Understanding through Discussion


Welcome! You are not logged in. [ Login ]
EvC Forum active members: 86 (8945 total)
368 online now:
dwise1, Hyroglyphx, PaulK (3 members, 365 visitors)
Newest Member: ski zawaski
Post Volume: Total: 865,199 Year: 20,235/19,786 Month: 632/2,023 Week: 140/392 Day: 0/53 Hour: 0/0


Thread  Details

Email This Thread
Newer Topic | Older Topic
  
Author Topic:   Morals without God or Darwin, just Empathy
RAZD
Member
Posts: 20226
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 10 of 184 (379944)
01-25-2007 8:53 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Stile
01-25-2007 11:28 AM


Empathy within a social animal context?
Either through God as outlined throughout The Bible, or through evolution-explanations,

Personally I think those who say there is an evolutionary morality tend to be fundamentalists attempting to make science into belief, and asking how such and such can happen ... rather than why it is moral or not.

Empathy comes into play in human morality because we are a social animal, and we cannot be social without empathy at some level.

Morality is dependent on the individual within their society, and it is fairly easy to conceive that a social animal will have a very different sense of morality than a non-social one, particularly when it comes to killing. What would a tiger's morality be like? Different from ours.

We also see elements of what we see as moral behavior in the interactions of other social animals, particularly social primates and apes - the sharing of food between cages when one has access and another doesn't. And punishments for "immoral" behavior as well.

Enjoy.


Join the effort to unravel AIDS/HIV, unfold Proteomes, fight Cancer,
compare Fiocruz Genome and fight Muscular Dystrophy with Team EvC! (click)


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
RebelAAmericanOZen[Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Stile, posted 01-25-2007 11:28 AM Stile has acknowledged this reply

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 20226
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 14 of 184 (380282)
01-26-2007 10:11 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by Stile
01-26-2007 9:36 AM


reduction?
Regardless of how or why I'm able to empathize, I can. And I will use that ability to make the decisions that feel most correct, and right, to me.

Essentially what you are saying is that morality is just empathy - the golden rule - being able to wear the other person's shoes.

But we see other animals with empathy -
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2003/09/0917_030917_monkeyfairness.html

quote:
Researchers studying brown capuchin monkeys (Cebus apella) have found that the highly social, cooperative species native to South America show a sense of fairness, the first time such behavior has been documented in a species other than humans.

"It looks like this behavior is evolved … it is not simply a cultural construct. There's some good evolutionary reason why we don't like being treated unfairly," said Sarah Brosnan, lead author of the study to be published in tomorrow's issue of the science journal Nature.

Only female capuchins were tested because they most closely monitor equity, or fair treatment, among their peers, Brosnan said.


They even have morality police? This kind of gets back to your original point about evolved morality, but I think there is another element to the issue:

Is moral behavior "natural" or is it a-natural?

mor·al -adj.1. of, pertaining to, or concerned with the principles or rules of right conduct or the distinction between right and wrong; ethical: moral attitudes.
2. expressing or conveying truths or counsel as to right conduct, as a speaker or a literary work; moralizing: a moral novel.
3. founded on the fundamental principles of right conduct rather than on legalities, enactment, or custom: moral obligations.
4. capable of conforming to the rules of right conduct: a moral being.
5. conforming to the rules of right conduct (opposed to immoral): a moral man.
6. virtuous in sexual matters; chaste.
7. of, pertaining to, or acting on the mind, feelings, will, or character: moral support.
8. resting upon convincing grounds of probability; virtual: a moral certainty.

It seems to me that there is a connotation that the behavior is a-natural, outside of natural behavior, considered for other reasons. Thus "natural" empathy alone is not enough, there needs to be an intellectual element.

Being able to act outside of natural behavior then allows behavior to be evil or ... (is there a real antonym for evil? Good doesn't seem 'good' enough - or is this because we are really more concerned with bad behavior than with good behavior?).

Why do all discussions of morality seem to focus on bad behavior eh?

Enjoy.

Edited by RAZD, : indent fieldset


Join the effort to unravel AIDS/HIV, unfold Proteomes, fight Cancer,
compare Fiocruz Genome and fight Muscular Dystrophy with Team EvC! (click)


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
RebelAAmericanOZen[Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 12 by Stile, posted 01-26-2007 9:36 AM Stile has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 22 by Stile, posted 01-29-2007 9:10 AM RAZD has not yet responded

  
Newer Topic | Older Topic
Jump to:


Copyright 2001-2018 by EvC Forum, All Rights Reserved

™ Version 4.0 Beta
Innovative software from Qwixotic © 2019