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  1. #1 morality 
    Forum Ph.D. william's Avatar
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    Does an absolute morality exist?

    In other words, can you think of any action that would be immoral under any circumstances?

    Cheers,
    william


    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    No it doesn't, and under all circumstances? No.


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    Some people have died rather than eat human flesh to survive - the plane that crashed in the Andies for example, does this not suggest that an absolute morality is an individual or personal trait - after all if you are prepared to die rather than do something,that must be an absolute moral (at least inmy understanding).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Megabrain
    Some people have died rather than eat human flesh to survive - the plane that crashed in the Andies for example, does this not suggest that an absolute morality is an individual or personal trait - after all if you are prepared to die rather than do something,that must be an absolute moral (at least inmy understanding).
    Wrong. That's your brain working against you. Evolution style. That and human flesh tastes nasty.
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    So why was it not true for all suvivors? - all evolved the same way, all with genes from the same pool - thus I suggest to those who refrained, it may have been their morality, also consider captured spies tortured to death yet revealed nothing, was not their morale code that which allowed them to sacrifice their lives?

    Are you destined to just tread all over my arguments and never give ground - is this not immoral? :wink:
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    Quote Originally Posted by Megabrain
    So why was it not true for all suvivors? - all evolved the same way, all with genes from the same pool - thus I suggest to those who refrained, it may have been their morality, also consider captured spies tortured to death yet revealed nothing, was not their morale code that which allowed them to sacrifice their lives?

    Are you destined to just tread all over my arguments and never give ground - is this not immoral? :wink:
    Sorry, but you're as wrong as an armadillo claiming to be the queen of england. Even if a species evolves into relatively the same shape, and had similar genes for that shape, there are infinite amounts of changes within that limited set of appearance.

    However, it's largely a sociological influence. Your society can hinder, or increase, your brains ability to stop you from surviving because of some "moral". On the other hand, it's also an evolution trait. Some people have genes that make it worse, others do not.

    Sufficed to say, it doesn't have to even be a moral. One can do pretty much anything one wants to regarding ones own body and brain. Morals are only excuses we give to make ourselves feel special. "oh lookit me! I'm all moral!"

    And perhaps when your arguments are less lacking in intelligence/logic/basis I wont. until that time, you can only hope.
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    Now if you were to go and look at the definition of morality you might see that even armadillo could tell you you have contradicted yourself.
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    The quality of being in accord with standards of right or good conduct.

    From answers.com. I see no contradiction. but that's ignoring a rather lengthy philosophy issue. Hah

    Also, I've basically refuted your claim of an absolute moral. Since it's far from absolute.
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  10. #9  
    Forum Ph.D. william's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremyhfht
    No it doesn't, and under all circumstances? No.
    Hi Jeremy,
    Since you answered "no," let me ask this question;

    When would it be moral to rape and kill a 5-year old child for personal pleasure?

    If the answer is "never," then could we say that THAT action would always be immoral, providing us with at least one example, and lead us to the idea that an absolute morality exists?

    Note that I'm not asserting anything, just trying to understand this better myself....

    Cheers,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    When would it be moral to rape and kill a 5-year old child for personal pleasure?
    If I were to ask you, "Is it legal to carry a conceiled firearm?" you would most likely object. You may object to the usage of the term 'firearm' - does that include automatic rifles, or you might just appeal to the fact that not in all nations, these firearm restrictions are the same.

    By posing the question you posed, you have, in your question, enclosed an absolute morality by pretending there is only one possibility of morality. Imagine we would observe the behaviour of a lion - he might not object to eating a young child, or having non-consensual sex with a young pup.

    Look at deSade's works. He might not object to such behaviour, in fact he describes views defending rape and murder in various cases. Clearly there exist viewpoints in which rape is not so objectional.

    Is this harmful? I believe not. The mere possibility that someone might rape us ought not to be the reason why we say "Don't rape." In my view, at least, we should not base views on morality on fear or ressentiment. When I condemn rape, it is because I condemn such a fixation of power. Rape is a incomplete sublimation, it arises from weakness, from sickness - not from personal strength. The strong, self-willed individual might be interested in entertaining sexual relationships, but hardly enforcing them on others, just like he has no interests in using physical powers to end someone's life. "Why do you not murder?" "Because I'm not a murderer."

    Mr U
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    Homo is fairly correct in this matter. And my reaction is the same:

    Under all circumstances, no. Try to lead the discussion as much as you like with closed-ended examples, but the answer will probably remain a simple "no" unless further explanation is required.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremyhfht
    Homo is fairly correct in this matter. And my reaction is the same:

    Under all circumstances, no. Try to lead the discussion as much as you like with closed-ended examples, but the answer will probably remain a simple "no" unless further explanation is required.
    Okay...
    How about this closed-ended example;
    Is it always wrong for a human whos mental facilities are clearly ascertained (in other words, a person capable of reason (i.e., no mental disorder, etc.)) to rape and kill a 5-year old child against their will solely for personal pleasure?

    The point is to only find one clear example which would lead to an absolute statement.

    If the answer is still "no," then try to come up with a scenario to help explain it to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    If I were to ask you, "Is it legal to carry a conceiled firearm?" you would most likely object. You may object to the usage of the term 'firearm' - does that include automatic rifles, or you might just appeal to the fact that not in all nations, these firearm restrictions are the same.
    What if I said, in the US, with the proper permit, it IS legal to carry a firearm with the term 'firearm' meaning a handgun (or specifically, a 40-cal Sig Sauer automatic). If that statement is in fact true, then we can say absolutely that it is true in that context.

    By posing the question you posed, you have, in your question, enclosed an absolute morality by pretending there is only one possibility of morality. Imagine we would observe the behaviour of a lion - he might not object to eating a young child, or having non-consensual sex with a young pup.
    So then it wouldn't apply to lions. Again, the point is to find only one case where we can say something in absolute terms - something that applies to a particular circumstance at all times. I also think morality only applies to beings capable of reasoning and logic - afterall, how can we expect a being with limited reasoning capabilities to know the difference...?

    Look at deSade's works. He might not object to such behaviour, in fact he describes views defending rape and murder in various cases. Clearly there exist viewpoints in which rape is not so objectional.
    Yes... he would probably subscribe to a subjective morality. But that doesn't mean he is right.

    Perhaps my original question was poorly worded. I guess what I'm getting at is, if we can come up with at least one example of an action where we can say that it is immoral in that context for all times, does that imply an absolute morality? For example, perhaps my opening statement in this particular post. Can we say that, under those circumstances, that action is always immoral? Again, I admit my original question was poorly worded. I should have said something akin to "Can you think of an action that would always be immoral?"

    Cheers,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    Quote Originally Posted by william
    Okay...
    How about this closed-ended example;
    Is it always wrong for a human whos mental facilities are clearly ascertained (in other words, a person capable of reason (i.e., no mental disorder, etc.)) to rape and kill a 5-year old child against their will solely for personal pleasure?

    The point is to only find one clear example which would lead to an absolute statement.

    If the answer is still "no," then try to come up with a scenario to help explain it to me.
    Still no. Not in all circumstances.

    Morality is subjective anyway. However, lets provide the beginning of a list of probabilities: Lets say that someone threatened in some manner, and that the person doing the threatening will do something far worse than what the person threatened would do.

    However, for another example that covers the pleasure bit, who is to say that is immoral? Society, most likely, but that's a subjective view. To the one comitting the act, it isn't immoral. Also, what happens if the 5 year old wanted/needed it? Regardless of the persons obvious pleasure from the act.

    I'm not really too great at creating hypothetical situations, but you get the jist. It's never absolute.
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    Subjective, surely individual as well, William do you mean globally as in a morale all peaople may hold or that of an individual only? - if it's global then there's always somebody lacking in scruples who will undertake an action others may feel is immoral. If it's individual than you can [maybe] always find an individual who will hold an action immoral to the end.
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    Ah, I just thought of a mental problem that should void a universal morality: Sociopaths.
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  17. #16  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremyhfht
    Quote Originally Posted by william
    Okay...
    How about this closed-ended example;
    Is it always wrong for a human whos mental facilities are clearly ascertained (in other words, a person capable of reason (i.e., no mental disorder, etc.)) to rape and kill a 5-year old child against their will solely for personal pleasure?

    The point is to only find one clear example which would lead to an absolute statement.

    If the answer is still "no," then try to come up with a scenario to help explain it to me.
    Still no. Not in all circumstances.

    Morality is subjective anyway. However, lets provide the beginning of a list of probabilities: Lets say that someone threatened in some manner, and that the person doing the threatening will do something far worse than what the person threatened would do.

    However, for another example that covers the pleasure bit, who is to say that is immoral? Society, most likely, but that's a subjective view. To the one comitting the act, it isn't immoral. Also, what happens if the 5 year old wanted/needed it? Regardless of the persons obvious pleasure from the act.

    I'm not really too great at creating hypothetical situations, but you get the jist. It's never absolute.
    Thanks. But note the highlighted words;

    Quote Originally Posted by william
    Is it always wrong for a human whos mental facilities are clearly ascertained (in other words, a person capable of reason (i.e., no mental disorder, etc.)) to rape and kill a 5-year old child against their will solely for personal pleasure?
    Or how about this one;
    Would this be immoral?
    To commit an act which affects someone else, against their will, provided that it is clearly ascertained that the act is not necessary, and that the individual’s past behavior hasn’t caused harm to another [against their will] thus negating their disapproval of the action which affects them and is meant to prevent further harm to others.

    Regards,
    wm
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    As I said, I'm not too good at hypothetical situations. Find someone who is.
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  19. #18  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremyhfht
    Ah, I just thought of a mental problem that should void a universal morality: Sociopaths.
    Jeremy, with all due respect, I don't think you are reading what I say very carefully (although I'm not the most articulate person...).

    Sociopaths possibly aren't capable of accessing an absolute moral code (if it exists) perhaps due to their mental disadvantage (but heck, I'm no psychologist...), or perhaps they are aware of right and wrong yet choose to do what they know is immoral. That is why I threw in the clause for a being who didn't suffer from a mental disorder.

    Just because someone isn't able to access a universal moral code, or chooses not to follow it, doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

    Now...
    I'm not entirely sure about this 'absolute moral code' shice myself, but I guess I may lean to the idea that some universal principles may exist....

    cheers
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    Quote Originally Posted by Megabrain
    Subjective, surely individual as well, William do you mean globally as in a morale all peaople may hold or that of an individual only? - if it's global then there's always somebody lacking in scruples who will undertake an action others may feel is immoral. If it's individual than you can [maybe] always find an individual who will hold an action immoral to the end.
    Hi Mega,
    Well... personally, I think many things are subjective. What's on my mind though, is simply the possibility that some universal principles of morality may exist....

    cheers
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    Well if that's universal as in a common moral accepted by everyone then forget it. At the end of the day there are people who have no scruples about killing masses of fellow humans, making animals extinct or destroying the planet - what could be worse, more immoral than any of those - If we each had a button that we could press and cause the whole universe to dissappear it would have been pressed the first day it was issued.
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    if nothing is immoral then you have to think everything or action is moral.
    in Africa many, many things are everyday events that no one on this forum would consider moral. the people on Donner's peak ate human flesh to survive and did...i would think those dieing insistent on it as i hope i could have. in short it is objective, it is individual but both are, even if not to all.
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  23. #22  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Megabrain
    Well if that's universal as in a common moral accepted by everyone then forget it. At the end of the day there are people who have no scruples about killing masses of fellow humans, making animals extinct or destroying the planet - what could be worse, more immoral than any of those - If we each had a button that we could press and cause the whole universe to dissappear it would have been pressed the first day it was issued.
    Hi Mega,
    Then let me ask this;
    Would logic and reasoning dictate that for an action to be moral, these criteria must be met?
    a. The consent of the individual whom the action affects must be clearly ascertained, and if not, the action must be postponed until such time,
    b. the necessity of the action must be clearly ascertained if consent is not given else the action must be postponed until such time, and
    c. the individual’s past behavior hasn’t caused harm to another [against their will] thus negating their disapproval of the action which affects them and is meant to prevent further harm to others.

    And... if these criteria are not met, then the action, if done to that person [intentionally], would be immoral.

    Off the cuff, I would say that this principle might hint at an absolute moral code which is... this very principle....

    By "harm," may I suggest that we could simply take this as the standard definition coupled with any effect of an action that is disapproved by the individual whom it affects no matter how petty the effects are. In other words, ultimately, the individual whom the action affects may define "harm" at their whim. Simply put, if I don't like it, and it is not necessary, and it is not meant to prevent me from doing harm to others against their will, then the "thing" that I don't like I may classify as "harm." I know, I know....

    For example (purely hypothetical):
    Let's say that I simply don't like someone driving too close behind me. Even though no real "harm" is likely to occur by this action, I simply don't like it. Let's further say that I get out at the next stop and ask the other driver to distance himself - or in other words, I don't give my consent for him to drive so close. Let's assume that the other driver and I agree that it is not necessary for him to follow so close - so the necessity is clearly ascertained (i.e., it's not necessary). And to top it off, let's say that my past behavior (as far as the time the other driver has been following me) hasn't somehow negated my ability to not give consent (i.e., I don't "deserve" to be followed so close (imagine the other driver is a policeman for example)).

    Now...
    Even though this is clearly a paltry example and demonstrates an extreme pettyness on my part and no "real" harm will be done, would it be moral for the other driver to fluff off my request at his whim in this example? I would say the "moral" thing to do in this example is to "humor" my request based on the criteria (the "a, b, & c") I presented above.

    cheers
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    Quote Originally Posted by william
    Would logic and reasoning dictate that for an action to be moral, these criteria must be met?
    It may do to a logical rational person, but since these themselves are relative terms, who is to say that logic and reason are the superior assets?

    You are implying [in my humble opinion] that only logical reasoning people may have their view taken into account, as such I feel you have reduced the concept from a universal to a selective or group moral.

    Obviousley the smaller the group the more likely you are to find something so distasteful as to be declared by the group as immoral.

    You are essentially, asking for a universal agreement on immorality or an immoral topic for the agreement of all human kind - next comes the age thing, at what age should a person's views become valid?

    My 'gut' feeling is there is no such thing as a universally accepted amoral action where universal incorporates all mankind.

    In my opinion there should be actions which certainly ought to be considered immoral in any circumstances, in a civilised world, but this is far from a civilised world, there may be civilised individuals, maybe even groups or patches but [again in my opinion] these are a minority.
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    By the way, when thinking about this subject in the context of the three criteria I proposed, I can't help but think about the recent discussion about "F-words" in the "site feedback" section. I believe Ophiolite addressed the necessity of them, and also that Bettina seems to have not given her consent for them. Also, her past behavior I would think wouldn't make her "deserving" to be subject to the F-word....

    And...
    two people I would like to hear the opinions of as pertaining to this thread are Ophiolite and mitchellmckain....

    Regards,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    Both who have a lot more experience of debating than I - still I do try and dip my toe in occasionally, even if it does get bitten off rather quick...
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    What if I said, in the US, with the proper permit, it IS legal to carry a firearm with the term 'firearm' meaning a handgun (or specifically, a 40-cal Sig Sauer automatic). If that statement is in fact true, then we can say absolutely that it is true in that context.
    You are changing the example. The problem is that there are a great variety of moralities as there are a lot of different municipals/counties/states/nations with different views on concealed weapons.

    Your question in itself presupposes an absolute morality. In a thread about questioning absolute morality, it has no place.

    I spoke of deSade.. How do you explain him? Will you do away with him simply as immoral.. Because you think so? Because you say "raping a five year old in this and that condition is wrong" it is so? This Kantian approach requires an objective standard. Kant himself admitted he required the existence of God for that.

    Mr U
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    Quote Originally Posted by Megabrain
    Quote Originally Posted by william
    Would logic and reasoning dictate that for an action to be moral, these criteria must be met?
    It may do to a logical rational person, but since these themselves are relative terms, who is to say that logic and reason are the superior assets?
    My personal opinion? (Since I don't claim to have all the answers...)
    Well... I think logic and reasoning manifest themselves as superior traits. For instance, using logic and reasoning, we can come to an agreement that might not be obtained through other qualities such as emotion/religious beliefs/etc.

    You are implying [in my humble opinion] that only logical reasoning people may have their view taken into account, as such I feel you have reduced the concept from a universal to a selective or group moral.
    Well... sort of.... I guess that's why we don't let kids make laws....
    But... when the action affects those who may not be able to reason as well as "we'd like", there still is the necessity of their consent provided the other criteria is met.

    Obviousley the smaller the group the more likely you are to find something so distasteful as to be declared by the group as immoral.

    You are essentially, asking for a universal agreement on immorality or an immoral topic for the agreement of all human kind - next comes the age thing, at what age should a person's views become valid?
    Well... I would hope that, based on some universal principles, there would be universal agreement by those who are able to use reasoning and logic. As far as the age thing, my personal feeling is that maturity should dictate when their views become valid. Still though, there is the problem of deciding when that happens. In any system of morality (or anything else), there are the logistical problems and fine details that must be worked out. I'm open for suggestions....

    My 'gut' feeling is there is no such thing as a universally accepted amoral action where universal incorporates all mankind.
    We might agree... one action may be moral in one instance and not in another. I'll have to think about it more. But what should remain constant is the three criteria I presented for determining if that action is moral or not.

    In my opinion there should be actions which certainly ought to be considered immoral in any circumstances, in a civilised world, but this is far from a civilised world, there may be civilised individuals, maybe even groups or patches but [again in my opinion] these are a minority.
    True. But let's look at one extreme - say a prison. Should the prisoners be allowed to "govern" themselves? I think if they could understand the three criteria I presented (by the way... I'm sorry I keep saying that, but...), and agree to abide by that principle, then perhaps it would be possible. But their past behavior demonstrates that they, in all likelyhood, wouldn't be able to govern themselves in a manner that is beneficial for the whole group and also for the individuals. That is why we don't let them "run amok," even when they are confined to a prison.

    An extension of this is, perhaps those who are capable of truly deciding what is moral and not (i.e., those that can decide based on universal principles), should "guide" those who are not capable. It may even be their duty to do so. After all, that is pretty much what parents do with their children....

    Regards,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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  29. #28  
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    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    What if I said, in the US, with the proper permit, it IS legal to carry a firearm with the term 'firearm' meaning a handgun (or specifically, a 40-cal Sig Sauer automatic). If that statement is in fact true, then we can say absolutely that it is true in that context.
    You are changing the example. The problem is that there are a great variety of moralities as there are a lot of different municipals/counties/states/nations with different views on concealed weapons.

    Your question in itself presupposes an absolute morality. In a thread about questioning absolute morality, it has no place.

    I spoke of deSade.. How do you explain him? Will you do away with him simply as immoral.. Because you think so? Because you say "raping a five year old in this and that condition is wrong" it is so? This Kantian approach requires an objective standard. Kant himself admitted he required the existence of God for that.

    Mr U
    Hi H.U.,
    Okay, I admitted that my initial attempt to get this discussion started had some problems....

    Instead, pick up this discussion from where I presented a principle of universal morality and presented three criteria for such a principle about 7 posts back. Concentrate on that instead of my trite initial attempts.

    Truthfully, I am not familiar with deSade. So I'm not sure what to say on that. But I wouldn't do away with him because of anything I think. Instead, I would appeal to logic, reasoning, and the principle of morality I presented (which I think is valid... ) to make the decision to do away with him or not.

    Edit:
    I feel that this deserves more attention than what I initially gave it:
    I spoke of deSade.. How do you explain him? Will you do away with him simply as immoral.. Because you think so? Because you say "raping a five year old in this and that condition is wrong" it is so? This Kantian approach requires an objective standard. Kant himself admitted he required the existence of God for that.
    My stance is not about what I or anyone else thinks. That would make it subjective and not objective - which is the opposite of what I'm thinking. My contention is that there may indeed exist a universal principle of morality which we can appeal to via logic and reasoning. That would be the equivalent to Kant's objective standard.

    In this picture, raping and killing a 5-year old is not immoral because I or anyone else thinks so. It would be immoral if the child didn't give consent (as silly as that sounds... ), if raping and killing the child was not necessary (again, as silly as that sounds...), and the child didn't "deserve" it based on their past behavior (man... that sounds silly!). Because those sound so silly, that's why so many of us agree that it seems obvious that raping and killing a 5-year old is immoral....
    (Those that wouldn't agree most likely are the sociopaths Jeremy mentioned. )

    How would deSade reply to this? Just curious....

    And do you H.U. subscribe to the idea of total moral relativism or do you think there are universal principles? Again, just curious....

    Regards,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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  30. #29  
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    a. The consent of the individual whom the action affects must be clearly ascertained, and if not, the action must be postponed until such time,
    So defeating someone in a game of chess is immoral unless he consents with your victory?

    b. the necessity of the action must be clearly ascertained if consent is not given else the action must be postponed until such time, and
    Necessity? If it is not necessary to tickle someone, and I do not have her consent, is it immoral?
    Vice versa - if it is necessary to murder someone, is moral, then to do so?

    c. the individual’s past behavior hasn’t caused harm to another [against their will] thus negating their disapproval of the action which affects them and is meant to prevent further harm to others.
    So if this five-year old calls me a poo-poo-head, I can rape her? If I define insulting as transgressing the personal integrity of an individual and rape as transgressing the personal integrity of an individual - the only difference would be degree, an entirely subjective term. In this view, my raping her would be legitimate.
    Moreover, I could even say - representing my intent - that I just really wanted to rape her, because you never included intent in your c.

    And do you H.U. subscribe to the idea of total moral relativism or do you think there are universal principles? Again, just curious....
    Total moral relativism? I'm unsure what you mean by this. I am not a murderer or a rapist - I believe there are ways for me to manifest myself that are much more noble. However, my inhibition does not follow from sympathy or mercy. My moral choices depend on an evaluation - is this what I am? Am I a murderer? What makes me a murderer? Why do I wish to murder? What is this desire in itself, where does it find its origin?

    Such deep psychology does not offer any guarantees that others will not murder or rape; but then again, I'm not searching for any universal system, nor attempting to universalise my system.

    Mr U
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    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    a. The consent of the individual whom the action affects must be clearly ascertained, and if not, the action must be postponed until such time,
    So defeating someone in a game of chess is immoral unless he consents with your victory?
    By agreeing to play in the first place would subject oneself to the possibility of defeat. It is understood on the onset. I see no dilemma.

    b. the necessity of the action must be clearly ascertained if consent is not given else the action must be postponed until such time, and
    Necessity? If it is not necessary to tickle someone, and I do not have her consent, is it immoral?
    Vice versa - if it is necessary to murder someone, is moral, then to do so?
    In short, yes. But tickling is a very minor offense. Surely you have been in the position where you just didn't feel like being tickled - perhaps you were sick, or simply weren't in the mood.

    Sometimes it's not immoral to "murder" someone. Perhaps it was necessary to go to war with Hitler's army. In that case, "murdering" the "enemy" soldiers would have been necessary. (By the way, "kill" would be a more appropriate term I think.) Also, is it not necessary to kill someone if you are in the position that they would kill you (self defense)?

    c. the individual’s past behavior hasn’t caused harm to another [against their will] thus negating their disapproval of the action which affects them and is meant to prevent further harm to others.
    So if this five-year old calls me a poo-poo-head, I can rape her? If I define insulting as transgressing the personal integrity of an individual and rape as transgressing the personal integrity of an individual - the only difference would be degree, an entirely subjective term. In this view, my raping her would be legitimate.
    Moreover, I could even say - representing my intent - that I just really wanted to rape her, because you never included intent in your c.
    Rape... no. Spank... perhaps. The consequences must fit the "crime" wouldn't you agree? If one is unable to adaquately match the "punishment" (consequences) to the "crime," then they should seek out someone who can. Someone who would be able to do this would do this using logic and reasoning. Is this a perfect system? No. But is it the best we can do? maybe.

    I don't see your connection between rape and intent. How would you include intent in my "part c?"

    And do you H.U. subscribe to the idea of total moral relativism or do you think there are universal principles? Again, just curious....
    Total moral relativism? I'm unsure what you mean by this. I am not a murderer or a rapist - I believe there are ways for me to manifest myself that are much more noble. However, my inhibition does not follow from sympathy or mercy. My moral choices depend on an evaluation - is this what I am? Am I a murderer? What makes me a murderer? Why do I wish to murder? What is this desire in itself, where does it find its origin?

    Such deep psychology does not offer any guarantees that others will not murder or rape; but then again, I'm not searching for any universal system, nor attempting to universalise my system.

    Mr U
    I am neither trying to universalize "my" system. I'm not a lawmaker, world leader, nor am I a politician. But I think it may indeed be "universalizable." It seems to make sense (at first thought...).

    If morality is completely relative to the individual, then how would it work? Society, as is, tends to lean towards some objective standards. That's where we get laws and prisons etc.

    Just curious, do you H.U. think I'm totally off base or does your "gut instincts" tell you that what I have laid out as the basis for morality could/would/should work?

    Also, it would help me to understand where you are coming from if you could concisely state your idea of morality (perhaps you have, but if you would be kind enough to explicitly state it for me...). Even better if you could include how others might apply that system to themselves.

    Regards,
    william

    N.B. I'm not trying to get at anything "deeper." I have no agenda to push if that makes the reader feel a bit more "at ease."
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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  32. #31  
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    Quote Originally Posted by william
    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    a. The consent of the individual whom the action affects must be clearly ascertained, and if not, the action must be postponed until such time,
    So defeating someone in a game of chess is immoral unless he consents with your victory?
    By agreeing to play in the first place would subject oneself to the possibility of defeat. It is understood on the onset.
    Ah. So when we see life as a game, and someone defeats you and kills you, it is no illegal, because you accepted that one day you died?

    I see no dilemma.
    That´s because your moral theory fails :P

    b. the necessity of the action must be clearly ascertained if consent is not given else the action must be postponed until such time, and
    Necessity? If it is not necessary to tickle someone, and I do not have her consent, is it immoral?
    Vice versa - if it is necessary to murder someone, is moral, then to do so?
    In short, yes. But tickling is a very minor offense. Surely you have been in the position where you just didn't feel like being tickled - perhaps you were sick, or simply weren't in the mood.

    Sometimes it's not immoral to "murder" someone. Perhaps it was necessary to go to war with Hitler's army. In that case, "murdering" the "enemy" soldiers would have been necessary. (By the way, "kill" would be a more appropriate term I think.) Also, is it not necessary to kill someone if you are in the position that they would kill you (self defense)?
    And who is the ultimate determinant of what is neccesary? Rationalists like Kant judge things in their own favour. This too will happen with your system. People will just pretend that what they are doing is neccesary. For England, James, for England!

    c. the individual’s past behavior hasn’t caused harm to another [against their will] thus negating their disapproval of the action which affects them and is meant to prevent further harm to others.
    So if this five-year old calls me a poo-poo-head, I can rape her? If I define insulting as transgressing the personal integrity of an individual and rape as transgressing the personal integrity of an individual - the only difference would be degree, an entirely subjective term. In this view, my raping her would be legitimate.
    Moreover, I could even say - representing my intent - that I just really wanted to rape her, because you never included intent in your c.
    Rape... no. Spank... perhaps. The consequences must fit the "crime" wouldn't you agree?
    By what standard? Subjectivity.

    If one is unable to adaquately match the "punishment" (consequences) to the "crime," then they should seek out someone who can. Someone who would be able to do this would do this using logic and reasoning. Is this a perfect system? No. But is it the best we can do? maybe.
    Bollocks! You are presenting a system of rationality here. You here admit that it is just your view on what is the best. Eventually, when you force this system over others - by friendly persuasion or military intervention, it will be your power, your authority that causes adherence to these principles, not their inherent superiority.

    Nature nor rationality can provide formulae for morality. Is that a bad thing? Of course not! It´s beautiful. We can all have different moralities and be different in what we are and what we wish to become.

    I don't see your connection between rape and intent. How would you include intent in my "part c?"
    You do not speak of intent. If I would be to punish that little girl, and I´d spank her because I have a spanking fetish, would that be immoral if I punished her for ulterior reasons?

    And do you H.U. subscribe to the idea of total moral relativism or do you think there are universal principles? Again, just curious....
    Total moral relativism? I'm unsure what you mean by this. I am not a murderer or a rapist - I believe there are ways for me to manifest myself that are much more noble. However, my inhibition does not follow from sympathy or mercy. My moral choices depend on an evaluation - is this what I am? Am I a murderer? What makes me a murderer? Why do I wish to murder? What is this desire in itself, where does it find its origin?

    Such deep psychology does not offer any guarantees that others will not murder or rape; but then again, I'm not searching for any universal system, nor attempting to universalise my system.

    Mr U
    I am neither trying to universalize "my" system. I'm not a lawmaker, world leader, nor am I a politician. But I think it may indeed be "universalizable." It seems to make sense (at first thought...).

    If morality is completely relative to the individual, then how would it work? Society, as is, tends to lean towards some objective standards. That's where we get laws and prisons etc.
    Laws? You generalise current trends. Look at Ancient Greece - here there was a whole culture of sueing others. Moralities were shaped, and accounted for for various reasons.

    Just curious, do you H.U. think I'm totally off base or does your "gut instincts" tell you that what I have laid out as the basis for morality could/would/should work?
    Imagine, a tribe. They live in a forest, near a clearing. In this clearing stands a pitchblack rock, with some resemblance of a human head. This head is quickly deified, and some lazy bum comes up with the idea that when one drops a stone - this god wills the stone down.

    Now, this explanation explains behaviour. It is even a proper predictor. In the same manner, your moral system appeals to those people that are already moral. Those who do not murder will not murder under your system. However, they will not do so because of your system.
    Your system does not describe the source - the raison d´être - of morality, and in that is - in veracity - equal to the rockgod.

    Also, it would help me to understand where you are coming from if you could concisely state your idea of morality (perhaps you have, but if you would be kind enough to explicitly state it for me...). Even better if you could include how others might apply that system to themselves.

    Regards,
    william

    N.B. I'm not trying to get at anything "deeper." I have no agenda to push if that makes the reader feel a bit more "at ease."
    Morality comes in two variants. The slave-morality and the master-morality. There are people who do what they want. They say `This what I do, is good´. They are the aristocrats, the first tribe-heads. The slaves, the subjugated - tired of their subjugation - say `These oppressors are evil, we are good.´

    The actions of these oppressors that harm them are titled as evil. Rape, murder, et cetera are titled as evil. The idea is `If i don´t harm you, you can´t harm me.´
    Although the `golden rule´ is often phrased differently, in terms of genealogy this is the origin - in my vision.

    In modern times, the significance lies from where we draw our morality. Do we distill it from outside, or from inside? I say `I am not a murderer´, because I feel that my aggression or others passions that might drive me to murder can better be sublimated in different manners.

    The truly powerful become picky - barbaric acts are for them distasteful. Rapists and murderers are people who could not sublimate their energy in another way. They had to sublimate their energy in this manner. Perhaps they were betrayed and they can not return the aggression, perhaps they can not revenge themselves.

    In this perspective, I do not expect to evade murder or rape because I do not do it. It is a perspective of personal strength. One learns to accept the worldly. One does not need the otherworldy or promises of Heaven. One appreciates the world for what it is, tragedy for what it is.
    One says: `Yes, there is suffering, but life is worth it nonetheless.´

    Mr U
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  33. #32  
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    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    Quote Originally Posted by william
    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    a. The consent of the individual whom the action affects must be clearly ascertained, and if not, the action must be postponed until such time,
    So defeating someone in a game of chess is immoral unless he consents with your victory?
    By agreeing to play in the first place would subject oneself to the possibility of defeat. It is understood on the onset.
    Ah. So when we see life as a game, and someone defeats you and kills you, it is no illegal, because you accepted that one day you died?
    Well... the Mayans did just this. They played a "ball game" where the loser beheaded the "winner." Since there was consent by both players (I assume), I don't see this as immoral. Why would it be?

    I see no dilemma.
    That´s because your moral theory fails :P
    Or have you failed to grasp it? :P

    b. the necessity of the action must be clearly ascertained if consent is not given else the action must be postponed until such time, and
    Necessity? If it is not necessary to tickle someone, and I do not have her consent, is it immoral?
    Vice versa - if it is necessary to murder someone, is moral, then to do so?
    In short, yes. But tickling is a very minor offense. Surely you have been in the position where you just didn't feel like being tickled - perhaps you were sick, or simply weren't in the mood.

    Sometimes it's not immoral to "murder" someone. Perhaps it was necessary to go to war with Hitler's army. In that case, "murdering" the "enemy" soldiers would have been necessary. (By the way, "kill" would be a more appropriate term I think.) Also, is it not necessary to kill someone if you are in the position that they would kill you (self defense)?
    And who is the ultimate determinant of what is neccesary? Rationalists like Kant judge things in their own favour. This too will happen with your system. People will just pretend that what they are doing is neccesary. For England, James, for England!
    Not who, but what. The answer being logic and reasoning. Do you not agree that through logic and reasoning rational beings can come to an agreement?

    c. the individual’s past behavior hasn’t caused harm to another [against their will] thus negating their disapproval of the action which affects them and is meant to prevent further harm to others.
    So if this five-year old calls me a poo-poo-head, I can rape her? If I define insulting as transgressing the personal integrity of an individual and rape as transgressing the personal integrity of an individual - the only difference would be degree, an entirely subjective term. In this view, my raping her would be legitimate.
    Moreover, I could even say - representing my intent - that I just really wanted to rape her, because you never included intent in your c.
    Rape... no. Spank... perhaps. The consequences must fit the "crime" wouldn't you agree?
    By what standard? Subjectivity.
    By logic and reasoning again. And some can decide this where others cannot. Some people are better at using logic and reasoning than others. Kids for example would be a bad choice for deciding such things as they aren't as capable as adults. In short, we must do the best that we can with what resources we have. By definition, we can do no better than the best we are able to do. Again, this is not perfect, but perhaps it's the best we've got.

    If one is unable to adaquately match the "punishment" (consequences) to the "crime," then they should seek out someone who can. Someone who would be able to do this would do this using logic and reasoning. Is this a perfect system? No. But is it the best we can do? maybe.
    Bollocks! You are presenting a system of rationality here. You here admit that it is just your view on what is the best. Eventually, when you force this system over others - by friendly persuasion or military intervention, it will be your power, your authority that causes adherence to these principles, not their inherent superiority.

    Nature nor rationality can provide formulae for morality. Is that a bad thing? Of course not! It´s beautiful. We can all have different moralities and be different in what we are and what we wish to become.
    Bollocks back at you! (As far as your first statement....) :P If I admit that it is only my own view, it's because I'm not arrogant enough to claim to have all the answers. Would you rather debate a closed-minded person?

    Your second statement I believe fits well with my idea of individual consent - it leaves it up to the individual to determine what is harmful to themselves or not. That is nature and rationality at work as you put it.

    I don't see your connection between rape and intent. How would you include intent in my "part c?"
    You do not speak of intent. If I would be to punish that little girl, and I´d spank her because I have a spanking fetish, would that be immoral if I punished her for ulterior reasons?
    I see what you mean. Good point. I think you knew the answer though... the sole reason for "punishment" should be for the sake of punishment. Logic and reasoning would lead us to the conclusion that if you would get enjoyment due to your spanking fetish, you should have someone without this problem administer the punishment to avoid this dilemma. See how nice logic and reasoning works.

    And do you H.U. subscribe to the idea of total moral relativism or do you think there are universal principles? Again, just curious....
    Total moral relativism? I'm unsure what you mean by this. I am not a murderer or a rapist - I believe there are ways for me to manifest myself that are much more noble. However, my inhibition does not follow from sympathy or mercy. My moral choices depend on an evaluation - is this what I am? Am I a murderer? What makes me a murderer? Why do I wish to murder? What is this desire in itself, where does it find its origin?

    Such deep psychology does not offer any guarantees that others will not murder or rape; but then again, I'm not searching for any universal system, nor attempting to universalise my system.

    Mr U
    I am neither trying to universalize "my" system. I'm not a lawmaker, world leader, nor am I a politician. But I think it may indeed be "universalizable." It seems to make sense (at first thought...).

    If morality is completely relative to the individual, then how would it work? Society, as is, tends to lean towards some objective standards. That's where we get laws and prisons etc.
    Laws? You generalise current trends. Look at Ancient Greece - here there was a whole culture of sueing others. Moralities were shaped, and accounted for for various reasons.
    So did ancient Greece stop to reevaluate their ideas of morality in the context of logic and reasoning? And I'm not talking about "various reasons." Each group may formulate their own ideas of morality, but I think if logic and reasoning are used to get there, very similar concepts of morality would arise in each group though they may differ in the details.

    Just curious, do you H.U. think I'm totally off base or does your "gut instincts" tell you that what I have laid out as the basis for morality could/would/should work?
    Imagine, a tribe. They live in a forest, near a clearing. In this clearing stands a pitchblack rock, with some resemblance of a human head. This head is quickly deified, and some lazy bum comes up with the idea that when one drops a stone - this god wills the stone down.

    Now, this explanation explains behaviour. It is even a proper predictor. In the same manner, your moral system appeals to those people that are already moral. Those who do not murder will not murder under your system. However, they will not do so because of your system.
    Your system does not describe the source - the raison d´être - of morality, and in that is - in veracity - equal to the rockgod.
    I never said that there would be some who wouldn't agree with the "rules." Indeed, that is why prisons are currently occupied. For whatever reason, they either can't grasp the concept of morality or they choose to ignore it. Heck, even I don't always follow my own standards even though I know better (i.e., sometimes I choose to do immoral things).

    As far as the "rock-god" example. As you say, bollocks! You have to know that logic and reasoning can differentiate between a false cause that may give the correct prediction, and the true cause. That is how science works, right?

    Also, it would help me to understand where you are coming from if you could concisely state your idea of morality (perhaps you have, but if you would be kind enough to explicitly state it for me...). Even better if you could include how others might apply that system to themselves.

    Regards,
    william

    N.B. I'm not trying to get at anything "deeper." I have no agenda to push if that makes the reader feel a bit more "at ease."
    Morality comes in two variants. The slave-morality and the master-morality. There are people who do what they want. They say `This what I do, is good´. They are the aristocrats, the first tribe-heads. The slaves, the subjugated - tired of their subjugation - say `These oppressors are evil, we are good.´

    The actions of these oppressors that harm them are titled as evil. Rape, murder, et cetera are titled as evil. The idea is `If i don´t harm you, you can´t harm me.´
    Although the `golden rule´ is often phrased differently, in terms of genealogy this is the origin - in my vision.
    Why can't the "slaves" and "masters" come together and decide amongst all what the "rules" will be based on logic and reasoning?

    In modern times, the significance lies from where we draw our morality. Do we distill it from outside, or from inside? I say `I am not a murderer´, because I feel that my aggression or others passions that might drive me to murder can better be sublimated in different manners.
    If it is completely from the inside, how can that work? Wouldn't everyone simply justify their actions in their own way then? I punch you in the face and there is nothing you can complain about because my inner morality told me it was okay....

    The truly powerful become picky - barbaric acts are for them distasteful. Rapists and murderers are people who could not sublimate their energy in another way. They had to sublimate their energy in this manner. Perhaps they were betrayed and they can not return the aggression, perhaps they can not revenge themselves.
    So should they be prevented from harming others? Should we just accept their reasons and forget what they did? Shouldn't they be "controlled" somehow?

    In this perspective, I do not expect to evade murder or rape because I do not do it. It is a perspective of personal strength. One learns to accept the worldly. One does not need the otherworldy or promises of Heaven. One appreciates the world for what it is, tragedy for what it is.
    One says: `Yes, there is suffering, but life is worth it nonetheless.´

    Mr U
    What do you mean by "accept the worldly" and "One appreciates the world for what it is, tragedy for what it is."? Does this mean to simply accept that I punch you in the face even if you didn't deserve it? Or should my actions have consequences? Accept that there are people that will harm others or should we prevent them from harming others? Etc., etc., etc.

    Also, I hope you are not of the mind that I'm trying to ultimately push the idea for the necessity of God or heaven. Not the case....

    Cheers,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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  34. #33  
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    Quote Originally Posted by william
    Well... the Mayans did just this. They played a "ball game" where the loser beheaded the "winner." Since there was consent by both players (I assume), I don't see this as immoral. Why would it be?
    Because game is free to interpretation. And that is the whole problem. I can define context to suit my own purposes.

    Or have you failed to grasp it? :P
    Ha! Watch it, or I'll trash this thread for having an inappropriate title! :P

    Not who, but what. The answer being logic and reasoning. Do you not agree that through logic and reasoning rational beings can come to an agreement?
    You assume a person is capable of clear-cut rational deduction! I argue against this - of course. Most of the choices we make are [i]not[i] made consciously. Various factors that we find valuable are taken into decision, whether we know it or not.
    Heck - that's not even considering Dostoevksy's criticism; man strives against rationality, the mathematically determinant nature of his being. Indeed, history is great evidence hereof - call it grand, call it narrow, but call it rational? I think not. Many choices are made with a drive against rationalism - Fyodor (in my view) posits.

    I am to choose between three cars. One is expensive, but goodlooking. One is cheap, but badlooking. One is expensive, but there is a young promiscuous blond girl drewling all over it - obviously willing to cary over her infatuation to the future owner. Which one would the rational being choose? Eventually, it is about value. What is more important, money, aesthetics, or getting one's freak on?
    It is entirely possible to make a rational choice about morality. Such a choice would be an honest one - an attempt to disect the choice. But eventually, you do not speak of the important values.
    No, those values come in the guise of necessity - which you never elaborate upon.

    You just speak about it is as some a priori obvious statement. What is the difference between utility and necessity?

    By logic and reasoning again. And some can decide this where others cannot.
    So it is subjective - indeed.

    Some people are better at using logic and reasoning than others. Kids for example would be a bad choice for deciding such things as they aren't as capable as adults. In short, we must do the best that we can with what resources we have. By definition, we can do no better than the best we are able to do. Again, this is not perfect, but perhaps it's the best we've got.
    I would disagree. If kids are not good at judging - are they more often immoral? How about animals? Can they be immoral? Or are they excluded from your system? Why? Why am I forced to live under your system that follows from rationality (does it?) and they don't?

    Bollocks back at you! (As far as your first statement....) :P If I admit that it is only my own view, it's because I'm not arrogant enough to claim to have all the answers. Would you rather debate a closed-minded person?
    I don't know - close-minded people can be very sexy. What this is about, however, is that you claim that your theory bears the stamp of "Theory of Rationality." Why - elaborate on it. Prove it.

    Your second statement I believe fits well with my idea of individual consent - it leaves it up to the individual to determine what is harmful to themselves or not. That is nature and rationality at work as you put it.
    If I am murdered because a religious fanatic thinks that will make me go to Heaven - he should not be punished because it is moral - he thinks it does not hurt me, and he thinks it is neccesary.

    I see what you mean. Good point. I think you knew the answer though... the sole reason for "punishment" should be for the sake of punishment. Logic and reasoning would lead us to the conclusion that if you would get enjoyment due to your spanking fetish, you should have someone without this problem administer the punishment to avoid this dilemma. See how nice logic and reasoning works.
    Sure. But you seem to believe that people are this open about making their choices. In a hypothetical sitation your system might provide an answer - but it is all too subject to interpretation, and will eventually be a bad measure of moral or immoral behaviour based on that.

    For me, this is obvious - there is no absolute standard and so it is impossible for what you propose to exist. But, I'm open-minded, so I'm waiting for evidence. :P

    So did ancient Greece stop to reevaluate their ideas of morality in the context of logic and reasoning?
    From whose perspective? I mean, there are quite some philologists. I fear that I can not provide a proper perspective on this - this is not my speciality.

    And I'm not talking about "various reasons." Each group may formulate their own ideas of morality, but I think if logic and reasoning are used to get there, very similar concepts of morality would arise in each group though they may differ in the details.
    Perhaps, but that is a whole different matter. You propose a system of morality based on rationality - you have much to prove :P

    Imagine, a tribe. They live in a forest, near a clearing. In this clearing stands a pitchblack rock, with some resemblance of a human head. This head is quickly deified, and some lazy bum comes up with the idea that when one drops a stone - this god wills the stone down.

    Now, this explanation explains behaviour. It is even a proper predictor. In the same manner, your moral system appeals to those people that are already moral. Those who do not murder will not murder under your system. However, they will not do so because of your system.
    Your system does not describe the source - the raison d´être - of morality, and in that is - in veracity - equal to the rockgod.
    I never said that there would be some who wouldn't agree with the "rules." Indeed, that is why prisons are currently occupied. For whatever reason, they either can't grasp the concept of morality or they choose to ignore it. Heck, even I don't always follow my own standards even though I know better (i.e., sometimes I choose to do immoral things).
    But the question is what makes something moral and something immoral. In your theory, there are still cases in which this is anything but clear. In fact, almost everything can be considered to be moral. This is what I am arguing in hope to convince you this is a very, very silly idea :P

    As far as the "rock-god" example. As you say, bollocks! You have to know that logic and reasoning can differentiate between a false cause that may give the correct prediction, and the true cause. That is how science works, right?
    Of course not :P. One of the failures of science, that. I could very well argue the same, if it can explain everything. The problem is that gravity is a more likely explanation. However - it is just as 'truth'-apt.

    Morality comes in two variants. The slave-morality and the master-morality. There are people who do what they want. They say `This what I do, is good´. They are the aristocrats, the first tribe-heads. The slaves, the subjugated - tired of their subjugation - say `These oppressors are evil, we are good.´

    The actions of these oppressors that harm them are titled as evil. Rape, murder, et cetera are titled as evil. The idea is `If i don´t harm you, you can´t harm me.´
    Although the `golden rule´ is often phrased differently, in terms of genealogy this is the origin - in my vision.
    Why can't the "slaves" and "masters" come together and decide amongst all what the "rules" will be based on logic and reasoning?
    Why would masters do so? They begin with themselves, they do what they feel, what they can. Their minds may already be rational. They don't accept influences from the outside to determine their behaviour.

    In modern times, the significance lies from where we draw our morality. Do we distill it from outside, or from inside? I say `I am not a murderer´, because I feel that my aggression or others passions that might drive me to murder can better be sublimated in different manners.
    If it is completely from the inside, how can that work? Wouldn't everyone simply justify their actions in their own way then? I punch you in the face and there is nothing you can complain about because my inner morality told me it was okay....
    Indeed. The powerful will just hit each other. But they don't, because hitting someone isn't interesting when you can murder whole tribes - or when you can defeat someone in intellectual contest. They are always searching for the next challenge - they love their enemies for the opposition the bring. In contrast to the slaves, who hate their enemies.

    The truly powerful become picky - barbaric acts are for them distasteful. Rapists and murderers are people who could not sublimate their energy in another way. They had to sublimate their energy in this manner. Perhaps they were betrayed and they can not return the aggression, perhaps they can not revenge themselves.
    So should they be prevented from harming others? Should we just accept their reasons and forget what they did? Shouldn't they be "controlled" somehow?
    Why? Because it will make you sleep more comfortable? Is that good thing - you think? Is that feeling of security real? I sleep very well, by the way, but not out of false confidence.

    In this perspective, I do not expect to evade murder or rape because I do not do it. It is a perspective of personal strength. One learns to accept the worldly. One does not need the otherworldy or promises of Heaven. One appreciates the world for what it is, tragedy for what it is.
    One says: `Yes, there is suffering, but life is worth it nonetheless.´

    Mr U
    What do you mean by "accept the worldly" and "One appreciates the world for what it is, tragedy for what it is."? Does this mean to simply accept that I punch you in the face even if you didn't deserve it?
    Deserve? I wish that word had never been created. No one and nothing deserves anything. "Deserve" implies some justice. Justice does not exist - it is a human construct.
    If you would punch me in the face, I would probably punch you back, but that's not the point. The point is that I don't expect anyone to protect me from punching me in the face - or that if I don't punch anyone in the face, I won't get punched in the face. I don't expect the world to behave according to my morality - I embrace the world as it is.

    Or should my actions have consequences? Accept that there are people that will harm others or should we prevent them from harming others? Etc., etc., etc.
    Consequences? You believe you can understand or see the consequences of your actions when you do your actions? When you give someone the keys of your cars, and someone has planted a bomb under your car - you effectively deal out death with such a silly gesture as giving carkeys.

    Harm, suffering, these are natural conditions. We ought not remove them from our lives - because it would be an illusion of security. In this light, attempting to limit others would be spent energy - energy better invested in affirming life.
    I mean, why remove suffering, when that is an illusion, and you can better spend your energy on this life, this moment?

    Also, I hope you are not of the mind that I'm trying to ultimately push the idea for the necessity of God or heaven. Not the case....

    Cheers,
    william
    Oh, I know that's not the case. I tested that two or three posts ago :P

    Mr U
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    Forum Ph.D. william's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    Ha! Watch it, or I'll trash this thread for having an inappropriate title! :P
    :P

    Not who, but what. The answer being logic and reasoning. Do you not agree that through logic and reasoning rational beings can come to an agreement?
    You assume a person is capable of clear-cut rational deduction!
    No! I assume that some people are capable of this.
    Pay attention sonny....

    It is entirely possible to make a rational choice about morality. Such a choice would be an honest one - an attempt to disect the choice. But eventually, you do not speak of the important values.
    No, those values come in the guise of necessity - which you never elaborate upon.

    You just speak about it is as some a priori obvious statement. What is the difference between utility and necessity?
    In some cases it is an a priori obvious thing. When it is not, the action should be postponed until it is evident. - And you know the difference between utility and necessity!

    By logic and reasoning again. And some can decide this where others cannot.
    So it is subjective - indeed.
    My statement was not an obscure one... can an animal solve your math problem? Some people are better at certain things than others. That does not make it subjective.... :x

    Some people are better at using logic and reasoning than others. Kids for example would be a bad choice for deciding such things as they aren't as capable as adults. In short, we must do the best that we can with what resources we have. By definition, we can do no better than the best we are able to do. Again, this is not perfect, but perhaps it's the best we've got.
    I would disagree.
    Big surprise.... :P

    If kids are not good at judging - are they more often immoral? How about animals? Can they be immoral? Or are they excluded from your system? Why? Why am I forced to live under your system that follows from rationality (does it?) and they don't?
    Would you agree that someone who knows better should make the better decision? A kid that does the same "crime" as an adult would be punished less severe. Why do you think that is?

    Bollocks back at you! (As far as your first statement....) :P If I admit that it is only my own view, it's because I'm not arrogant enough to claim to have all the answers. Would you rather debate a closed-minded person?
    I don't know - close-minded people can be very sexy. What this is about, however, is that you claim that your theory bears the stamp of "Theory of Rationality." Why - elaborate on it. Prove it.
    You are a student right? In science? It should be clear to you of all people that logic and reasoning is the best way to get to the bottom of something. What is it that YOU are using to counter my arguments!?!

    By the way, I am very disappointed in you - especially being a science student as you are. When have I ever called my "thing" a theory!?! As a person of science, you should be more careful how you use that word.... :P

    Your second statement I believe fits well with my idea of individual consent - it leaves it up to the individual to determine what is harmful to themselves or not. That is nature and rationality at work as you put it.
    If I am murdered because a religious fanatic thinks that will make me go to Heaven - he should not be punished because it is moral - he thinks it does not hurt me, and he thinks it is neccesary.
    DID YOU GIVE YOUR CONSENT? Duh! :P
    (pay attention!)

    I see what you mean. Good point. I think you knew the answer though... the sole reason for "punishment" should be for the sake of punishment. Logic and reasoning would lead us to the conclusion that if you would get enjoyment due to your spanking fetish, you should have someone without this problem administer the punishment to avoid this dilemma. See how nice logic and reasoning works.
    Sure. But you seem to believe that people are this open about making their choices.
    No! But I believe they should be!

    In a hypothetical sitation your system might provide an answer - but it is all too subject to interpretation, and will eventually be a bad measure of moral or immoral behaviour based on that.
    Okay, then pose a real scenario to the best of your ability and I will apply my line of reasoning to decide the best action. Let's see if, in the end, you agree with it....
    [The gauntlet has been thrown down....]

    For me, this is obvious - there is no absolute standard and so it is impossible for what you propose to exist. But, I'm open-minded, so I'm waiting for evidence. :P
    Right....

    So did ancient Greece stop to reevaluate their ideas of morality in the context of logic and reasoning?
    From whose perspective?
    There you go with the who again.... Are you p-a-y-i-n-g attention? :P

    And I'm not talking about "various reasons." Each group may formulate their own ideas of morality, but I think if logic and reasoning are used to get there, very similar concepts of morality would arise in each group though they may differ in the details.
    Perhaps, but that is a whole different matter. You propose a system of morality based on rationality - you have much to prove :P
    And you, I guess, have nothing to prove...? Yawn...

    Imagine, a tribe. They live in a forest, near a clearing. In this clearing stands a pitchblack rock, with some resemblance of a human head. This head is quickly deified, and some lazy bum comes up with the idea that when one drops a stone - this god wills the stone down.

    Now, this explanation explains behaviour. It is even a proper predictor. In the same manner, your moral system appeals to those people that are already moral. Those who do not murder will not murder under your system. However, they will not do so because of your system.
    Your system does not describe the source - the raison d´être - of morality, and in that is - in veracity - equal to the rockgod.
    I never said that there would be some who wouldn't agree with the "rules." Indeed, that is why prisons are currently occupied. For whatever reason, they either can't grasp the concept of morality or they choose to ignore it. Heck, even I don't always follow my own standards even though I know better (i.e., sometimes I choose to do immoral things).
    But the question is what makes something moral and something immoral. In your theory, there are still cases in which this is anything but clear. In fact, almost everything can be considered to be moral. This is what I am arguing in hope to convince you this is a very, very silly idea :P
    I suppose any action in the right circumstances could be considered moral. That would depend only on that the criteria I posited be met. Serioulsy... are you paying attention? :P

    As far as the "rock-god" example. As you say, bollocks! You have to know that logic and reasoning can differentiate between a false cause that may give the correct prediction, and the true cause. That is how science works, right?
    Of course not :P. One of the failures of science, that. I could very well argue the same, if it can explain everything. The problem is that gravity is a more likely explanation. However - it is just as 'truth'-apt.
    And why is gravity a more likely explanation? Yawn.... :P

    Morality comes in two variants. The slave-morality and the master-morality. There are people who do what they want. They say `This what I do, is good´. They are the aristocrats, the first tribe-heads. The slaves, the subjugated - tired of their subjugation - say `These oppressors are evil, we are good.´

    The actions of these oppressors that harm them are titled as evil. Rape, murder, et cetera are titled as evil. The idea is `If i don´t harm you, you can´t harm me.´
    Although the `golden rule´ is often phrased differently, in terms of genealogy this is the origin - in my vision.
    Why can't the "slaves" and "masters" come together and decide amongst all what the "rules" will be based on logic and reasoning?
    Why would masters do so? They begin with themselves, they do what they feel, what they can. Their minds may already be rational. They don't accept influences from the outside to determine their behaviour.
    Did the slaves give their consent to become the slaves? Wouldn't anyone interested in "justice" recognize this? Oh yeah... you don't believe in justice....

    In modern times, the significance lies from where we draw our morality. Do we distill it from outside, or from inside? I say `I am not a murderer´, because I feel that my aggression or others passions that might drive me to murder can better be sublimated in different manners.
    If it is completely from the inside, how can that work? Wouldn't everyone simply justify their actions in their own way then? I punch you in the face and there is nothing you can complain about because my inner morality told me it was okay....
    Indeed. The powerful will just hit each other. But they don't, because hitting someone isn't interesting when you can murder whole tribes - or when you can defeat someone in intellectual contest. They are always searching for the next challenge - they love their enemies for the opposition the bring. In contrast to the slaves, who hate their enemies.
    H.U., don't take this the wrong way, because I do have great respect for you... but what you say is just plain stupid - that people should base their morality on what's interesting??? Get real!

    Oh... I understand exactly what you mean by "...defeating someone in intellectual contest." :P :P


    The truly powerful become picky - barbaric acts are for them distasteful. Rapists and murderers are people who could not sublimate their energy in another way. They had to sublimate their energy in this manner. Perhaps they were betrayed and they can not return the aggression, perhaps they can not revenge themselves.
    So should they be prevented from harming others? Should we just accept their reasons and forget what they did? Shouldn't they be "controlled" somehow?
    Why? Because it will make you sleep more comfortable? Is that good thing - you think? Is that feeling of security real? I sleep very well, by the way, but not out of false confidence.
    Do you think that those that have the ability, may also have the responsibility? Seriously, are you the kind of person that would just sit back and watch a big bully beat the hell out of some runt or would you try to help the runt? If you wouldn't help the runt, then I may just have to retract some of that respect I have for you.... :P

    In this perspective, I do not expect to evade murder or rape because I do not do it. It is a perspective of personal strength. One learns to accept the worldly. One does not need the otherworldy or promises of Heaven. One appreciates the world for what it is, tragedy for what it is.
    One says: `Yes, there is suffering, but life is worth it nonetheless.´

    Mr U
    What do you mean by "accept the worldly" and "One appreciates the world for what it is, tragedy for what it is."? Does this mean to simply accept that I punch you in the face even if you didn't deserve it?
    Deserve? I wish that word had never been created. No one and nothing deserves anything. "Deserve" implies some justice. Justice does not exist - it is a human construct.
    If you would punch me in the face, I would probably punch you back, but that's not the point. The point is that I don't expect anyone to protect me from punching me in the face - or that if I don't punch anyone in the face, I won't get punched in the face. I don't expect the world to behave according to my morality - I embrace the world as it is.
    Just because you don't punch someone in the face doesn't mean that you will never get punched yourself. It's also not a very effective deterrent.

    So you don't expect anyone to protect you - then you must be a big "tuf-guy." What about the runt that can't protect himself? F*ck 'em then? I see that your morality is very... very selfish! :P

    Or should my actions have consequences? Accept that there are people that will harm others or should we prevent them from harming others? Etc., etc., etc.
    Consequences? You believe you can understand or see the consequences of your actions when you do your actions?
    At times, yes! And sometimes, while I may not know the exact consequences, I still know they exist.

    When you give someone the keys of your cars, and someone has planted a bomb under your car - you effectively deal out death with such a silly gesture as giving carkeys.
    Good example. Since you presumably were not aware of the bomb, you did nothing wrong. You are only responsible for the things you can control. You can't control that which you aren't aware of. This is not difficult stuff.... :P

    Harm, suffering, these are natural conditions. We ought not remove them from our lives - because it would be an illusion of security. In this light, attempting to limit others would be spent energy - energy better invested in affirming life.
    I mean, why remove suffering, when that is an illusion, and you can better spend your energy on this life, this moment?
    I'm actually glad you feel this way. If we ever meet in real life, you can reflect on this and marvel at your acumen after I punch you in the head. :P :P :P

    Also, I hope you are not of the mind that I'm trying to ultimately push the idea for the necessity of God or heaven. Not the case....

    Cheers,
    william
    Oh, I know that's not the case. I tested that two or three posts ago :P

    Mr U
    Right....

    All you would have to do is ask. Plus... the fact you had to "test" me reveals that you have not payed much attention to any of my other 360-something posts. :P

    One last thing...
    :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P

    Cheers,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    First things first:

    All you would have to do is ask. Plus... the fact you had to "test" me reveals that you have not payed much attention to any of my other 360-something posts. :P
    On the italics:
    True. There are a great many members here, and when I get to reading here, I'm more concerned with checking out whether members have been good or bad than whether they have something interesting to say. I hope to be becoming a bit more active in the near future. So, hopefully, we'll be seeing more of each other .
    It is not entirely in this context that I won't be responding to a lot of what has been said, but I feel we are talking past each other.

    I suppose any action in the right circumstances could be considered moral. That would depend only on that the criteria I posited be met.
    If people have a tendency to explain their own behaviour as moral - do you believe it is feasible that people will ignore certain details to interpret circumstances to appear to themselves moral?
    Will people not explain 'necessity' and 'justice' in accord with their own flawed perspective?

    Seriously, are you the kind of person that would just sit back and watch a big bully beat the hell out of some runt or would you try to help the runt? If you wouldn't help the runt, then I may just have to retract some of that respect I have for you....
    I have never encountered a big bully beating a runt. I do know that if I do help that runt, that he will never taste the victory of he himself overcoming that bully. By helping him, I cheapen his suffering. I overcome his weakness and he experiences no catharsis. He has conquered nothing, learned nothing.

    Just because you don't punch someone in the face doesn't mean that you will never get punched yourself. It's also not a very effective deterrent.
    Indeed it is not. But my morality is not intented as a detterent. This is precisely what I am saying. My own morality is aimed at affirming life, not attempting to prevent it.

    So you don't expect anyone to protect you - then you must be a big "tuf-guy." What about the runt that can't protect himself? F*ck 'em then? I see that your morality is very... very selfish!
    No, not really. I am a second degree black belt in judo though, and I have years of experience in jiu jitsu. Not that I'm an ultimate warrior, mind you, but I'm capable of defending myself. but that is not what this is about.
    You interpret my actions as immoral and selfish from your perspective, yet you have simply failed to see the complete array of factors that I have used to come to my conclusion. In effect, your judgement of my behaviour being selfish or immoral is entirely subjective - as would be any moral decision you make.

    You are only responsible for the things you can control. You can't control that which you aren't aware of. This is not difficult stuff....
    You dismiss Sartre quickly, and without proper investigation. That's naughty!

    Mr U
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    Alright HU...
    I don't see an end to this little song and dance coming anytime soon. :x

    All I would like to ask of you is, if you can spare a little extra "bathroom time," simply apply my three criteria to some real-world scenarios. You can even modify it to include intent if you like. I may do this too - something I overlooked.

    What I think you'll find is that it provides the moral solution.

    Can people f*ck it up? Of course! (You did...) :P But if they are honest and truly using logic and reasoning (not rationalizing their poor choices mind you), I think it's a good idea that works.

    The part I'm calling universal is the principle itself. I think your view of it was something like the golden rule. Deep down, you really do agree with me - you just haven't figured that bit out yet....

    Adios,
    william

    P.S. You point out that I "dismiss" philosophers (e.g., Sartre, deSade). Most of my time is spent trying to keep up with physics - that's my job. While I have read many of the works by some of the more famous philosophers, I have a lot to catch up on....
    However, I was surprised to find out that you hadn't read what I asked you in the PM. And that's your field of study! Shame! :P
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
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    All I would like to ask of you is, if you can spare a little extra "bathroom time," simply apply my three criteria to some real-world scenarios. You can even modify it to include intent if you like. I may do this too - something I overlooked.
    I have no doubt that they are well-engineered. However, you have not provided inferences. Why are these rules the direct result of the logical? This you have not proven.

    What I think you'll find is that it provides the moral solution.
    This I do not doubt. Imagine I would say "Just do what your father would do."

    In many cases, that does work. Your father is most likely a moral person himself, and so following his code would make you moral as well. However, it is the not the core morality - it is not what is most fundamental, what makes something moral or not.

    You say that something being moral or not is determined by its degree of rationality. Why? Why is logic/ratio so important?

    But if they are honest and truly using logic and reasoning (not rationalizing their poor choices mind you), I think it's a good idea that works.
    This is a secondary critique on your theory of rationality. I believe that people rationalise their choices and want to appear rational, and twist reality to do so.

    Deep down, you really do agree with me - you just haven't figured that bit out yet....
    And that is where you are wrong. You appeal to universal principles of whose nature you have not yet demonstrated that they are universal and as such your inference about me 'not figuring it out' is unfounded.

    P.S. You point out that I "dismiss" philosophers (e.g., Sartre, deSade). Most of my time is spent trying to keep up with physics - that's my job. While I have read many of the works by some of the more famous philosophers, I have a lot to catch up on....
    However, I was surprised to find out that you hadn't read what I asked you in the PM. And that's your field of study! Shame!
    Psychology is a hobby, my interests lie in philosophy

    Mr U
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    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    Psychology is a hobby, my interests lie in philosophy

    Mr U
    You already mentioned deSade and Sartre. Do you have any specific works by them that you would recommend for me?

    Any other philosophers and works by them you might recommend also?

    Thanks,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
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    Lol - i see an example of proof by intimidatingly long post thanks to william
    As is often the case with technical subjects we are presented with an unfortunate choice: an explanation that is accurate but incomprehensible, or comprehensible but wrong.
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    Quote Originally Posted by river_rat
    Lol - i see an example of proof by intimidatingly long post thanks to william
    Yeah... I learned that in an abstract algebra class.
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    You already mentioned deSade and Sartre. Do you have any specific works by them that you would recommend for me?

    Any other philosophers and works by them you might recommend also?
    What you are looking for is criticisms on Kant. If you have a lot of time, you'd want to read Schopenhauer and then Nietzsche, but Nietzsche is your best bet if you don't have the next years available to spend penetrating bad translations from German to English.. :P

    "On the Genealogy of Morals" by Nietzsche would be a good read. If you want to read deSade, I recommend secondary literature. Unless you enjoy reading gross pornography. There should be a couple of books on his philosophy, which is what you'll be looking for.

    Sartre I would not recommend - he preaches a intellectual responsibility that is near unfeasible, however, reading a wikipedia article on him should be sufficient when understanding his views on morality.

    You'll be wanting to read Beyond Good and Evil by Nietzsche after that, in companionship with Thus Spoke Zarathustra (it's wise to buy a philosophical interpretation guide to that book, like Lampert's - although I have not read that one)

    Aside from that, tapdancing lessons have never harmed anyone..

    Mr U
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    Has the original question even been addressed?

    William asked if there is an absolute morality.

    The discussion has revolved around the question of whether there is a universally accepted morality.

    The answer to the real question is yes, but I am not sure what it is; the answer to the substituted question is no, but I am not sure what it isn't.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Has the original question even been addressed?

    William asked if there is an absolute morality.

    The discussion has revolved around the question of whether there is a universally accepted morality.

    The answer to the real question is yes, but I am not sure what it is; the answer to the substituted question is no, but I am not sure what it isn't.
    I believe that your criticism is dead on, where it not that william wished ti inquire about the veracity of his own moral theory. I rejected the first, absolute. And then he presented his theory that was supposedly universal and absolute, which I was then to reject, to demonstrate that such a universal morality does not exist.

    Mr U
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    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Has the original question even been addressed?

    William asked if there is an absolute morality.

    The discussion has revolved around the question of whether there is a universally accepted morality.

    The answer to the real question is yes, but I am not sure what it is; the answer to the substituted question is no, but I am not sure what it isn't.
    I believe that your criticism is dead on, where it not that william wished ti inquire about the veracity of his own moral theory. I rejected the first, absolute. And then he presented his theory that was supposedly universal and absolute, which I was then to reject, to demonstrate that such a universal morality does not exist.

    Mr U
    Huh? You demonstrated that a universal morality doesn't exist? I think you demonstrated that you have read a few philosophical treatises and choose to ignore logic and reason. :P


    Cheers,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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    Are you upset over my tap-dancing remark or are you generally a bad loser?

    :P

    Mr U
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    Quote Originally Posted by HomoUniversalis
    Are you upset over my tap-dancing remark or are you generally a bad loser?



    Mr U
    Well Mr. U, I'm actually a pretty good loser - I've had a lot of experience at it. But if your arguments were so convincing, then how do you explain this quote from daytonturner?

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Has the original question even been addressed?

    William asked if there is an absolute morality.

    The discussion has revolved around the question of whether there is a universally accepted morality.

    The answer to the real question is yes, but I am not sure what it is; the answer to the substituted question is no, but I am not sure what it isn't.
    Cheers,
    william
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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