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Are you born with morals?

whatledge
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6/8/2010 9:18:15 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
A pelican feeding the blind pelican in the flock, for what purpose, if not instinctive altruism? I read the article below, and it has come to attention that it is natural to cooperate just as much it is to compete. My friend and I were arguing about where our morals come from, he claimed it came from religions and that without religion there is no reason to be moral and society would be like a jungle. But I think this is blatantly false. Are theists only acting good so they don't face the consequences in the afterlife? I agree that morality is taught, to an extent, but to claim that religion is the source is ridiculous. In fact, truth be told, all said and done, all theists must agree that religion has caused some of the most immoral acts in this world, (e.g. 9/11, terrorists, crusades). While religion may have contributed to morality, it is clearly no the origin of it.

http://content.usatoday.com...
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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6/9/2010 1:13:19 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/8/2010 10:50:18 PM, Kinesis wrote:
No informed theist thinks religion is the source of morality. They think God is the source of morality.

This.

And if you believe religion is the source of morality instead of God, how can you even call yourself religious in the first place? It's almost an admittance that religion is a just an arbitrary system of ethics that isn't grounded in God, otherwise you would say that morality come from God.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
GeoLaureate8
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6/9/2010 1:14:53 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
And yes, I believe we're born with morals. People all generally have a sense of empathy, as well as being capable of recognizing when actions result in suffering.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
Atheism
Posts: 2,033
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6/9/2010 1:27:01 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
Hm. Morals are innately born with you, but they still are subjective, as they can change. Really, it all depends on the parents indoctrinating, and the nine months inside the womb.
I miss the old members.
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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6/9/2010 1:34:26 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 1:19:12 AM, TheSkeptic wrote:
Morals? You mean those odd objectively prescriptive "things"?

You're a moral skeptic, so you believe morals exist, but that no one can have moral knowledge?
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
JustCallMeTarzan
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6/9/2010 1:40:58 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/8/2010 10:50:18 PM, Kinesis wrote:
No informed theist thinks religion is the source of morality. They think God is the source of morality.

No informed theist thinks God is the source of morality either... the simple thought experiment of "If God commanded you to rape babies, would it be moral or immoral to do so?" proves this to be the case....
GeoLaureate8
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6/9/2010 1:45:40 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 1:40:58 AM, JustCallMeTarzan wrote:
At 6/8/2010 10:50:18 PM, Kinesis wrote:
No informed theist thinks religion is the source of morality. They think God is the source of morality.

No informed theist thinks God is the source of morality either... the simple thought experiment of "If God commanded you to rape babies, would it be moral or immoral to do so?" proves this to be the case....

Your definition of an "informed theist" seems to be "atheist." The thought experiment (which seems to be based off Socrates' Euthyphro Dilemma) is not one that any theist, informed or not, would accept. Obviously it's an atheist argument.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
Kinesis
Posts: 3,667
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6/9/2010 4:24:13 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 1:40:58 AM, JustCallMeTarzan wrote:
At 6/8/2010 10:50:18 PM, Kinesis wrote:
No informed theist thinks religion is the source of morality. They think God is the source of morality.

No informed theist thinks God is the source of morality either... the simple thought experiment of "If God commanded you to rape babies, would it be moral or immoral to do so?" proves this to be the case....

Assuming God is A. Omni-benevolent and B. The source of morality, God would necessarily have a morally sufficient reason for ordering child rape.

Playing with intuitions doesn't prove anything.
JustCallMeTarzan
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6/9/2010 5:54:08 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 1:45:40 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 6/9/2010 1:40:58 AM, JustCallMeTarzan wrote:
At 6/8/2010 10:50:18 PM, Kinesis wrote:
No informed theist thinks religion is the source of morality. They think God is the source of morality.

No informed theist thinks God is the source of morality either... the simple thought experiment of "If God commanded you to rape babies, would it be moral or immoral to do so?" proves this to be the case....

Your definition of an "informed theist" seems to be "atheist." The thought experiment (which seems to be based off Socrates' Euthyphro Dilemma) is not one that any theist, informed or not, would accept. Obviously it's an atheist argument.

That doesn't make any sense - a similar thought experiment was conducted on Amish children of varying ages, and the results of that study showed that even religiously conservative faiths like the Amish, Catholics, and O. Jews did not believe absolute morality came from God. I can find the study if you want - it's linked in one of my debates...

The thought experiment is in no way an atheist argument - the conclusion is that God isn't responsible for morality, not that God doesn't exist...
JustCallMeTarzan
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6/9/2010 5:57:29 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 4:24:13 AM, Kinesis wrote:
At 6/9/2010 1:40:58 AM, JustCallMeTarzan wrote:
At 6/8/2010 10:50:18 PM, Kinesis wrote:
No informed theist thinks religion is the source of morality. They think God is the source of morality.

No informed theist thinks God is the source of morality either... the simple thought experiment of "If God commanded you to rape babies, would it be moral or immoral to do so?" proves this to be the case....

Assuming God is A. Omni-benevolent and B. The source of morality, God would necessarily have a morally sufficient reason for ordering child rape.

Playing with intuitions doesn't prove anything.

And what, pray tell, would you consider a morally sufficient reason for raping a baby? Furthermore, your assumption that God is the source of morality begs the question - we're DISPUTING that very point! Not to mention the lack of evidence for your first assumption given what is in the Bible...

Also, there is in fact good evidence that morality has an intuitive component, so people's intuitions WOULD prove something.
popculturepooka
Posts: 7,924
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6/9/2010 6:20:14 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 5:57:29 PM, JustCallMeTarzan wrote:
At 6/9/2010 4:24:13 AM, Kinesis wrote:
At 6/9/2010 1:40:58 AM, JustCallMeTarzan wrote:
At 6/8/2010 10:50:18 PM, Kinesis wrote:
No informed theist thinks religion is the source of morality. They think God is the source of morality.

No informed theist thinks God is the source of morality either... the simple thought experiment of "If God commanded you to rape babies, would it be moral or immoral to do so?" proves this to be the case....

Assuming God is A. Omni-benevolent and B. The source of morality, God would necessarily have a morally sufficient reason for ordering child rape.

Playing with intuitions doesn't prove anything.

And what, pray tell, would you consider a morally sufficient reason for raping a baby? Furthermore, your assumption that God is the source of morality begs the question - we're DISPUTING that very point! Not to mention the lack of evidence for your first assumption given what is in the Bible...


Hmm, so because you can't see a morally sufficient reasons there must be none? That's called a bad no-see-um inference.

Besides I'd just say it's impossible for God to command that anyway.

Also, there is in fact good evidence that morality has an intuitive component, so people's intuitions WOULD prove something.
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TheSkeptic
Posts: 1,362
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6/9/2010 6:35:39 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 1:34:26 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 6/9/2010 1:19:12 AM, TheSkeptic wrote:
Morals? You mean those odd objectively prescriptive "things"?

You're a moral skeptic, so you believe morals exist, but that no one can have moral knowledge?

Nope, I don't believe morals exist in the first place (if by that, you mean objectively prescriptive values). Here's a simple question you can ask yourself: what necessary reason do you have for being moral?
Ragnar_Rahl
Posts: 19,297
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6/9/2010 6:49:21 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
A pelican feeding the blind pelican in the flock, for what purpose, if not instinctive altruism?
No purpose. biology isn't telelogical.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
whatledge
Posts: 210
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6/9/2010 7:13:17 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 6:35:39 PM, TheSkeptic wrote:
At 6/9/2010 1:34:26 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 6/9/2010 1:19:12 AM, TheSkeptic wrote:
Morals? You mean those odd objectively prescriptive "things"?

You're a moral skeptic, so you believe morals exist, but that no one can have moral knowledge?

Nope, I don't believe morals exist in the first place (if by that, you mean objectively prescriptive values). Here's a simple question you can ask yourself: what necessary reason do you have for being moral?

Common decency, civility, and ethics. Lets look at the example Tarzan gave. Wouldn't you feel disgusted by someone raping babies? What makes you feel disgust, and what necessary reason do you have for wanting to stop it?
Cerebral_Narcissist
Posts: 10,806
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6/10/2010 2:52:35 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/8/2010 9:18:15 PM, whatledge wrote:
A pelican feeding the blind pelican in the flock, for what purpose, if not instinctive altruism? I read the article below, and it has come to attention that it is natural to cooperate just as much it is to compete. My friend and I were arguing about where our morals come from, he claimed it came from religions and that without religion there is no reason to be moral and society would be like a jungle. But I think this is blatantly false. Are theists only acting good so they don't face the consequences in the afterlife? I agree that morality is taught, to an extent, but to claim that religion is the source is ridiculous. In fact, truth be told, all said and done, all theists must agree that religion has caused some of the most immoral acts in this world, (e.g. 9/11, terrorists, crusades). While religion may have contributed to morality, it is clearly no the origin of it.

http://content.usatoday.com...

Morality is subjective, and a matter of perspective you can't really discuss it on an intellectual level whilst considering some acts more moral than others, unless of course the person is actually violating their own morality. To Bin Laden 9-11 was a moral act, if he got drunk then maybe that would be an immoral act.

But anyway, morality is social conditioning. It can be derived from religion, it can be acquried inspite of religion.

But you are right in that we probably do have a cooperation instinct.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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6/10/2010 3:05:39 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 6:35:39 PM, TheSkeptic wrote:
Nope, I don't believe morals exist in the first place (if by that, you mean objectively prescriptive values). Here's a simple question you can ask yourself: what necessary reason do you have for being moral?

To escape suffering for myself and others.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
Kinesis
Posts: 3,667
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6/10/2010 3:30:48 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 5:57:29 PM, JustCallMeTarzan wrote:
And what, pray tell, would you consider a morally sufficient reason for raping a baby?:

Beside the point. If there is no morally sufficient reason for ordering child rape, God would never order it.

Furthermore, your assumption that God is the source of morality begs the question - we're DISPUTING that very point!:

No. We were disputing whether or not Christians really believe God is the source of morality. Therefore, this discussion operates under the Christian world view.

Not to mention the lack of evidence for your first assumption given what is in the Bible...:

I dunno. I assume it's in the bible somewhere if Christians believe it.

Also, there is in fact good evidence that morality has an intuitive component, so people's intuitions WOULD prove something.

I don't understand what you're getting at here. What do you mean by morality?
Kinesis
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6/10/2010 3:36:37 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/9/2010 6:20:14 PM, popculturepooka wrote:
Hmm, so because you can't see a morally sufficient reasons there must be none? That's called a bad no-see-um inference.

Besides I'd just say it's impossible for God to command that anyway.

Those statements seem to be in conflict. :P
popculturepooka
Posts: 7,924
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6/10/2010 5:56:31 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/10/2010 3:36:37 AM, Kinesis wrote:
At 6/9/2010 6:20:14 PM, popculturepooka wrote:
Hmm, so because you can't see a morally sufficient reasons there must be none? That's called a bad no-see-um inference.

Besides I'd just say it's impossible for God to command that anyway.

Those statements seem to be in conflict. :P

Nah, the first part is meant to apply to the problem of evil in general - not really to that case as I consider it a non-option in the first place.
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brian_eggleston
Posts: 3,347
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6/10/2010 9:48:14 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
I was just thinking, is theft always immoral?

I mean if you stole a large bundle of cash off a drugs baron and gave it to charity, wouldn't that be a morally sound (albeit dangerous) thing to do?
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Ragnar_Rahl
Posts: 19,297
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6/10/2010 11:12:24 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/10/2010 9:48:14 AM, brian_eggleston wrote:
I was just thinking, is theft always immoral?

I mean if you stole a large bundle of cash off a drugs baron and gave it to charity, wouldn't that be a morally sound (albeit dangerous) thing to do?

No. He sells drugs. He has a right to sell drugs.

Now if you steal from a murderer, sure, go ahead.

The problem is stealing from people who have rights, not people who have forfeited all claim to rights.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Kinesis
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6/10/2010 11:39:28 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/10/2010 5:56:31 AM, popculturepooka wrote:
At 6/10/2010 3:36:37 AM, Kinesis wrote:
At 6/9/2010 6:20:14 PM, popculturepooka wrote:
Hmm, so because you can't see a morally sufficient reasons there must be none? That's called a bad no-see-um inference.

Besides I'd just say it's impossible for God to command that anyway.

Those statements seem to be in conflict. :P

Nah, the first part is meant to apply to the problem of evil in general - not really to that case as I consider it a non-option in the first place.

Okay...why?
Cerebral_Narcissist
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6/10/2010 11:42:15 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/10/2010 11:12:24 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
At 6/10/2010 9:48:14 AM, brian_eggleston wrote:
I was just thinking, is theft always immoral?

I mean if you stole a large bundle of cash off a drugs baron and gave it to charity, wouldn't that be a morally sound (albeit dangerous) thing to do?

No. He sells drugs. He has a right to sell drugs.

Now if you steal from a murderer, sure, go ahead.

The problem is stealing from people who have rights, not people who have forfeited all claim to rights.

If he is a heroin baron he is also a murderer. Slit his throat and steal his stuff. Perfectly moral.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
Ragnar_Rahl
Posts: 19,297
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6/10/2010 11:50:12 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/10/2010 11:42:15 AM, Cerebral_Narcissist wrote:
At 6/10/2010 11:12:24 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
At 6/10/2010 9:48:14 AM, brian_eggleston wrote:
I was just thinking, is theft always immoral?

I mean if you stole a large bundle of cash off a drugs baron and gave it to charity, wouldn't that be a morally sound (albeit dangerous) thing to do?

No. He sells drugs. He has a right to sell drugs.

Now if you steal from a murderer, sure, go ahead.

The problem is stealing from people who have rights, not people who have forfeited all claim to rights.

If he is a heroin baron he is also a murderer.
How so?

(Remember, volenti non fit injuria)
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
innomen
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6/11/2010 12:54:03 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 6/10/2010 3:05:39 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 6/9/2010 6:35:39 PM, TheSkeptic wrote:
Nope, I don't believe morals exist in the first place (if by that, you mean objectively prescriptive values). Here's a simple question you can ask yourself: what necessary reason do you have for being moral?

To escape suffering for myself and others.

How do you explain acts of morality that are illogical where the risks far outweigh the benefits - as a commonly known example, Saving Private Ryan. That is a completely illogical act that puts more suffering in jeopardy than can possibly be gained, and yet the act is not only moral by most standards, but raised high as heroic.
InsertNameHere
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6/11/2010 12:58:25 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
This is a difficult question to answer as everybody has different ideas about what is moral and immoral although most people can agree there are some things that are never moral such as murder.