Morality is an experience claim. We experience morality, it is not something we can disprove or prove in a lab. I would argue that morality is objective not because we have similar values but because I believe in a god who made us for a purpose.
Objective morality can only come from god, if god made us for a purpose then we have rules in order to carry out that purpose and those rules would be considered morality. You cant prove objective morality from a secularist point of view since nobody has any authority over what is good and bad.
Think about this. It's really very simple. If I think something is moral, and you think it's immoral, that is nothing more than our respective opinions. That would subjective.
Now, suppose several people agree with me, but no one agrees with you. What do we have then? Hmm. Mob rule? That's not morality.
I would ask how one could have morals without God, whatever your definition of God is. In order for morals to exist, there has to be a foundation to base those morals on. That would be God.
Also, there is an acid test for whether something is moral or not. If your actions affect another, ask yourself how you would feel if they did the same thing to you. If you wouldn't like it, it's a sure bet it's immoral.
Most people would consider morality subjective because, by definition, morality is "the right to do", which is arbitrary and subjective. But once you define morality's purpose I believe morality can be objective. When we consider most thought experiments considering morality such as Pascal's Wager or the Trolley Experiment, we realise that, in fact, what we mean by morality is what is the best thing to do to maximise human welfare. Physical and emotional well-being.
Once you define that, it's much simpler to have an objective morality. Personally, I subscribe to secular humanism. You can find the best possible way(s) to maximise well-being through experiments and using science, you can learn how to maximise human welfare.
“Man has been called a rational being, but rationality is a matter of choice—and the alternative his nature offers him is: rational being or suicidal animal. Man has to be man—by choice; he has to hold his life as a value—by choice; he has to learn to sustain it—by choice; he has to discover the values it requires and practice his virtues—by choice. A code of values accepted by choice is a code of morality.” - Galt's speech.
Life or death is man’s only fundamental alternative. To live is his basic act of choice. If he chooses to live, a rational ethics will tell him what principles of action are required to implement his choice. If he does not choose to live, nature will take its course.
How do you know if something is morally right or wrong? How can you ground a belief that says acts such as torturing an innocent child, rape, murder, racism, and other such things are objectively immoral? By "objectively," we mean that such acts are immoral in a way that goes beyond personal opinion or feelings; they are immoral whether anyone thinks they are or not.
Those who do not believe in God object to such an assertion and say that a person does not need to acknowledge any kind of deity to understand moral right and wrong. And, they are right. Human beings do not need to believe in God to discern moral duties or understand that objective moral values exist. But, that has never been the argument of those who believe in God. Instead, the Christian argument is that in order to ground an objective moral law, you need to have a transcendent source of those values.
This truth is acknowledged by leading atheists. For example, the famous nihilist philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche said: "You have your way, I have my way. As for the right way, it does not exist."
At issue are the requirements for being able to have objective moral laws. Three things are needed: (1) an absolute and unchanging authority; (2) an absolute and unchanging standard; (3) absolute truth. Atheism and naturalism admit to nothing being absolute, that everything is random, and that everything is changing. In such an environment, no one can ever be sure anything is truly and objectively right or wrong.
Without an unchanging, absolute authority that uses an unchanging, absolute standard, which is based on the right and unchanging truth, ethics simply becomes emotive and opinion. Rape doesn't become wrong, but rather the strongest statement that can be made about it is, "I don't like rape." C. S. Lewis put is simply when he said: "A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line." For those without God, that unchanging straight line does not exist.
However, the rub comes from the fact that every human being recognizes moral absolutes. They may not practice them, but they understand and acknowledge them. There is a difference in what a culture and its people are doing and what they ought to do; a difference between something that is descriptive and that which is prescriptive. And one thing that history has shown is that humanity recognizes universal right and wrong.
Where does this universal understanding of moral right and wrong come from – an understanding that transcends human opinion? Why does a small child immediately know when they've been treated unfairly or know that it is wrong to have something stolen from them? They know because there is a universal moral law that has been intrinsically woven into them by their Creator.
The question "Is morality objective" is assuming there is virtue in answering that question and anyone who disagree that there is virtue in answering that question is presupposing that knowing what is and what is not virtue is virtuous.
If answering the question is virtuous then that means truth is virtuous. If the truth is virtuous that means that objective morality exists.
Truth is virtue.
Deception is Vice.
Objective Morality Exists
There is a moral behavior exhibited by animals (humans included in the term) toward their immediate family and off spring; sharing food, parental care and bonding, as well as aggression against threats from outside forces. Animals are not selfish or ego centric in this regard, therefore behaves morally toward one another. To cause harm within a family group can be seen as harmful. Not to behave morally in this context would lead to the demise of familial members, decreasing further reproduction of the species.
Within a specific cultural group, civic morality has the aim to maintain social order for the health of a whole community. We understand that the term witch is subjective, and claims that such a person causes harm to our social order or community health has no merit. Yet, cultures in non-industrialized areas of the world the burning of witches is still practiced as a moral imperative to rid the community of the evil spirits or to curtail negative events that have affected that community. Drought, locus, crop failure and the like, is attributed to the accused and must be disposed of for order to return. Morality, differs from one culture to another.
In extending cultural morality, to a degree there, is in essence a global morality. Even in times of war there is a moral repulsiveness toward the death of others. No matter which side one is on, as individuals we have empathy for the hurt felt by families due to the loss its members. Though there can be arguments made to specific instances to the contrary, as a generalization this holds true.
Morality tends to support a certain notion or idea. For example, murder is bad because we value our lives, and thus, the value of human lives. However, it should be noted that these notions are entirely up to the mind that defines it. That is why a serial killer finds murder seemingly OK, while society condemns it: the number of people with the notion of the values of lives is higher than the one individual with this eccentric thought. Thus, morality is a product of the man, with boundaries drawn by man,
One guy up there said basically that “we cannot prove morality; it is not the kind of thing that we can find under a microscope”, this is wrong, morality does not need to be proven, or found under a microscope, it is self-evident, so no, it is not objective, it is absolute regardless of emotions or otherwise
Morality is and always will be objective. There will never be a set of human beings who all have the same moral values. Morality also needs to be defined. You may have the same moral values in a given set, but one set might be might greater than the other. Some Socialists believe it is immoral to not allow for your wealth to be forcefully taken from you to be redistributed to the lazy and the poor, while many believe the opposite. It's all up to interpretation. If everyone had an objective morality, and they never broke these rules, we would live in a utopia. Having people will all the same ideals creates slaves to a system. It is better to be independent, makes debating more fun :)
Morality like religion, is an opinion. It is sacred to each person and cannot be used as a form of control. When someone votes on an issue, they are stating their stance on that subject. It is only their opinion but everyone else should agree or be held accountable. It is dangerous for an entire society to have a hyperbolic stance on any one subject unless direct harm is induced from the decision. In other words, one person cannot decide another persons view of existence. Is our empathy towards others morals a sign of a healthy and well adaptable society?
“The simple Open System Binary Nature of Truth/Logic & Life/Love is simply that they SourCe directly out of the Law of Zer0, whereas Mistruth/Ignorance & Death/Hate SourCes directly out of the Law of One.” – Old Toad Proverb
"There is no don't, there's only dew. So if you can't don't, then don't can't." - Old Toad Proverb
Man A kills Man B - that's wrong right?
But what if we learn that man B was seriously blackmailing and threatening man A's family? Then we can understand the murder in another way, and thus it's subjective. Can we say he was 'wrong'? No.
Different cultures treat murder differently in the past. Samurai had every right, both socially and by law to slaughter peasants who were disrespectful. At different times we have allowed different things as a culture.
To say everybody knows right from wrong is true to some extent (other than the millions of sociopaths and psychopaths...), but it is not a general law.
Objective morality is the idea that a certain system of ethics or set of moral judgments is not just true according to a person's subjective opinion, but factually true. Proponents of this theory would argue that a statement like "Murder is wrong" can be as objectively true as "1 + 1 = 2." Most of the time, the alleged source is God, or the Kantian Categorical Imperative; arguably, no objective source of morality has ever been confirmed, nor have any a priori proofs been offered to the effect that morality is anything other than subjective.
The moral principles that people claim to be "objective" usually coincide very well with what they feel subjectively to be true. When pressed to provide justification, the person in question will usually just fail to understand that morality might not be objective, and might consequently grow increasingly doubtful or hysterical as the subjective bases of their arguments are progressively revealed, as has been observed in recent times.
Most of the objective morals promoted today in the West are grounded in Christianity. Among Christians, it follows from the ideas of inherent human sinfulness and original sin that one's subjective moral instincts must be categorically classed as evil. Thus, say the Christians, one needs an external, objective source for morality. And — speak of the devil — there is such an external, objective source to be found at a nonspecific location in the sky, sitting on a throne.
The Catholic Church originally admitted several sources for such morality, including human reason; but at the Protestant Reformation, when the principle of "total depravity" was promulgated to an unprecedented degree, human reason became very dodgy and the Bible became the only source that was not suspect. Hence, we see creationists arguing that there are no meaningful morals if Genesis 1 is not true to the letter.