Monday, June 26, 2017

Morality requires a god whether you are religious or not

According to philosopher Gerald K. Harrison. Here. 

HT: Steve Hays

12 comments:

John Moore said...

He assumes that morality is a matter of commands, or rules. If that is the case, then his argument seems sound. But what if morality is all about the outcomes? Some outcomes are good because we have evolved to strive for those outcomes. Other outcomes are bad because we evolved to abhor those outcomes.

So the question is: Are there particular rules that tell us infallibly how to achieve good outcomes? Do some rules always help us achieve good outcomes regardless of the situation?

It's possible that no such set of rules exists. In other words, we humans with our feeble minds and imprecise language are incapable of describing every possible path to good outcomes in every possible scenario.

Instead of infallible rules that apply to all cases, we end up with a set of pretty good rules of thumb that work pretty well in most cases. That's what most people think of as morality. But what really defines good and bad are the outcomes.

Joe Hinman said...

Morality about outcomes is called teleological and it is fawned upon by most ethicists these days. It bit the big one back in the 19th century with utilitarianism. John Rawls is creosoted with driving the final nail in the coffin on that.

I did 15 years of hard debate time arguing on message boards with atheists day in and day out. I never saw one single atheist who gave me an adequate grounding for moral axioms that stacks up to God.

Grousing is the real issue.

Jimmy S. M. said...

Divine Command Theory requires god(s), of course. Is the author totally unaware of other systems?

John Moore said...

Uh, if an axiom is grounded then it's not an axiom. I think Joe Hinman just meant to say "rules." The purpose of rules is to help us get better outcomes, wouldn't you agree? And an outcome is better or worse due to our evolved human nature.

Joe Hinman said...

Autin Kline's attack on Religious Experience

Joe Hinman said...

Jimmy S. M. said...
Divine Command Theory requires god(s), of course. Is the author totally unaware of other systems?

As I said no system offers grounding with the kind of efficacy of God as grounding.

Joe Hinman said...

John Moore said...
Uh, if an axiom is grounded then it's not an axiom. I think Joe Hinman just meant to say "rules." The purpose of rules is to help us get better outcomes, wouldn't you agree? And an outcome is better or worse due to our evolved human nature.

No. It is a common mistake for people unread in ethical theory to think moral axioms are like mathematical one's. Since we are dealing in a subject like ethics this not certain like math the axioms are different they require grounding. I refer you to Dorothy Emmett the Moral Prism and other such thinkers,

Edward T. Babinski said...

Ancient Near Eastern kings issued commands, and also claimed to be elevated to kingship by "gods" and priests who interpreted the will of such gods, and thus to have unquestionable power to issue laws and commands. Is such a story true? The Israelites certainly were neither the first nor only ancient Near Eastern people to think along such lines.

The Laws of Hammurabi preceded the laws of Moses. And in both cases gods allegedly inspired such lists of laws. One can see the efficacy of making such claims linking commands to divine entities, i.e., of getting people to believe and abide by such laws with fewer questions asked, and also letting people know that that such commands or laws are not merely being made at the whims of one isolated individual. But is moral authoritarianism true in the way those people believed it to be?

I doubt that moral decision making is special when compared with all other forms of human decision-making. Human moral concerns are like many other human concerns, and such concerns probably arose as the result of human interaction rather in isolation. No man is an island, and no person's thoughts about their behavior vis a vis others, exists in isolation from those others. I explain matters further here https://edwardtbabinski.us/scrivenings/2014/the-moral-question.html

bmiller said...

@Edward T. Babinski,

Interesting avatar. What is it?

Joe Hinman said...

Babinski

Your argument would be like me saying "science is not a valid way to think because it ca't prove brains stones or either." then you say those are early science ideas that are way obsolete and have been so for hundreds of years." So it is with your understanding of religion.

Atheists spend lots of time telling each other their myth of modern progress and pretending it all came apart from and without input from religious people that's crap.

Religious people stopped the witch trials not atheists, religious people stopped silvery not atheists. Religious people got women the vote not atheists. religious people invented modern science, atheists were 100 years late in getting there, Newton and Boyle were almost a hundred years before LaPlace.

Even in the most radically atheist group of enlightenment France, the circle of D'Holbach there was Joseph Priestly who was admired in the group,he was a Christian.

Every stp along the way religious thinking has kept pace with modern ideas,

Joe Hinman said...

slavery not silvery,dyslexia

Joe Hinman said...

neither religious people nor atheists have found a cure for dyslexia