Do objective moral values exist?
Debate Rounds (4)
My first debate, so any criticisms or suggestions for form are appreciated. I've kept it to 4 rounds. First round as invite plus 3 further rounds for opening arguments and rebuttals.
I accept the debate and am interested in how Pro will go about proving objective morality.
I await your arguments.
If objective moral values do exist, then it follows that a moral law giver must exist. The conception of a moral law giver existing implies God exists. If we take the position that God is perfectly good and morally incorruptible, it follows that His laws given are equally perfect and knowable by us. If God is perfectly good, then it applies that humans are inherently good, and will tend to desire well-being and happiness for themselves and for others. This is not a purely selfish and instinctive motivation solely based on material well-being, but a genuine overriding desire for a state of well-being for all.
The opposing position of this is that moral values are relative, and hence subject to change according to either opinion of what is the right or wrong way for people to behave in society, or how people are told how to behave by an authority. The relativistic view, that the evolution of man from apes living within groups has taught us all how to behave well instinctively to ensure the survival of the group, will hopefully be shown to be faulty or tentative at best.
I am not arguing for God"s existence, as I believe that to be self-evident, nor am I arguing for religion in any way. I am not discussing whether an action in the past was right or wrong, also God"s actions in the OT are therefore not relevant for this debate. I fully accept evil exists, and do not recognize this as an argument against the existence of objective morality, more the proof of objectivity. I hope to show that the objectivity of people"s morals is clearly evident, and thus the theory of moral relativism is false.
In taking the Pro view in the debate, I am asserting the position that only 2 world views are possible. There is a universe that is purely physical, or there is a universe that includes both physical and metaphysical elements. If the universe is purely physical, it contains matter only, and there will be no order and no concept of order in the universe.
Morals - standards of behaviour; principles of right and wrong.
Objective - not influenced by personal feelings or opinions in considering and representing facts.
Relative - considered in relation or in proportion to something else
For this round, I will give 3 concurrent arguments that suggest the universe is not purely physical and suggest the existence of a metaphysical entity that could be the moral law given in logical terms.
P1 Debate relies on the use of an accepted standard of logic (Truth as the ultimate aim). Human emotion aside, the winner will be decided upon the closest adherence to that standard, and therefore we admit there is also a standard of fairness. You would not like to me to win the debate on emotive principles and would appeal to fairness to gain sympathy if I did.
P2 If there were no standard of logic or fairness in the Universe, effective debate would not be possible and completely futile.
Effective - successful in producing a desired or intended result.
C1 As my opponent in this debate, you desire to win and hope to be successful, therefore accepting the view that effective debate is possible.
P3 Standards of logic and fairness do exist, making effective debate possible. Asserted by C1.
P4 Logic and fairness are not represented by physical elements and therefore metaphysical. How much does logic weigh? What element is responsible for justice? Science is not concerned with metaphysical entities and therefore no proof will ever be given that these are material elements.
C2 Conclusively, the existence of immaterial things that will never be proven to exist materially in the Universe, will always lead to the logical conclusion that the Universe is both physical and metaphysical. If you believe otherwise, you are emotively taking a position of faith and believing the idea that everyone has a physical element within the human makeup responsible for that faith.
P1 You believe your position of faith, as concluded by your acceptance to this debate and defined as C2, is the correct position to take. The position can either be considered logical or emotive.
P2 If you believe your position to be logically correct, you are concluding that there exists a truth and a standard of right and wrong to measure that view against and that you are the source of that standard being a physical entity, and are therefore in essence always right. Otherwise you will be considered as illogical and emotive.
C3 You do not want to be considered as illogical and emotive, therefore we must conclude that you truly believe the source of all logic and moral truth is YOU, being always right of course. Hence your individual faith chemicals are better than anybody else"s.
I therefore bow down before the great wise one, keeper of all truths, and will be forever at his mercy.
I just hope something doesnt go wrong with his chemicals, as we"ll all be USCWAP.
In practical terms moral relativity (your's v mine) would never be able to resolve any dispute ever, as everyone would walk around individually thinking they are correct and they would not even have the faintest motivation to intercede in another individual's dispute without causing murder and mayhem, unless they make an appeal to some higher authority. We don't appreciate murder and mayhem therefore a higher authority must exist, I will just conclude that authority is a metaphysical entity and a law giver.
Thanks for your arguments, Pro.
Before I begin to rebut your logic, I will address the first few paragraphs. I'm short on characters, so instead of quoting all of them, I will put the corresponding number of each paragraph before my response to each one.
1. I agree that God should not be the focus of this debate. However, this God (I assume it is the Christian god as you talk about the Old Testament) may pop up now and then throughout the debate, and should be fair game for arguments.
2. Yes, morals are relative and stem from either society or per what a person, through his/her experiences, believes is morally correct. The little bit about evolution is a bit misplaced to me, and I ask kindly that we set that aside in keeping with the theme of the debate. I will not argue with what you said because I don't see the relation to the topic, even though I think it is misguided.
3. No, the existence of a God is not self-evident. If you were to convince me that morality is, indeed, objective, that would be the first step in convincing me of the existence of a deity. What has been done in the past is, in my view, at the heart of this debate, as it helps show different moral situations and actions. However, the Old Testament reference is a bit out of place, seeing as you need not prove that the "objective moral giver" is the Christian God and could say that this god has never done anything anyone would consider immoral. I would also like to mention that I could find contradictions and fallacies with this God, as no being can be all-powerful and perfect without inherent contradictions, but I will not go this route as I find it a bit of a loophole.
4. No objections, I agree and will be arguing that the universe is purely physical.
Before I start my rebuttal, I will describe my format and address one major point.
FORMAT: I will be quoting each point Pro has made and follow each with my rebuttal or agreement. My response to Pro's ending paragraph and my closing arguments will follow my rebuttal.
I would like to address the fact that I actually agree with most of Pro's first and third conditional. However, I do not agree with the assumptions he draws from them. Therefore I concede both of those points to Pro, however I will still refute his logic if it is faulty, as I do not intend to concede all of his antecedents.
"P1 Debate relies on the use of an accepted standard of logic (Truth as the ultimate aim). Human emotion aside, the winner will be decided upon the closest adherence to that standard, and therefore we admit there is also a standard of fairness. You would not like to me to win the debate on emotive principles and would appeal to fairness to gain sympathy if I did."
I have no problems with my opponent winning a debate on an emotional argument. I believe that the winner of a debate should be decided based upon who made better points and arguments, regardless of whether they were emotional or logical. Granted I and many others put more weight on logical arguments, however I do not feel an appeal to one's emotions is a violation of inherent debate rules.
"P2 If there were no standard of logic or fairness in the Universe, effective debate would not be possible and completely futile."
What makes a debate with appeals to logic and emotion non-effective? I find that my moral compass leads me to concede points fairly often if I hear a well-made emotional appeal. (Ex. pedophilia is wrong because children cannot consent and it is cruel to force your will on children)
"C1 As my opponent in this debate, you desire to win and hope to be successful, therefore accepting the view that effective debate is possible."
Yes, effective debate is possible. This is because I have hope of showing people the flaws in their logic and possibly changing their moral code.
"P3 Standards of logic and fairness do exist, making effective debate possible. Asserted by C1."
Somewhat agreed, extend my arguments for the first antecedents to this.
"P4 Logic and fairness are not represented by physical elements and therefore metaphysical. How much does logic weigh? What element is responsible for justice? Science is not concerned with metaphysical entities and therefore no proof will ever be given that these are material elements."
Logic, fairness, love, other emotions, etc. are all names we give to concepts. These concepts happen because a certain neuron in a brain fired in such a way that stimulated certain chemicals and caused these things to happen. In a sense, instead of justice we could be saying "the firing of certain neurons that caused somebody to do this that caused this human to give a punishment to this human because the other human did something because of certain neurons firing that made the first person's neurons fire in such a way that made them feel bad," but we just say justice because it is much easier. With these terms we are describing actions, reactions, and changes in the physical world. They don't have weight and the like because they are processes, much like gravity doesn't have weight yet still exists in the physical world.
"C2 Conclusively, the existence of immaterial things that will never be proven to exist materially in the Universe, will always lead to the logical conclusion that the Universe is both physical and metaphysical. If you believe otherwise, you are emotively taking a position of faith and believing the idea that everyone has a physical element within the human makeup responsible for that faith."
Refer to my argument for P4 to show that this universe is indeed purely physical, and it requires no faith to believe such.
"P1 You believe your position of faith, as concluded by your acceptance to this debate and defined as C2, is the correct position to take. The position can either be considered logical or emotive."
I do believe my position is correct, but not because of any faith (I am having a bit of trouble understanding this whole "faith" thing). C2 has been disproven.
"P2 If you believe your position to be logically correct, you are concluding that there exists a truth and a standard of right and wrong to measure that view against and that you are the source of that standard being a physical entity, and are therefore in essence always right. Otherwise you will be considered as illogical and emotive."
Well, yes, I believe that my morals are right, but I am willing to change them if someone were to provide a good enough reason(s) to do so. For example, if I were a cannibal (NOTE: I AM NOT ACTUALLY A CANNIBAL), and my friend told me that cannibalism was wrong because I was taking away other life and that using other people as a food source was not respectful, I might see his side of things and change my cannibalistic ways.
"C3 You do not want to be considered as illogical and emotive, therefore we must conclude that you truly believe the source of all logic and moral truth is YOU, being always right of course. Hence your individual faith chemicals are better than anybody else"s."
Yes, as of now I believe that my morals are the best set of morals in the universe, as everyone does. However, as I said, I would be open to changes in these morals and I only believe this because I see no issues with my morals (which would be impossible as I would change my morals as soon as a valid issue was made known to me), not because of "faith chemicals" or because I don't want to be considered as illogical and emotive.
I believe that moral relativity is the reason why we have debates, because different people's morals differ. Thus, people try to convince others to see their side of things, and this actually works sometimes, believe it or not. My own moral code has changed in response to others' convincing arguments. Murder and mayhem aren't caused constantly because we all realize that it is better to be civilized and use our words instead of our fists in arguments, and sometimes this does happen, because we have wars over ideologies which result in murder and violence.
If I use any sarcasm in the debate, it is not meant to offend. I"m not a comedian, and therefore use of the lowest form is generally all I have.
Secondly, I would just like clear the first few points I put across in my opening statement, which Pro has clarified in his.
1.No problem, if it pops up we"ll try and deal with it briefly.
2.I wasn"t trying to bring in other topics, but merely stating that moral relativity is a large part of overall evolutionary thinking. Think of changing moral landscapes if that"s useful. However, I may bring in an example later of this flawed logic to try to prove something to you.
3.Again, time and character space permitting I will prove that indeed there is no inherent contradiction in the idea of an all-powerful, perfect being. I won"t dwell, but if you"re going to use well-known trick questions, then let"s see what"s wrong with those fallacies.
4.Good, that is what I thought. I will also hopefully show you, that is not the logically valid position to take. I say, I hope.
So, on to my rebuttals of Pro"s arguments. I"ll ctry and keep it short here.
P1 and P2 combined rebut
My point was purely on emotional voting, and not the emotive nature of the arguments. If my opponent wins in an emotional (subject) debate by using correct or sounder logic in providing his or her arguments, I agree also and I have no problem with that. I also agree that moral grey areas exist, that somehow do not lend themselves to establishing an absolute truth in a debate. That is not the point. Unfortunately some debates do work to move closer to a truth, like this one, where the source of morality can be established hopefully =514;. It also necessarily follows that to make a good argument you do indeed need to use sound logic otherwise you won"t make good arguments. So if you are voting for the "best" arguments that didn"t use sound logic, then in effect you are being emotive and deluding the yourself. And I fully agree that appealing to emotion, popularity etc can be employed, but they are fallacious in nature and therefore do not make good arguments. The overriding purpose of debate is in essence a search for an absolute or objective truth, there are no relative truths. If you make the statement, "Truth is all relative", logically you are trying to establish that as an absolute truth, and are therefore contradicting yourself and deceiving yourself along with it. Is that true for me or for you? I believe the deception is the worst part morally. So, there is a truth that is absolute. If you deny this you are deceiving yourself and therefore partaking in debate is really a futile exercise, and I will show you why with some examples.
Win by emotive voting " the win feels good, you have not really learned anything except that appeals to popularity do work, but deep down inside you feel it is a hollow victory as you didn"t move closer to truth. You have deceived yourself in effect, and also not let your opponent move closer to truth.
Lose by emotive voting " you feel it was a little unfair that the opponents appeal to spite won the day. None of you moved closer to the truth.
Emotive voting does not let either opponent move closer to the truth. It"s not fair, I hear the losers cry.
Win with sound arguments " feels good sure, better still, you let your opponent move closer to the truth. You may not have increased your ability but you helped somebody. That must feel good in a way.
Lose with less sound arguments " disappointing maybe, hey but you learned something new, both in creating sound arguments, and most importantly you moved closer to truth.
Ok, now I like the phrase "moral compass", I think you"re getting there. You are a perceptive young man. The needle on a compass points to magnetic north. If the magnetic field got all screwed up and became disordered and unstable (I"m not a scientist =514;), for example logical truths in the universe swung around and did not remain constant, what chance does your moral compass have in pointing you in the right direction in life and finding the truth that you so admirably search for? You become a mixed up, emotional, irrational, possibly angry person, I would think. Life has at least taught me that much. I see it in myself and in others.
If everybody walks around with their own little individual moral compass inside of them (we"re talking 7 billion people on this planet) how incredibly marvelous it is that we haven"t all killed each other by now, or that there isn"t significantly more evil in the world. Have you considered that? I refer to my opening statement where I suggested that people are inherently good and desire well-being for everybody. How strange that it should be like that? When you observe 95% of people in society, not only behaving decently but also wishing the best for everyone on the whole, do you not think that maybe we are actually programmed in some way? I also submit that good deeds such as altruism and charity would not be possible in a purely physical and moral relativist state of being.
C1 You desire to win with logically sound arguments, to not only confirm your own logic, which will help you to move closer to truth, but you have also done your opponent a great favour indeed. You will not change anybody"s moral code because you are not the source of that code, believe me. You have helped somebody to recognize and remind them of the objective moral code in them only, but it is still commendable nonetheless. I will show you why you haven"t and can"t change anything, but only remind someone of how they ought to behave. (I"m not talking about mere manners and standards of behavior in a social setting)
P3/P4 and C2 rebuttals
You live in a purely physical world and everything is material.
You honestly think you can change somebody"s moral code.
By typing words on a screen at home, you are hoping to materially change that person who may be nowhere near you physically.
By you even hoping this, I conclude that you therefore believe you ARE an all-powerful being capable of the impossible, or you are severely deceiving yourself. Either way, it"s deception.
If you need further proof of the logic, here it is:
My concepts and beliefs are a result of purely physical chemicals in action. (your belief)
The cause is chemicals, the result is my concepts.
The effect can never be greater than the cause, and the effect therefore cannot become the cause.
I want to and can change my concepts if I wish to.
What do you do?
Hence the only logical belief to have is that metaphysical attributes are present in every person, and the source must therefore be of a metaphysical nature.
The word faith obviously strikes a little terror into materialists. I used it to show you that for you to believe something as a materialist, you need chemicals. If you "believe" that and that "belief" chemical or process will never likely to be found through science, you are relying therefore on faith/belief that your world view is correct. There won"t be any proof given to you. Consequently an atheistic and materialistic word view is your faith and religion. Think it"s not? Check the wiki definition. In your religion or faith, you believe that you are the only one worthy of praise and worship. At any point in your life, you are always right and therefore perfect morally and accountable to no one. Inside yourself you have set the standard and you always follow it. Hey, I like that, it"s so easy. I go around around hitting people and not feel any shame, because my morals are perfect. Think about, again you are deceiving yourself.
I am not saying you do this, by the way.
I ran out of space so will continue in round 4
I'd like to thank Pro for this debate as well, it has been very intellectual and thought-provoking.
I also thanks Pro for clarifying his positions on his first four statements.
I recognize the character limit and how constricting it can be to arguments, so I do not mind if you continue and/or clarify your arguments between rounds. However, I would like to remind Pro of two things. Firstly, I am of the Con position in this debate, and secondly, I will continue to rebut his arguments, complete or not. With that, I'll start my rebuttal.
"My point was purely on emotional voting, and not the emotive nature of the arguments. If my opponent wins in an emotional (subject) debate by using correct or sounder logic in providing his or her arguments, I agree also and I have no problem with that."
Okay, I can see what you're saying a bit. However, if it were logically sound emotional arguments that influenced an emotional vote, then that vote would be logical, so I am only against purely illogical or emotive voting. I think we both agree that an illogical vote is not correct and unfair, however I am saying that a logical vote can stem from emotional arguments and thus can be emotive.
"I also agree that moral grey areas exist, that somehow do not lend themselves to establishing an absolute truth in a debate."
I sincerely hope you misspoke about moral grey areas, because if not I've won the debate. Your position is that there is a clear-cut, absolute moral standard. This means that every issue must have a black and white, because something is either inherently good or inherently bad. There is no grey area in your opinion. To say as such would be conceding that there is no objective morality. I don't understand the latter part of this statement.
"Unfortunately some debates do work to move closer to a truth, like this one, where the source of morality can be established hopefully"
I agree that some debates are not for the purpose of uncovering truths or changing opinions, and that many debates that are for this purpose don't change any minds or opinions, or even provoke any thought. However, I don't see how thus debate falls under those criteria. You say that the source of morality could be established in this debate, which actually supports my claim that this debate does have purpose.
"It also necessarily follows that to make a good argument you do indeed need to use sound logic otherwise you won"t make good arguments."
Yes, but I fail to see how that prevents you from making an emotional argument which influences people to cast a logical, emotive vote.
" So if you are voting for the "best" arguments that didn"t use sound logic, then in effect you are being emotive and deluding the yourself."
I'd agree with that, save for the deluding yourself part.
" And I fully agree that appealing to emotion, popularity etc can be employed, but they are fallacious in nature and therefore do not make good arguments."
Appeals to emotion aren't fallacious if they are based upon sound logic.
" The overriding purpose of debate is in essence a search for an absolute or objective truth, there are no relative truths."
Maybe for you, but not for me. I don't believe that anyone can ever reach an absolute, objective moral truth. I debate because I want to see if my logic and morals stand up to the test of others' criticisms, and want to help others see how their morals and logic may be flawed. I don't believe that there's an absolute moral truth, but I do believe that there is a moral position that is the most logical that can be attained, and the way to get there is through debate.
"If you make the statement, "Truth is all relative", logically you are trying to establish that as an absolute truth, and are therefore contradicting yourself and deceiving yourself along with it. Is that true for me or for you? I believe the deception is the worst part morally."
No, I am trying to show you that that is the logical position to take. I am not deceiving myself, I am simply trying to show you that there is no absolute truth when it comes to morals, and that it is illogical to assume such.
Examples and Analogies
My response to your examples and my view on debating is that there are three ways you can vote on a debate: Logically and emotively, illogically and emotively, or logically and non-emotively. We hope to have votes from the first category, as they take all things into consideration and create an honest vote that they're happy with. We never want votes from the second or third, because if you vote illogically or ignore emotive arguments, you're not taking in every argument put on the table, which you should.
My response to the compass analogy is that my relative compass is best for navigating any type of universe, because my morals can adapt to different situations based on what is logically sound. However, if the absolute moral truth said that it was the right thing to rape people, you would be the one raping, not me. Everyone has a different moral compass and they clash all the time, like they are currently over gay rights. However, we all live in a society which says that you shouldn't kill people and that you should fight it out with words instead of fists, and most people accept that. There are some who have no moral issues with killing, so they do so, but as a society the majority of us agree that killing is wrong and therefore do not kill. That standard is not absolute, but it is logical.
To address C1, I am the source of some people's morals, and I'm very proud of that fact. I've convinced people to change their ways by pointing out things to them that they could never have found out themselves, and that's a great feeling. That's why I debate. I hope I can do that again and change some people's minds so that as a whole we can become a better species. I don't believe that we are all moving towards moral absolutes because there are grey areas, as you said, which show that not everything is black and white and that we must adapt to situations in the most logical way.
P3/P4 and C2 rebuttals
Yes, I do believe that I can change people's morals by typing on this keyboard. I've done it before and I'll do it again. I'm not all-powerful, and it's not impossible to communicate logical ideas to someone through a technological medium. I've done it before and I am subject to it being done to me.
Yes, effects can become causes. CAUSE->EFFECT->EFFECT. The middle effect is also a cause. A more appropriate diagram would be CAUSE->EFFECT/CAUSE->EFFECT.
I know the definition of atheist. It's a negative claim. Atheism is NOT a religion, it is the LACK of a religion. It is the default position to hold. You're an atheist towards Zeus or Odin or the flying spaghetti monster, so is your religion not believing in Zeus and Odin and the flying spaghetti monster and etc.? Atheists do not believe that we are the only ones worthy of praise or worship. We believe that nothing is worthy of worship. It does not take faith to believe in naturalistic processes, as we can observe them, and we do on a daily basis. I feel that my morals as they are now are logical and make sense. However, I am open to changes in my morals. I don't believe that going around hitting people is morally correct, so I don't do it. If I did, then I would probably go around hitting other people. However, that is not logical and we live in a society where it's not okay to do that, and my moral basis is my society. I don't agree with everything society says, which is why I try to change my society members' morals (if the people in the society believe something, the society should reflect that belief).
I hope that cleared up my position on this a bit.
I did run out of character space also, so I will briefly put the additional argument in a moment. As a committed atheist and materialist you are in fact a member of a religion. It is in the dictionary or wiki reference. You can also refute this by saying the dictionary is false, but even I wouldn't believe you were that presumptious., or do you really think the definitions of words now should be whatever you want it to be? You can chop and change definition to make you feel good, but in overall essence it is the same and again self-delusion. My worldview versus your worldview. Faith and religion quite obviously.
A religion is an organized collection of beliefs, cultural systems, and world views that relate humanity to an order of existence.
Look very closely at that. You are a materialist atheist and are therefore religious by definition. You want to believe something to make you feel good inside, and feel that you are a positively good person. I can see that, why do you feel that way I wonder?
Ok my last point or argument was this basically, as I want to make an effective rebuttal to your comments also.
One of your heroes here writing and speaking, I quote
'The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.'
" Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion
Now why is this rant so illogical? Well here goes,
If you can possibly conceive of there being such an entity as God with his oft quoted attributes, it therefore necessarily exists. This is not the same as imagining by the way.
Richard Dawkins can conceive of such an entity, (he has an idea of what God should be like using his moral concept as proven by the quoted rant. And vicious it was too. Ouch! Why would such an eminent professor publish a rant about a character in a fairy tale?
Therefore God necessarily exists.
Richard Dawkins has a conception of God, and therefore God exists. If he had no conception of God he would not need to even contemplate the idea and publish a book on his beliefs. Any mention of God and he should just look clueless and walk away scratching his head.
He also believes the Bible is a fairy tale.
Logical intelligent people would not waste so much time bothering about and commentating on fairy tales, unless they were being emotive. Hasn't he got some useful biology to sort out?
Therefore Richard Dawkins is being purely emotive and illogical in his argument against God thus proving His existence.
Richard Dawkins uses what he thinks is his own moral code being a wonderfully evolved superior specimen to compare himself to a fairy tale God, and comes out thinking he is morally superior. Again would you make any serious claim that you were better than Superman and not expect people to laugh at you?
Richard Dawkins therefore does think he is more morally superior to a morally superior being, or else he doesn't believe in Him and wants to tell people he hates Him. More likely scenario: Richard Dawkins doesn't like it when he can't do what he wants to without feeling a little guilty and he hates THAT.
What is THAT? - his objective moral compass. He actually tries to delude people in writing a book trying to deny a fairy story, and you want to take that person seriously? No, I don't believe you do actually, you have been taught to believe fallacies and taught how to delude yourself, by not being taught how to think properly. You are not alone. And personally I think that is morally reprehensible for any person to have to endure that. Nothing good is accomplished. As I said you may feel good reading it, but in essence it's not good. You want it so to be that way, you've deluded yourself that it is right.
Therefore proving my claim that belief in atheistic moral relativity is completely illogical in itself, thus cannot be considered as an absolute truth. Completely torn down by using logic and the gullibility of atheists themselves. Thanks Richard ;-)
Ok, just my rebuttals and clarification on your comments
Define logic - a tool used to avoid deception, or a tool used to obtain truth. Either way. Logical truths exist and are unchangeable. Fact. If you deny it, then you have torn down thousands of years of historical reasoned debate. Don't do that. But I must say when people become illogical they do start attacking logic as they neither understand it nor want it. Dawkins v God perhaps. Mmm think for a while on that.
So no, there is no such thing as voting both logically and emotively. Emotion can affect your decision that's all. If you have been affected by emotion, then you have overridden your sound logic. FACT
Can I employ emotion in my argument to try to win a debate? Yes. But if you aren't aware of the fallacy (unsound logic, emotive) committed you may be deceived to believing it's the truth. See now? Any claim you make can be considered logically sound or unsound leading to valid and invalid claims. Sound arguments can be invalid but you need to disprove a premise in that argument. Emotion makes the claim or any counter claim fallacious in nature and should not be considered sound or valid. I think you know that.
Moral grey areas - are there times when you're not sure exactly what to do in a situation? Your mind is racing. Shall I save 100 people in a train, by letting and knowing that one person will die because of saving the rest. You have a competing moral dilemma. That's all. If you are a considered person, then I think letting one die to save 100, may be the best option. Why is it a dilemma? Because if you could save 100 without another one dying, that would be the best option, but you don't have it. They occur everywhere throughout life, but your solid moral compass will help you decide, if you listen to it. People make mistakes, I sure hope you do. I know I do. It's not material physical processes, you have to listen to it. So no, this does not lead to a forfeit unfortunately, but I commend you on trying. You would not have even thought of it, I presume as a sound argument.
Sorry, I meant to type fortunately I think, And no, I think that was my claim that you conceded to in the first argument, but I am working quickly here. But I think we agree debate is effective to find absolute truth.
The point is you can make an emotive argument or claim, but if people used logic they would recognise it as fallacious and not be influenced by emotion. Refer my opening statements in this round.
Why? you are deluding yourself, as you in effect are nowhere nearer the truth by believing emotive claims.
'Appeals to emotion aren't fallacious if they are based upon sound logic' (your claim)
How can you be both logically sound and include fallacies in your own argument? Again, self deception or you want to deceive. You can try of course, if it makes you feel good. But as I said, it's a hollow feeling.
You have made a straw man argument in the next comment unfortunately, another fallcy. I said there is an objective truth in the Universe only. My claim 'objective moral values do exist' is what we are debating, so I wouldn't use it to prove my own argument. However, Your claim 'maybe for you, but not for me' is positively making a claim that that is an absolute truth and therefore you unknowingly have contradicted yourself. Law of contradiction. Again self delusion moving nowhere nearer absolute truth.
I'll just add, no effect can become the cause of itself. That's illogical.
Good luck with trying to change my physical moral values by typing on a screen. God Bless and take care. It's been great
Likewise; thanks for everything.
Before I start with your arguments, I'd like to get some semantics out of the way in the form of definitions. If you disagree with Merriam-Webster, I've also included Oxford's definitions.
1. An organized system of beliefs, ceremonies, and rules used to worship a god or a group of gods.
2. The belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods
1. A disbelief in the existence of deity
2. Disbelief or lack of belief in the existence of God or gods.
1. Firm belief in something for which there is no proof
2. Strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof; A strongly held belief or theory
1. A theory that physical matter is the only or fundamental reality and that all being and processes and phenomena can be explained as manifestations or results of matter
2. The doctrine that nothing exists except matter and its movements and modifications.
1. A proper or reasonable way of thinking about or understanding something
2. Reasoning conducted or assessed according to strict principles of validity
I would like to note that due to space constraints, I will not be quoting Pro, rather assigning numbers to his corresponding paragraphs starting with his second paragraph (his second paragraph = #1).
Now that that's out of the way, I'll begin my rebuttal.
1. I'd say that the definitions I provided agree with my view that atheism is a lack of belief and that materialism is a set of beliefs separate from religion. You can look at the sources if you'd like, I haven't "chopped and changed" anything.
2. You got this definition from Wikipedia, but I think you forgot to read the note, which says "While religion is difficult to define, one standard model of religion, used in religious studies courses, was proposed by Clifford Geertz, who simply called it a "cultural system"".. This is simply one teacher's definition of religion. I find Merriam-Webster more reliable for definitions.
3. No, by definition I am NON-religious. I find your next statement quite ironic, as it is religious people who use heaven and God as feel-good sources, when atheists face the grim nature of reality, even if that means admitting that those important to us that are deceased are, in fact, dead, and that we will never see them again.
5. Well, I wouldn't call Dawkins my hero, but I do think he has the right ideas on a lot of subjects and knows what he's talking about.
6. Wow, well said and a good point I find funny and intelligent.
7&8 (basically the same).
I'm not going to go about proving every trait Dawkins has listed, so the link to the book is in my sources, if you want to read the reasoning behind that statement. To address your contention, just because you can conceive something does not mean it exists. It can exist in fiction, which is what Dawkins says and how he got his description, but that does not mean it exists in real life. If I say "Harry Potter is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully," does that mean Harry Potter exists? You also say, basically, that atheists like Dawkins should not be so concerned about religion. However, atheists talk about religion because it affects them and society. If the majority of society keeps spouting these Bronze-age morals and keeps trying to spread these fairy tales by brainwashing their children, we'll never get anywhere. Religion is harmful to society, which is why we fight it.
9. Yes, Dawkins does exactly this, which is why it's so eye-opening when he makes this statement. If this god were perfect, then how can it possibly be morally inferior (by most's consideration) to Richard Dawkins? It can't, which is proof that this God is not perfect, as he even breaks his own supposed "moral standard" by killing almost every human on Earth. Dawkins is not mad that he can't do what he wants, he's pointing out a contradiction in the Bible.
10. Yes, it's sad that Dawkins should have to write a book dismissing a fairy tale, but most of mainstream society believes this tale, and it's harming society and humans as a whole. He has to write this book in the hopes that he can start getting humanity back on track. Your next statement is one of the most ironic I've ever heard, as this is exactly what I say to creationists about the Bible. You guys are the ones that have been brainwashed into believing these wild fairy tales, not us.
11. I think Richard would chuckle and say, "you're welcome".
12. That's not what Merriam-Webster or Oxford say. Yes, logical truths exist. God is illogical, Dawkins is the logical one.
13. Yes there is. When someone votes for Obama because they think his positions make sense and they agree with his beliefs and morals, that is making a logical and emotive vote.
14. No, I don't see now. If I say that you're wrong when you say that killing people is logical, then that is a logically sound, emotional argument.
15. Not to be rude or attack you personally or anything, but I think you may be a psychopath. That situation you're referring to is very similar to the trolley problem, and the answer you gave is the answer that most psychopaths would also give, as psychopaths do not operate on emotion, but logic only. Anyways, I see what you're saying about the grey areas, and I'll accept that that fits into the philosophy of objective morality.
16. Yes, debate is sometimes effective to help people sort out their morals.
17. No, emotive claims have weight and can be logical, they just hold less weight than logical arguments in my opinion.
18. You have yet to prove how emotive arguments are fallacious. I don't get the last part of this.
19. WHAT? How did I straw man you??? I put your quote directly above mine and your statement was that the purpose of debate was to search for the objective moral truth. My response made sense and was sound; I don't believe you can ever reach that truth because I don't believe it exists, just like people who search for unicorns will never find them because they don't exist. How did I misrepresent your position or contradict myself?
20. Effects can become causes of other effects that are nearly identical, however.
I hope I've changed at least one or two minds with this. I know my own views on objective morality have changed, so thank you for this great debate. It has been fun.
One last note: if I sounded sarcastic, condescending, or rude in my rebuttal I apologize, this was not the intent and I did not mean to attack Pro in any way.
2. http://knizky.mahdi.cz... (page 31)
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Codedlogic 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: While I agreed with Pro from the outset Pro was completely ineffective at developing their arguments and got sidetracked by religion, faith, and Epistemic Rationality vs. Instrumental Rationality (two sides of the same coin). It was a bit like reading a debate with someone arguing for "being skeptical" while the other person argues for "keeping an open mind" - both parties not realizing these two concepts are part of the same thing. Also I was confused why Pro brought up Divine Command Theory as that would prove Morals are subjective not objective (because unless a "law giver" is using some metric for determining morals then those laws would be subjective). Even more bizarre, Con conceded that if morals could be shown to be objective they would become a theist. Con showed that if "moral grey areas" exist then morality is not subjective. Pro failed to refute this argument.
Vote Placed by FuzzyCatPotato 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Voting merely out of frustration. This debate (a) assumes the Abrahamic god to exist and (b) fails to mention the Euthyphro dilemma. These seem crucial issues yet are untouched.
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