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The moral argument for God vs. atheism

philochristos
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1/3/2014 1:08:44 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Here's the moral argument in a nutshell:

1. If there is no God, then no moral statements are objectively true.
2. Some moral statements are objectively true.
3. Therefore, there is a God.

By "moral statements," I mean statements like, "You have a moral obligation to feed your children," or, "It is morally wrong for you to beat your wife," or even statements like, "Kindness is a virtue" or "Cruelty is a vice," and statements like "Rape is evil," or "Charity is good."

I have met atheists who agree with the first premise but do not agree with the second premise. I've met other atheists who disagree with the first premise, but agree with the second premise. But I never see these atheists argue with each other over these premises. It seems like as long as they both reach the same conclusion--that the moral argument is unsound--it doesn't matter what their reasons are.

I sometimes wonder if these differing atheists would debate each other on these premises what would happen. And let's assume that from time to time one of them will persuade the other.

It seems in that case two things could happen. On the one hand, an atheist could be persuaded that both premises are false, in which case he'd remain an atheist. On the other hand, an atheist could be persuaded of the one premise they previously denied, in which case that atheist would be rational obligated to convert to theism. (Of course, there'll be the occasional atheist who will be persuaded that a premise is true, then decide the other one must be false merely out of expediency, i.e. the argument must be unsound one way or another).

So if atheists argued over these premises, it seems at least possible that some atheists could convert each other to theism. That would sure save us theists the trouble! :-)

I'm just curious, among the atheists out there, which of these premises you deny. So sound off in the comments, like so:

Premise 1: Agree
Premise 2: Disagree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Agree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Disagree

This is just to satisfy my curiosity.
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle
Illegalcombatant
Posts: 4,008
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1/3/2014 7:45:16 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Even thou you asked for replies from atheists I am going to extend that to skeptics and testers of arguments/reasons given. :)

1) I use to buy into the claim that objective morals exist but now I am not too sure.

The argument I am most familiar with is a child being tortured then most if not all would all agree the person should be punished cause what they did was morally wrong..........OBJECTIVELY MORALLY WRONG.

But now I see a break in the link here. Once you get passed the emotional aspect of it. What do you have left ? An unsupported assertion that child torture is objectively morally wrong. This seems to suggest that we are equating our own high intensity negative emotions of X = therefore that X is morally wrong or objectively morally wrong.

I don't think that is a defensible position. This has also let me to ponder whether at the end of the day our "morality" is just at its core a form of emotivism, and all our arguments used are just being fuel by a need to justify our emotivism.

2) But even if I am or anyone else is of the view that objective morality exists using "God" as the one and only way that could be true.

In of its self it just an unsupported assertion. I have found arguments used to justify this to have flaws.......

Eg: appeal to ignorace........but how can rape be wrong unless God such and such ?

The ad hocness of claiming about what God can and can't do because it is or is not compatible with its nature.
"Seems like another attempt to insert God into areas our knowledge has yet to penetrate. You figure God would be bigger than the gaps of our ignorance." Drafterman 19/5/12
RhysJaxson
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1/3/2014 7:52:49 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Objective moral values don't really exist. Instead, we have subjective concepts of good and bad, and based on those subjective concepts we can have objectively best moral values, or logically best moral values.

So really, it depends on whether or not both sides can agree on the basic framework from which to derive objectively best morals. Here's an example.

Is it better for every human to have enough food to live, or for nobody to have any food? As long as we can agree that having food is a good thing, or a worthy goal, then we can derive the logically best methods of achieving those goals.

That's all morals are in the end, guidelines designed to achieve a goal. The problem is, believers tend to refuse to accept those basic understandings just to try and prove their point, but none of them actually believe that there is no difference between watching TV with the family and being cooked alive in the oven.

Basically, objectively best moral values exist for any particular goal, but the goals are subjective, and generally based off of our natural instincts for survival and empathy.
We are better than religion. We are better than gods.
AlbinoBunny
Posts: 3,781
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1/4/2014 3:02:56 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/3/2014 1:08:44 PM, philochristos wrote:
Here's the moral argument in a nutshell:

1. If there is no God, then no moral statements are objectively true.
2. Some moral statements are objectively true.
3. Therefore, there is a God.

By "moral statements," I mean statements like, "You have a moral obligation to feed your children," or, "It is morally wrong for you to beat your wife," or even statements like, "Kindness is a virtue" or "Cruelty is a vice," and statements like "Rape is evil," or "Charity is good."

I have met atheists who agree with the first premise but do not agree with the second premise. I've met other atheists who disagree with the first premise, but agree with the second premise. But I never see these atheists argue with each other over these premises. It seems like as long as they both reach the same conclusion--that the moral argument is unsound--it doesn't matter what their reasons are.

I sometimes wonder if these differing atheists would debate each other on these premises what would happen. And let's assume that from time to time one of them will persuade the other.

It seems in that case two things could happen. On the one hand, an atheist could be persuaded that both premises are false, in which case he'd remain an atheist. On the other hand, an atheist could be persuaded of the one premise they previously denied, in which case that atheist would be rational obligated to convert to theism. (Of course, there'll be the occasional atheist who will be persuaded that a premise is true, then decide the other one must be false merely out of expediency, i.e. the argument must be unsound one way or another).

So if atheists argued over these premises, it seems at least possible that some atheists could convert each other to theism. That would sure save us theists the trouble! :-)

I'm just curious, among the atheists out there, which of these premises you deny. So sound off in the comments, like so:

Premise 1: Agree
Premise 2: Disagree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Agree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Disagree

This is just to satisfy my curiosity.

1. If there is no God, then no moral statements are objectively true.

Why would "God" make something "objectively true" and why can no other alternative make something so?

2. Some moral statements are objectively true.

What does "objectively true" mean? Psychopaths don't find anything immoral, so can moral statements be objective?
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phantom
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1/4/2014 3:08:27 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Atheists argue about objective morality all the time. Putting God into it just limits it and makes it less interesting in my opinion. I'm one of those who feels inclined to agree with premise 1 and disagree with premise 2. However, while I'd gladly debate anyone on objective morals, arguing in favor of premise 1 just does not interest me. However, if I ever was persuaded that objective morals existed, I would not necessarily accept the moral argument and if an atheist persuaded me, I probably wouldn't. If an atheist persuaded me, the argument he presented would be secular and thus would have no need of God. So I doubt I'd have to believe in God after being persuaded by a secularist argument that objective morality is true.
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InVinoVeritas
Posts: 59
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1/4/2014 3:09:01 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/3/2014 1:08:44 PM, philochristos wrote:
Here's the moral argument in a nutshell:

1. If there is no God, then no moral statements are objectively true.
2. Some moral statements are objectively true.
3. Therefore, there is a God.

Premise 1: Agree
Premise 2: Disagree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Agree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Disagree
bulproof
Posts: 25,295
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1/4/2014 3:10:36 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/3/2014 1:08:44 PM, philochristos wrote:
Here's the moral argument in a nutshell:

1. If there is no God, then no moral statements are objectively true.
2. Some moral statements are objectively true.
3. Therefore, there is a God.

By "moral statements," I mean statements like, "You have a moral obligation to feed your children," or, "It is morally wrong for you to beat your wife," or even statements like, "Kindness is a virtue" or "Cruelty is a vice," and statements like "Rape is evil," or "Charity is good."

I have met atheists who agree with the first premise but do not agree with the second premise. I've met other atheists who disagree with the first premise, but agree with the second premise. But I never see these atheists argue with each other over these premises. It seems like as long as they both reach the same conclusion--that the moral argument is unsound--it doesn't matter what their reasons are.

I sometimes wonder if these differing atheists would debate each other on these premises what would happen. And let's assume that from time to time one of them will persuade the other.

It seems in that case two things could happen. On the one hand, an atheist could be persuaded that both premises are false, in which case he'd remain an atheist. On the other hand, an atheist could be persuaded of the one premise they previously denied, in which case that atheist would be rational obligated to convert to theism. (Of course, there'll be the occasional atheist who will be persuaded that a premise is true, then decide the other one must be false merely out of expediency, i.e. the argument must be unsound one way or another).

So if atheists argued over these premises, it seems at least possible that some atheists could convert each other to theism. That would sure save us theists the trouble! :-)

I'm just curious, among the atheists out there, which of these premises you deny. So sound off in the comments, like so:

Premise 1: Agree
Premise 2: Disagree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Agree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Disagree

This is just to satisfy my curiosity.

Even with a god no moral statements are objectively true.
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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1/4/2014 5:49:23 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/3/2014 1:08:44 PM, philochristos wrote:
Here's the moral argument in a nutshell:

1. If there is no God, then no moral statements are objectively true.
2. Some moral statements are objectively true.
3. Therefore, there is a God.

By "moral statements," I mean statements like, "You have a moral obligation to feed your children," or, "It is morally wrong for you to beat your wife," or even statements like, "Kindness is a virtue" or "Cruelty is a vice," and statements like "Rape is evil," or "Charity is good."

I have met atheists who agree with the first premise but do not agree with the second premise. I've met other atheists who disagree with the first premise, but agree with the second premise. But I never see these atheists argue with each other over these premises. It seems like as long as they both reach the same conclusion--that the moral argument is unsound--it doesn't matter what their reasons are.

I sometimes wonder if these differing atheists would debate each other on these premises what would happen. And let's assume that from time to time one of them will persuade the other.

It seems in that case two things could happen. On the one hand, an atheist could be persuaded that both premises are false, in which case he'd remain an atheist. On the other hand, an atheist could be persuaded of the one premise they previously denied, in which case that atheist would be rational obligated to convert to theism. (Of course, there'll be the occasional atheist who will be persuaded that a premise is true, then decide the other one must be false merely out of expediency, i.e. the argument must be unsound one way or another).

So if atheists argued over these premises, it seems at least possible that some atheists could convert each other to theism. That would sure save us theists the trouble! :-)

I'm just curious, among the atheists out there, which of these premises you deny. So sound off in the comments, like so:

Premise 1: Agree
Premise 2: Disagree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Agree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Disagree

This is just to satisfy my curiosity.

I think 2 is most likely false, but I am not certain. I think 1 is most likely true, but not certain. If there is some transcendent source of morality, and morality is essentially tied to personhood, then a God starts making a whole lot of sense. However, if our 'moral' intuitions are just drummed into us by some natural evolutionary mechanism, which we have good reason to believe is actually the case, then it is not really in need of anything transcendent. 'Morality' would just be an aid to survival with regards to human beings, and no other grand being would have to have it.
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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1/4/2014 5:56:23 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Even though more moral philsophers are moral realists than not, moral anti-realism is still alive in well in philosophy according to the biggest philosophy survey:

Out of 102 moral philosophers, these are the numbers:

Meta-ethics: moral realism or moral anti-realism?Accept or lean toward: moral realism57 / 102 (55.9%)
Accept or lean toward: moral anti-realism27 / 102 (26.5%)
Other18 / 102 (17.6%)

So, moral realism is more popular, but moral anti-realism is still in the game.

Also, interestingly enough, out of the moral philosophers, most of them are Atheists:

Accept or lean toward: atheism81 / 102 (79.4%)
Other14 / 102 (13.7%)
Accept or lean toward: theism7 / 102 (6.9%)

http://philpapers.org...

This seems to suggest that in moral philosophy; Atheistic moral realism is the most popular position.
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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1/4/2014 7:19:16 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/4/2014 5:49:23 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 1/3/2014 1:08:44 PM, philochristos wrote:
Here's the moral argument in a nutshell:

1. If there is no God, then no moral statements are objectively true.
2. Some moral statements are objectively true.
3. Therefore, there is a God.

By "moral statements," I mean statements like, "You have a moral obligation to feed your children," or, "It is morally wrong for you to beat your wife," or even statements like, "Kindness is a virtue" or "Cruelty is a vice," and statements like "Rape is evil," or "Charity is good."

I have met atheists who agree with the first premise but do not agree with the second premise. I've met other atheists who disagree with the first premise, but agree with the second premise. But I never see these atheists argue with each other over these premises. It seems like as long as they both reach the same conclusion--that the moral argument is unsound--it doesn't matter what their reasons are.

I sometimes wonder if these differing atheists would debate each other on these premises what would happen. And let's assume that from time to time one of them will persuade the other.

It seems in that case two things could happen. On the one hand, an atheist could be persuaded that both premises are false, in which case he'd remain an atheist. On the other hand, an atheist could be persuaded of the one premise they previously denied, in which case that atheist would be rational obligated to convert to theism. (Of course, there'll be the occasional atheist who will be persuaded that a premise is true, then decide the other one must be false merely out of expediency, i.e. the argument must be unsound one way or another).

So if atheists argued over these premises, it seems at least possible that some atheists could convert each other to theism. That would sure save us theists the trouble! :-)

I'm just curious, among the atheists out there, which of these premises you deny. So sound off in the comments, like so:

Premise 1: Agree
Premise 2: Disagree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Agree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Disagree

This is just to satisfy my curiosity.

I think 2 is most likely false, but I am not certain. I think 1 is most likely true, but not certain. If there is some transcendent source of morality, and morality is essentially tied to personhood, then a God starts making a whole lot of sense. However, if our 'moral' intuitions are just drummed into us by some natural evolutionary mechanism, which we have good reason to believe is actually the case, then it is not really in need of anything transcendent. 'Morality' would just be an aid to survival with regards to human beings, and no other grand being would have to have it.

RT, I may disagree with you on alot of things, but it's nice to see someone being an honest thinker. I commend you on that.
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philochristos
Posts: 2,614
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1/4/2014 7:46:14 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/4/2014 3:08:27 PM, phantom wrote:
However, if I ever was persuaded that objective morals existed, I would not necessarily accept the moral argument and if an atheist persuaded me, I probably wouldn't. If an atheist persuaded me, the argument he presented would be secular and thus would have no need of God. So I doubt I'd have to believe in God after being persuaded by a secularist argument that objective morality is true.

I don't think a secular argument for the existence of objective morals would necessarily give you any reason to think there's no need for God. After all, it's possible to show that something exists without making any reference at all to what caused it to exist. We all know the universe exists, but we disagree on why it exists. If God is what grounds morality, it's still possible for people to know that there are objective morals without knowing that God is what grounds them.
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle
philochristos
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1/4/2014 8:08:00 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Thank you all for your feed back!
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle
KingDebater
Posts: 687
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1/5/2014 7:58:58 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/3/2014 1:08:44 PM, philochristos wrote:
Here's the moral argument in a nutshell:

1. If there is no God, then no moral statements are objectively true.
2. Some moral statements are objectively true.
3. Therefore, there is a God.

By "moral statements," I mean statements like, "You have a moral obligation to feed your children," or, "It is morally wrong for you to beat your wife," or even statements like, "Kindness is a virtue" or "Cruelty is a vice," and statements like "Rape is evil," or "Charity is good."

I have met atheists who agree with the first premise but do not agree with the second premise. I've met other atheists who disagree with the first premise, but agree with the second premise. But I never see these atheists argue with each other over these premises. It seems like as long as they both reach the same conclusion--that the moral argument is unsound--it doesn't matter what their reasons are.

I sometimes wonder if these differing atheists would debate each other on these premises what would happen. And let's assume that from time to time one of them will persuade the other.

It seems in that case two things could happen. On the one hand, an atheist could be persuaded that both premises are false, in which case he'd remain an atheist. On the other hand, an atheist could be persuaded of the one premise they previously denied, in which case that atheist would be rational obligated to convert to theism. (Of course, there'll be the occasional atheist who will be persuaded that a premise is true, then decide the other one must be false merely out of expediency, i.e. the argument must be unsound one way or another).

So if atheists argued over these premises, it seems at least possible that some atheists could convert each other to theism. That would sure save us theists the trouble! :-)
Nice thought, but I think the premise most atheists disagree with is the second.

I'm just curious, among the atheists out there, which of these premises you deny. So sound off in the comments, like so:

Premise 1: Agree
Premise 2: Disagree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Agree

or

Premise 1: Disagree
Premise 2: Disagree

This is just to satisfy my curiosity.
unitedandy
Posts: 1,173
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1/5/2014 4:59:18 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
I'd agree with P2 and reject P1.

Me and RT had a discussion about this in a thread a month or so ago. I must admit, I can't really fathom the mindset of anyone who rejects there are moral values. Such a position seems to me to violently contradict our strongest intuitions about how the world really is. It would take a spectacularly good argument to even consider that the holocaust, for example, was not objectively wrong.

Not only that, I think any atheist concerned with things like the problem of evil, Hell, biblical atrocities, social harm caused by religion and so on is committed to the view that there are objectively better states of affairs for sentient beings.
Illegalcombatant
Posts: 4,008
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1/5/2014 5:36:58 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/5/2014 4:59:18 PM, unitedandy wrote:
I'd agree with P2 and reject P1.

Me and RT had a discussion about this in a thread a month or so ago. I must admit, I can't really fathom the mindset of anyone who rejects there are moral values. Such a position seems to me to violently contradict our strongest intuitions about how the world really is. It would take a spectacularly good argument to even consider that the holocaust, for example, was not objectively wrong.

This seems to be a blend of incredulity & appeal to emotion. Oh you can't really believe that............but but but the holocaust................you horrible horrible person.

Incredulity & appeal to emotion are considered logical fallacies correct ?


Not only that, I think any atheist concerned with things like the problem of evil, Hell, biblical atrocities, social harm caused by religion and so on is committed to the view that there are objectively better states of affairs for sentient beings.
"Seems like another attempt to insert God into areas our knowledge has yet to penetrate. You figure God would be bigger than the gaps of our ignorance." Drafterman 19/5/12
philochristos
Posts: 2,614
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1/6/2014 12:34:10 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/5/2014 5:36:58 PM, Illegalcombatant wrote:
At 1/5/2014 4:59:18 PM, unitedandy wrote:
I'd agree with P2 and reject P1.

Me and RT had a discussion about this in a thread a month or so ago. I must admit, I can't really fathom the mindset of anyone who rejects there are moral values. Such a position seems to me to violently contradict our strongest intuitions about how the world really is. It would take a spectacularly good argument to even consider that the holocaust, for example, was not objectively wrong.

This seems to be a blend of incredulity & appeal to emotion. Oh you can't really believe that............but but but the holocaust................you horrible horrible person.

Incredulity & appeal to emotion are considered logical fallacies correct ?

Why do people always consider it an appeal to emotion when somebody points out something like the holocaust as a clear case example of a moral wrong? I don't see where emotion fits into it unless you are equating "strongest intuitions" with "emotions." I think that is a mistake. It is possible for an action to seem morally wrong to a person without that person feeling any emotion about it whatsoever. And it is possible for somebody to have an emotional reaction against somebody's action without them thinking that action is morally wrong. So moral intuitions and emotions are just not the same thing.

Think about this for a second. Almost all of us would get far more emotional if somebody we loved were tortured and murdered than we would if we heard on TV that somebody we had never even heard of was tortured and murdered. But we'd recognize that the torture and murder of the unknown person was just as wrong as the torture and murder of our loved one. In fact, a lot of us would have no emotional reaction whatsoever to hearing on the news that somebody was tortured and murdered since we know that sort of thing happens all around the world all the time. But we still have a strong intuition that it's morally wrong.
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle
bulproof
Posts: 25,295
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1/6/2014 12:49:49 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/6/2014 12:34:10 AM, philochristos wrote:
At 1/5/2014 5:36:58 PM, Illegalcombatant wrote:
At 1/5/2014 4:59:18 PM, unitedandy wrote:
I'd agree with P2 and reject P1.

Me and RT had a discussion about this in a thread a month or so ago. I must admit, I can't really fathom the mindset of anyone who rejects there are moral values. Such a position seems to me to violently contradict our strongest intuitions about how the world really is. It would take a spectacularly good argument to even consider that the holocaust, for example, was not objectively wrong.

This seems to be a blend of incredulity & appeal to emotion. Oh you can't really believe that............but but but the holocaust................you horrible horrible person.

Incredulity & appeal to emotion are considered logical fallacies correct ?

Why do people always consider it an appeal to emotion when somebody points out something like the holocaust as a clear case example of a moral wrong? I don't see where emotion fits into it unless you are equating "strongest intuitions" with "emotions." I think that is a mistake. It is possible for an action to seem morally wrong to a person without that person feeling any emotion about it whatsoever. And it is possible for somebody to have an emotional reaction against somebody's action without them thinking that action is morally wrong. So moral intuitions and emotions are just not the same thing.

Think about this for a second. Almost all of us would get far more emotional if somebody we loved were tortured and murdered than we would if we heard on TV that somebody we had never even heard of was tortured and murdered. But we'd recognize that the torture and murder of the unknown person was just as wrong as the torture and murder of our loved one. In fact, a lot of us would have no emotional reaction whatsoever to hearing on the news that somebody was tortured and murdered since we know that sort of thing happens all around the world all the time. But we still have a strong intuition that it's morally wrong.

Can you describe an objectively moral imperative?
Illegalcombatant
Posts: 4,008
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1/6/2014 1:30:39 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/6/2014 12:34:10 AM, philochristos wrote:
At 1/5/2014 5:36:58 PM, Illegalcombatant wrote:
At 1/5/2014 4:59:18 PM, unitedandy wrote:
I'd agree with P2 and reject P1.

Me and RT had a discussion about this in a thread a month or so ago. I must admit, I can't really fathom the mindset of anyone who rejects there are moral values. Such a position seems to me to violently contradict our strongest intuitions about how the world really is. It would take a spectacularly good argument to even consider that the holocaust, for example, was not objectively wrong.

This seems to be a blend of incredulity & appeal to emotion. Oh you can't really believe that............but but but the holocaust................you horrible horrible person.

Incredulity & appeal to emotion are considered logical fallacies correct ?

Why do people always consider it an appeal to emotion when somebody points out something like the holocaust as a clear case example of a moral wrong? I don't see where emotion fits into it unless you are equating "strongest intuitions" with "emotions." I think that is a mistake. It is possible for an action to seem morally wrong to a person without that person feeling any emotion about it whatsoever. And it is possible for somebody to have an emotional reaction against somebody's action without them thinking that action is morally wrong. So moral intuitions and emotions are just not the same thing.

Cause usually it's presented in such a way to appeal to your emotion. Just think about the two cases brought up already.........child rape and the holocaust. They have much more emotional impact than stealing cookies from the cookie jar.


Think about this for a second. Almost all of us would get far more emotional if somebody we loved were tortured and murdered than we would if we heard on TV that somebody we had never even heard of was tortured and murdered. But we'd recognize that the torture and murder of the unknown person was just as wrong as the torture and murder of our loved one. In fact, a lot of us would have no emotional reaction whatsoever to hearing on the news that somebody was tortured and murdered since we know that sort of thing happens all around the world all the time. But we still have a strong intuition that it's morally wrong.

If you can present a moral argument based on intuition that doesn't make any appeal to emotional then good for you, at least your argument can't be objected to as an appeal to emotion fallacy.
"Seems like another attempt to insert God into areas our knowledge has yet to penetrate. You figure God would be bigger than the gaps of our ignorance." Drafterman 19/5/12
Illegalcombatant
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1/6/2014 1:51:21 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/5/2014 4:59:18 PM, unitedandy wrote:
I'd agree with P2 and reject P1.

Me and RT had a discussion about this in a thread a month or so ago. I must admit, I can't really fathom the mindset of anyone who rejects there are moral values. Such a position seems to me to violently contradict our strongest intuitions about how the world really is. It would take a spectacularly good argument to even consider that the holocaust, for example, was not objectively wrong.

Not only that, I think any atheist concerned with things like the problem of evil, Hell, biblical atrocities, social harm caused by religion and so on is committed to the view that there are objectively better states of affairs for sentient beings.

That's the Sam Harris argument in a nut shell. Dr craig counters that conflates well being with morality and they are not necessarily one and the same.

Sam Harris counters Craig isn't offering a different morality, hell is just a state of immense suffering that one should seek to avoid and all the religious claims that claim to achieve that end.
"Seems like another attempt to insert God into areas our knowledge has yet to penetrate. You figure God would be bigger than the gaps of our ignorance." Drafterman 19/5/12
unitedandy
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1/6/2014 12:38:51 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 1/6/2014 12:34:10 AM, philochristos wrote:
At 1/5/2014 5:36:58 PM, Illegalcombatant wrote:
At 1/5/2014 4:59:18 PM, unitedandy wrote:
I'd agree with P2 and reject P1.

Me and RT had a discussion about this in a thread a month or so ago. I must admit, I can't really fathom the mindset of anyone who rejects there are moral values. Such a position seems to me to violently contradict our strongest intuitions about how the world really is. It would take a spectacularly good argument to even consider that the holocaust, for example, was not objectively wrong.

This seems to be a blend of incredulity & appeal to emotion. Oh you can't really believe that............but but but the holocaust................you horrible horrible person.

Incredulity & appeal to emotion are considered logical fallacies correct ?

Why do people always consider it an appeal to emotion when somebody points out something like the holocaust as a clear case example of a moral wrong? I don't see where emotion fits into it unless you are equating "strongest intuitions" with "emotions." I think that is a mistake. It is possible for an action to seem morally wrong to a person without that person feeling any emotion about it whatsoever. And it is possible for somebody to have an emotional reaction against somebody's action without them thinking that action is morally wrong. So moral intuitions and emotions are just not the same thing.

Think about this for a second. Almost all of us would get far more emotional if somebody we loved were tortured and murdered than we would if we heard on TV that somebody we had never even heard of was tortured and murdered. But we'd recognize that the torture and murder of the unknown person was just as wrong as the torture and murder of our loved one. In fact, a lot of us would have no emotional reaction whatsoever to hearing on the news that somebody was tortured and murdered since we know that sort of thing happens all around the world all the time. But we still have a strong intuition that it's morally wrong.

Couldn't of put it better. Obviously, emotion enters the fray of moral atrocities and rightly so. Things like the Holocaust are the clearest examples of moral wrong-doing and to even try to airbrush emotion out of the picture is just not reflective of the real world. Recognising the world as it is can't be fallacious. Not doing so presents a straw-man.

That being said, I already admitted that if there were good REASON to doubt our intuitions, I'd abandon my belief in such values. As for appealing to incredulity, read what I said. I'm incredulous because of how seemingly irrational it is. Again, reason-based.