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Author Topic:   Morals without God or Darwin, just Empathy
Suspended Member (Idle past 4658 days)
Posts: 1024
From: Pacific Northwest
Joined: 09-08-2003

Message 53 of 184 (381162)
01-30-2007 1:00 AM
Reply to: Message 52 by anastasia
01-29-2007 10:55 PM

Re: The same but different?
Ana writes:

I have animals. I see sympathy-type behaviors. I do not see choices, or guilt over lack of sympathy.

  • Choice - Not going to touch that with a ten foot pole knowing the intricacies about free will, self-determinations, etc.

    However i will note that the arguments you use to reduce animals to automatons are the same arguments that can be used against humans just on another level.

  • Guilt over Lack of Sympathy - Did you have sympathy for the chicken you had for dinner tonight? or for the dead cow that made the leather for your shoes? We humans have a decidedly non-existent guilt over the lack of sympathy.

    The prophet Dawkin's talks about our speciest centered morality that is akin to racism. We exclude many things from our consideration of sympathy and empathy.

    Edited by iceage, : No reason given.

  • This message is a reply to:
     Message 52 by anastasia, posted 01-29-2007 10:55 PM anastasia has not yet responded

    Suspended Member (Idle past 4658 days)
    Posts: 1024
    From: Pacific Northwest
    Joined: 09-08-2003

    Message 87 of 184 (381481)
    01-31-2007 9:02 AM
    Reply to: Message 82 by anastasia
    01-30-2007 6:23 PM

    Re: Mundane? Yes. Survival-driven? Not convinced.
    Ana writes:

    Sure, you have said that we have things which tell us right from wrong. You have scientifically proved this. The Bible also said we have these things, and the writers did not have to go to behavioral science class to find out.

    The old testament is replete with examples and statements that demonstrate the ethic of reciprocity.

    However note the OT scoped this principle to only include those who could also scratch your back (ie thy people)

    Leviticus 19:18 writes:

    Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself: I am the LORD.

    This is the same "ethic" recognized my chimpanzee groups.

    Not very inspiring or out of context with the beginnings of other cultures.

    Also every major religion has this feature embedded into it's fabric. The bible is not unique.

    Another note is the earliest written example of the rudiments of this ethic predates the biblical reference by centuries. Look up Egyptian "The Tale of the Eloquent Peasant" (over 4k years old) which is a bit hard reading but worth the effort.

    This message is a reply to:
     Message 82 by anastasia, posted 01-30-2007 6:23 PM anastasia has not yet responded

    Suspended Member (Idle past 4658 days)
    Posts: 1024
    From: Pacific Northwest
    Joined: 09-08-2003

    Message 124 of 184 (382177)
    02-03-2007 4:56 PM
    Reply to: Message 123 by anastasia
    02-03-2007 2:14 PM

    Re: Empathy does not equal Good
    Ana writes:

    Find me a study of a human being who has been kept alone for all of his life, and prove to me that he shows nothing of what we consider 'morality'. Then, I may believe that morals are learned.

    That is a bit of extreme is it?

    However there may be some instruction in examining earlier cultures.

    Some examples without looking anything up are:

  • Spartans trained their boys that stealing was good and encouraged it, but being sloppy and getting caught was not.

  • The Romans considered it sport to watch people kill and tear each other apart in the arena.

  • To many native american cultures, owning a horse or other property stolen from a different tribe was cool.

  • Most early cultures put no taboos on infanticide

  • To most early cultures the killing of strangers was normal and the first reaction. Possessing some souvenir of the act was a symbol of prestige.

  • Most early cultures consider slavery as acceptable.

  • Many cultures consider women as not fully human. Most legal issues concerning women centered on women being property only. Justice from the womens point of view was non-existent. In the old testament and within the Muslim tradition the notion of salvation was a male only concept.

    As a side note I recently I read Samuel Hearne's journal of his account exploring the northern part of Canada. Read that first witness account will change any beliefs you may have that the 10 commandments are written onto the hearts of humans. The stories told in that account haunted me for days.

    What we consider moral or ethics today is the result of the maturation and evolution of culture.

  • This message is a reply to:
     Message 123 by anastasia, posted 02-03-2007 2:14 PM anastasia has not yet responded

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