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(Daily Wildcat .com)   Poll shows atheists are much more likely to believe in haunted houses, palm reading, alien visits, astrology and communicating with the dead than religious nuts. Reason, logic, smug, surrender   ( media.wildcat.arizona.edu) divider line
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1456 clicks; posted to Geek » on 26 Sep 2008 at 11:57 AM (8 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2008-09-26 06:43:06 PM  

I drunk what: Ok. I will try this again in the format you prefer


Yea, how silly of me. Wanting answers for the questions I ask. I'm sorry you had to inconvenience yourself to accommodate my special needs.

Kome: What makes a person religious as opposed to just claiming to be religious?

One who actually practices the lifestyle to which they subscribe. My 2 cents, going to church once per year does not make you religious.


What if a religion's practices are so varied that there are many possible lifestyles that one can live? What if some of those lifestyles more often lead to immoral behaviors than moral behaviors?

What's the difference between a true religion and a false religion?

Only those who believe in MY religion are true all others are FALSE!!1!! I really don't enjoy questions like this.


Despite you saying so in a flippant way, I suspect you really believe that answer. As to your not enjoying questions like this, I'm not surprised. They require actually thinking about why you think what you think, to justify your beliefs. I imagine that's very uncomfortable for you... well for many people.

What difference does it make if a false religion or a true religion is the cause of those things listed?

Well because if it's a false religion that encourages this type of behaviour, it's not really fair to lump those who actually teach against such things, together into your all encompassing title. And then to conveniently blame ALL religion for the bad deeds.


What if a true religion also encourages that type of behavior? What if both true and false religions encourage similar behaviors, whether they are moral or immoral? What does that say about them?

When it comes from a true religion, does that make it better or worse than when it comes from a false religion?

FAR worse.


Why?

But my original point was that your statement was so flawed that I thought you would catch it if repeated. Evil deeds do not COME FROM religion. They come from people. Again bad people =/= religion is bad.

is that better?


Without religion, millions upon millions of people wouldn't have died because of crimes of blasphemy. So I'm sure religion is one contributing causal factor of lots of immoral behavior.
 
Ant [TotalFark]
2008-09-26 07:02:41 PM  

I drunk what: Jesus came to fulfill the Old Law and thoroughly reiterated what Old Law concepts we are to live, as he pointed how certain ideas were incomplete.


So it's still OK for Jews to kill then, right?
 
2008-09-26 07:07:45 PM  

Ant: So it's still OK for Jews to kill then, right?


If God ordered them to. Otherwise NO. (hence the whole thou shalt not kill thing)
 
2008-09-26 07:24:10 PM  

Kome: What if a religion's practices are so varied that there are many possible lifestyles that one can live?


huh?

Kome: I imagine that's very uncomfortable for you


not at all, I was referring to the Trollish nature of the question, which is why I don't enjoy those type of questions

they reek of insincerity, but I usually give in to the benefit of doubt

Kome: What if some of those lifestyles more often lead to immoral behaviors than moral behaviors?


then I would suggest there is something flawed in one's belief

Kome: What if a true religion also encourages that type of behavior?


I would suggest that it does not.

Kome: Without religion, millions upon millions of people wouldn't have died because of crimes of blasphemy. So I'm sure religion is one contributing causal factor of lots of immoral behavior.


without religion we would all be lost to eternal damnation, is this the choice you would prefer?

with religion we are given the knowledge to make a choice, it is 100% up to you, and you alone. Even the Devil himself cannot push you into one direction or the other.

with or without religion those millions and millions would still have died, I think you have failed to prioritize what is important, but I do agree that false teachings can do great harm
 
2008-09-26 07:26:08 PM  
ninjakirby:

Keyword there was society. Groups. Big groups - like species wide.

Bevets

Define 'big'. Would 200 people comprise a 'big group'? How about 2,000,000? If 99% (or 51%) of the world population ca 2008 disagrees with 99% of the world population ca 1008, which is 'right'?


abb3w:

"Insufficient Data For Meaningful Answer"

How is the nature of "moral" determined?


This is the only criteria ninjakirby has offered. Is it possible that the entire population could arrive at an incorrect moral conclusion? How would this be determined?

abb3w:

I'll spot you six months of img.fark.net if you can indicate any post on Fark where I ever made the assertion that atheists as a category are perfectly rational. (Sarcastic use acceptable, but not me quoting another poster. In the event of a dispute over whether the citation does indeed constitute my making that assertion, I agree in advance to accept moderation by Bevets.)

'Out of Context' trumps all other claims -- havent you read Fark?
 
2008-09-26 07:34:53 PM  
It's weird that the author would spend the entire article lambasting atheists for perceived smugness, totally oblivious to how monstrously smug is own tone is. Pretty typical of atheist haters.
 
2008-09-26 07:37:52 PM  
imfallen_angel: "Why are there so many asshats out there?"

Well in all honesty you're one of the worst I've ever met. Why don't you tell us why you behave the way you do?
 
2008-09-26 07:59:26 PM  

I drunk what: PC LOAD LETTER: Since most people are claim to be religious, and we still have crime, lust, hate, and other unGodly behaviour committed by religious and atheist alike, I would say that it's not working out too well for you either.

FTFY


Ah, the old "no true Scotsman" argument. So much fail in such a tidy little package.
 
2008-09-26 08:02:59 PM  

I drunk what: without religion we would all be lost to eternal damnation, is this the choice you would prefer?


That's only according to your faith. Other religions don't agree with you. And there is as much evidence of their religion being true as there is of yours being true.
 
2008-09-26 08:21:23 PM  

I drunk what: interesting, this is how I felt about the responses to my previous problem. (the moral enigma)


Why? I considered it a legitimate question. A moral individual should be able to address the possibility of encountering an amoral individual. In return, it seemed to get several responses with decent approximations to an answer.

I drunk what: I claim to be a Japanese kamikaze jet pilot. Does this make it true?


Evidence would suggest you fail to meet the criteria for the categories. What properties of evidence are necessary and sufficient to for a Christian?

I drunk what: What's the difference between real money and counterfeit money?


Different units of account.

I drunk what: when a person lumps all religion (good and bad) together then proceeds to make accusations about it (them), is it fair for the non-guilty parties to have to defend the guilty ones?


Fair to have to defend? No. Fair to require a means to distinguish themselves from? Yes.

I drunk what: Going along with your suggestion I could use 'Alice in Wonderland' as a cookbook


"More pepper" isn't bad advice, but it makes a better introductory computer science textbook.

I drunk what: without religion we would all be lost to eternal damnation, is this the choice you would prefer?


Now, there's your fallacy: false dichotomy.

Bevets: This is the only criteria ninjakirby has offered.


And I would agree, it is woefully incomplete. Not outright wrong, but definitely an overly simplified approximation.

Bevets: Is it possible that the entire population could arrive at an incorrect moral conclusion?


Possible? Quite. Likely to occur with significant frequency is another matter.

Bevets: How would this be determined?


I'm not sure. More generally, it leads back to the question of how the nature of "moral" may be generally determined (preferably as a formal inference from evidence). For a specific instance.... to the (slightly inaccurate) extent that entire population of Jonestown arrived at the same conclusion, would you agree it was morally incorrect?

Bevets: 'Out of Context' trumps all other claims -- havent you read Fark?


Which is why I explicitly allowed sarcastic use. I'm still willing to accept your arbitration. For a $25 stake, using the limits of your sense of integrity seems a rational hedge bet.
 
2008-09-26 08:47:14 PM  

I drunk what: OldGrover: In general, you can't use the Bible any book or idea as a morality guide [fill in the blank]. You use it to justify what you already think. It is good at that, since you can justify pretty much anything with it.

I suppose anything is possible. Going along with your suggestion I could use 'Alice in Wonderland' as a cookbook, or as divine instruction from Thor to destroy all European countries. But that would just be silly, wouldn't it?

Can you refresh my memory where in the New Testament (the Christian Law) God authorized us to commit murder? Jesus came to fulfill the Old Law and thoroughly reiterated what Old Law concepts we are to live, as he pointed how certain ideas were incomplete.


Sure. Start with Matthew :

Matt 5:18 "For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled."

That brings in all of Leviticus - which contains many commands to kill.

Or, if that's too much sophistry, there's lots directly from the New Testament :

Matt 10:21 "Brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death."

Matt 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. I came not to send peace, but a sword. ... A man's foes shall be they of his own household. 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. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

And now Mark :

7:10 For Moses said, Honour thy father and thy mother; and, Whoso curseth father or mother, let him die the death:

From Acts 3 :

3:22 For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you. A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me. Every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people. And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.

There's more. That enough?
 
2008-09-26 08:53:24 PM  
OldGrover: There's more. That enough?

I think my post got lost in the shuffle, but you covered what I had.

So I'll add just one more item, which is the question:

What kind of moral code is the Book of Judges (^) talking about?
 
2008-09-26 09:01:34 PM  

maddogdelta: What kind of moral code is the Book of Judges talking about?


Law of hospitality. The man himself is a guest; his concubine merely a servant of that guest, and the host's daughters even less important.

Triage, but really lousy triage.
 
2008-09-26 09:29:46 PM  
abb3w: Law of hospitality. The man himself is a guest; his concubine merely a servant of that guest, and the host's daughters even less important.

Triage, but really lousy triage.


There is a point I hadn't considered. But I would be willing to wager a year of TF that if I showed the same kind of hospitality today, the local constabulary agencies would want to have a little chat with me. I'm also sure, that every major religious leader would condemn what I had done.
 
2008-09-26 09:34:03 PM  

OldGrover: That enough?


Indeed. And after you have learned the concept of context. I'd be happy to continue a discussion.

Also quoted from the Bible:

"Luke" "I am" "your" "Father"

/obviously the Biblical authors plagerized from Lucas
//obviously
 
2008-09-26 09:37:18 PM  

abb3w: Fair to have to defend? No. Fair to require a means to distinguish themselves from? Yes.


salvation lies within
 
2008-09-26 09:41:37 PM  

Ed Grubermann: That's only according to your faith. Other religions don't agree with you. And there is as much evidence of their religion being true as there is of yours being true.


If my faith is false then you have nothing to worry about. It is possible that every writer of the Bible was brainwashed and/or hallucinated the entire thing. And all the witnesses, again possible brain wash/hallucination. You've got something there.
 
2008-09-26 09:52:25 PM  

I drunk what: Kome: What if a religion's practices are so varied that there are many possible lifestyles that one can live?

huh?


There are hundreds of different sects of Christianity, Judaism, Islam, etc. What if a religion's practices allow for many possible lifestyles?

Kome: I imagine that's very uncomfortable for you

not at all, I was referring to the Trollish nature of the question, which is why I don't enjoy those type of questions

they reek of insincerity, but I usually give in to the benefit of doubt


Oh please. The last resort of an internet scoundrel is the accusation that the other guy is trolling. It's a serious question. You are the one that brought up false religions and true religions. You should be able to explain the difference.

Kome: What if some of those lifestyles more often lead to immoral behaviors than moral behaviors?

then I would suggest there is something flawed in one's belief


First of all, how can you understand this question enough to answer it, but not the above question of "What if a religion's practices are so varied that there are many possible lifestyles that one can live?" Did you just not want to answer the first question because it's a toughie?

Second, I'm glad you acknowledge there is something flawed with Christianity.

Kome: What if a true religion also encourages that type of behavior?

I would suggest that it does not.


Please note the first two words were "What if..." Answer the question.

Kome: Without religion, millions upon millions of people wouldn't have died because of crimes of blasphemy. So I'm sure religion is one contributing causal factor of lots of immoral behavior.

without religion we would all be lost to eternal damnation, is this the choice you would prefer?


Goodness man, answering a question with a question only works as a rhetorical device when the question you ask in response is a good one, not one laden with assumptions. Carrying on...

with religion we are given the knowledge to make a choice, it is 100% up to you, and you alone. Even the Devil himself cannot push you into one direction or the other.

Religion is not a source of knowledge, it is a source (as in, one of many) of spiritual fulfillment. That's not knowledge.

with or without religion those millions and millions would still have died,

They wouldn't have been murdered. Are you suggesting that because you're going to die some day, it would be okay for me to come kill you?

I think you have failed to prioritize what is important, but I do agree that false teachings can do great harm

It's really disturbing that you think not wanting people to be murdered for no good reason is a trivial issue.
 
2008-09-26 10:03:04 PM  

DamnYankees: The Icelander: DamnYankees: I don't understand this argument.

Argument ad populum.

I don't think he's saying that. He doesn't believe in god, but because other people do, he's an agnostic and not an atheist. Muh?

This may have been addressed already in the thread, but I think my feelings may be similar.

I don't have a belief in a god, but I don't have a belief in the absence of gods. Said differently, I don't belief in God, but that doesn't mean that I believe there isn't one. I don't know if there is or isn't, but for myself I've seen no evidence that any "greater being" has any involvement in my day-to-day life. I'm neither a believer or disbeliever. I simply am.
 
2008-09-26 10:33:18 PM  

I drunk what: Indeed. And after you have learned the concept of context. I'd be happy to continue a discussion.


Since I expect ninjakirby might be interested if he should stop back by, what rules do you feel should be used for evaluating context?

maddogdelta: There is a point I hadn't considered.


As I understand, this is the standard Rabbinical explanation for the story of Lot, who faced a similar incident.

I drunk what: a means to distinguish

[link to the Bible]

Ah, so it doesn't matter that they lie, cheat, kill, bugger altar boys, screw pubescent girls any way they can, as long as they're waving a Bible about?

I drunk what: It is possible that every writer of the Bible was brainwashed and/or hallucinated the entire thing. And all the witnesses, again possible brain wash/hallucination.


You forgot the con artists.

"There's a sucker born every minute and two to take him."

Kome: It's really disturbing that you think not wanting people to be murdered for no good reason is a trivial issue.


If there is a good reason, does it matter whether the true reason is given?
 
2008-09-26 10:44:51 PM  

I drunk what: OldGrover: That enough?

Indeed. And after you have learned the concept of context. I'd be happy to continue a discussion.

Also quoted from the Bible:

"Luke" "I am" "your" "Father"

/obviously the Biblical authors plagerized from Lucas
//obviously


*rolls eyes* Yeah, that's the same as what I did. Let's pick one and you can provide the context for me, then...

Matt 5:18 "For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled."

Here's the entire context :

17"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. 19Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven. (NIV)

That's the complete context in the book - the stuff before and after, though somewhat related, are other commandments. How do you interpret this commandment except that you should follow the Law and the Prophets - that is that you should follow what we now call the Old Testament? How do you know that your interpretation is more correct than the obvious face reading, which says you should follow Leviticus and the rest of the law?
 
2008-09-26 10:54:47 PM  
Another question, I drunk what - if you aren't supposed to follow Leviticus, what's it doing in your Bible? Why is it there?
 
2008-09-26 11:42:33 PM  
To the 31 percent of atheists who believe in this nonsense: What is wrong with you? And what's wrong with the other 69 percent of us who tolerate this?

WTF should I care about what other atheists believe? Atheists are a vast group of disparate backgrounds. The one unifying factor of atheists is that they don't believe--for one reason or another--in gods. Hell, even most Buddhists are atheists.

So, who cares? It's not like atheism can be a united front. Many atheists simply don't care about what others believe. Just keep it away from me, man.
 
2008-09-27 01:31:27 AM  

OldGrover: How do you know that your interpretation is more correct than the obvious face reading


Or, more generally:

abb3w: what rules do you feel should be used for evaluating context?

...as it were.

Kuildeous: WTF should I care about what other atheists believe?


You might find some of it informative. For example, would you agree that (P OR Q) is logically equivalent to (Q OR P)...?
 
2008-09-27 01:40:04 AM  
http://abandonedbanana.com/?cat=54 (new window)

Who's with me?
 
2008-09-27 02:20:02 AM  

Bevets: ninjakirby:
Keyword there was society. Groups. Big groups - like species wide.

Define 'big'. Would 200 people comprise a 'big group'? How about 2,000,000? If 99% (or 51%) of the world population ca 2008 disagrees with 99% of the world population ca 1008, which is 'right'?


I haven't read the threads continuation after this comment, just posting this as my word on the subject now that I'm home.


First of all - I directly defined big as 'like species wide'. Asking if 'big' is 200 people just shows poor reading comprehension.

Second, I when I say beneficial for society, that can be construed in many different ways, as society is a nebulous shifting concept. This is why I attached it to the concept of species.

If I were talking to my child, and they were to truly follow this rabbits hole to it's very end, then the ultimate 'end point' of the conversation would involve Game Theory mathematics.

Second, it's not a hard and fast rule to be obeyed without questioning. As with any answer, it is highly contextual. If 99% of the worlds current population believed plucking out both of their eyes was a good thing to do, and 99% of the 1008 AD population thought it was stupid and dangerous, it doesn't matter. The result is what matters.

Plucking out your eyes, murder, suicide bombing, molestation, etc all have results and those results have consequences. It's the consequences that are judged to determine morality.

Now I'm going to bed.
 
2008-09-27 07:00:57 AM  
abb3w:

I'll spot you six months of img.fark.net if you can indicate any post on Fark where I ever made the assertion that atheists as a category are perfectly rational. (Sarcastic use acceptable, but not me quoting another poster. In the event of a dispute over whether the citation does indeed constitute my making that assertion, I agree in advance to accept moderation by Bevets.)

Bevets

'Out of Context' trumps all other claims -- havent you read Fark?


abb3w:

Which is why I explicitly allowed sarcastic use. I'm still willing to accept your arbitration. For a $25 stake, using the limits of your sense of integrity seems a rational hedge bet.

I am not an atheist. You have claimed to be an atheist. In Farkworld: If I agree with you about anything e.g. 'Porkchops taste good', that would be suggesting that I am an atheist. 'Out of Context' should remind everyone that I am not an atheist. Even if I say 'Porkchops taste good', full context would prove that I was thinking 'I hate porkchops'. The important thing to remember is that I am not an atheist.

ninjakirby

Keyword there was society. Groups. Big groups - like species wide.

Bevets

Define 'big'. Would 200 people comprise a 'big group'? How about 2,000,000? If 99% (or 51%) of the world population ca 2008 disagrees with 99% of the world population ca 1008, which is 'right'?


ninjakirby

First of all - I directly defined big as 'like species wide'. Asking if 'big' is 200 people just shows poor reading comprehension.

Second, I when I say beneficial for society, that can be construed in many different ways, as society is a nebulous shifting concept. This is why I attached it to the concept of species.

If I were talking to my child, and they were to truly follow this rabbits hole to it's very end, then the ultimate 'end point' of the conversation would involve Game Theory mathematics.


You have not explained your stipulation for 'species wide'. How do you KNOW a 'species wide' belief will be correct? You have already backed down to '99%' agreement -- why not '51%'?

We could make this simple: Suppose the human population is reduced to 3. If 2 humans agree to torture the third human, what would suggest their actions are immoral?

Second, it's not a hard and fast rule to be obeyed without questioning. As with any answer, it is highly contextual. If 99% of the worlds current population believed plucking out both of their eyes was a good thing to do, and 99% of the 1008 AD population thought it was stupid and dangerous, it doesn't matter. The result is what matters.

Plucking out your eyes, murder, suicide bombing, molestation, etc all have results and those results have consequences. It's the consequences that are judged to determine morality.


Now you have backed away from your original statement, but given no grounds for doing so. You have stipulated that the population agrees plucking out their eyes is 'good', therefore the 'result' or 'consequence' is 'good' -- this is what they wanted. If the desires of an entire population are wrong, I need to know your criteria for determining how they are wrong.
 
2008-09-27 08:15:32 AM  

Bevets: I need to know your criteria for determining how they are wrong.


If you cannot determine right from wrong without the threat of punishment or the promise of reward, you are not a good person.
 
2008-09-27 09:50:08 AM  
bevets

Here is one for you. You are standing by a railroad switch. There is a train coming at a very large rate of speed, and clearly cannot stop. There are 5 people on the track that are about to get run down and you have only one alternative to save these 5 people, and that is to throw the switch. Except there is one person on the other track, and that person will be killed if you throw the switch.

Which choice is moral? Throwing the switch and killing one person, or not throwing the switch and killing 5?


This may seem like a pointless exercise, but there is a branch of research called moral psychology. Researchers have found that people will most likely judge the idea of throwing the switch to be more moral. At first, you might think that this is some kind of "moral relativity" and "morality by vote". But these studies have been performed across cultures, economic backgrounds, religious affiliation and educational levels.

In other words, humanity has an innate set of morals which seems to be there whether or not you are religious, rich, poor or if you are a tribesman of some backwoods tribe or are a highly educated scientist.

Now here are some interesting points from these studies. The results do not show uniform morality. Some people are psycho or sociopaths. Some people have, what we would call, a pretty flawed idea of what most people would call moral. But the results are pretty uniform.

Which means, one of two things, depending on your outlook ( I think I know which position you will take)
1. God made us with a sense of morality.
2. We evolved a sense of morality

What it does point out, which may be a little disturbing, is that there is nothing special about Judeo-Christianity which will make us more moral than anything else. The bible isn't more moral than other "holy" books. (Although, we might look at some holy books and see them as very immoral...I will refer back to Judges 19.)

What was all this about? My point is that the atheist's morality, and your morality pretty much come from the same place. Not from a holy book.

abb3w:

Which is why I explicitly allowed sarcastic use. I'm still willing to accept your arbitration. For a $25 stake, using the limits of your sense of integrity seems a rational hedge bet.

I am not an atheist. You have claimed to be an atheist. In Farkworld: If I agree with you about anything e.g. 'Porkchops taste good', that would be suggesting that I am an atheist. 'Out of Context' should remind everyone that I am not an atheist. Even if I say 'Porkchops taste good', full context would prove that I was thinking 'I hate porkchops'. The important thing to remember is that I am not an atheist.


Which is the point of offering you as a judge in this matter. There is no way anyone will claim that if you rule on the side of abb3w that anyone will claim that you are sticking up for fellow members of the Fark Atheist CabalTM.

I don't think I would be considered to have the same impartiality.
 
2008-09-27 10:52:08 AM  
www.darklightproductions.com
 
2008-09-27 11:15:54 AM  
I drunk what: "If my faith is false then you have nothing to worry about. It is possible that every writer of the Bible was brainwashed and/or hallucinated the entire thing."

They didn't need to have hallucinated or been "brainwashed" except in the sense that they were early Christians motivated to embellish the truth by a desire to convert others and spread their religion. Why did the authors of the Qur'an lie about Muhammad's flight to Medina on a winged horse? Because they felt it would help sell Islam to potential converts, same as every other fantastic supernatural event described therein.

I drunk what: "And all the witnesses, again possible brain wash/hallucination. You've got something there."

There's a far more likely explanation; That the witnesses were fabricated, like the hundreds who allegedly witnessed Muhammad's feats in the Qur'an, or the fantastic battles between forest creatures and Ravana's soldiers in the Ramayana. It's easy to write anything you like, you can just add in that thousands witnessed an event and make it seem more credible.
 
2008-09-27 11:42:11 AM  

Bevets: We could make this simple: Suppose the human population is reduced to 3. If 2 humans agree to torture the third human, what would suggest their actions are immoral?


Nothing, except of course an outside observer (divine or mortal). But note that the outside observer doesn't PREVENT it from happening. Morality is only as good as society allows it to be. Gods or not, a moral code isn't being enforced by anyone except humans, and humans will always be capable of immoral decisions regardless of if there is a religious or legal code to the contrary.
 
2008-09-27 11:42:11 AM  

Bevets: We could make this simple: Suppose the human population is reduced to 3. If 2 humans agree to torture the third human, what would suggest their actions are immoral?


Those three people are now a society. If the two humans kill the third, the society is reduced to two members. This is 'bad'. If they torture the third, they will be mistrustful and uncooperative. This is 'bad'. If they harm the third, they will be unable to work/produce to their full potential (for the good of the group and individuals). This is 'bad'.

If, however, the third individual has proven themselves to be a danger to the other two, say by stealing from their winter stores, or attacking and attempting to kill - the group is justified in taking actions to keep their society intact as much as possible, by some means. In a little group of 3 thats probably death or ostricization. Here in the big cities, it's a ticket, or a fine, or jail time.


Bevets: Now you have backed away from your original statement, but given no grounds for doing so. You have stipulated that the population agrees plucking out their eyes is 'good', therefore the 'result' or 'consequence' is 'good' -- this is what they wanted. If the desires of an entire population are wrong, I need to know your criteria for determining how they are wrong.


I never stipulated that a population plucking its eyes out was good. It isn't, and I don't say it is. I say they think it is. If everyone plucked out their eyes, they would be blind. There would be mass deaths from infection, starvation, and just general mayhem as our entire world is pretty much based around vision. That is what makes it bad. Like I said previously, answers beyond this point require Game Theory mathematics, which is itself in its infancy.

As a demonstration of Game Theory and morality, if you're not familiar with it:

Two suspects are arrested by the police. The police have insufficient evidence for a conviction, and, having separated both prisoners, visit each of them to offer the same deal. If one testifies ("defects") for the prosecution against the other and the other remains silent, the betrayer goes free and the silent accomplice receives the full 10-year sentence. If both remain silent, both prisoners are sentenced to only six months in jail for a minor charge. If each betrays the other, each receives a five-year sentence. Each prisoner must choose to betray the other or to remain silent. Each one is assured that the other would not know about the betrayal before the end of the investigation. How should the prisoners act?


You have an answer for this in the bible?

Plus, I'm close to a utilitarian on moral issues. Others can disagree with me, no skin off my back - unless they actually try to take it off my back - then we have a problem.
 
2008-09-27 11:44:55 AM  

No Such Agency: Shut up, bot. You're not even a troll any more. You're a joke


You're telling a bot to shut up. If Bevets is a bot, you're talking to something that has no way to understand what you're saying. The only way to be correct in telling a bot to shut up is to be wrong about the fact that he is actually a bot.

Something that's always troubled me about religion. If I deny all religion, then I damn myself according to the rules of most religions. Then my biggest worry is that, if I am wrong, I would almost certainly find out too late to avoid eternal punishment and/or reincarnation as a dung beetle and/or quote-spouting forum bot.

So, do you rely on faith and believe that you are correct to follow a higher calling, or do you rely on what you can prove and secretly hope you are correct and won't be punished for it later/
 
2008-09-27 12:19:45 PM  
What is truth? ~ Pilate

The Icelander

Science has a proven track record of successfully uncovering the mysteries of the universe.

abb3w

Science also may be proven to be the most accurate way to judge the only answers we can get to.

Bevets

How do you know this? Can it be tested?

But then with me the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man's mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey's mind, if there are any convictions in such a mind? ~ Charles Darwin

If my mental processes are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain, I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true. They may be sound chemically, but that does not make them sound logically. ~ J.B.S. Haldane

I used to think that the brain was the most wonderful organ in my body. Then I realized, "Look what's telling me that." ~ Emo Phillips

Suppose the human population is reduced to 3. If 2 humans agree to torture the third human, what would suggest their actions are immoral?


ninjakirby

Those three people are now a society. If the two humans kill the third, the society is reduced to two members. This is 'bad' brain chemistry. If they torture the third, they will be mistrustful and uncooperative. This is 'bad' brain chemistry. If they harm the third, they will be unable to work/produce to their full potential (for the good brain chemistry of the group and individuals). This is 'bad' brain chemistry.

FTFY

maddogdelta

1. God made us with a sense of morality.
2. We evolved a sense of morality


Everyone was created in the image of God. Everyone has rebelled against God. We are moral to the extent that we act according to the Laws of God that are imprinted on our soul. Atheists can deny the image of God and still act morally. Atheists can also deny the existence of air and still live. But they must breathe air to live.
 
2008-09-27 12:23:19 PM  
SourImplant: So, do you rely on faith and believe that you are correct to follow a higher calling, or do you rely on what you can prove and secretly hope you are correct and won't be punished for it later/

Let me put it another way. There are tens of thousands of different religions/sects of those religions. For the most part, they all have creeds which will damn you to hell for not believing in their religion.

Which one do you pick to avoid eternal damnation? Why did you make that choice?
 
2008-09-27 12:26:49 PM  

Bevets: Everyone was created in the image of God. Everyone has rebelled against God. We are moral to the extent that we act according to the Laws of God that are imprinted on our soul. Atheists can deny the image of God and still act morally. Atheists can also deny the existence of air and still live. But they must breathe air to live.


Well, I guessed right, anyway.
 
2008-09-27 12:27:12 PM  

ninjakirby: Those three people are now a society. If the two humans kill the third, the society is reduced to two members. This is 'bad'. If they torture the third, they will be mistrustful and uncooperative. This is 'bad'. If they harm the third, they will be unable to work/produce to their full potential (for the good of the group and individuals). This is 'bad'.

If, however, the third individual has proven themselves to be a danger to the other two, say by stealing from their winter stores, or attacking and attempting to kill - the group is justified in taking actions to keep their society intact as much as possible, by some means. In a little group of 3 thats probably death or ostricization. Here in the big cities, it's a ticket, or a fine, or jail time.


I disagree. Its "bad" only to an outside observer or the victim (unless the victim thinks it is ok too, which is theoretically possible). Human Sacrifice was "good" for the Aztecs. Suicide bombing is "good" for the jihadis.

Morality is all relative to the group in question. It becomes an issue only when someone disagrees with the moral choice. That someone can be an individual or an entire society, but regardless, it's still contention.

Seemingly minor point, but I think vital.
 
2008-09-27 12:28:25 PM  
Bevets: Everyone was created in the image of God. Everyone has rebelled against God. We are moral to the extent that we act according to the Laws of God that are imprinted on our soul. Atheists can deny the image of God and still act morally. Atheists can also deny the existence of air and still live. But they must breathe air to live.

You call it the image of God, I call it the next step in the genetics of society-based species.
 
2008-09-27 02:07:42 PM  

Bevets: In Farkworld: If I agree with you about anything e.g. 'Porkchops taste good', that would be suggesting that I am an atheist.


No more than my willingness to have you as an arbitrator implies I agree with YEC; anyone making such inference is a fool.

Bevets: The important thing to remember is that I am not an atheist.


I'm fully aware, and have no problems with you emphasizing that. I'm still willing to accept your arbitration. If you're unwilling, my apologies for the presumption.

ninjakirby: It's the consequences that are judged to determine morality.


Or, when judging a course of action beforehand, the probable consequences. EG: building a nuclear reactor for power should bloody well consider that one-in-a-million chance of irradiating a few hundred square miles of real estate, even if it doesn't happen to happen.

Bevets: You have stipulated that the population agrees plucking out their eyes is 'good', therefore the 'result' or 'consequence' is 'good' -- this is what they wanted. If the desires of an entire population are wrong, I need to know your criteria for determining how they are wrong.

ninjakirby: I'm close to a utilitarian on moral issues.


Utilitarianism depends on consequences; so far, so good. It depends on the utility of those consequences... and we're getting into a swamp of circularity. Wikipedia gives a short definition of utility in the Utilitarianism entry: "that is, its contribution to happiness or pleasure as summed among all persons".

So, is making people happy necessarily a good? If it feels good for everyone, do it? Let's make everybody really happy by drugging them up until they die!

The full utility entry on WP gives a better definition: "In economics, utility is a measure of the relative satisfaction from or desirability of consumption of various goods and services." Presumably, this can be extended to the relative satisfaction of various consequences with little difficulty. However, we again come into a snag. Human satisfaction/desire (and the related happiness) come about as a result of evolution; they would appear to be (like most of low-level human cognition) an approximation algorithm for judging actions and their consequences. This leaves the minor question of how accurate that approximation is, and brings me back to the Big Question of what is actually being approximated.

"What is good?"

SourImplant: If Bevets is a bot


img89.imageshack.us

Bevets: Everyone was created in the image of God.


img89.imageshack.us
...via Biblical Inerrancy, the philosophical assumption we disagree on.

PC LOAD LETTER: Morality is all relative to the group in question.


So, to the (slightly inaccurate) extent that entire population of Jonestown arrived at the same decision of morality, you would claim it was morally correct?

I think it would be closer to say it's all relative to the environment of the decision; the group is only part of the environment.

PC LOAD LETTER: You call it the image of God, I call it the

a next step in the genetics of a society-based species.

FTFY.
 
2008-09-27 02:40:34 PM  

maddogdelta: Let me put it another way. There are tens of thousands of different religions/sects of those religions. For the most part, they all have creeds which will damn you to hell for not believing in their religion.

Which one do you pick to avoid eternal damnation? Why did you make that choice?


hometown.aol.com
 
2008-09-27 03:20:42 PM  

OldGrover: Another question, I drunk what - if you aren't supposed to follow Leviticus, what's it doing in your Bible? Why is it there?


historical account, so that when the Old Law is referenced in the new testament one has information of what is being discussed. And to show the proof of prophecies, lineages, examples of how man has failed time and again (so that we might learn from our mistakes)

please keep in mind the old law was made by Moses (tolerated by God not instructed by Him) because of the hardness of man's heart. The 10 commandments were given by God. Jesus did not teach against the old law, he showed how flawed and incomplete it was. (not to mention very ineffective)

if we were still bound to the old law we would have to have the ark of the covenant, make animal sacrifices, practice many ceremonial washings and incense burning, etc...
 
2008-09-27 03:56:59 PM  
I drunk what: please keep in mind the old law was made by Moses (tolerated by God not instructed by Him)

Actually, this is where I will respectfully disagree. It is quite clear in the Pentateuch that the law was dictated by God to Moses. That was the whole burning bush thing. God instructed the Israelites to commit genocide, and keep all the virgin females as slaves (well, except for the 32 virgins that were either given to the priests or made into human sacrifices, it's tough to tell with the wording of Numbers 31 (^)..)

Jesus did not teach against the old law, he showed how flawed and incomplete it was.

Again, I must disagree.
Matthew 5
17"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. 19Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven."

if we were still bound to the old law we would have to have the ark of the covenant, make animal sacrifices, practice many ceremonial washings and incense burning, etc...

and according to Jesus, you still do.
 
2008-09-27 04:08:12 PM  

I drunk what: if we were still bound to the old law we would have to have the ark of the covenant


Allegedly in the care of the Primate of the Ethiopian Seat, IIR.

"We've already got one. It's verra nice."
 
2008-09-27 04:18:55 PM  

maddogdelta:
Again, I must disagree.


Here (new window) is a good place to start.

This (new window) also should help illustrate the context.

I would recommend these links to OldGrover as well.
 
2008-09-27 04:20:37 PM  

abb3w: I drunk what: if we were still bound to the old law we would have to have the ark of the covenant

Allegedly in the care of the Primate of the Ethiopian Seat, IIR.

"We've already got one. It's verra nice."


what is IIR?

/You what?! (He said they've already got one)
//Well may we come up and see it?
 
2008-09-27 04:41:09 PM  

Deylan: I don't have a belief in a god, but I don't have a belief in the absence of gods. Said differently, I don't belief in God, but that doesn't mean that I believe there isn't one. I don't know if there is or isn't, but for myself I've seen no evidence that any "greater being" has any involvement in my day-to-day life. I'm neither a believer or disbeliever. I simply am.


If you found a clock on a beach would you assume it happened on accident? or naturally?

Saying "I simply am" do you believe that you came from somewhere? Your parents, perhaps? And from where did they come?

Do you think that you are the greatest force in the universe? Have the most knowledge?

Do you have a sense of right and wrong? If we are but another species of animal why don't they? Why don't they gaze at the stars? Don't they have eyes?
 
2008-09-27 04:49:17 PM  
and according to Jesus, you still do.

I disagree, but I can see (new window) why some might be confused.
 
2008-09-27 04:52:17 PM  

abb3w: Allegedly in the care of the Primate of the Ethiopian Seat


It's only a model.

/shhhhh
 
2008-09-27 06:34:13 PM  

Bevets: brain chemistry


How the hell does someone who believes God made humans special think that all we are is brain chemistry?
 
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