God either does not intervene, or does not exist.
I simply do NOT hold the belief that a monotheistic, omnipotent, omniscient God exists until proportional, sufficient evidence is presented.
There is a box. We haven't opened the box yet. So therefore, we have no sufficient justification that the box contains anything.
Same goes with the religious claim.
How are we capable of behaving properly without God's intervention (If he exists)?
You don't need a holy book to tell you what is right or wrong. If anything holy books can teach you a lot of things like genocide, infanticide, rape, murder etc. Yes, I am looking at the Koran and Bible as I type. So I go without the books and let my morals which come from rational thought prevail over stone age myths. You do not need a book to tell you that treating other with respect will result in others treating you with respect.
So where does morality come from, if not from God? Two places: evolution and secular reasoning. Despite the notion that beasts behave bestially, scientists studying our primate relatives, such as chimpanzees, see evolutionary rudiments of morality: behaviors that look for all the world like altruism, sympathy, moral disapproval, sharing — even notions of fairness. This is exactly what we'd expect if human morality, like many other behaviors, is built partly on the genes of our ancestors.
And the conditions under which humans evolved are precisely those that would favor the evolution of moral codes: small social groups of big-brained animals. When individuals in a group can get to know, recognize and remember each other, this gives an advantage to genes that make you behave nicely towards others in the group, reward those who cooperate and punish those who cheat. That's how natural selection can build morality. Secular reason adds another layer atop these evolved behaviors, helping us extend our moral sentiments far beyond our small group of friends and relatives — even to animals.
Should we be afraid that a morality based on our genes and our brains is somehow inferior to one handed down from above? Not at all. In fact, it's far better, because secular morality has a flexibility and responsiveness to social change that no God-given morality could ever have. Secular morality is what pushes religion to improve its own dogma on issues such as slavery and the treatment of women. Secular morality is what prevents ethically irrelevant matters — what we eat, read or wear, when we work, or whom we have sex with — from being grouped with matters of genuine moral concern, like rape and child abuse. And really, isn't it better to be moral because you've worked out for yourself — in conjunction with your group — the right thing to do, rather than because you want to propitiate a god or avoid punishment in the hereafter?
Nor should we worry that a society based on secular morality will degenerate into lawlessness. That experiment has already been done — in countries such as Sweden and Denmark that are largely filled with non-believers and atheists. I can vouch from experience that secular European nations are full of well-behaved and well-meaning citizens, not criminals and sociopaths running amok. In fact, you can make a good case that those countries, with their liberal social views and extensive aid for the sick, old and disadvantaged, are even more moral than America. Thanks for reading and have a nice day.
You do not need God in your life in order to be good. We gain understanding of what is right and wrong from the people we interact with around us. We learn what is right and wrong during the socilization process of our lives. We learn this while we are young.
God doesn't make you good. Hopefully, a relationship with God & belief in Him makes an individual better. The belief in a higher power, I think, has a foundation in the fact that believers accept that a higher power must exist. They feel it ... Know it ... Are comfortable with it ... Even though they cannot see it. Matters of the heart, like faith, do not need tangible proof. They also believe in the after-life. Since we are taught that works alone won't get you an eternal life, the need for faith runs even deeper. Christians, Jews & Muslims all believe in the after-life, i.E. Heaven & hell. They may call it by different names, but the definition is pretty much the same. Believing in God doesn't make an individual good or bad. Humans, by nature, are sinners. Therefore, even believers are guilty of behaving badly. The idea is to have a relationship with God ... And allow that relationship to bring you a better, more complete life on earth as well as guide you to eternity.
My supporting arguments will be anecdotal because I think it to be a valid argument in this instance.
I can honestly say that I am a good person. Of course I make the usual mistakes, but I know right from wrong. And yet, I was brought up with not a mention of god nor religion in my family. I was actually, I guess you could say, quite distanced from it as a child. It was something that was mentioned in passing as existing, but I never even knew anyone who went to church. It wasn't until I was in my early twenties that I even met a true, devout Christian. And you know what? She was rather an awful person. She was forever judging me for things that she thought were "wrong", such as having a boyfriend (who I am still with years later!) at 24 and having him stay over on weekends. This was all very normal behaviour to me for people my age - everyone I knew thought it was "normal", too. I see nothing wrong with it. She was forever critical of my own non-beliefs, continually questioning me as to how and why I don't believe in a god, to the point where I felt harassed. I didn't give her such grief for her beliefs. Even when her mother came to visit, and asked me what I was studying, as soon as I said archaeology with a major interest in palaeolithic/human evolution, she wouldn't speak a word to me! How's that for judgmental? Certainly not what I'd call "good".
Aside from that, from what I have seen/read/heard etc. There is just nothing there that makes Christian's "good". In fact, I disagree with many of their view points, which I think are inherently "bad". For example, homosexuality. I am not gay, but I have many gay friends. Why should they be vilified because of who they happen to be attracted to? They are adults in adult relationships. They are not child molesters (ahem, Catholics) nor are they into bestiality because of their orientation. These people pose no threat, and yet they are vilified.
I know what is right. I know how to treat people with respect. I did not have to have this hammered into my subconscious every Sunday. In fact, I am somewhat offended by this actual question. And as such, I shall leave it there for the real enthusiasts to tackle.
Being good or bad depends on the individual quality. Believing in God can be extended to various connotations aside from being a good person, as well as being a good person depends only on various factors such as personal life and experience. Each religion has different perspective and different way to make peace in our world. Some religion does not talk about god at all. It is the belief and the philosophy that cause the integrity of the person and makes one to persist for making good thing. For some people whom never been put in to any religion, the well behavior emerges because of the pleasure.
I believe in god, but we have freedom to choose good or bad on our own. This allows us to develop ourselves. I would write more but I'm tired and still have several more hours of homework to get through. Take home message god will not direct you in every decision good or bad. Definitely encouraged to do good but have freedom to choose.
If this question had been about whether or not objective morality could exist without God, I might have answered differently... But since this is asking, is it *possible* to be a moral person without God, then I would say yes. Let's put it very simply...
Either objective morality exists, or it does not.
This question seems to assume objective morality exists.
And we also have free will...
So if objective morality exists, and we have free will, isn't it at least possible, due to the nature of free will, for atheists to act in a way which adheres to this moral standard?
This question doesn't ask "Can objective morality exist without God.." or "Is it easy to be a moral person without God." It rather asks "is it *possible* to be moral without belief in God." And the simple answer is... If there's free will, then yes.
But when it comes down to it humans are more than capable of possessing good qualities. The main factor the most religions consider is praising somebody for being "good". But when taken into consideration there are more than enough Atheist that are do good in our world and this provides a sort of ironic outlook for religion. The idea of having an overlooking authority force you to do good is what's wrong.
Well, without God no action has any infinitely lasting value, which means it doesn't ultimately make a difference what we do. Due to the fact that the universe runs down and will eventually be in a state of ultimate randomness, we know that life will die out assuming there is no God. Therefore, nothing is of infinite consequence.
Also there is not a universal judge without God. For there to be universal judgements of right and wrong there must be a universal judge to make those judgements.
Finally, since we can determine that morality without God is based on perception and evolves in society and varies from person to person, without a universal perceiver there is no one preferred perception. Without God all morality is based on personal experiences and perceptions.
Subjective morals have no worth determining good or bad since one idea of good and bad can't be applied to someone else. No one can prove their personal perception to be objective. Without objective morals no one can be judged by objective standards. Without either of those right and wrong also have no existence outside of God's existence.
Therefore, in order to be good you must have a universe where God exists.
Use famous people to illustrate their points, in what is obviously an appeal to authority fallacy. Lots of rich people give money to charity most of them are religious because most people who study the universe know there is a God who created the beautiful world we live in today.
Atheists have killled hundreds of milllions more people than religious people, look at Mao, STALIN, Pol pot, etc, etc. Not all bad people are atheists, but all atheists are bad people.
The idea that God does not exist removes the idea that truth can exist.
Truth, by its nature is an idea. Ideas by their nature cannot exist without a conscious mind. To say something is good means there is some truth that you are comparing it to. Without truth an action has no meaning. Imagine explaining why helping someone up after the they tripped is good. Your opponent asks why. You explain because it is polite. He asks the same question. You explain it helps them after a negative experience. He asks why does that matter?
Without a universal truth of what is good you could never actually say that helping someone up is good or anything is for that matter, because without truth all action is meaningless. Someone can do good without believing in God, but they certainly couldn't do good if there was no god.
Atheism is the most absurd religion of all, It is the belief that logic does not exist. A belief only possible when you stop yourself from thinking...
I read all these "yes" opinions and I'm like really? The above posts are right in and of themselves. Because without God there is no distinction between good and evil. A person doesn't even have to read up on it to see that man is evil. Or are you a good person? Have you ever lied, stolen, taken God's name in vain (used it as a cuss word), committed adultery (Even by lusting after a person in your heart)? And if God judged you by these commandments would you be innocent or guilty? Would you go to Heaven or Hell? Most likely Hell. In this case God in His mercy came down in human flesh as the man named Jesus Christ to suffer and die for our sins. We are like criminals beneath him but Jesus paid our fine in full. And now we can walk out of the court room. We need to repent, that is turn from our sins (not just saying we are sorry) and trust in Christ. Like we would trust in a parachute if we jump out of a plane. God will give you a new heart and new desires and grant you eternal life. That is the Gospel truth.
People must wonder that, if there was a God, they shouldn't be in a muddly mess right now, they should be in heaven or they should always be protected and happy. Well, it's always no like that. Earth is actully in Stan's hands. Satan encourages us to do evil and bad things. Not all people are perfect, you know? You are the only one that can choose your own paths, or you're not a person at all.
1. A Christian might say you are never far from God's presence, so the phrase "without God" is meaningless (or at least needs clear definition).
2. A Christian might define "good" as "pleasing to God". From this definition a person who refused to acknowledge or submit to God cannot please Him.
3. If you are using a different definition for good (say politically correct, or socially nice) or have a different frame of reference for the word god you can say whatever fits your definition. In a conservative Christian, Jewish or Islamic view you cannot be good (please God) while denying his existence and authority.
You cannot be good with out god because we wont know what good is without god. There would be no standard of good or bad without god. So you couldn't be good or bad. Its like saying if that some person is good at football but have never seen a football player in your life to compare that person with.
First, sin is evil and comes from Satin. Then God sent his son Jesus to take away sin on the cross. If you have sinful you are not good, but if you have Jesus he takes away your sin so you can be good, therefore you cant be good without God.
First, no person is ever 100% good. All our purest motives are tainted even a little by selfishness. Secondly, yes, there can be a "good" person that does not believe in a God. That doesn't mean that this goodness does not come from God. Goodness itself IS God, and any person working towards that way is more or less trying to get close to God - even if he doesn't know / realize / acknowledge that.