Plentyoffish dating forums are a place to meet singles and get dating advice or share dating experiences etc. Hopefully you will all have fun meeting singles and try out this online dating thing... Remember that we are the largest free online dating service, so you will never have to pay a dime to meet your soulmate.
Show ALL Forums  > Science/philosophy  > morality      Home login  
Joined: 2/27/2010
Msg: 1
view profile
moralityPage 1 of 6    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
What is it? and care to share how you figured out yours.... and where it came from and why you hold on to it?

(Mine came from paying attention to people (little big, brother/sister) who were REALLY in need. (not sarcastic) and how beautiful and willing they are/were. to fit in ).

I knew I did not want to influence them but accepted I just might. (I did not "like" the responsibility that I THOUGHT came with this so called responsibility/love.)

It's a human trait to look after (not for) in my opinion.

Care to share where yours come from?
Joined: 6/29/2009
Msg: 2
view profile
Posted: 3/30/2013 2:13:35 AM

Mine is the result of a great deal of precision work of my own. I spent a great deal of intensive time, after my emotional existence was destroyed in a nuclear Holocaust long ago (natural result of following moral policies and bad advice collected during childhood), starting from the same basic point that Descartes did, and established my own comprehensive, and fully personally owned morality/philosophy/approach to life.

Although I am (naturally, being human) not that much different from lots of other people, everything I believe is my own personally pondered and built element. It's as though I drive a car that looks a lot like what everyone else drives, but every single nut, bolt, wheel, cog, shaft and panel is hand crafted in my own workshop.
Joined: 11/18/2008
Msg: 3
Posted: 3/30/2013 3:08:31 AM
Looking forward to those without morality telling us where they got their morality ...

Did you know that, if the hounds are chasing a fox and the fox has nowhere to go, but down a rabbitt burrow, and the rabbitts are currently occupying that hole, the fox won't bother them, in any way. But if the fox is hunting himself, comes across a rabbitt hole, finds rabbits in it, the fox will be dining in...

Lots and lots of birds, have 1 partner, there whole fact quite a number of species do....
Joined: 7/8/2004
Msg: 4
Posted: 3/30/2013 4:26:59 AM
I think my morality developed in the usual stages from amoral self-service to altruistic service thru the course of my life. A lot of variables went into making me the brilliant and wise old (oh yeah…and humble) Buddha that I am today.

Here's the breakdown by age:

birth to 1: nirvana stage - can't tell self from other - at one with universe
1-2: elementary ego development - learned self from other - became self conscious
2-19: ego inflation epoch - always got own way
(3+: started making friends - compared sizes of egos & penises (closely related))
(5+: started making girl friends - could only compare egos)
(6: stopped by court injunction from playing "doctor" - learned I can't always get my own way)
(7-13 - skipped school - turfed socialization in favour of learning stuff I wanted to)
(14: dropped out of school - precocious - already knew it all)
(15-19: social networking epoch - lots of friends - became group "doctor")

19-30: Trying to realize elementary ambitions - failing to get own way
31- 39: First existential crisis - lowered personal expectations, started considering others
40-50: Second existential crisis - self worth drops to zero - question meaning of life itself
51: 1st realization - must create our own meaning for life
52: 2nd realization - must always consider feelings of others
53: Started going to school again - focus on philosophy & moral theory
54: learned about natural law and justice - saw natural law as "silver rule"
55: realized other is more important than self - focused on service to others
56: saw true social evolution as move to "golden rule"
57: served by fighting for justice
58: served by fighting for everyone but me - starved after eschewing "commerce"
59: learned rules of commerce game and stopped playing
60: learned only way to win is not to fight at all - now live by golden rule and forgiving enemies.
currently: living with global family called humanity - WARNING: NOBODY SCREWS WITH MY FAMILY OR THEY WILL BE SPANKED!
Joined: 12/13/2006
Msg: 5
view profile
Posted: 3/30/2013 7:39:21 AM
Funny, been thinking about that this weekend. Maybe because of the ongoing holy days. My family of origin's first response (when time allowed) was: please think about what you just did. I did. I do. And I honestly think we're all actually hardwired to know what's right, and what isn't. We just need to listen to ourselves. The religion guys got on the bandwagon for the power and/or geld.

Family story (I don't remember this one at all). At about two, I'd gotten out of my high chair and was headed for freedom. At the kitchen door, met my mother's legs (I didn't look up). Turned around, saying, Get back and eat, get back and eat, on the long trip back to the high chair. When finally seated again, said: I will, Mama! She had not moved nor said one word.
Joined: 6/6/2009
Msg: 6
view profile
Posted: 3/30/2013 9:50:07 AM
I think it is too easy to blur the line between the popularist meaning of "morality" and narcissism.

Generally I find that old world terms (which most fundamentalist religious terms fall into the category of) are best defined strictly within their etymology and original use. Words like "evil" meaning literally "unlife" in old english, its modern equivalent is closest to the word "ill" or "unwell" and nothing to do with supernatural malevolent forces except to say that somewhere between the 8th century and modern medicine (largely a product of the late 19th century) it was popular to start thinking of illnesses (eg. plague) as sent by malevolent supernatural forces. Even in classical thinking (pre-mediaeval era) being beset by illness or personal issues was as medical as supernatural and purely homeopathic medicine was practised alongside and separately to magic for healing, as shown by medical artefacts such as the Nippur tablets (ca.5000BCE). In old hebrew the role of words translated to "evil" was always intended as more medical, sociological and psychological than supernatural, the very place of Sheol (mistranslated as being Hell) actually describes a personal state of impoverishment, vagrancy and desperation, it is entirely an earthly state and makes no reference to any supernatural or otherworldly existence.

Yet among this primary source research I find a more accurate use of the word "evil" when making a reference. It describes nothing supernatural and should be used simply as the word "live" spelled backwards, as it was originally intended. Or in other words, simply replace with the modern equivalent of "unwell behaviour" describes its original use accurately, in a modern context. It draws a line in the sand for fundies who toss the term "evil" around when declaring enemies, like Westboro protesting abortion clinics I would refer to as unwell behaviour. People attending abortion clinics I would not describe as unwell behaviour. Ergo clearly the protestors are the "evil" in that scenario since they cause real world hurt which is unwell justified by abstract hurt which is not unwell but just imagined.

Similarly the term "moral" in etymology just means a point to a story, a lesson. Its modern definition of a code of behaviour or descript of character are popularist definitions which evolved outside the scope of original use later, like the term "evil" to become an entirely different meaning and losing all original reference to become a colloquial abstract.

In strictest definition practising a literal mimicry of biblical passage, eg. don't eat meat on fridays but you don't know why other than being a dogmatic rule, then you are not being moral at all, it is in fact amoral because you have lost the point to this practise. The intention is to remind one of the referenced parable in which this practise occurs, which is the moral of the story and if you're just going through the motions you hardly learned anything from it, so it is amoral.

I find most people use the popularist modern evolution of the term "moral" and forgot that you have to be able to explain why you act in a certain way rationally in order for it to be accurately described as moral. They just go through the motions and seem to have no idea by doing so they are in strictest definition, ruled by amorality.

Reason is key to being moral. If a teacher cannot explain why a student should do a thing, then that student is not being moral by following instruction, nor is the teacher by claiming it. Both are just being apes ordering and following each other for reasons of animist dominance, not very civilised. In order to be moral you must be able to explain why, rationally. That is what the term originally means in etymology.

What it most definitely does not mean is doing what someone tells you is right just because they told you.
In this context you could say most young people tend to be amoral or immoral, most older people should have learned to become moral. This is merely a reflection of accumulated experience and personal confidence, it actually has not the slightest thing to do with benevolence. It has much more to do with simple ignorance.

Immoral (irrational) or amoral (rationale without corroberative reference) doesn't mean evil (unwell). It just means uneducated or anti-intelligentsia.

As for me, I tend to do everything with demonstrable reason, I tend to corroberate all rationale. When I argue with an employer or friend they have learned to listen whether or not they agree or acquiesce, because there is always a clear reason and point of view they themselves will appreciate. This method of negotiating problem solving governs my life.
Posted: 3/30/2013 11:06:29 AM
oh, here it is. snuck up on me ya'll.
Joined: 6/29/2009
Msg: 8
view profile
Posted: 3/30/2013 11:41:38 AM
Thanks for that in depth etymology post, vanaheim. I always like to have things in historical perspective.

I think I disagree very slightly with you, in that I do think that most people still use the word 'moral' in the old way you describe. It's just that as you also correctly point out, many of them additionally confuse behaving in a moral way, with mindlessly (and in my opinion, lazily) following a set of instructions derived from someone else.

I have a lot of respect for many leaders of morality causes, even when I disagree with how they have concluded everyone ought to behave, precisely because some of the DO specify that those who follow them must do so from a direct and personal understanding and agreement as to why whatever it is, is the right thing to do.

But again, I'm very glad of your post also, because I think you also touch on another very important thing about morality:

That is, it is not a thing that you can achieve, and then put on your mantle like an award, or a permanent title. It's an ongoing, very active way of living and growing. In this way, morality ought to be seen as being the way Science ought to be understood: it is not an object, or even a subject matter. It is a methodology of learning and understanding, more than it is an accomplishment or a set of established facts.
Joined: 2/26/2013
Msg: 9
view profile
Posted: 3/30/2013 12:09:18 PM
Hey, my morality is from God.

As a kid, I grew up in a Christian home and I think I had this kid belief in God. Growing up, however, I started questioning it and so, I thought about it and considered other religions. (other than Christianity) I looked into other religions and learned some very basic things about other religions. Then I figured since I have "access" to Church and christian teachers, why not explore the Christian faith better. Strangely, I had some conflict when it came to this Christianity. I didn't have conflict with Buddism... nor Hinduism or other religions. With other religions, it was just me checking them out. But, with Christianity... there was conflict. I also noted that I wasn't alone. Anyways, I dove into the beliefs and I just wanted to figure out why exactly Christians believe in what they believe. The answer is a simple one and the most profound one of all "religions." The long answer is that there is a belief system that speaks about 100% truth and actually dares to take that stance and treat truth as an actual virtue. This belief system is actually no doubt good because unlike other "religions," it actually separates good and evil. And values ONLY... good. Like-wise, God's word values justice from the smallest to the worst crimes and sins. But, all that being said. The short answer is... the reason why people believe in truth, justice, and goodness... is because of Jesus Christ.

That's the key and answer to all problems in our eternal life and human life.

Oh, also, it helps that I prayed for God to give me a vision... and actually got one.

Thanks for reading
Posted: 3/30/2013 3:19:35 PM
We owe it to ourselves as respectable human beings, as thinking human beings, to do what we can to make humanity more rational. Humanists recognize that it is only when people feel free to think for themselves, using reason as their guide, that they are best capable of developing values that succeed in satisfying human needs and serving human interests.

- Isaac Asimov

We cannot return to a simpler world. Much of contemporary social criticism is made irrelevant by its refusal to face that fact.

- John Gardner

Man can either remain within his "accidental" reference frame and unquestioningly accept the meaning it has to offer, or he can boldly emerge from his psycho-epistemological cocoon and broaden his reality image. The need for man to break out of his capsule is crucial, for encapsulation may well be the essence of contemporary man's spiritual emptiness.

- Joseph R. Royce

Teilhard de Chardin emphasized that the more evolved human being is one who, on the one hand, becomes more highly individualized, and who achieves, on the other hand, a high degree of conscious integration with other men. The evolution of man thus reveals two simultaneous and complementary trends: one toward keener awareness of self, and the other toward more intensive cooperation and participation.

- Rene Dubos

There are no ethical truths; there are just clarifications of particular ethical problems. Take advantage of these clarifications and work out your own existence. You are mistaken to think that anyone ever had the answers. There are no answers. Be brave and face up to it.

- Donald Kalish

The true grandeur of humanity is in moral elevation, sustained, enlightened and decorated by the intellect of man.

- Charles Sumner

Men become civilized, not in proportion to their willingness to believe, but in proportion to their readiness to doubt.

- H. L. Mencken

To have doubted one's first principles is the mark of a civilized man.

- Oliver Wendell Holmes

The person who "knows what he believes" can be one of the most dangerous individuals in our society. He has not only cut himself off from life in order to preserve his defenses; he would bring all his resources to bear upon us to do the same.

- ?

After all, when one tries to change institutions without having changed the nature of men, that unchanged nature will soon resurrect those institutions.

- Will Durant

I never liked comic books or super heroes, but I do like Batman. He is not an alien, a mutant, or a supernatural being from some other dimension. He doesn't have any super powers, and he doesn't want anything to give him righteousness or approval. He is a Man. He doesn’t do anything because it's easy, or popular, he owes allegiance to no one, no group or formal philosophy, and tries to use none as an excuse or justification. He is very consciencious and self-conscious, independently and as a Man. He does the work himself - physically, intellectually, emotionally, and a Man.

- a teenager at the mall

Of course, there is a crucial moral difference between those whose faith tells them to murder innocent people, and those whose faith tells them to respect life. But the difference is not something we can get from faith. The Islamic militant who believes he is doing the will of God when he flies a plane full of passengers into the World Trade Center is just as much a person of faith as the Christian who believes she is doing the will of God when she spends her days picketing a clinic that offers abortions. Faith cannot tell us who is right and who is wrong, because each will simply assert that his or her faith is the true one. In the absence of a willingness to offer reasons, evidence, or arguments for why it is better to do one thing rather than another, there is no progress to be made. If we try to dissuade people from becoming radical Islamic terrorists, not by persuading them to be more thoughtful and reflective about their religious beliefs, but by encouraging them to switch from one unquestioned religious faith to another, we are fighting with our hands tied behind our backs.

- Peter Singer

I first saw the light one night when I was sixteen years old. It was initially a very small light – the beam from the flashlight that enabled me to read under the bedcovers when I was supposed to be sleeping. That night I was reading a Little Blue Book that had been given to me by my boyfriend. It was Percy Bysshe Shelley’s The Necessity of Atheism.

I usually say that until the moment I opened the book I was a very religious young woman, but I suppose I had actually been outgrowing my religion for a while. For one thing, my boyfriend, a freethinker, had been giving me books like this and had been making me defend my religious beliefs – which I had difficulty doing to his satisfaction, and my own.

So I was prepared for Shelley and his atheism even though I didn’t know it. And, as I read, the light got brighter and brighter. Not from the flashlight I was reading with but from my mind absorbing what I read. Shelley’s logic shattered, in one memorable night, all the Sunday school lessons, Bible studies, and sermons I had been exposed to for years.

My first reaction was fury, a fury so strong that I risked confronting my father the next morning at breakfast. “You can’t possibly believe all that god stuff! Do you?” I demanded. “You’re an intelligent, educated man. God is as much a hoax as Santa Clause and not nearly as much fun. And only kids believe in Santa.”

His response made me even angrier. This pillar of the religious community, this trustee of the local Presbyterian church, this man who supported the church financially and attended services every Sunday told me calmly that no, he didn’t believe what the church taught. But he did believe that without the church there would be no morality in the world. Children learned right and wrong in the church, and adults lived righteous lives because they believed in God and heaven and hell.

I have since leaned that this attitude is not unusual among many who appear to be religious. They are less concerned with their own spirituality than with the conduct of others. They see themselves as superior, able to understand their religion as mythology and still conduct their lives morally. But they don’t think the ordinary person can do that, so they count on religion to keep the masses under control. Indeed, throughout history such “superior” men have used religion to regulate their slaves and subjugate women.

In my first heady release from religion I too thought it was the only thing that had kept me “good”. My life would change. I could sin. As a teenager, for me the three great sins were smoking, drinking, and premarital sex.

I told my boyfriend that I had seen the light. He was glad. He said he thought I was too intelligent to stay caught up in religion forever. Then I told him that we could sin together. We could drink, and smoke, and have sex. He looked at me as if I were crazy. I could do those things if I wished, he said, but he was in training. As captain of the high-school football team, a star basketball player, and a Golden Gloves boxer, he was always in training.

He wasn’t “good” because he believed in a god but because he wanted to be an athlete. Slowly it dawned on me that I hadn’t been “good” because I believed in a god but because I loved my family and friends, enjoyed my studies and my music, and wanted to prepare myself for all life’s possibilities.

I have never ever regretted the night I saw the light. I shall be ever grateful to the young athlete who gave me that Little Blue Book (and to Emanuel Haldeman-Julius, the publisher of Little Blue Books). I have stopped being personally furious with the Christian religion that duped me as a child, but I continue to be alarmed at religion when it hurts people, stunts their growth, and practices sexism and racism.

When I visit my family I go to church with them. I cringe through the Apostles’ Creed. How narrow and restrictive it is! I cringe through the hymns, too. I’m a pacifist, so “Onward Christian Soldiers” is repugnant. And “Amazing Grace” – which asks God “to save a wretch like me” – shows how destructive religion can be of self-esteem. It spreads guilt instead of joy. It denies nature and closes minds to scientific knowledge.

So except for an annual journey back to my roots in family and the Presbyterian church, I have not returned to religion, nor have I missed it. My associates since the night I saw the light have been people with whom I share common interests and goals, people trying to make this world better, not hoping for heaven. Like Abou Ben Adhem, in Leigh Hunt’s wise poem, they are moral because they love this earth and those with whom they share it. I trust they can say the same about me.

- Gina Allen
Posted: 3/30/2013 5:50:58 PM
^ There are many issues in human life which require us to try and understand how to "avoid acts that can hurt other people." (forgetting for the moment that it's not just about not hurting other people in the first place) When people get lazy and apathetic concerning understanding the how, and want to cling too much to simplicity, then that's one of the times when people become immoral.

Hence, from my above post -

We cannot return to a simpler world. Much of contemporary social criticism is made irrelevant by its refusal to face that fact.

- John Gardner
Joined: 11/18/2008
Msg: 12
Posted: 3/30/2013 7:23:28 PM

First of all, just to point out, a fox will rarely fit down a rabbit hole, even warrens that are hundreds of years old may have large entrances but quickly narrow to the normal size. I have however while ferreting once had a barn owl bolt out into my nets....figure that one out.

What interests me about this is the case of koko, the gorilla who was taught sign language, after finding the sink ripped from the walls the carer asked koko what had happened, she blamed the cat for doing it...
This suggests that animals know "right" from "wrong" and as such does not reserve morality to just us humans

Stubbornness is a form of morality, hypocrisy is not.
Joined: 2/26/2013
Msg: 13
view profile
Posted: 3/30/2013 8:00:02 PM
Hey bhawk

I'm not sure what you mean by the infallible and all knowing thing. It sounds like something big. But, could you explain it better?

About the genocide thing, rape thing.. and killing children thing... and beating a slave. All out of context, I know your just twisting things because I'm fairly familiar with what your referring to. You've been lead wrong or you yourself are just taking things out of context, accidentally or purposely.

So, do I really believe the biblical God is a compass for morality. Absolutely, no doubt, God and his word shows him to be the one and only good God. Do you have conflict with that?
Joined: 11/18/2008
Msg: 14
Posted: 3/30/2013 8:17:58 PM
In theory, there is morality in biblical teachings, in practice, there is not or has yet to be.
Joined: 12/24/2012
Msg: 15
view profile
Posted: 3/31/2013 12:01:29 AM
Its all from beliefs, Saudi Arabia will use the same condescending tone towards women retaining their dignity that hard line right or left wing politicians will use towards different groups of people.

The only conclusion you can make after considering there's nothing special about any culture is that morality is quite flexible to meet aggregate beliefs.
Joined: 6/29/2009
Msg: 16
view profile
Posted: 3/31/2013 3:13:07 AM

Aside from the fact that you have only a surface grasp of things such as the concepts behind biblical teachings and writings (i.e. your arguments are fallacious in the most fundamental of ways), PLEASE don't turn this into yet ANOTHER thread, debating between people who do believe, and those who don't. We have plenty of those already, and it is clear that no one will ever be convinced to switch sides, because neither side argues from the same concepts and starting points as the other.

Lets stay with stating how you came to have what morality you do, and leave off trying to convince each other that the others are wrong.
Joined: 5/8/2010
Msg: 17
Posted: 3/31/2013 8:01:45 AM

IgorFrankensteen msg 21


PLEASE don't turn this into yet ANOTHER thread, debating between people who do believe, and those who don't.

Igor, you should place the responsibility for turning the thread into a belief system debate on the person who turned it into one, specifically:

ChristianGuy777 msg 9

The short answer is... the reason why people believe in truth, justice, and goodness... is because of Jesus Christ.

That's the key and answer to all problems in our eternal life and human life.

He can get his morality out of jesus, a box of cornflakes or a tube of ky and no one is going to care one way or the other. However, when he passes judgement on where the morality of other people comes from or what it's based on, which he is doing when he claims " the reason why people believe in truth, justice, and goodness... is because of Jesus Christ." then he is invalidating the source(s) of everybody else's morality if they are not based on _his_ and only _his_ source.

It is not only reasonable but, entirely justified for anyone, even everyone, to point out to this self righteous believer that his high horse isn't that high and, that it may very well be significantly lower than somebody else's foundation of morality, including truth, justice and goodness. Additionally, no matter what he believes, his belief certainly isn't "the reason why people believe in .. proselytization here".

The subject of this thread, per the OP and your own words, is about where one's morality comes from. It is not an invitation for anyone to "in-lectrinate" jesus and the bible onto others by implicitly claiming that jesus is the reason for people embracing truth, justice and goodness.

bhawk's reply is entirely justified. His source of morality is not based on jesus and it is as valid and, in the opinion of some, significantly more so, than any religious source, jesus included.

Joined: 6/29/2009
Msg: 18
view profile
Posted: 3/31/2013 8:16:26 AM
I disagree.

A religious person answered the thread with his honest response to the question. His horse is no higher than anyone else's, just because of his beliefs. There is no more need or justification to react negatively to his version of where his morality comes from, than there would be for someone to attack me, for where mine came from, or you for yours.

Frankly, I can perceive not a jot or a tittle of difference between self-righteous anti-theists, and self-righteous theists, when it comes to declaring that the other side deserves to be attacked just for expressing themselves.

Back to the original intent of the thread, I say, no matter who thinks who did what first.
Joined: 5/8/2010
Msg: 19
Posted: 3/31/2013 8:24:55 AM

A religious person answered the thread with his honest response to the question.

His "honest" response included a clear invalidation of everyone's source of morality that wasn't jesus.

ChristianGuy777 msg 9

The short answer is... the reason why people believe in truth, justice, and goodness... is because of Jesus Christ.

His "honest" response is a negative judgement on all other sources of morality. All the "honesty", "truth", "justice" and "goodness" historically expected from that source.

Joined: 6/29/2009
Msg: 20
view profile
Posted: 3/31/2013 8:37:08 AM
So what? His response might feel like an attack on your beliefs, but then a statement of your beliefs feels like an attack on his.

Again, lets please stick to the thread as specified, and just say where and or how we came to have whatever morality we do. Leave this pro-anti-religion stuff for the other threads.

I can tell you for sure, that if we don't, a mod is quite likely to kill this thread entirely.
Posted: 3/31/2013 8:56:07 AM
Just to get it on record, and just speaking for myself -

How a thread is titled, and what's in the original posting, has influence on how active and sustaining the thread is. Myself, I've been wishing for something on the general subject of morality. And I wanted it so that people could visit, observe, read, reflect on the subject for themselves, and learn, whether they post or not, as well as for folks to post instead of just sit back and read. This can't happen if the thread fades and isn't visible so that people can't notice that it even exists. (I'm not going to do too much myself until it warms up, achieves some sustainability, and I see that my time won't be wasted) So, I myself don't mind so much if things meander a bit. I think that a little meandering would both be a tool to help keep it alive and active, as well as allow for full expression, exploration, and learning in this area. Yes, certain of us are tired of particular religious aspects of these discussions, yet that is exactly part of what we need to address, concerning morality. I'm one to be pretty darn critical of certain posts along these lines, but I also like when it's put on the table, because that's part of what we get it out there, in the open. What's prudent is to respond to these views however is deserved, applicable, and productive...but we are also (obligated?) and free to not be limited by this - we can discuss into whatever other directions we choose, despite posts of religious spins. Someone wants to post and make it about religion or what? We do our part to take it into other more productive directions.

This concludes a message from the super duper jibber-jabber broadcasting service
Posted: 3/31/2013 9:06:58 AM
Joined: 5/8/2010
Msg: 23
Posted: 3/31/2013 9:12:18 AM

So what? His response might feel like an attack on your beliefs, but then a statement of your beliefs feels like an attack on his.

So what ?... this is what, his response _is_ (not feel) a clear attack on everyone's source of morality that is not jesus.

That invites his statement to be attacked. When bhawk, legitimately attacked it, you placed the responsibility of turning this thread into a debate between people who believe and those who don't, on him instead of placing it on the believer who took advantage of the question to proselytize.

If I were to state my personal source of morality, I would state it as such. I would not underhandedly claim that my reason is "_the_ reason people" believe in truth, justice and goodness. By the way, in post 2, you did exactly that (meaning you stated your source and made no universal claims about it). If you had claimed your source of morals is _the_ source of truth, justice and goodness, would you not have expected that claim to be contested ?

The bottom line is this: you accused the wrong person (bhawk) of turning this thread into a debate between believers and non believers. I suppose we will now see how good your source of morals turned out to be.

Leave this pro-anti-religion stuff for the other threads.

It is not about pro or anti religion. It is about placing responsibility on the shoulders where it belongs.

I can tell you for sure, that if we don't, a mod is quite likely to kill this thread entirely.

That would be unfortunate but, I will defend bhawk's action because it is fair and justified. At this point, it is your choice, place the responsibility where it legitimately belongs or this argument has just started and, it has nothing to do with belief and everything to do with responsibility.

NOTE: slight post-edit in the third paragraph.
Joined: 12/8/2011
Msg: 24
Posted: 3/31/2013 10:31:34 AM

What is it?

It like all things with regards to living things, is rooted in evolution.

We thinks babies are cute not because how they look but because it is in our evolutionary best interest to do so, thus we do not think that murder is a good idea, not because it is bad to kill, but because that is not in our evolutionary best interest.
Joined: 7/8/2004
Msg: 25
Posted: 3/31/2013 12:29:46 PM
OOP…Silly me!…I posted this to the wrong thread a little while ago…Sorry.

Scripture has to be read metaphorically to interpret it properly and learn it's profound moral lessons. As an example of what I mean, I will now critique bhawk's post of scriptural quotes with my own take on their meaning. I'll omit the quotes from what Jesus meant, since he probably didn't say it exactly that way…if he was even there to say anything at all:

(CHRIST) Matthew 10:34-36
34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

36 And a man's foes shall be they of his own household.

34 - I came to shake up the rotten status quo of the priests with the power of reason logic and wisdom, which is ultimately, the greatest of weapons against the absurdities that make people commit atrocities (see Voltaire).

35 - This will cause much dissension, even in the family where the parents wish to stick to the absurd status quo.

36 - Families will argue and fight over the interpretations of scripture.

(CHRIST) Luke 22:36

36 Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

Money has no real value and neither do worldly possessions. There is great power in being poor, as it shows others that you do not seek false values they can use against you (How can any man stand against you when they rely on your all-too-human foibles of fear, greed and ego to defeat you?) A pure, courageous and unselfish heart is the mightiest weapon that can be wielded (that is the sword to which he referred).

Deuteronomy 13:13-18

13 Certain men, the children of Belial, are gone out from among you, and have withdrawn the inhabitants of their city, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which ye have not known;

14 Then shalt thou enquire, and make search, and ask diligently; and, behold, if it be truth, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought among you;

15 Thou shalt surely smite the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, destroying it utterly, and all that is therein, and the cattle thereof, with the edge of the sword.

16 And thou shalt gather all the spoil of it into the midst of the street thereof, and shalt burn with fire the city, and all the spoil thereof every whit, for the Lord thy God: and it shall be an heap for ever; it shall not be built again.

17 And there shall cleave nought of the cursed thing to thine hand: that the Lord may turn from the fierceness of his anger, and shew thee mercy, and have compassion upon thee, and multiply thee, as he hath sworn unto thy fathers;

18 When thou shalt hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, to keep all his commandments which I command thee this day, to do that which is right in the eyes of the Lord thy God.

This was part of a "moral" lesson inserted by the power-hungry priests to prevent the "faithful" from following a God they weren't "pushing" and rally them to commit profitable atrocities of conquest in the name of their own God. (the absurd "God is on our side" fallacy)

1 Samuel 15:2-3

2 Thus saith the Lord of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt.

3 Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.

Ditto to the above, and at least partly made up, since if you read all the scripture, you will see that the Chosen of God, doing his bidding, killed off the Amalekites to the last man, woman & child THREE TIMES! (Apparently they were a lot harder to kill off than the Almighty and Omnipotent God thought)

Thats just a brief example, before you say the old testament is not relevant, it was jesus who said:

Matthew 5:17-19

17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.

18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

17 - You guys are screwing up by misinterpreting and making up scripture & the real law. I'm here to set you straight.

18 - The real law isn't written by men, but by the universe (God?) itself. The fulfilment of the law is the very function of the universe and the law will never change as long as the universe (God?) exists.

19 - The truly good and moral man is the one who is in total harmony with the Law of God (the law of nature…natural law)

So you see, scripture, like Aesop's fables teaches us many and profound lessons when you read it properly and without making stupid assumptions (like it's meant to be taken literally, or is historically accurate, or was written by an almighty and nasty, vengeful, jealous God modelled on Zeus, etc.)

Like any truly good storybook, the Bible teaches us a great deal about ourselves
Show ALL Forums  > Science/philosophy  > morality