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In Defence of Nihilism

sdavio
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11/28/2013 7:00:38 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
1. Axioms are conceptually self-detonating.

The primary axiom; the one on which all others rely, is the principle of non-contradiction.

"A = A."

This states that one thing must be accepted as 'itself.' However, in the form above; the means by which it's most often denoted, this is not what it states. It instead states that the 'A' on the left must be equated with the 'A' on the right. This is a nonsensical and erroneous method of establishing such a principle, because this is not recognizing a 'thing' as 'itself' at all, but equating one symbol with another which is separate and different. So, to more accurately demonstrate the principle, we should reduce it to simply:

"A."

What we have removed is the defining feature which made our example an axiom in the first place. What we have now is not an axiom, but a letter of the alphabet. This makes it clear what an axiom is; not a rational argument, a self-evident concept, or anything else, but a meaningless bare statement of some 'thing' or another.

2. Any ideology is based on emotional prejudice, not objective reason.

It is impossible to make any deductive argument with no assumptions whatsoever. This is because a deductive argument can only be made when we have some initial statement to 'deduce' from. Therefore, many ideologies resort to axioms, and deduce from those axioms whatever ideas they decide follow. However, as argued above, an axiom is nothing but a bare statement of [something.] What then happens is the content of that 'something' is arbitrarily chosen. The boundaries of that variable depend entirely, necessarily on whim or emotion. If 'myself, as an individual' is the variable which we choose to inhabit that axiom, the way we choose to define that term, and the decision to choose that one over any other is only the result of our inherent prejudices.

The separation of any concept as separate and 'individual', followable through time, is difficult to defend in an airtight way, and is certainly not 'self-evident'. The edges of this concept are always blurred - and therefore we define them as close to coherently as possible according to our own benefit. A deductive argument from axioms is the furthest thing from an objective stance - it is a slicing up of the universe into 'objects', the boundaries of which are defined entirely by emotional preference.

3. 'Subjective morality' is nothing but preference.

Morality can be defined, in the most basic terms, as the act of distinguishing between 'good' and 'bad'. However, these words are only useful in relation to some goal. Therefore, if no 'objective' goal exists, and goals are only subjectively decided according to what a person wants, then no objective morality exists. This also means that morality is a much less meaningful term than is often implied. If you want to hit a nail, we could say that a hammer is a more 'moral' tool for doing so than a stick or a guitar. This is because you prefer the hammer; it provides, in a sense, maximum utility in relation to the goal of your preference. This goal is ultimately arbitrary. There is no existential reason to prefer the goal of [your own preference] over the goal of [the hammer staying on the desk and not being used], or of [all of humanity being erased].

An objective morality wouldn't make sense anyway, though, since it would only be defined by a higher-level preference, which would also be ultimately arbitrary.
"Logic is the money of the mind." - Karl Marx
sdavio
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11/28/2013 7:58:54 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 7:42:34 AM, AnDoctuir wrote:
You're making an argument for anarchy with this and it's stupid.

How does anarchy relate to this?
"Logic is the money of the mind." - Karl Marx
AnDoctuir
Posts: 11,060
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11/28/2013 8:01:41 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 7:58:54 AM, sdavio wrote:
At 11/28/2013 7:42:34 AM, AnDoctuir wrote:
You're making an argument for anarchy with this and it's stupid.

How does anarchy relate to this?

Your whole subjective/objective morality bit. This is emotional bro. You're getting there, though.
Wren_cyborg
Posts: 241
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11/28/2013 12:25:38 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
You know, you are creating this to cast all this doubt and subjectivity over morality, but your arguments themselves are the most subjective things I've ever seen to begin with. You are accusing moral absolutists of creating paradigms to satisfy their own ends, based on faulty axioms, yet that is precisely what you are doing here - creating a paradigm to meet your own ends (you obviously are very attached to nihilism) and creating axioms to base it off of. You're packaging morality up in a neat and pretty package and throwing it into the garbage. Nothing you're saying here gets to the meat of the issue. We are individuals, and we act to forward our own interests - selfishly. Morality is selfishness.

There is a BIG difference between the arguments I, as a moral absolutist and you et al. as moral relativists and nihilists make. My arguments are simple, agree with common experience, practical, and straight-forward. Your arguments are complicated and complex (leaving much room for debate and misunderstanding), high-brow (sounds like you are flexing your intellectual muscles in the mirror more than trying to achieve reason), and not practical in the least bit. I've talked with utilitarians and the like on here for years, and not a SINGLE one of you has even the SLIGHTEST practical use for anything you say. The predictive component of your theory is absolutely nonexistent. What you say on DDO and what you do in life cannot be the same things, because you could not operate on those principles for any length of time in the real world.

GUARANTEED my post is rebutted without actually addressing 9/10s of the points I made. Sort of that withdraw and declare victory sort of thing I'm used to on here.
sdavio
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11/28/2013 8:19:54 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 12:25:38 PM, Wren_cyborg wrote:
You know, you are creating this to cast all this doubt and subjectivity over morality, but your arguments themselves are the most subjective things I've ever seen to begin with.

It is addressing the most common method's I've seen to ground morality objectively. So in a sense I guess they're subjective, yeah. To claim objectivity would be sort of counter productive though, wouldn't it? lol.

You are accusing moral absolutists of creating paradigms to satisfy their own ends, based on faulty axioms, yet that is precisely what you are doing here - creating a paradigm to meet your own ends (you obviously are very attached to nihilism) and creating axioms to base it off of.

What axioms am I using? I'm deflating the claims of objectivists / moral 'realists' by arguing that any claim is based empirically and emotionally.

You're packaging morality up in a neat and pretty package and throwing it into the garbage. Nothing you're saying here gets to the meat of the issue. We are individuals, and we act to forward our own interests - selfishly. Morality is selfishness.

Wouldn't the word for that simply be self-interest / preference? There's nothing objective about a personal preference at all.

There is a BIG difference between the arguments I, as a moral absolutist and you et al. as moral relativists and nihilists make. My arguments are simple, agree with common experience, practical, and straight-forward. Your arguments are complicated and complex (leaving much room for debate and misunderstanding), high-brow (sounds like you are flexing your intellectual muscles in the mirror more than trying to achieve reason), and not practical in the least bit. I've talked with utilitarians and the like on here for years, and not a SINGLE one of you has even the SLIGHTEST practical use for anything you say. The predictive component of your theory is absolutely nonexistent. What you say on DDO and what you do in life cannot be the same things, because you could not operate on those principles for any length of time in the real world.

All of the above is ad hominem.

GUARANTEED my post is rebutted without actually addressing 9/10s of the points I made. Sort of that withdraw and declare victory sort of thing I'm used to on here.

9/10 of your arguments were ad hominem. In fact your response itself is guilty of what you just complained about, lol. You accused me of working with axioms to create a false paradigm, but that's just name-calling until you actually explain how you see it as doing so.
"Logic is the money of the mind." - Karl Marx
Wren_cyborg
Posts: 241
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11/28/2013 10:05:50 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 8:19:54 PM, sdavio wrote:
At 11/28/2013 12:25:38 PM, Wren_cyborg wrote:
You know, you are creating this to cast all this doubt and subjectivity over morality, but your arguments themselves are the most subjective things I've ever seen to begin with.

It is addressing the most common method's I've seen to ground morality objectively. So in a sense I guess they're subjective, yeah. To claim objectivity would be sort of counter productive though, wouldn't it? lol.

Morality either exists or it doesn't. If it doesn't exist, it is subjective - we made it up. There is no option #3.

You are accusing moral absolutists of creating paradigms to satisfy their own ends, based on faulty axioms, yet that is precisely what you are doing here - creating a paradigm to meet your own ends (you obviously are very attached to nihilism) and creating axioms to base it off of.

What axioms am I using? I'm deflating the claims of objectivists / moral 'realists' by arguing that any claim is based empirically and emotionally.

If you're implying you don't have to use an axiom to give morality a value, either objective or subjective, because you are simply implying it doesn't exist, then what is the limit to this reasoning? Is this similar to Descartes' views of nothing existing except consciousness and God or something? If you're willing to take the argument that far then that doesn't leave us much to talk about, but if not then what's the limit? Our senses might be ultimately subjective, but without them we have no other ability to gather information.

You're packaging morality up in a neat and pretty package and throwing it into the garbage. Nothing you're saying here gets to the meat of the issue. We are individuals, and we act to forward our own interests - selfishly. Morality is selfishness.

Wouldn't the word for that simply be self-interest / preference? There's nothing objective about a personal preference at all.

OK but you're twisting it up here. You're taking a rule of morality - greed - and using it to say that since acting greedily is subjective, morality must be invalid. I don't disagree with you at all that preferring yourself is subjective - that subjectivity is exactly not NOT preferring yourself is objective. I think the confusion you nihilists have is based on the fact that morality is not an action, it is an absence of one - morality is inherently negative. So when you are using morality in your axioms, you are actually using the negation of positive morality, not the assertation of the "good." To act in one's own self-interest is arbitrary and the simplest mode of thought is to act in unison with the parts around you. You could frame that in terms of a computer (all parts are sentient?) or even look at an ant farm. If, for any reason, ants in a colony became self-interested (working for themselves at the expense of the colony, as opposed to what they actually do, which is work very objectively for the colony as a whole even if it means certain death) then the colony would not survive. If your computer's parts became sentient, hypothetically they could act selfish. If parts of your computer took more power than necessary (gluttony), did not bother to function (sloth), or were selfish in any way, it would rob your computer's performance and probably cause it not to work properly. A computer and a society are not unalike in that respect. The seven "sins" are killers of efficiency and efficacy.

There is a BIG difference between the arguments I, as a moral absolutist and you et al. as moral relativists and nihilists make. My arguments are simple, agree with common experience, practical, and straight-forward. Your arguments are complicated and complex (leaving much room for debate and misunderstanding), high-brow (sounds like you are flexing your intellectual muscles in the mirror more than trying to achieve reason), and not practical in the least bit. I've talked with utilitarians and the like on here for years, and not a SINGLE one of you has even the SLIGHTEST practical use for anything you say. The predictive component of your theory is absolutely nonexistent. What you say on DDO and what you do in life cannot be the same things, because you could not operate on those principles for any length of time in the real world.

All of the above is ad hominem.

GUARANTEED my post is rebutted without actually addressing 9/10s of the points I made. Sort of that withdraw and declare victory sort of thing I'm used to on here.

9/10 of your arguments were ad hominem. In fact your response itself is guilty of what you just complained about, lol. You accused me of working with axioms to create a false paradigm, but that's just name-calling until you actually explain how you see it as doing so.

Your paradigm is useless. Asserting morality is subjective or nonexistent has no practical application in humanity. Human affairs, from the moment we are born to the moment we die, are perhaps best summed up by saying they are "a series of moral lessons that change our behavior and mature us." What else is life about? Building things? Reproduction? Experiencing pleasure? If you are saying that we have no purpose, and that right and wrong don't exist, then you are implying that rape and murder are no inherently different than gardening or brushing your teeth. If that's how our discussion ends, I would think my argument is in a pretty strong position!
sdavio
Posts: 1,798
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11/28/2013 11:14:13 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 10:05:50 PM, Wren_cyborg wrote:
At 11/28/2013 8:19:54 PM, sdavio wrote:
At 11/28/2013 12:25:38 PM, Wren_cyborg wrote:
You know, you are creating this to cast all this doubt and subjectivity over morality, but your arguments themselves are the most subjective things I've ever seen to begin with.

It is addressing the most common methods I've seen to ground morality objectively. So in a sense I guess they're subjective, yeah. To claim objectivity would be sort of counter productive though, wouldn't it? lol.

Morality either exists or it doesn't. If it doesn't exist, it is subjective - we made it up. There is no option #3.

I have been very clear in my view of morality - that it is simply the act of discriminating between 'good' and 'bad', but that only makes sense in relation to some 'ideal' or 'goal'. My next assertion is that there is no objectively salient goal, outside of subjective human bias. Hence, morality is subjective. Ie, 'according to the subject.'

Is the number 129 good? It depends on the subject. If morality were objective you could judge the morality of the number itself, independently, as an object.

You are accusing moral absolutists of creating paradigms to satisfy their own ends, based on faulty axioms, yet that is precisely what you are doing here - creating a paradigm to meet your own ends (you obviously are very attached to nihilism) and creating axioms to base it off of.

What axioms am I using? I'm deflating the claims of objectivists / moral 'realists' by arguing that any claim is based empirically and emotionally.

If you're implying you don't have to use an axiom to give morality a value, either objective or subjective, because you are simply implying it doesn't exist, then what is the limit to this reasoning? Is this similar to Descartes' views of nothing existing except consciousness and God or something? If you're willing to take the argument that far then that doesn't leave us much to talk about, but if not then what's the limit? Our senses might be ultimately subjective, but without them we have no other ability to gather information.

I don't know what you mean by 'limit'. In my understanding the sentiment of philosophy is not the arbitrary placing of 'limits' but rather the unrelenting, undiscriminating pursuit of truth.

You're packaging morality up in a neat and pretty package and throwing it into the garbage. Nothing you're saying here gets to the meat of the issue. We are individuals, and we act to forward our own interests - selfishly. Morality is selfishness.

Wouldn't the word for that simply be self-interest / preference? There's nothing objective about a personal preference at all.

OK but you're twisting it up here. You're taking a rule of morality - greed - and using it to say that since acting greedily is subjective, morality must be invalid. I don't disagree with you at all that preferring yourself is subjective - that subjectivity is exactly not NOT preferring yourself is objective.

I can't understand the above, especially the underlined.

I think the confusion you nihilists have is based on the fact that morality is not an action, it is an absence of one - morality is inherently negative. So when you are using morality in your axioms, you are actually using the negation of positive morality, not the assertation of the "good."

What is your definition of morality, and how is it inherently negative?

To act in one's own self-interest is arbitrary and the simplest mode of thought is to act in unison with the parts around you. You could frame that in terms of a computer (all parts are sentient?) or even look at an ant farm. If, for any reason, ants in a colony became self-interested (working for themselves at the expense of the colony, as opposed to what they actually do, which is work very objectively for the colony as a whole even if it means certain death) then the colony would not survive. If your computer's parts became sentient, hypothetically they could act selfish. If parts of your computer took more power than necessary (gluttony), did not bother to function (sloth), or were selfish in any way, it would rob your computer's performance and probably cause it not to work properly. A computer and a society are not unalike in that respect. The seven "sins" are killers of efficiency and efficacy.

So you are saying that it is most efficient to work with your surroundings? How does that relate to nihilism / moral realism?

There is a BIG difference between the arguments I, as a moral absolutist and you et al. as moral relativists and nihilists make. My arguments are simple, agree with common experience, practical, and straight-forward. Your arguments are complicated and complex (leaving much room for debate and misunderstanding), high-brow (sounds like you are flexing your intellectual muscles in the mirror more than trying to achieve reason), and not practical in the least bit. I've talked with utilitarians and the like on here for years, and not a SINGLE one of you has even the SLIGHTEST practical use for anything you say. The predictive component of your theory is absolutely nonexistent. What you say on DDO and what you do in life cannot be the same things, because you could not operate on those principles for any length of time in the real world.

All of the above is ad hominem.

GUARANTEED my post is rebutted without actually addressing 9/10s of the points I made. Sort of that withdraw and declare victory sort of thing I'm used to on here.

9/10 of your arguments were ad hominem. In fact your response itself is guilty of what you just complained about, lol. You accused me of working with axioms to create a false paradigm, but that's just name-calling until you actually explain how you see it as doing so.

Your paradigm is useless. Asserting morality is subjective or nonexistent has no practical application in humanity.

The truth has application in humanity. If someone makes a claim to an objective morality, or objective knowledge in general, we can more accurately judge those claims in light of these arguments if they are accurate. For instance, Ayn Rand's philosophy, called 'Objectivism', has an immense influence on modern politics, and is built entirely on the axiom of A = A. I'm not saying I am necessarily right, but that if I am right, this has an important bearing on a large amount of the moral and philosophical rhetoric which is commonly espoused.

Human affairs, from the moment we are born to the moment we die, are perhaps best summed up by saying they are "a series of moral lessons that change our behavior and mature us." What else is life about? Building things? Reproduction? Experiencing pleasure? If you are saying that we have no purpose, and that right and wrong don't exist, then you are implying that rape and murder are no inherently different than gardening or brushing your teeth.

Please answer this question with recourse to absolutely no assumptions: What is inherently, objectively wrong with rape and murder? According to what standard, independent of subjective experience?

If that's how our discussion ends, I would think my argument is in a pretty strong position!

That is called an appeal to emotion.
"Logic is the money of the mind." - Karl Marx
Wren_cyborg
Posts: 241
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11/29/2013 12:14:39 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 11:14:13 PM, sdavio wrote:
At 11/28/2013 10:05:50 PM, Wren_cyborg wrote:
At 11/28/2013 8:19:54 PM, sdavio wrote:
At 11/28/2013 12:25:38 PM, Wren_cyborg wrote:

I have been very clear in my view of morality - that it is simply the act of discriminating between 'good' and 'bad', but that only makes sense in relation to some 'ideal' or 'goal'. My next assertion is that there is no objectively salient goal, outside of subjective human bias. Hence, morality is subjective. Ie, 'according to the subject.'

Well then we are not in disagreement. I don't have any problem with the idea you presented above, because I define morality differently.

If you're implying you don't have to use an axiom to give morality a value, either objective or subjective, because you are simply implying it doesn't exist, then what is the limit to this reasoning? Is this similar to Descartes' views of nothing existing except consciousness and God or something? If you're willing to take the argument that far then that doesn't leave us much to talk about, but if not then what's the limit? Our senses might be ultimately subjective, but without them we have no other ability to gather information.

I don't know what you mean by 'limit'. In my understanding the sentiment of philosophy is not the arbitrary placing of 'limits' but rather the unrelenting, undiscriminating pursuit of truth.

I mean to say that the idea of true "objectivity" leaves almost nothing for us to talk about. We could be in the Matrix and everything we perceive, aside from the fact that our own body has consciousness, we can't make any objective assessment of anything.

Morality is selfishness.

Wouldn't the word for that simply be self-interest / preference? There's nothing objective about a personal preference at all.

OK but you're twisting it up here. You're taking a rule of morality - greed - and using it to say that since acting greedily is subjective, morality must be invalid. I don't disagree with you at all that preferring yourself is subjective - that subjectivity is exactly not NOT preferring yourself is objective.

I can't understand the above, especially the underlined.

Whoops! Somehow that last sentence got mangled - it is quite nonsensical! This next piece is my explanation of it anyway, just disregard the last part.

I think the confusion you nihilists have is based on the fact that morality is not an action, it is an absence of one - morality is inherently negative. So when you are using morality in your axioms, you are actually using the negation of positive morality, not the assertation of the "good."

What is your definition of morality, and how is it inherently negative?

Morality consists of the seven "sins." I don't prefer the name "sin" because it is religious and carries metaphysical baggage, so I'd rather call them the Cardinal Vices. Morality is our ability to cope with these impetuses in our character. They can be split into sub-groups, those based off of pride (greed, anger, envy) and those based off of indulgence (lust, gluttony, sloth).

Morality is therefore inherently negative. Any being that is intelligent gains the responsibilities and privileges of an individual (or a person). That necessarily means they are going to be under the influence of certain vices that come to bear on intelligence, which I think is summed up nicely on that list (and described well by Jesus Christ, whether you believe he was a demigod or not). Morality is NOT a measurement of ones efficacy and efficiency in the collective; no, measurements are subjective and you can leave that stuff up to utilitarians. Morality IS the principles that lead to the greatest efficacy and efficiency in the collective, which is really not measurable because it is quite beyond our comprehension to measure. Individuals must overcome vice in order to balance individualism with the needs of the collective. Ants have no such responsibility ONLY BECAUSE they do not have such privileges as people. If ants were suddenly endowed with personhood in all its glories, they would be much more interesting but you better start getting punchcards for that antfarm because some of them are going to want to get high instead of going to work! :D

So you are saying that it is most efficient to work with your surroundings? How does that relate to nihilism / moral realism?

Morality is measurable (in retrospect only) as how well an individual functions in society. Somebody who is not proud (self-superior), gluttonous, slothful, etc. will function better in society than somebody who is. If we gave these traits to ants, can you predict the success of the ant farm?

The truth has application in humanity. If someone makes a claim to an objective morality, or objective knowledge in general, we can more accurately judge those claims in light of these arguments if they are accurate. For instance, Ayn Rand's philosophy, called 'Objectivism', has an immense influence on modern politics, and is built entirely on the axiom of A = A. I'm not saying I am necessarily right, but that if I am right, this has an important bearing on a large amount of the moral and philosophical rhetoric which is commonly espoused.

Influence =/= good

I'm saying that the things DDOers talk about in the philosophy and politics sections don't help you make good decisions. Now that's not to say they don't get on tangents and the like that do, I'm just saying that utilitarians discussing utilitarians in the philosophy forum, nihilists defending nihilism, etc. do not wake up the next day and implement these ideas into their casual decision-making process.

Please answer this question with recourse to absolutely no assumptions: What is inherently, objectively wrong with rape and murder? According to what standard, independent of subjective experience?

There's nothing objectively wrong with rape and murder. What's wrong is the reasoning one used to get to that decision in the first place. I'm not going to log off DDO and then seriously contemplate murdering my customers at work tomorrow. The reason is that that decision would entail a certain list of steps that are immoral. The first would be an impetus, which would necessarily be one of the following:
. Pride
. Envy
. Anger
. Greed
. Lust (I define lust broadly, not inherently sexually)

There is ABSOLUTELY no other reason I would contemplate killing somebody. Now the killing itself is absolutely morally exempt; actions are simply a matter of retrospective measurement of utility. But these reasons in my mind are not. If I feel one of these strongly enough and cannot control it, I will start to consider scenarios to satisfy my desire. If any killing of one human being of another occurs, it must fall into one of several categories:
- accidental
- justified (i.e., self-defense, execution, assisted suicide, etc.)
- murder

There is not a single possible reason that would put one human killing in any other category. If it is accidental, then there was no thought involved (perhaps negligence, and that would be another conversation). If it was justified, I don't mean necessarily philosophically "just," I simply mean that there was a non-emotional impetus. For example, you may have employment killing people. It's not your call, you throw a switch when somebody says and you have no say (again, it's another moral conversation why you picked that job but I digress). You may be acting defensively, which means you have no internal impetus to kill, you simply made a quick decision based on non-emotional data (e.g., a gun pointed at your friend).

The only other reason a killing would occur is if you simply wanted to. These 5 rationales are the only reason you'd decide to kill. The list is exhaustive. Keep in mind that people who are insane have not the benefit of intelli
sdavio
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11/29/2013 2:21:22 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/29/2013 12:14:39 AM, Wren_cyborg wrote:
I have been very clear in my view of morality - that it is simply the act of discriminating between 'good' and 'bad', but that only makes sense in relation to some 'ideal' or 'goal'. My next assertion is that there is no objectively salient goal, outside of subjective human bias. Hence, morality is subjective. Ie, 'according to the subject.'

Well then we are not in disagreement. I don't have any problem with the idea you presented above, because I define morality differently.

I still don't understand what you definition of morality is..

I don't know what you mean by 'limit'. In my understanding the sentiment of philosophy is not the arbitrary placing of 'limits' but rather the unrelenting, undiscriminating pursuit of truth.

I mean to say that the idea of true "objectivity" leaves almost nothing for us to talk about. We could be in the Matrix and everything we perceive, aside from the fact that our own body has consciousness, we can't make any objective assessment of anything.

So, are you saying that moral nihilism is invalid, or just a pointless thing to talk about?

I think the confusion you nihilists have is based on the fact that morality is not an action, it is an absence of one - morality is inherently negative. So when you are using morality in your axioms, you are actually using the negation of positive morality, not the assertation of the "good."

What is your definition of morality, and how is it inherently negative?

Morality consists of the seven "sins."

This is slightly different from providing an actual definition of morality itself. To say 'breaking these rules is immoral' does not define the concept of morality itself. According to what standard should your rules here described be adhered to? Are they inherently immoral, or is following them simply the best means to accommodating the self-interest of an individual?

I don't prefer the name "sin" because it is religious and carries metaphysical baggage, so I'd rather call them the Cardinal Vices. Morality is our ability to cope with these impetuses in our character. They can be split into sub-groups, those based off of pride (greed, anger, envy) and those based off of indulgence (lust, gluttony, sloth).

Morality is therefore inherently negative. Any being that is intelligent gains the responsibilities and privileges of an individual (or a person). That necessarily means they are going to be under the influence of certain vices that come to bear on intelligence, which I think is summed up nicely on that list (and described well by Jesus Christ, whether you believe he was a demigod or not). Morality is NOT a measurement of ones efficacy and efficiency in the collective; no, measurements are subjective and you can leave that stuff up to utilitarians. Morality IS the principles that lead to the greatest efficacy and efficiency in the collective, which is really not measurable because it is quite beyond our comprehension to measure.

That is literally the definition of utilitarianism. Greatest happiness for the greatest number.

So you are saying that it is most efficient to work with your surroundings? How does that relate to nihilism / moral realism?

Morality is measurable (in retrospect only) as how well an individual functions in society. Somebody who is not proud (self-superior), gluttonous, slothful, etc. will function better in society than somebody who is. If we gave these traits to ants, can you predict the success of the ant farm?

I feel like this has gotten off-topic. You are supposedly arguing for morality as intrinsic in objects or actions, right?

The truth has application in humanity. If someone makes a claim to an objective morality, or objective knowledge in general, we can more accurately judge those claims in light of these arguments if they are accurate. For instance, Ayn Rand's philosophy, called 'Objectivism', has an immense influence on modern politics, and is built entirely on the axiom of A = A. I'm not saying I am necessarily right, but that if I am right, this has an important bearing on a large amount of the moral and philosophical rhetoric which is commonly espoused.

Influence =/= good

I'm saying that the things DDOers talk about in the philosophy and politics sections don't help you make good decisions. Now that's not to say they don't get on tangents and the like that do, I'm just saying that utilitarians discussing utilitarians in the philosophy forum, nihilists defending nihilism, etc. do not wake up the next day and implement these ideas into their casual decision-making process.

The idea is that more thought is in order, rather than acting on whatever philosophical system first appears. That is, it is beneficial to hold off action in order to think more rather than holding off thought in favor of action.

Please answer this question with recourse to absolutely no assumptions: What is inherently, objectively wrong with rape and murder? According to what standard, independent of subjective experience?

There's nothing objectively wrong with rape and murder. What's wrong is the reasoning one used to get to that decision in the first place.

You have laid out these impetuses quite well, but have not explained the meta-paradime in which the standard exists that they are 'wrong' in relation to - which is the entire topic. Is greed wrong inherently, or because it works against / in favor of some standard / goal? If you are to disprove moral nihilism you must show how greed is inherently immoral irrespective of all else.
"Logic is the money of the mind." - Karl Marx
zmikecuber
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11/30/2013 10:18:26 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/28/2013 7:00:38 AM, sdavio wrote:
1. Axioms are conceptually self-detonating.

How do you know that?


The primary axiom; the one on which all others rely, is the principle of non-contradiction.

"A = A."


That's the law of identity. The LNC is different.

This states that one thing must be accepted as 'itself.' However, in the form above; the means by which it's most often denoted, this is not what it states. It instead states that the 'A' on the left must be equated with the 'A' on the right. This is a nonsensical and erroneous method of establishing such a principle, because this is not recognizing a 'thing' as 'itself' at all, but equating one symbol with another which is separate and different. So, to more accurately demonstrate the principle, we should reduce it to simply:

"A."

What we have removed is the defining feature which made our example an axiom in the first place. What we have now is not an axiom, but a letter of the alphabet. This makes it clear what an axiom is; not a rational argument, a self-evident concept, or anything else, but a meaningless bare statement of some 'thing' or another.


But aren't you assuming logic is valid in order to prove it's invalid? Doesn't that argument undermine itself?

If logic shows logic is invalid, how do we know this follows in the first place?
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
sdavio
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11/30/2013 10:33:25 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/30/2013 10:17:08 AM, YYW wrote:
http://www.suicidenote.info...

Lol I've just started reading that actually. I like it.
"Logic is the money of the mind." - Karl Marx
YYW
Posts: 36,289
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11/30/2013 10:36:39 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/30/2013 10:33:25 AM, sdavio wrote:
At 11/30/2013 10:17:08 AM, YYW wrote:
http://www.suicidenote.info...

Lol I've just started reading that actually. I like it.

The ending is great.
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sdavio
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11/30/2013 10:49:11 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/30/2013 10:18:26 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 11/28/2013 7:00:38 AM, sdavio wrote:
1. Axioms are conceptually self-detonating.

How do you know that?

My explanation is directly below. When you remove the redundant part of the equation, the part which made it an axiom is 'detonated' away.


The primary axiom; the one on which all others rely, is the principle of non-contradiction.

"A = A."


That's the law of identity. The LNC is different.

Damn, lol.

This states that one thing must be accepted as 'itself.' However, in the form above; the means by which it's most often denoted, this is not what it states. It instead states that the 'A' on the left must be equated with the 'A' on the right. This is a nonsensical and erroneous method of establishing such a principle, because this is not recognizing a 'thing' as 'itself' at all, but equating one symbol with another which is separate and different. So, to more accurately demonstrate the principle, we should reduce it to simply:

"A."

What we have removed is the defining feature which made our example an axiom in the first place. What we have now is not an axiom, but a letter of the alphabet. This makes it clear what an axiom is; not a rational argument, a self-evident concept, or anything else, but a meaningless bare statement of some 'thing' or another.


But aren't you assuming logic is valid in order to prove it's invalid?

It's not really axioms in general which I'm refuting; I fully accept their use as a man made rule regarding communication. What I reject is their being 'objectively true' or used as a ground to build an absolute realist morality from. Logic is a man made paradigm but is capable of limiting itself.

Doesn't that argument undermine itself?

The claim to objective knowledge is not a logical one but a faith-based one, and that is what logic here undermines.

If logic shows logic is invalid, how do we know this follows in the first place?

Logic can show invalid logic as being invalid.
"Logic is the money of the mind." - Karl Marx