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Author Topic:   Atheists must appeal to an absolute moral standard when complaining about wrongs.
Taq
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Posts: 8488
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 7.4


Message 40 of 71 (865327)
10-23-2019 1:22 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Christian7
10-20-2019 6:31 PM


Gospel Preacher writes:

If, as atheists claim, morality is relative, then by definition there is no absolute standard of right and wrong. Thus, atheists have no basis for complaining about moral wrongs, because they cannot appeal to anything to prove that it is wrong.

I am an atheist, and I think morality is subjective. Morality is based on human needs and wants, and that is what I base morality on. Therefore, it is entirely proper to claim that something is morally wrong if it goes against the subjective needs and wants of human society and individuals.

All they can do is appeal to their own feelings, but without an absolute standard their feelings don't matter, because only an absolute standard can say that the feelings of humans beings ought to matter to every other human being.

Our emotions absolutely do matter to us. That's the whole point. In fact, it could be argued that our emotions are some of the most important things.

When the morals of one human contradict the morals of another human, which human is right, since there is no absolute standard? If they both are offended, whose feelings do we base our morals on?

There will be occasions where this is hard to figure out. This is why morality has long been a heavily debated topic.

The problem for you is determining what is moral in the face of two people who claim to have absolute standards, but those standards disagree with one another. What happens then?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Christian7, posted 10-20-2019 6:31 PM Christian7 has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 41 by Faith, posted 10-23-2019 2:00 PM Taq has responded

Taq
Member
Posts: 8488
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 7.4


(1)
Message 42 of 71 (865334)
10-23-2019 2:55 PM
Reply to: Message 41 by Faith
10-23-2019 2:00 PM


Faith writes:

Um, some individuals have a strong need and want to have sex with children.

The majority of human society doesn't have those needs or wants. In fact, they have the opposite. They have a need and want to protect their children from sexual predators.

If someone said that God told them it was ok to have sex with children, would you be fine with that?

You have a very naïve idea of what lurks in the human soul.

You have a serious misunderstanding of what human society is. Human society is not the immoral needs of a tiny minority. Human society is the common thread that runs through the vast majority of human society.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 41 by Faith, posted 10-23-2019 2:00 PM Faith has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 47 by Faith, posted 10-23-2019 8:14 PM Taq has responded

Taq
Member
Posts: 8488
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 7.4


Message 43 of 71 (865335)
10-23-2019 3:01 PM


Links worth reading
There are two blog posts that really helped me solidify my thinking on this topic.

quote:
Is it even possible to have an objective morality? I would argue that it is not possible, and even if such existed it would be irrelevant because we could not know about it. Further, there is no compelling evidence that anyone, any group or society, has access to an objective morality.

The notion of an objective morality assumes that morality is something that can make sense apart from the context in which it is used (in our case, human society). Is it objectively wrong, according to some moral law of the universe, to harm another creature? If you try to justify this moral position, then you are actually engaging in moral philosophy – the complex and messy human understanding of morals.
https://theness.com/....php/objective-vs-subjective-morality


quote:
Thus, if morality were an absolute set by a god, something could be immoral even if every human disagreed. If, instead, human feelings and desires are what ultimately count, then that is a subjective morality.

Thus, a subjective morality is strongly preferable to an objective one! That’s because, by definition, it is about what we humans want. Would we prefer to be told by some third party what we should do, even if it is directly contrary to our own deeply held sense of morality?

Given that an objective morality would be highly undesirable, why do so many philosophers and others continue to try hard to rescue an objective morality?
https://coelsblog.wordpress.com/...tive-morality-is-nonsense



Replies to this message:
 Message 65 by Stile, posted 10-24-2019 3:48 PM Taq has responded

Taq
Member
Posts: 8488
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 7.4


Message 64 of 71 (865410)
10-24-2019 3:44 PM
Reply to: Message 47 by Faith
10-23-2019 8:14 PM


Faith writes:

You had said that subjective needs and wants was a sufficient criterion for morality, and I was answering that such a definition won't work. Are you now changing your definition or what?

Still using the same definition. Billions of parents have the want and need to protect their children from sexual predators. We can also use our own self reflection and empathy to know that children don't want to be molested, and they lack the maturity to consent. The moral implications are pretty clear as they are based on human wants and needs.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 47 by Faith, posted 10-23-2019 8:14 PM Faith has not yet responded

Taq
Member
Posts: 8488
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 7.4


Message 66 of 71 (865412)
10-24-2019 4:16 PM
Reply to: Message 65 by Stile
10-24-2019 3:48 PM


Re: Links worth reading
Stile writes:

You can have an objective morality (the facts of the matter are the same, regardless of who judges them) based on a standard.

The standard could be "if you say 'God made me do it' - then it's good. Otherwise, it's bad."
It's a terrible standard... but it is objective.

For it to be objective we would need to know that what God asks us to do is based on an objective moral code. If God is telling us what to do based on his own subjective judgment, then it is a subjective morality.

The standard could be "if the person affected by the action deems it good - then it's good, if the person affected by the action deems it bad - then it's bad."
It a great standard... and objective.

What is good or bad is based on the person's subjective needs and wants.

I think it stems from the revolution of identifying "objective truth" as better than "subjective truth" - the realization that we do not (and cannot) define reality with our thoughts or words. Reality is what it is.
There was a long time in history when "reality" was "whatever that guy says it is... because he said so!"
The revelation that objective truth is a far greater tool and provides far greater progress that this wacko subjective truth washed over humanity like a tsunami.

I agree. At the same time, we can also realize that subjective emotions are also important to us, and definitely have their place in the human experience. Requiring an objective reason for everything humans do is not a sustainable goal because we experience the world through our subjective senses and emotions. Being human is being both subjective and objective, and we should embrace that.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 65 by Stile, posted 10-24-2019 3:48 PM Stile has responded

Replies to this message:
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