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Offlineld50negative1
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: ]
    #3081463 - 09/02/04 07:31 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

This is stupid when alot of you don't believe the possibility of proving the existence of a spiritual god - just because of the fact that you can't say to them look, "something good happened in that person's life, since god is good was it not him that made this happen?" without them thinking you are an idiot


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OfflinePhred
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: deafpanda]
    #3081473 - 09/02/04 07:36 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Again, I am at a complete loss as to how to make you grasp this point. In all my years of debating on this forum, you're the first I've seen take this position. If you want, I could add the phrase "a forceful response to the initiation of physical force is NOT immoral," but that unnecessarily lengthens the definition while adding no new information. The definition is not about what is permitted, but about what is forbidden.

If someone shoots at you and you shoot back, do you honestly believe that by doing so you are the initiator in the interaction? Would you have shot at the other guy if he hadn't shot at you? Nope.

Think of it in biological terminology if it makes it any clearer -- stimulus and response.

pinky


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Offlinedeafpanda
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: Phred]
    #3081481 - 09/02/04 07:39 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Sorry, I may have been being too stubborn...I accept that it is moral to respond to initiation of force, I have done throughout, it is merely that your definition didn't account for responding.

Quote:

I could add the phrase "a forceful response to the initiation of physical force is NOT immoral," but that unnecessarily lengthens the definition while adding no new information




It would add new information. Your previous definition didn't allow for anyone to respond to an initiation of force. This one does. That's all I was saying.


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective moral [Re: ]
    #3081491 - 09/02/04 07:45 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

utilitarianism holds that it is just to violate innocent people as long as the net utility of all people is increased by the act.




So you would prefer a situation where a minority or even one person gets his way to the detriment of many???


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OfflinePhred
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: deafpanda]
    #3081495 - 09/02/04 07:46 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

The bullet points are all true, but they have nothing to do with the premise, that was what I meant. They add nothing to the argument.

They are the necessary foundation leading to the conclusion. If there is no reality -- if all there is is your waking dream (solipsism), then there is no such thing as morality. If there are no entities, then again there is no such thing as morality. Further, if there are entities, but no living entities, there is no such thing as morality. If there are living entities, but those entities can continue to exist qua living entities regardless of what actions they perform, there is no such thing as morality.

The bullet points lay the groundwork for showing the viability of "morality" as a valid concept. If any one of the points is untrue, then there is no such thing as morality and there is no point proceeding further. The foundation does nothing to describe which actions are moral and which are not -- it merely shows that there is a point in trying to ascertain which actions are moral and which are not.

pinky


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective moral [Re: ]
    #3081497 - 09/02/04 07:47 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

is not tax evasion a victimless crime?




No. Not if it forces a rise in the amount of tax others pay.


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: Phred]
    #3081506 - 09/02/04 07:51 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

There is an objective morality applicable to Homo sapiens sapiens




But Pinky surely you contradict yourself when you say.

Quote:

a premise must be injected into the chain of reasoning. That premise is that a human, once born, has the right to attempt to continue living. If one rejects that premise, then of course anything goes and there is no point taking the discussion any further.





So there is an objective morality as long as you subjectively decide to insert a certain premise into your reasoning? The set of fairly objective statements you were making could have been continued without the need of this premise.

Objective morality? I dont think so.


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OfflinePhred
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: GazzBut]
    #3081523 - 09/02/04 08:02 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Since the morality we are discussing is the ethical code by which humans should exist, there is perforce a certain amount of subjectivity involved in it; but only to the extent that it is a prescribed code of behavior for humans rather than honeybees. When we speak of objective here I am assuming we are speaking of objectivity in the context of humans.

The moral is that which is right. The immoral is that which is not right. That is why at some point it is necessary to ask the question "Is it right for a human to attempt to continue his/her existence as a living entity?" If the answer is no, then the whole concept of morality is a null concept and there is no need to continue the discussion. However, if the answer is "yes", then the chain of reasoning in the bullet points shows us which actions taken by humans are right and which are not. For those uncomfortable with the term "right", feel free to substitute "good", "correct", "moral", or "ethical" -- it doesn't alter the principle being discussed.

If you ask yourself the question "Is it right for me to attempt to continue to live," and can honestly answer "no", then of course no amount of discussion will persuade you that there is such a thing as right and wrong. No one who can answer honestly that question with a "no" will ever be persuaded of the objectivity of morality -- any morality -- no matter how it is defined.

pinky


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Invisiblefastfred
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: Phred]
    #3081546 - 09/02/04 08:15 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Awesome posts pinksharkmark!

Of course you can prove an objective morality. I'm surprised that you guys are even arguing it.


-FF


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: Phred]
    #3081551 - 09/02/04 08:16 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

That is why at some point it is necessary to ask the question "Is it right for a human to attempt to continue his/her existence as a living entity?"




You would answer yes, I would answer yes, many people may answer no - The answer to this question is subjective and does nothing to show convince me of an objective morality.

It seems really you are saying "my morality is right and therefore it is objective."

From good ole' dictionary.com: Of or having to do with a material object, Having actual existence or reality, Uninfluenced by emotions or personal prejudices, Based on observable phenomena; presented factually.

Now unless we are talking about a very different definition I dont see how you can support your claim for objective morality. Im not even sure there is an objective reality let alone objective morality!!!


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Invisiblefastfred
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: fastfred]
    #3081552 - 09/02/04 08:16 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

You guys aren't going to start arguing if there is an objective reality now are you?


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: fastfred]
    #3081570 - 09/02/04 08:24 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

No I will leave that to the advanced quantum physicists. I doubt whether any of us have much to add to their debate. Lets face it the extent of your ability to proof an objective reality is simply to say, "we all see the same things so there is an objective reality"

Hey I think what we need is a new term "Collective-subjectivity" or "multi-subjective" perhaps? How about that for a compromise guys?!  :grin:


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OfflineMAGnum
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Registered: 07/08/04
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective moral [Re: ]
    #3081576 - 09/02/04 08:25 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Morals are based on concepts of good and evil, based on concepts of desirable and undesirable.

I don't feel like writing much, so I will be curt.

Morals wouldn't exsist without beings to believe in them, we give them powers as objective things. You will never find morals outside of living creatures. Even animals have morals, a group of dogs or lions have ranks and beliefs based on thier rankings and thus morals to follow who directs who. Morality is a common concept in nature because it works for the better of most of the whole species (most of the time).

Even animals that live alone usually live by some rules.

I'm done and going home now.


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OfflinePhred
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: GazzBut]
    #3081591 - 09/02/04 08:34 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

GazzBut writes:

You would answer yes, I would answer yes, many people may answer no - The answer to this question is subjective and does nothing to show convince me of an objective morality.

The people who answer "no" to that question are entirely irrelevant to the process of determining what constitutes objective morality, since they reject the very validity of their own existence. The fact that some people are too dense to grasp the concept doesn't invalidate the concept.

Your argument in essence is that since some people honestly believe even to this day that no men from the United States have ever walked on the moon, it is not an objective fact that men from the United States walked on the moon.

pinky


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: Phred]
    #3081602 - 09/02/04 08:38 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

I see what your saying but the arguement as to whether the US ever walked on the moon can be settled in a fairly objective manner.

i.e I could be taken to the moon and be shown Neil Armstrong's footprints, be shown whatever other traces the moonlanding left etc.

Thst would settle most peoples need for objective proof.

Now show me some objective proof for objective morality that doesnt rely on my acceptance of subjective premises.

---------------------

From good ole' dictionary.com: Of or having to do with a material object, Having actual existence or reality, Uninfluenced by emotions or personal prejudices, Based on observable phenomena; presented factually.

Now unless we are talking about a very different definition I dont see how you can support your claim for objective morality.


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Invisiblefastfred
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: GazzBut]
    #3081652 - 09/02/04 08:58 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

I think you guys are confused. You are thinking that the question is: Is there a physical morality? As if morality were a law of physics or something.

The answer to that is, of course, no. But that doesn't prevent that fact that there is an objective reality and hence an objective morality.


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InvisibleRandalFlagg
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: Phred]
    #3081762 - 09/02/04 10:04 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)


The moral is that which is right. The immoral is that which is not
right. That is why at some point it is necessary to ask the
question "Is it right for a human to attempt to continue his/her
existence as a living entity?" If the answer is no, then the whole
concept of morality is a null concept and there is no need to
continue the discussion. However, if the answer is "yes", then the
chain of reasoning in the bullet points shows us which actions taken
by humans are right and which are not.

But, life has circumstances in it that are much more varied than
life or death situations where a person has to make a decision
to keep living. What about the situations where people's actions
are not about life and death? What if someone attempts to better
their situation and it ends up affecting somebody else negatively?
The various things that can happen in life are so varied, nuanced,
complicated, overlapping, and confusing, that one rule cannot
possibly be applied to every action or idea that is undertaken by Man.

Also, I am still of the opinion that if an order and an indisputable
morality has not been instituted by an intelligence, that no
morality at all exists. Which means all of Man's theories and
notions(including the right to exist) mean nothing, because there
is no standard to measure them against, and all morality would be
subjective.


Edited by RandalFlagg (09/02/04 10:13 AM)


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OfflinePhred
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: fastfred]
    #3081763 - 09/02/04 10:07 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

Fastfred nails it.

pinky


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InvisibleRandalFlagg
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: fastfred]
    #3081808 - 09/02/04 10:20 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)


I think you guys are confused. You are thinking that the question is:
Is there a physical morality? As if morality were a law of physics or
something.

Of course absolute morality is not physical. But, if it does
exist, it is indisputable and Right.


The answer to that is, of course, no. But that doesn't prevent that
fact that there is an objective reality and hence an objective
morality.

I don't agree. I think it is possible that reality can exist without
an objective morality. For example, if human beings came into
being purely by accident(molecules colliding or something), and
there was no intelligence involved in our creation or development,
and no order is intrinsic in the universe, then it is possible that
absolute morality doesn't exist.


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OfflinePhred
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Re: can you prove the existence of absolute, objective morality? [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #3081811 - 09/02/04 10:20 AM (17 years, 1 month ago)

RandalFlagg writes:

What about the situations where people's actions
are not about life and death? What if someone attempts to better
their situation and it ends up affecting somebody else negatively?


Could you give us a concrete and specific example of such a situation?

The various things that can happen in life are so varied, nuanced,
complicated, and confusing, that one rule cannot possibly be applied
to every action or idea that is undertaken by Man.


If you are talking of "rules", then perhaps you could make a cogent argument supporting your contention. But we are not talking about a long list of specific rules here (i.e. a legal code), we are talking about a moral principle -- the foundation upon which a code of law is constructed.

In a civilized society, actions which are not immoral (as tested against the fundamental principle we have been discussing in this thread) are permitted. How could they not be? A legal code doesn't tell you what is legal, it tells you what is illegal. Among those various non-immoral actions are actions which do not necessarily relate to minute-to-minute subsistence survival, but to increasing the likelihood of longterm survival, or to increasing the efficiency of energy expenditure in securing longterm survival, and yes -- even to the enjoyment of your longterm survival.

If no one's rights are being violated by you watching reruns of Seinfeld, why does there need to be any rule allowing you to watch Seinfeld reruns? How does your watching Seinfeld reruns violate the fundamental principle being discussed here? Answer -- it doesn't.

pinky


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