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Morals

TheBloodyScot
Posts: 59
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10/31/2012 10:22:12 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Is there any chance whatsoever that our morals could be pre-programed, meaning that we have them due to evolution. My logic is in regard to moral of not killing someone. I think that we could have evolved the aversion to killing other people because if you killed everything that moved, there is a chance that they could be your offspring. If you killed your offspring, your genes would not be passed on.
Something is not worth doing if it is not worth doing right.

"Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?"
-Epicurus

"I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing."
-Socrates
phantom
Posts: 6,774
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10/31/2012 12:38:07 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Evolution is the only option.
"Music is a zen-like ecstatic state where you become the new man of the future, the Nietzschean merger of Apollo and Dionysus." Ray Manzarek (The Doors)
darkkermit
Posts: 11,204
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10/31/2012 12:41:52 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 10/31/2012 10:22:12 AM, TheBloodyScot wrote:
Is there any chance whatsoever that our morals could be pre-programed, meaning that we have them due to evolution. My logic is in regard to moral of not killing someone. I think that we could have evolved the aversion to killing other people because if you killed everything that moved, there is a chance that they could be your offspring. If you killed your offspring, your genes would not be passed on.

Yes, there's a whole discipline on it.

A good read if you want to a theory on how altruism formed google "The Road to Peace" altruism and war.

There's also something called kin selection. We evolve to protect those we are genetically close to because they are also carriers of our genes, so there are evolutionary positive reasons to protect them.
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philochristos
Posts: 2,614
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11/14/2012 12:14:43 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
It's possible, but it's not without its difficulties. I remember reading one of Nietzsche's books (Twilight of the Idols, I think), and he was arguing against traditional morality on the basis that it suppresses and negates our instincts. But it seems to me that's exactly what makes morality a good thing. Morality is what makes us civilized precisely because it negates our instincts. If we gave into our every instinct, then we'd be just like every other animal on the planet.

It seems to me that if evolution is to explain morality, it's inexplicable why we would have these internal conflicts--a natural urges pressing us to act one way, and our sense of morality urging us to act another way. If our motives and urges were purely the result of evolution, it seems to me that we would simply have instincts to act a particular way, and then we would act on those instincts. There would be no difference between our instincts and our morals. Both urges would meld into one and be indistinguishable.
"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