Are Morals Relative or Absolute?
Debate Rounds (4)
1) respect your father and mother. This idea has become incredibly prevalent in our modern day society. It is ignored by many teenagers throughout our world. However, I have found no evidence of a society in which it is promoted to disregard your parents authority.
2) You shall not misuse the name of the lord (swear). This is ignored by almost everyone. However, in the professional and religious communities it is certainly frowned upon to use vulgar language.
3) You shall not commit murder. This is one of the oldest examples of human morality recorded. Laws about murder date back all the way to the Code of Ur-Nammu (2100 - 2050 BC). And thats only one of the earliest recorded examples,
These three examples are all morals that date back hundreds to thousands of years. Morals remain the same all throughout time. Whether or not morals remain generally excepted by society is certainly up for debate. However the morals themselves do not change. In regards to the morals around having premarital sex. The moral itself remains unchanged premarital sex vs. postmarital sex, the only thing that changes is the number of people who accept and follow it.
1. Respect your mother and father - In Conservative societies this is moral is held to be very true. But in the West, it is encouraged by society to not respect your mother and father. In fact it is often times portrayed by our culture that if you are just obedient to your father and mother, that it is wrong and that instead you should be an individual and rebel against them since its a natural part of the growing up process.
2. Some societies don't even believe in a religion so that moral is irrelevant. Take for example the communist states founded on the principles of Atheism such as the Soviet Union, 1960s-1990s China, or North Korea. In those nations, people don't even believe in a god so they could care less if the lords name was misused or not.
3. As I said earlier, this isn't necessarily a concrete moral as scary as that sounds. Native American societies would sacrifice people and rip their hearts out of their chest as tribute to a god. Most societies also tolerate murder by promoting warfare, the death penalty, and some would argue abortion. If these examples aren't good enough, then take the Nazi society for example and how they promoted the killing of jews in concentration camps. So even these morals, while more solid than the others, still have not been absolute since there have been societies were those morals were non-existent.
In response to your rebuttals.
1) There are really two main perspectives on this. The teen/ young adult and the adult. Of coarse from the teens perspective they believe they should rebel and ditch their parents at the first opportunity. Then there is the adults perspective, where they realize what a huge mistake it was to party instead of getting a proper education like their parents suggested. Your argument supports my point. The moral is upheld largely by the conservative population and ignored by others. The doesn't mean the moral changes, it just means its ignored.
2) Morals aren't religious. Morals can have a basis in religion, i.e. the ten commandments. However, they are not necessary based in religion. Even people with absolutely no religious background of any kind still no that it is morally wrong to rape and kill people. Also as I said using the phrase "use the lord name in vain" refers to swearing in general and not just using God, Jesus or any variation thereof in a vulgar manner.
3) This is very true, certain cultures sacrificed people to their gods. To us this seems totally immoral. But this is because we have different morals, not because they took our morals and reversed them. During war some would argue killing is wrong. While others would say that both combatants knew the risk of engaging in war and thus killing them would not be immoral.
To sum it all up, morals don't change. Whether your morals say killing is wrong and mine saying killing is ok is irrelevant. If a society as a whole just decides one day to change their perspective on killing, this does not mean that the moral supporting the preservation of life has changed. It simply means that they have decided to ignore one moral and subscribe to a different perspective. It is like reading the newspaper. If a man reads the same newspaper for 10 years and then one day changes newspapers it does not mean the newspapers themselves have changed, it only means that the man has decided to read another newspaper. Morals are absolute and never change. The only thing that changes is the individual and social perspective on those morals.
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