the purpose?

Nobody can show that, and yet, we all find meaning in our subjective experiences. How do you explain that?

It's simple to explain, in the context of alleged morals. Meaning is as nonexistent as a concept or idea, in a strictly blind biological process. The universe itself would have to have some meaning, for other biological process to have meaning. So if the universe which actually exists has no meaning, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that something that DOES Not exist, could actually have meaning.

That doesn't tell me how you explain that we all find meaning in our subjective experiences?

The universe itself would have to have some meaning, for other biological process to have meaning.

Wrong; Biological processes (brains thinking) can invent meanings within the universe even if the universe, itself, does not have some meaning.

Why? Why not just leave it at that: they are subjective experiences that exist. And we can't know if they are right or wrong, or good or bad.

Ok, so from you position you are admitting that these things don't exist, correct?

Of course not, for the nth time: they do exist, they are just subjective rather than objective.

If we don't characterize Morality as right or wrong, any action like stealing is perfectly ok correct.

We characterize behaviors and actions as right or wrong within a particular context, and those characterizations are what a morality is.

Stealing may be perfectly ok, for example, if you are feeding someone who is starving to death and there's no way around it.

There is no objective or absolute morality where we can outline when and when it is not okay to steal. Its a case-by-case basis.

As I've demonstrated without fear of contradiction there is no such thing as relatively morality.

I reject that you've demonstrated that. All morality is relative. There is nothing that we can identify as an objective morality. They all depend on the situation.

You've or anybody here has failed, to demonstrate that imaginations are actually real.

Do you, or do you not, have an imagination? Is it nothing or is it something?

A standard is required if you want it to make any logical sense

I'm sure you can see the nonsesne in your phrase, "everything becomes a Standard in or of its own". If everything is a standard and the standards differ contiuously, then of course there is no standard.

A standard is only required for an objective or absolulte morality. But we can't know if one of those exists or not. We do know that relative moralies exist, everybody has one.

Don't you have a morality? Can you demonstrate that it is objective? If not, why can't you accept that it is relative?

You don't get to make Morality whatever you want. No thinking person buys that kind of nonsense

Every civilization throughout history has had a morality that they made. Thinking people buy this kind of sense all the time.

Even if you could demonstrate this in some ACTUAL way, your still left with the problem of showing IT as anything more than another biological process, in an already meaningless universe.

The biological process of our brains thinking creates the meanings that form moralities.

Excellent. Now show me the relative standard, from you perspective, of why it is less moral to kill a worm than a rabbit. And how you came to that "conclusion". And I'll show you that your way of proceeding is nonsense. That's assuming nonsense is objective. Is it?

Rabbits are smarter than worms and the smarter something is the harder it is to justify killing it.

You are correct that I cannot say that this rule of morality is the best one, or the right one, or even correct, but it is mine and it does exist. It's just that it is subjective rather than objective.

Your above statement is a self defeating statement it doesn't need my help to show it fallacious. As you corectly pointed out, everything becomes a standard. Unfortunarely, there is no way for that to make sense in reality

If by "in reality", you mean "objectively", then I agree with there being no way for it to make sense. But that does not mean that it doesn't exist. It exists subjectively.

So I would ask again. Is it absolutely true that your above statement about subjective morality is true, indeed. Or is it true subjectively. It can't be both and make sense

There is no such thing as an absolute truth except for this statement.

So no, my statement about subjective morality is not absolutely true, but it is a truth nonetheless.

They have the meaning that we assign to them. For instance: That which is helpful we call good and that which is hurtful we call bad.

So if you kill and eat animals, other life forms, that's helpful to you but hurtful to them.

And if a cow eats grass then it's helpful to the cow but hurtful to the grass.

Do you think cows are immoral? Do you think it is immoral to eat meat?

OR we don't know and have no real way of knowing or what. Oh I see, you mean that kind of relative morality

We do have a real way of knowing: We experience and think about it and determine how it makes us feel and whether or not it is a good or bad thing.

Being helpful or hurtful are real things that happen in the real world that we can observe. There is an objective basis for morality that ties it to the real world, but the meanings we assign to it and the determinations of right and wrong that we make are what is subjective. They are products of our minds. That doesn't make them non-existent.

And this is exactly why your morality does not exist in reality.

If by "in reality" you only mean "objectively" then you are not disagreeing with me.

Being helpful and hurtful only get meaning when they help or hurt you. You do not ascribe,the same meaning when it comes to other species, or,even other humans at times.

No, I am often capable of determining if my actions are helpful or hurtful to another being.

Something being completely inconsistent and irrational most of,the time is still irrational and inconsistent, no matter what verbiage you attach to it or how you describe it.

Being relative doesn't mean inconsistent. And it can be rationalized so it isn't irrational.

Even if they existed objectively, they cant be described as morality. The part, in this instance, your thought is not greater than that which created it. No way to show meaning in a real sense, since death cancels out your so called meaning. Death being another biological process, greater than even you small part of subjective morality, correct. Then there's the problem of you labeling it a moral. Moral is only a concept of the imagination, if there is nothing greater than the universe, with no meaning, this contrived verbiage is just that, contrived verbiage.

I'm not quite sure what you're trying to say. But adding qualifiers like being "actually" real, or things being in a "real" sense, and that my explanations are "so called" meanings, is making it look like you are desperately trying to find some kind of difference that just isn't there.

"Oh, yeah, that's real... but it's not really real!"

Then of course there's the problem of having any kind of consistency. Assuming consistency, even matters in your subjective morality. Those two words together are like saying the Existence of nonexistence

Only because you are operating under a false dichotomy that a morality has to be objective to be real.

I never said being nonobjective doesn't mean they don't exist. I'm saying that you are labeling something that may or may not exist as subjective, which means they may not actually exist. Subjective is a concept itself. Even if they did actually exist, that is a far cry from MAKING them a moral or morality. Morality is another concept you invented, which is not only inconsistent in your structure, but hopeless subjective, therefore all intents and purposes, nonexistent.

You say that you are not saying that non-objective doesn't mean nonexistent, but then you go on to say that something is nonexistent because it is subjective.

Pardon me for seeing you as confused and contradicting yourself.

Yes I can objectively show you that your meaning has no meaning, that's assuming meaning has meaning in your explanation of things as subjective. I can objectively show you that I'd meaning is


This message is a reply to:
 Message 257 by Dawn Bertot, posted 02-17-2017 5:51 AM Dawn Bertot has not yet responded

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