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Author Topic:   Do feelings count?
Silent H
Member (Idle past 3863 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 46 of 135 (293076)
03-07-2006 5:36 PM
Reply to: Message 43 by robinrohan
03-07-2006 4:20 PM


We need something more obvious.

Uhm... I don't see how that wasn't obvious. To one culture an action was morally reprehensible. It is your claim that feelings represent an observation of some external moral reality. So were they right or not? Your second claim was that some cultures could be coarse, would that not make the western cultures coarse for not realizing their action's immoral properties?

I might add that one could consider the cartoons just one example in a series of morally reprehensible actions taken by the west. While there is no question western nations were attacked by AQ, the response has been to invade nations wholly unrelated to AQ killing many thousands more innocent people, the capture and torture of many innocent individuals, and growing reductions in civil rights. The conflict is often pitched as a clash between cultures, which is similar to how stalinism or nazism were pitched.


holmes
"What you need is sustained outrage...there's far too much unthinking respect given to authority." (M.Ivins)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 43 by robinrohan, posted 03-07-2006 4:20 PM robinrohan has responded

Replies to this message:
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 47 of 135 (293089)
03-07-2006 6:19 PM
Reply to: Message 45 by Chiroptera
03-07-2006 4:41 PM


It merely replaces one subjective set of principles (my own, say) with another subjective set, namely whatever God feels is morally right or wrong.

Presumably what God thinks is right and wrong is what is really right and wrong.

Admittedly, there are some logical problems here.


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Hangdawg13
Member (Idle past 2949 days)
Posts: 1161
From: Texas
Joined: 05-30-2004


Message 48 of 135 (293100)
03-07-2006 6:41 PM
Reply to: Message 46 by Silent H
03-07-2006 5:36 PM


It is your claim that feelings represent an observation of some external moral reality.

All senses and feelings can be fooled. When this happens, its often called a lie.

Just because our sense of morality can sometimes be fooled more easily than other senses, doesn't mean the morality that is sensed doesn't exist objectively. Of course those feelings don't prove it does either, just like feelings of bark don't prove trees exist.


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Hangdawg13
Member (Idle past 2949 days)
Posts: 1161
From: Texas
Joined: 05-30-2004


Message 49 of 135 (293101)
03-07-2006 6:46 PM
Reply to: Message 39 by nator
03-07-2006 3:48 PM


I don't deny that they may agree with you, but as they are not inside your head, and you are not inside their head, you cannot actually say that you know you feel the same.

Well, if that is your standard for "knowledge" then we can know nothing. Since we cannot get inside another's head to find out if blue to them feels the same way blue does to us, we can't "know" if the color blue exists.

For us to "know" anything, at some point we have to start making assupmtions that what we feel and what others feel points to an objective reality, and though our perception of it may be imperfect, we may assume that we are grasping a piece of it as real knowledge.


This message is a reply to:
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Hangdawg13
Member (Idle past 2949 days)
Posts: 1161
From: Texas
Joined: 05-30-2004


Message 50 of 135 (293110)
03-07-2006 7:47 PM
Reply to: Message 41 by Silent H
03-07-2006 4:07 PM


Okay, given the diverse nature of feelings on all subjects, including morals, and even the specific example of cruelty... who is right and who has been burned?

The one who is right is the one with the purest heart.

As I have suggested even tight moral rules usually have convenient exceptions...

I've heard this argument so many times... its retarded. It has to do with equivocation on the meaning of "absolute". Since an action is inextricably tied to its context, ethics are inevitably situational; however, if an action in a particular context is wrong, it is absolutely wrong if wrong is an objective quality. Just like a rose is absolutely red, but only when in bloom.

Who decides?

The person with the purest heart.

Would that be correct?

Perhaps, but I would take issue with you for calling them "Christian"... and we don't need to debate the N.T.S. fallacy again.

My position is that feelings are objectively real, only they are objectively real characteristics of an individual and not the external world. Not all feelings, though objective, suggest anything about the outer world.

Perhaps this is the key point where we differ. By "outer world" I presume you have in mind the physical material world. I make no distinction between the physical and metaphysical except that they are simply two parts of the same whole existing within the mind of the creator, therefore, I believe that something can be objectively real and have no corresponding physical existence.

By saying that feelings of morality are objectively real, but correspond to no objective reality, you are essentially saying that these feelings are meaningless. Its the same as saying there's really no tree.

I think the only reason we tend to think of the things that can be perceived through the physical senses as more "objectively real" is that our physical senses have been more fully evolved and are less easily damaged.

For example, just because a person has a headache, does not mean that there is an objective entity called "headache" that only that person is sensing.

No, it means there is an objective entity called "head" that the person is sensing in an unusually unpleasant manner.

Here's another example, a heavy metal concert.

Whether or not there is an objective standard for loudness depends on whether or not the One who created sound set that standard.

Like with "loudness" its "morality" is not a set quality of the content (or onstage activity) but rather characterizes the individuals based on their personal characteristics.

I agree with the last part of that statement. If a person loves loud rock music and the culture of rock and all that jazz... then we might say that person is characterized as a "hardcore rocker." Similarly, if a person loves killing babies and Jews, we might say that person is characterized as hardcore "evil". Just as rock music exists objectively, so does evil.


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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Hangdawg13
Member (Idle past 2949 days)
Posts: 1161
From: Texas
Joined: 05-30-2004


Message 51 of 135 (293111)
03-07-2006 7:54 PM
Reply to: Message 45 by Chiroptera
03-07-2006 4:41 PM


But that doesn't objectively ground morality. It merely replaces one subjective set of principles (my own, say) with another subjective set, namely whatever God feels is morally right or wrong.

The subjectivity of the creator is the objectivity of the created.

If God says a rose is red, then by golly its red. If I am colorblind, that doesn't change the fact that its red to God. If God says murdering people is wrong, then by golly its wrong. If I am morally bankrupt, that doesn't change the fact that its wrong to God.

This message has been edited by Hangdawg13, 03-07-2006 07:55 PM


This message is a reply to:
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Silent H
Member (Idle past 3863 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 52 of 135 (293142)
03-08-2006 3:54 AM
Reply to: Message 50 by Hangdawg13
03-07-2006 7:47 PM


The one who is right is the one with the purest heart.

And who measures that?

I've heard this argument so many times... its retarded. It has to do with equivocation on the meaning of "absolute". Since an action is inextricably tied to its context, ethics are inevitably situational

Don't be so quick to throw around names. You didn't understand my point. The only way your objection holds up is if the contexts are similar across different beliefe systems, which they do not. Let's take cruelty. Xians once believed cruelty was wrong against Xians but okay against unbelievers. Jews once believed cruelty was wrong against jews but okay against unbelievers. The only similar context is cruelty okay against unbelievers. So where is the moral objectivity in that?

By saying that feelings of morality are objectively real, but correspond to no objective reality, you are essentially saying that these feelings are meaningless.

Wrong. They absolutely have meaning. The question is to who. And the answer is to the individual. Unless individuals are meaningless to themselves, their feelings have meaning.

The feeling is objectively real and is attached to the individual. Just as if you have an image of a tree in your mind. Is that not objectively true, and yet have no objective reality outside yourself?

it means there is an objective entity called "head" that the person is sensing in an unusually unpleasant manner.

Heheheh... You are absolutely right. Just as there is a painting and some sense it as unusually unpleasant and some do not. Just as there is an activity that some sense as unusually unpleasant and some do not. You have described my position, and countered your own.

Whether or not there is an objective standard for loudness depends on whether or not the One who created sound set that standard.

Well isn't it funny then that it usually relates to tthe qualities I mentioned? How can you be sure that gods did not make the world with many different subjective experiences, and part of our "fall" was the mistaken belief that our subjective experiences were indications of some objective quality?

If a person loves loud rock music and the culture of rock and all that jazz... then we might say that person is characterized as a "hardcore rocker."

I agree with this, but not with...
Similarly, if a person loves killing babies and Jews, we might say that person is characterized as hardcore "evil".

People from many different cultures can all agree that a person fits hardcore rocker, but that is not the same as for hardcore evil. That's the problem we are facing here. Rock music is not the same as evil. It is much less defined, and usually on an individual basis.

Indeed I don't believe there is any such thing as evil at all. Its a pure fiction, or at best convenient shorthand for persistent activities I don't like and will foster more such activity. But the real definition is of me and when I apply that term to something. Same for you.


holmes
"What you need is sustained outrage...there's far too much unthinking respect given to authority." (M.Ivins)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 50 by Hangdawg13, posted 03-07-2006 7:47 PM Hangdawg13 has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 62 by 2ice_baked_taters, posted 03-08-2006 9:55 AM Silent H has responded
 Message 78 by Hangdawg13, posted 03-08-2006 6:27 PM Silent H has responded

    
robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 53 of 135 (293150)
03-08-2006 5:28 AM
Reply to: Message 46 by Silent H
03-07-2006 5:36 PM


Your second claim was that some cultures could be coarse, would that not make the western cultures coarse for not realizing their action's immoral properties?

You can't judge an entire culture by one incident. You have to examine a culture as a whole, and you can only do that if you look at history.


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 54 of 135 (293151)
03-08-2006 5:35 AM


knowledge and moral judgement
One distinction we must make is between knowledge and moral judgement.

Every violent act is not cruel. If a bad person deserves ill-treatment, then such ill-treatment could not called cruel (a criminal is sent to prison, for example).

If a man sincerely believes that another man is evil, and thinks he has proof of some dastardly deed committed by that man, then his ill-treatment of that man may not be cruelty but justice. If he is honestly mistaken, then his act is still not "cruel." Horrible perhaps, but not "cruelty" strictly speaking.

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 03-08-2006 04:39 AM


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nator
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 55 of 135 (293161)
03-08-2006 6:57 AM
Reply to: Message 49 by Hangdawg13
03-07-2006 6:46 PM


I don't deny that they may agree with you, but as they are not inside your head, and you are not inside their head, you cannot actually say that you know you feel the same.

quote:
Well, if that is your standard for "knowledge" then we can know nothing. Since we cannot get inside another's head to find out if blue to them feels the same way blue does to us, we can't "know" if the color blue exists.

No, it's not the same.

We can analyse the light waves and find that what you call "blue" and what another percon calls "blue" fall in very similar places on the spectrum.

There is an objective measure, from physics, for color, but there is no objective measure for feelings.

I am not sayingthat feelings cannot be generally agreed upon, but you cannot feel what another person is feeling, and there is no way to verify it from an outside source. It is internally-produced opinion.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 49 by Hangdawg13, posted 03-07-2006 6:46 PM Hangdawg13 has responded

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nator
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 56 of 135 (293162)
03-08-2006 7:02 AM
Reply to: Message 54 by robinrohan
03-08-2006 5:35 AM


Re: knowledge and moral judgement
quote:
Every violent act is not cruel. If a bad person deserves ill-treatment, then such ill-treatment could not called cruel (a criminal is sent to prison, for example).

Who is to say if a person is "bad"?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 54 by robinrohan, posted 03-08-2006 5:35 AM robinrohan has responded

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Silent H
Member (Idle past 3863 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 57 of 135 (293164)
03-08-2006 7:20 AM
Reply to: Message 53 by robinrohan
03-08-2006 5:28 AM


Well western culture includes the inquisition, the crusades, nazism, wiping out native cultures of the Americas, as well as suppressing nations of the far east.

If this is not enough, then I want to know what one CAN use to judge a culture as coarse?

I might add that chiro is correct that this new line of argument is contradictory to your original argument.


holmes
"What you need is sustained outrage...there's far too much unthinking respect given to authority." (M.Ivins)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 53 by robinrohan, posted 03-08-2006 5:28 AM robinrohan has not yet responded

    
robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 58 of 135 (293172)
03-08-2006 8:02 AM
Reply to: Message 56 by nator
03-08-2006 7:02 AM


Re: knowledge and moral judgement
Who is to say if a person is "bad"?

Our strong feelings tell us.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 56 by nator, posted 03-08-2006 7:02 AM nator has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
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Phat
Member
Posts: 12033
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.4


Message 59 of 135 (293176)
03-08-2006 8:20 AM
Reply to: Message 56 by nator
03-08-2006 7:02 AM


Re: knowledge and moral judgement
Schraff writes:

Who is to say if a person is "bad"?

In the strict literalist sense, we all are bad and yet we all have been made good by sacrificial love. (an example to ponder)

In a non-religious common sense approach, take the example of Juvenile Court. When a young peson is under 18, they are judged in a restorative system and are often taken from their parents if the "best interestes of the child" are in any way compromised. If Mom or Dad is an alcoholic, for example, they are not judged to be a "bad" influence as in regards to punishing them--(the parent) yet they are often judged a negative influence in the best interests of the child.

A person could be said to be "bad" when their overall influence on others is more of a subjectively agreeable "negative" quality versus an overall subjectively agreeable "positive" quality--or influence.


Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes not through states, nor between classes, nor between political parties either, but right through every human heart, and through all human hearts. This line shifts. Inside us, it oscillates with the years. Even within hearts overwhelmed by evil, one small bridgehead of good is retained; and even in the best of all hearts, there remains a small corner of evil. --Alexander Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago

This message is a reply to:
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Silent H
Member (Idle past 3863 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 60 of 135 (293179)
03-08-2006 8:32 AM
Reply to: Message 58 by robinrohan
03-08-2006 8:02 AM


Re: knowledge and moral judgement
Our strong feelings tell us.

I have a strong feeling that your argument is not correct. Does that make me or anyone else sharing this feeling correct, based solely on our feeling (or the strength of them)?


holmes
"What you need is sustained outrage...there's far too much unthinking respect given to authority." (M.Ivins)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 58 by robinrohan, posted 03-08-2006 8:02 AM robinrohan has responded

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