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Objectivism Vs. Subjectivism In Morality


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Matthew, there's a lot you're not getting from what I'm saying, and a lot of that is probably my fault for failing to articulate it.

My bad too, I didn't realize we were pulling at different things until later in our discussion.

 

The problem I see is that you're starting on this third and final step and saying that we must prove that the act is truly morally virtuous in order for morality to be objective. You said as much in your last post, so let me quote it...

No, and this is what I've failed to semantically outline in my previous posts, I am not looking for morality to be objective, I am looking for Objective Morality. And more specifically, for it to be true. In order for Objective Morality to be true, it would have to be true all the time, therefore disallowing other forms of morality like your definition of it, or Relativism, or any other form of ethics.

 

As a side note, Kant's categorical imperative would most like be proven as the highest standard of moral code in existence if Objective Morality is in any way true. But again, I cannot see anything presented thus far that makes Objective Morality a realistic thing, which means Relativism is true, ergo virtues and vices are subjective, which makes Kant's imperative a pile of horseshit. Which also means that most everything done under moral pretense is done falsely.

 

The truth or correctness of the formula for the volume of a sphere isn't what makes a geometry objective, and the truth or correctness of a moral virtue isn't what makes morality objective. What makes them objective is that we can move from the first step to the third step using deduction and logic without personal and emotional bias.

The first step means ****-all if geometry is in itself intrinsically flawed as a means for logic to be used. Let's go further into that; aside from the truth or correctness of a moral virtue, what makes something a moral virtue to begin with? Like, unquestionably provable that a certain action is virtuous? You see what I'm getting at here? the categorical imperative won't allow you to say that killing is immoral, it just tells you that whatever you define as immoral shouldn't be done. And how we define moral and immoral is rather relative, ergo Relativism. If you want to say killing is objectively immoral, then it has to always be immoral, universally, and it has to transcend every other form of ethics that states that killing can sometimes be okay. In fact to say that killing is immoral also transcends individual consciousnesses, you would have to be disallowed from intentionally killing anything at all, inclusive to the food you eat. You see how making Objective Morality a reality changes what we're allowed to do? Now that I think about it, it's probably better that ethics is subjective, cause that'd suck if we weren't allowed to murder for fun.

 

To my disdain, here's a postulate for morality (which is what I've been looking for to prove Objective Morality) that disproves Objective Morality:

M = Murder 
F = Cow
P = Person
E = Eat
H = Be Happy

So take:

(M+F) + (E+F) = H

And substitute the cow with the person:

(M+P) + (E+P) = H

Why is it immoral to be happy murdering and eating the person, but not immoral to be happy murdering and eating the cow?

 

Killing for food is generally accepted as morally passable, even a virtuous thing to do. If that's the case, then it's no longer an universally applicable rule, making Kant and the rest of the supporters of Objective Morality wrong.

 

As such it is a mistake to think that any geometry or any moral philosophy is "true" or "correct". They can't be described in those terms. But, it is equally mistaken to think they lack objectivity because they can't be described in those terms.

I'm sorry, but if my schema is true, and as far as I can tell, A=B & B=C here, then murdering for happiness is the correct thing to do.

 

However, A doesn't equal C in your quote- It is a mistake to think goe/ethics are true/correct, and you can't describe geo/ethics as true/correct, but somehow they don't lack it so it's a mistake to think they lack it.

It's a mistake to think they lack it as well as to think they have it? Okay bro, you're obviously the logician here.

 

Also, you keep pushing that you can't define one form of morality as more true than another, that just like geometry, two forms can exist at the same time. As your record appears broken, so is mine, so allow me to repeat myself-

The problem with your argument here is that Euclidean geometry does not exclude other logics of geometry. Objective Morality, however, does exclude Relativism/Subjective Morality as possible logics. You cannot have both be true, as I said earlier, they contradict and eradicate themselves on the most fundamental levels of the definition of overall "Morality".

 

What I told Lawcat is that most people generally do agree on the definition of morality. Once that agreement is made it is easy to objectively show someone that they've made some deductive logical mistake about what is moral and what isn't moral (under that definition).

And this is the core of my worries. If my conscience should rest at ease, or scold me, based on a code that is as loosey-goosey as what people simply agree upon (which in many scenarios they don't, otherwise we wouldn't be having this discussion), then why should I even give a ****? If what is moral or immoral rests on what people agree the definition is, which can drastically change for any given situation, then why should I care what people subjectively define the cool-headed killing of another human being as? I'm really not seeing why I shouldn't stab someone back who stabs me first in the park. I'm really not seeing why I shouldn't cheat on a final to get an A in a class if the professor is an unruly **** who unfairly downgrades my papers because he doesn't like me. I'm not seeing why I should chose to do the "right" thing in these situations which to me appears to be the wrong thing. What people define as the "wrong" thing to do, appears to be the right thing in these situations- stabbing him back, and cheating a cheater. I need to be shown that Objective Morality is true, and that Kant knew what he was talking about, not subjectively saying that it's good because it's pro-social. It's pro-social to kill killers, it's pro-social to have others make you taste your own poison. An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a hand for a hand, and a life for a life. Treat others as they have treated you. Tell me why that is wrong, give me the objectivity, please show me, because I'm tired of you telling me it's wrong and that you can be objectively right, without showing me examples to prove it.

 

To close, I'm not angry or upset or anything, but I'm really trying to play devil's advocate lul, so don't take what I'm saying seriously, I'm just throwing stuff out there. =P

Edited by Matthew Garon
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I still don't know what you mean by "totally subjective". Let's try this...   Anger is subjective. It is highly influenced by a person's emotional character just like morality. The things, in other

Dude, do you even know who Louis Pojman is? You can google that quote bro, all kinds of legitimate sources have it down from a physical recording of Bundy right before he murdered that victim. I mean,

Wouldn't it be objectively true that our ancestors who made moral choices did better than the ones who did not? Evolution rewards beneficial behavior. If people in general didn't know that murder wa

I am not looking for morality to be objective, I am looking for Objective Morality.

Uh, oh. I've suddenly become positive we're failing to communicate. I swear to the old gods and the seven new... every time I compare something to geometry I get a flash of break lights in the fog. I'm positive I need to stop, but I can't see for the life of me where or why. Probably someone clipped a deer... let's see...

 

And more specifically, for it to be true. In order for Objective Morality to be true, it would have to be true all the time, therefore disallowing other forms of morality like your definition of it, or Relativism, or any other form of ethics.

Oh, I'm surprised! It was a deer! Better yet, as long as I'm drawing out the game of thrones analogy, it was a wolf!

 

Yes, your morality is different from that of a wolf. I hate to break so long fought a struggle so easily, but, yes. Morality is not "true". Your morality is not the wolf's morality. You are not a wolf, and what is right for the wolf might, just perhaps, be wrong for you. Morality is not "true", it is "applicable". I honestly thought many posts back we were well beyond this, but here we are. You are not a dire wolf.

 

As a side note, Kant's categorical imperative would most like be proven as the highest standard of moral code in existence if Objective Morality is in any way true.

I'm not sure if you meant to, but you just seriously pissed off Schopenhauer... and Hegel... HA! Philosopher's song :lol:

 

Sorry, nobody's gonna get that :)

 

But again, I cannot see anything presented thus far that makes Objective Morality a realistic thing, which means Relativism is true, ergo virtues and vices are subjective, which makes Kant's imperative a pile of horseshit.

I honestly don't know where to begin. If you've ever found yourself saying "relativism is true" you need to look back at where the record skipped a few tracks. For example, "if relativism is true then morality is true and "true" isn't relative" is most likely true. Go figure.

 

Nonetheless, I think morality is objective. I'm positive we'll get no closer on that point.

 

And this is the core of my worries. If my conscience should rest at ease, or scold me, based on a code that is as loosey-goosey as what people simply agree upon...

Four billion years of life and death have fought over the issue of what you and I can and can't agree upon. Nothing that you or I know has been longer fought or harder won. If it were easily disregarded then neither of us would be here, and if it were not greatly cherished in our friends and family then there would be no morality about which to discuss.

 

We don't sing songs because we "simply agree upon" the lyrics. This is beyond explanation.

 

~modest

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And this is the core of my worries. If my conscience should rest at ease, or scold me, based on a code that is as loosey-goosey as what people simply agree upon...

Four billion years of life and death have fought over the issue of what you and I can and can't agree upon. Nothing that you or I know has been longer fought or harder won. If it were easily disregarded then neither of us would be here, and if it were not greatly cherished in our friends and family then there would be no morality about which to discuss.

 

We don't sing songs because we "simply agree upon" the lyrics. This is beyond explanation.

 

~modest

I feel, actually, a need for contrition or confession on this point... on the last couple posts really. I mean, I was sure after reading your last post that we just weren't getting each other, and I proceeded on talking to myself in endless references that only I would get as if to make the point that we wouldn't get each other. That's not helpful. It's a bit ironic, but looking back on it, the irony isn't worth the helplessness of it at all.

 

But... I did mean this last bit seriously and not ironically at all. I do see, believe me as much as it may seem like I don't see where you're coming from... I do see exactly where you're coming from. I do understand it and it's nothing to be dismissed lightly.

 

The thing on which my conscious rests is, as I said so flippantly, the struggle that has brought us here. There was, you can imagine, a first instance of life that somehow replicated itself. However that came about, it happened. And, the offspring no doubt looked about themselves (metaphorically and allegorically speaking) and they were immediately faced with a problem.

 

They could either look at their siblings as competition and food or they could look at them as a cooperative force in surviving this dreadful disaster that we would call their life. The struggle must surely have been ever continued from there and the line ever more defined. How much does something have to be similar to yourself before you're completely ok with killing it and considering it food? It's a question evolution has been working out for billions of years.

 

How much, also, is it worth throwing down today's rations in an instant to extend a hand to a drowning man? That's what a person does, and without thinking about it and weighing the personal consequences of the thing as well. Evolution slowly worked that out for us over several billion years.

 

What I mean to say is that it's nothing easy to throw off this thing evolution did for us, nor should it be. Every ancestor of yours, for longer than a person can imagine, died trying to work out this question for you. They passed it along to you. It is something special to be able to look at mount Vesuvius and say "well, this thing is dangerous and it's spouting things and shaking the earth and it's very nearly going to burry everyone in ash". That kind of knowledge is, of course, useful to life. That kind of truth is well won to life.

 

But, just as useful evolution has first and foremost worked out is to say.. . "hey, Tim (or John or whoever cohort's name you might imagine), I've got your back if you've got mine". That isn't something we "simply agree upon", it's something we are! If we weren't then we'd be trees unable to get out of the way so that some sunlight could shine on our sproutlings... too dimwitted to help our offspring in the slightest,

 

That isn't us and I honestly mean to say in the most helpful way possible... it isn't worth the "core of your worries" to balance your life on the truth of that prospect. It's well worth embracing. Four billion years of everything that conspired to make you has worked out that you can't throw that **** by the gutter.

 

So... I just mean that as a slight postscript to what I was saying and so on... as it were and all...

 

~modest

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I wanna start by saying that all your thrones analogies were lulzy and well-played. Good on you, Modest. =P

 

 

Yes, your morality is different from that of a wolf. I hate to break so long fought a struggle so easily, but, yes. Morality is not "true". Your morality is not the wolf's morality. You are not a wolf, and what is right for the wolf might, just perhaps, be wrong for you. Morality is not "true", it is "applicable". I honestly thought many posts back we were well beyond this, but here we are. You are not a dire wolf.

Wutlol. You are basically arguing my side now. This is not what I wanted modest, I wanted you to keep fighting me and win because this is bad ju-ju here. If it's cool for people to have conflicting moralities, especially if it's practical and highly applicable, then it would be cool for me to murder for fun. You just disemboweled all the stuff we have built up, but you say it was already established that morality is totally subjective, the very thing you have been at teeth with me since we started. Please don't do this! I'm probably going to kill three people if ethics is this loosey-goosey...

 

I'm not sure if you meant to, but you just seriously pissed off Schopenhauer... and Hegel... HA! Philosopher's song :lol:

 

Sorry, nobody's gonna get that :)

I think I got it, and Kant's Categorical Imperative is considered the goldenest of the golden-rule ideas, so I doubt they're turning in their graves over it.

 

I honestly don't know where to begin. If you've ever found yourself saying "relativism is true" you need to look back at where the record skipped a few tracks. For example, "if relativism is true then morality is true and "true" isn't relative" is most likely true. Go figure.

 

Nonetheless, I think morality is objective. I'm positive we'll get no closer on that point.

I mean Relativism as Ethical Relativism, not Relativism as it relates to the whole of philosophy, because we aren't talking about the whole of philosophy. I think that fixes what you were saying because you imply the latter use rather than the former. If you were already aware of this clarification and were also referring to Ethical Relativism, then you are wrong. True-isms are not a relative part of Relativism. Ethical Relativism can be true, as it does not make everything relative, only morality. Again this is similar to the exclusion of ethical logics I talked about before.

 

Also, I commend you for making a "record" retort in accordance with my record statement. Even if that was not intentional, it was well played.

 

Four billion years of life and death have fought over the issue of what you and I can and can't agree upon. Nothing that you or I know has been longer fought or harder won. If it were easily disregarded then neither of us would be here, and if it were not greatly cherished in our friends and family then there would be no morality about which to discuss.

 

We don't sing songs because we "simply agree upon" the lyrics. This is beyond explanation.

It's not really beyond explanation, I mean you just explained it in your own words.

 

That aside, I'm not talking about the things we have learned from aggregate historical accounts (like war is bad), I am talking about the situational individual events - the things Objective Morality would cover with its Universalities. If the majority of people deem it is morally wrong for me to murder someone, but not for a soldier, then the definition people put behind the morality of murder becomes inconsistent and loosey-goosey. On top of that, if this situational inconsistency is only ultimately dictated by majority, then Objective Morality is a false logic because you can't apply the universal to it (like "all murder is immoral").

 

Also, thanks again modest, nobody else (either here or irl) is willing to discuss this topic this far with me. Everyone gives up and says I'm right, which is bullshit since I don't want to be right, or says I'm being biased because I want to purchase a gun lol. I'm just playing devil's advocate and trying to find the truth behind ethics.

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Yes, your morality is different from that of a wolf. I hate to break so long fought a struggle so easily, but, yes. Morality is not "true". Your morality is not the wolf's morality. You are not a wolf, and what is right for the wolf might, just perhaps, be wrong for you. Morality is not "true", it is "applicable". I honestly thought many posts back we were well beyond this, but here we are. You are not a dire wolf.

Wutlol. You are basically arguing my side now. This is not what I wanted modest, I wanted you to keep fighting me and win because this is bad ju-ju here. If it's cool for people to have conflicting moralities, especially if it's practical and highly applicable, then it would be cool for me to murder for fun. You just disemboweled all the stuff we have built up, but you say it was already established that morality is totally subjective, the very thing you have been at teeth with me since we started. Please don't do this! I'm probably going to kill three people if ethics is this loosey-goosey...

I'm failing to communicate our inability to communicate. Do you remember me quoting Pirsig?

 

One geometry cannot be more true than another; it can only be more convenient. Geometry is not true, it is advantageous.

 

-R. Pirsig

 

Morality, like geometry, is not "true" or "correct" (they can't be described in those terms). This implies nothing about their objectivity or subjectivity. You failed to get that point the first couple times so I said "I'm going to break this down and drive it home as much as possible" and I did that...

 

The inability to describe morality as "true" says nothing about objectivity or subjectivity. Long posts exist entirely dedicated to making that one point.

 

Morality is not universal, but it can be objective. I repeated it several more times, compared it to Newtonian mechanics,

 

It has a limited domain of validity. Despite the fact that Newtonian mechanics is not universal, it is nonetheless 100% objective. This should be enough to show that objectivity doesn't imply universality.

 

repeated it,

 

It is a mistake to think that any geometry or any moral philosophy is "true" or "correct". They can't be described in those terms. But, it is equally mistaken to think they lack objectivity because they can't be described in those terms.

 

 

Please, put that thought in your mind... it is a mistake to think morality lacks objectivity just because it can't be described as "true". That is my position. Tether it to your thoughts... Morality can't be described as true, but that doesn't mean it lacks objectivity...

 

Then explain your last post,

 

Yes, your morality is different from that of a wolf. I hate to break so long fought a struggle so easily, but, yes. Morality is not "true". Your morality is not the wolf's morality. You are not a wolf, and what is right for the wolf might, just perhaps, be wrong for you. Morality is not "true", it is "applicable". I honestly thought many posts back we were well beyond this, but here we are. You are not a dire wolf.

Wutlol. You are basically arguing my side now. This is not what I wanted modest, I wanted you to keep fighting me and win because this is bad ju-ju here. If it's cool for people to have conflicting moralities, especially if it's practical and highly applicable, then it would be cool for me to murder for fun. You just disemboweled all the stuff we have built up, but you say it was already established that morality is totally subjective, the very thing you have been at teeth with me since we started. Please don't do this! I'm probably going to kill three people if ethics is this loosey-goosey...

 

~modest

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I've read through this and while lots of good points have been made.... lots of manure is flying around as well.

 

First of all define moral and immoral...

 

1000 years ago (in some societies)throwing a virgin into an erupting volcano was moral, trying to keep your virgin daughter from being thrown in would have been immoral.

 

We as an "advanced" culture think we have the final word on what is moral, not harming each other is a good basis to start with but as the group gets larger and other groups become involved this becomes more problematic.

 

Even in modern groups what is or is not moral can be highly subjective. 50 years ago in SC the age of sexual consent was something like 12 years old, we look at that now and think it's difficult to understand such a lax law.

 

One thing to remember, and the talk about Ted Bundy is what brings this up, is that some people either inherently lack an internal moral compass at all or are trained as children to ignore this compass. This moral compass is real but limited, small children can tell if something is fair or not but larger issues are beyond them and must be taught.

 

We as a society decide what is moral, we tend to use various yardsticks to decide what is moral and they are rooted in our society and what our society can allow and remain viable. Various aspects of knowledge are used to decide, sometimes the knowledge is flawed and the results are equally flawed. Killing Jews during WW2 is easy for us to see as flawed but at the time and before that Jews and other ethnic groups were considered less than the ones making the decisions. Usually the dominant groups decided who was "ethnic".

 

We use knowledge of the past and how it affected people to make decisions about moral behavior. Once women were considered fully human sex with a 12 yo was seen as morally questionable because 12 yo's aren't capable of completely understanding what they are giving up or the consequences of their actions.

 

Once Black people were fully considered human it became more and more difficult to justify denying them their rights as human beings... which of course begs the question of the evolution of morals. A societies morals evolve as the society evolves, no direction other than what gives the society a better chance at survival, some moral choices work, others do not, this success of morals can be long term or short term but the morals themselves are extensions of what we as a society think is best for our survival as a society, what is best can and does change over time...

 

One of our recent presidential candidates displayed a stunning lack of empathy for people of lesser means during the campaign. This lies at the core of immorality IMHO. you are less likely to do something immoral to someone who you think of as deserving of respect than someone who you think of as being less than you... once you get the idea that others deserve the same basic respect you do immoral behavior becomes more difficult... and easier to define...

 

Wolves btw are a great example of morals, even by human standards. they rarely kill each other, even in dominance battles once the opponent has given up the battle stops and everything goes back to normal, death is rarely the result of such battles. Healthy wolves will take care of their pack mates who are sick or injured, food is shared as is the risk of obtaining that food. packs of wolves are at least as good as humans at cooperation, the cooperative nature of wolves and their natural "morals" is what makes them good social animals and led to them being the ancestors of dogs, our basic moral values are similar, human civilization has led to complexity of morals but not a huge change in them...

Edited by Moontanman
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369434_1477208606_190478610_q.jpg

Kenneth Julio Moilanen shared Nyeng Gyang's status.

SaturdayThere is a sentiment, an inspiration, that I have resolutely determined to shun ABSOLUTELY,

The feeling of “us against them,”

The spirit that both drives/motivates and is at the core of the practice by humans of organizing themselves into one (national, tribal, ethnic, racial, religious, gender, ideological, socio-economic class or age) group or the other, of regarding themselves as superior to others (in one respect or the other) and of uniting and establishing themselves in antagonizing others!

 

 

 

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

 

i thought this was brilliantly stated

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I'm failing to communicate our inability to communicate. Do you remember me quoting Pirsig?

 

One geometry cannot be more true than another; it can only be more convenient. Geometry is not true, it is advantageous.

-R. Pirsig

 

Morality, like geometry, is not "true" or "correct" (they can't be described in those terms). This implies nothing about their objectivity or subjectivity. You failed to get that point the first couple times so I said "I'm going to break this down and drive it home as much as possible" and I did that...

 

The inability to describe morality as "true" says nothing about objectivity or subjectivity. Long posts exist entirely dedicated to making that one point.

 

Morality is not universal, but it can be objective.

Lol bro, the only thing you're failing to do is read what I keep saying, which has nothing to do with this objective **** you're talking about. You can obviously read your own arguments very well, and have no failure in quoting them over and over again, but consider the following: I never said anything about an objective within the umbrella of morality, this entire thread has been instead about Objective Morality, which DOES REQUIRE UNIVERSAL RULES WITHIN ETHICS.

 

I understand that you're trying to clarify that morality at large cannot be true or correct, but you're doing so in a futile fashion, because no one has said you were wrong with that claim. I have been asking for the truths within Objective Morality, not the truths within the umbrella of morality. If you are still at odds with me over this, it is your own fault, because we are talking about two very different things.

 

I will re-iterate this by showing that different forms of geometry are not like different forms of morality, no matter who you quote, they are wrong. Objective Morality negates the plausibility of Subjective Morality, Relativistic Morality, and Cultural Morality. They all become null if the schema of Objective Morality can be proven. You may argue it can't be proven true, but then Subjective Morality is proven true by falsifying Objective Morality. This is an on-off switch, it's only in one state, not both at the same time. I don't see how you can falter in reading this here, but if you do, I'm just going to stop talking to you about it.

 

Since you like quotes, here's one for you, "Good and Evil are subjective, just rape her."

 

 

I've read through this and while lots of good points have been made.... lots of manure is flying around as well.

 

...

 

packs of wolves are at least as good as humans at cooperation, the cooperative nature of wolves and their natural "morals" is what makes them good social animals and led to them being the ancestors of dogs, our basic moral values are similar, human civilization has led to complexity of morals but not a huge change in them...

 

This is my problem that I'm getting at here- if morals are based on whatever makes us a more efficient species, then Objective Morality is false, and Subjective Morality (really Culturalism) is true. Which means I can murder people for fun as long as I don't murder too many to bring the species near extinction. I don't think that's really a good thing, but I cannot equivocate why I think it's not a good thing because I don't have any reasons that aren't entirely subjective. Quadruple negative, my apologies.

 

Also, Ted Bundy didn't have any disorder or lack of empathy or anything like that. He was a very normal person and only started to think about murdering people after he took a philosophy class that told him morality was entirely subjective. He had to murder people to break free of the mental limitations of logic and philosophy he was experiencing, as he described it. And after he was convicted he admitted to feeling terrible about it, but that doesn't mean it didn't have to be done. Ted Bundy wasn't crazy, he didn't have any disorder, and he wasn't raised to be without the feeling of empathy. This is why his case is so interesting, because technically, he probably wasn't committing any moral wrongs.

Edited by Matthew Garon
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Lol bro, the only thing you're failing to do is read what I keep saying, which has nothing to do with this objective **** you're talking about.

 

Ok. Read what you say yourself I guess,

 

you say it was already established that morality is totally subjective

You can't point out where I said it because I didn't and it should be clear that you're talking about "this objective ****". The problem is not difficult to follow. When I say 'morality can't be described as true' you hear 'morality is totally subjective'. The one quite simply doesn't imply the other.

 

I never said anything about an objective within the umbrella of morality, this entire thread has been instead about Objective Morality, which DOES REQUIRE UNIVERSAL RULES WITHIN ETHICS... I have been asking for the truths within Objective Morality, not the truths within the umbrella of morality.

You started the thread by asking "what is there in morality that you can say is totally objective?". You didn't mention truth or universality at all. The problem came later when you assumed that a person would have to find a universal truth to answer, "What's objective about morality?". I will never tire of pointing out the problem there: *objective things about morality don't need to be universal*.

 

Now you're looking for "truths within Objective Morality" (where the capital letters are apparently very important). Objective/subjective is different from absolute/relative. Truth statements in morality are objective if they don't depend on personal emotional bias. Truth statements in morality are absolute if they don't depend on bias or culture, or anything situational. It sounds like you're looking for the latter and trying to put it into the language of the former. That can be a little confused and confusing.

 

~modest

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This is my problem that I'm getting at here- if morals are based on whatever makes us a more efficient species, then Objective Morality is false, and Subjective Morality (really Culturalism) is true. Which means I can murder people for fun as long as I don't murder too many to bring the species near extinction. I don't think that's really a good thing, but I cannot equivocate why I think it's not a good thing because I don't have any reasons that aren't entirely subjective. Quadruple negative, my apologies.

 

No you cannot murder people for fun, our culture forbids it. Any culture that did not would come apart quickly.

 

Also, Ted Bundy didn't have any disorder or lack of empathy or anything like that. He was a very normal person and only started to think about murdering people after he took a philosophy class that told him morality was entirely subjective. He had to murder people to break free of the mental limitations of logic and philosophy he was experiencing, as he described it. And after he was convicted he admitted to feeling terrible about it, but that doesn't mean it didn't have to be done. Ted Bundy wasn't crazy, he didn't have any disorder, and he wasn't raised to be without the feeling of empathy. This is why his case is so interesting, because technically, he probably wasn't committing any moral wrongs.

 

 

Could you back this up with something besides your own assertions?

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you say it was already established that morality is totally subjective

You can't point out where I said it because I didn't and it should be clear that you're talking about "this objective ****". The problem is not difficult to follow. When I say 'morality can't be described as true' you hear 'morality is totally subjective'. The one quite simply doesn't imply the other.

Where you said it-

Morality is not "true". Your morality is not the wolf's morality. You are not a wolf, and what is right for the wolf might, just perhaps, be wrong for you. Morality is not "true", it is "applicable".

This means Culturalism/Subjective Morality is always applicable over Objective Morality, ergo making Subjective Morality true, and Objective Morality false (so morality is totally subjective in this sense). You see, one DOES imply the other. If you can't prove Objective Morality, then Culturalism and the likes can be proven via the negative of the former. The very definition of Objective Morality implies universality, if there is no universality within morality, then by definition Objective Morality is FALSE. This is a simple logic proof, and I don't know why you're arguing with me over some semantics of this as if it is unclear that it has to be true. Why not have it be true? Wouldn't you like to definitively say that murdering for fun is wrong within the act itself besides just saying it's unfavorable/inapplicable for our species?

 

 

You started the thread by asking "what is there in morality that you can say is totally objective?". You didn't mention truth or universality at all. The problem came later when you assumed that a person would have to find a universal truth to answer, "What's objective about morality?". I will never tire of pointing out the problem there: *objective things about morality don't need to be universal*.

Totally objective: universally applicable and true. Totally, universally, objective within morality. Totally objective does in fact mean universal, by definition. And if something is objective, it is also true by definition, otherwise where could the objectivity come from? If it is objective that you can have two 2's, then it is true that as a total you have 4. Sure, everyone doesn't have to have 4, they can keep saying they have two 2's (tutus lol) but it's interchangeable. Telling me that killing each other is not beneficial for our society is not a statement about morality, it is a social, or even a biological statement. Just because it's objective does not mean it applies in the slightest to morality. You are giving me nothing within the act itself that defines it as immoral. I am touching on previous things I had given up to you because I thought you would drop it, but now I'm fairly certain that you've been wrong all along. Why is it not okay to kill a human, but it's okay to kill a pig? Do you honestly think the human values its life more than a hog values its own life? Ted Bundy is starting to sound more reasonable than you, Modest.

 

 

Now you're looking for "truths within Objective Morality" (where the capital letters are apparently very important). Objective/subjective is different from absolute/relative.

The capitals are very important only because you made them. If you'd stopped bringing the argument to how we define objectivity within morality, I don't think I'd need to clarify specifically what type of morality I was talking about each and every time.

And true, Objective Morality and Subjective Morality and different from Relativistic Morality and Culturalism. It's too bad Objective Morality doesn't give no ****s about any other forms of morality though.

 

 

Truth statements in morality are objective if they don't depend on personal emotional bias. Truth statements in morality are absolute if they don't depend on bias or culture, or anything situational. It sounds like you're looking for the latter and trying to put it into the language of the former. That can be a little confused and confusing.

Ye, kinda. I think I just realized something lol. There are multiple definitions for the word "objective". We were arguing this entire thread about essentially different things the entire time never realizing that we were using what should probably be different words (since objective has situation/personal and logical definitions).

 

Also I know my writing style suggests something else, but I write similar to how I talk, unfortunately all the inflection and facial signals are lost, so keep in mind I'm just playing around and trying to work both arguments. I know I may come off negatively but I'm just throwing the language into the areas I want to be addressed more strongly back to me if that makes sense. You're a pretty cool dude Modest so take this whole thing with a grain of salt I know I'm putting you through a lot trying to explain this to me lol. We should like vid chat or something cause I'm reading what I've previous typed and I sound really hostile without my tone thrown in there haha. My apologies again.

 

 

No you cannot murder people for fun, our culture forbids it. Any culture that did not would come apart quickly.

Our culture also forbids the caste system and speedcore, yet those things exist almost unchecked in other parts of the world. Culturalism in not factualism.

 

 

Could you back this up with something besides your own assertions?

Gladly - Ted Bundy's Reasons

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Ye, kinda. I think I just realized something lol. There are multiple definitions for the word "objective". We were arguing this entire thread about essentially different things the entire time never realizing that we were using what should probably be different words (since objective has situation/personal and logical definitions).

No. *You* didn't realize. I've had this discussion many times before. I know the pitfalls. I've read 'The Moral Landscape' which says what most works on the subject say,

 

"Many people are also confused about what it means to speak with scientific “objectivity” about the human condition. As the philosopher John Searle once pointed out, there are two very different senses of the terms “objective” and “subjective.” The first sense relates to how we know (i.e., epistemology), the second to what there is to know (i.e., ontology). When we say that we are reasoning or speaking “objectively,” we generally mean that we are free of obvious bias, open to counterarguments, cognizant of the relevant facts, and so on. This is to make a claim about how we are thinking. In this sense, there is no impediment to our studying subjective (i.e., first-person) facts “objectively.”

 

which is why I defined the term objectivity twice. You think I was telling you that your use of the term is confusing because I didn't notice it was different from how I was using the term? Honestly, you're just not paying attention.

 

I say, "You can't describe morality as "true", and that doesn't imply subjectivity"

 

and you say, "HA! You just admitted morality is totally subjective"

 

What can a person say to that?

 

I explained already that math can't be described as "true" any more than morality can. But, you give the example "2 + 2 = 4" as a universal truth. It is only true if the Peano axioms are true, and you can't prove the axioms are true any more than I can prove Kant's categorical imperative is universally correct. You didn't notice any of that. You dismissed it without understanding it. I refuted your point before you made it, but you're so busy repeating a mantra that you've worked out for yourself that you haven't noticed.

 

 

I can't prove that math is universally true. I can't prove that time exists. But, I would be incredibly stupid to proceed as if math doesn't work and time doesn't exist. You can't prove that morality is true, but you would have to be extremely dysfunctional to try and proceed in life without it. I'm sorry if you're uncomfortable with the way of things, but that is the way of things.

 

~modest

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So you want me to believe something just because someone else claimed it on another forum? I'm not sure even if Bundy had said that himself it would be evidence of anything but Bundy being a psychopath...

Dude, do you even know who Louis Pojman is? You can google that quote bro, all kinds of legitimate sources have it down from a physical recording of Bundy right before he murdered that victim. I mean, it's even in one of my old philosophy books from two semesters ago, Ted Bundy was pretty sane, and why shouldn't he be? I mean his rationale is pretty solid- why not murder a human when it's totally fine to murder a pig?

 

 

No. *You* didn't realize. I've had this discussion many times before. I know the pitfalls...

 

which is why I defined the term objectivity twice. You think I was telling you that your use of the term is confusing because I didn't notice it was different from how I was using the term? Honestly, you're just not paying attention.

 

I say, "You can't describe morality as "true", and that doesn't imply subjectivity"

 

and you say, "HA! You just admitted morality is totally subjective"

 

What can a person say to that?

Your kind of person would say that I am the one that doesn't understand apparently lol, even though you presented the case that you have to question what's going on. Also, objectivity is a little different than objective. Objectivity only has one used definition that I'm aware of, whereas objective has a logic definition as well as a person-related definition. And since it was so obvious to you that that's what I meant, then why is there a problem officer? I mean, I'm the one that doesn't realize what's going on right? So you obviously realize we're using the logic definition because it's the only one that applies to Objective Morality, right? A = B, & B = C, then what does A also equal again? Let the buttfrustration flow through you.

 

You're taking this too seriously. For all the times you've repeated yourself, I think I've equally warned you to calm down, I mean after all, it should be in your nature to be modest about this kind of thing, no?

 

I explained already that math can't be described as "true" any more than morality can. But, you give the example "2 + 2 = 4" as a universal truth. It is only true if the Peano axioms are true, and you can't prove the axioms are true any more than I can prove Kant's categorical imperative is universally correct. You didn't notice any of that. You dismissed it without understanding it. I refuted your point before you made it, but you're so busy repeating a mantra that you've worked out for yourself that you haven't noticed.

 

I can't prove that math is universally true. I can't prove that time exists. But, I would be incredibly stupid to proceed as if math doesn't work and time doesn't exist. You can't prove that morality is true, but you would have to be extremely dysfunctional to try and proceed in life without it. I'm sorry if you're uncomfortable with the way of things, but that is the way of things.

That's delusional, and I'll tell you why. It's a good thing that you're wrong here because it means Objective Morality can take hold. Math schema can certainly be described as true if you prove them, I mean we'd live in a very false reality if two and two was not equivalent to four. I've never heard anyone say that math can't ever be true, I mean say it out loud and tell me it doesn't sound as if you're actively perverting the logic you used to come about saying it in the first place. The cool thing about any field of philosophy is that you can have provable schema just like in mathematics, and that's why Kant is considered the Moral Giant amongst philosophers, which I'm sure you already knew all about since I'm the one misunderstanding this whole thing right? Let's say everyone universally stole from each other. We can't make that a universal rule because then the concept of private possession would be null and stealing wouldn't be possible by definition. However, in the negative, if we universalized to never steal, we can say stealing is undeniably a "wrong" because it perverses the concept of private ownership. You see, what Kant did with categorical imperatives is show that you can only have a universe in which stealing is immoral within the definition of the act itself, just as this universe only allows 2 + 2 to equal 4. This is Objective Morality. Now what was so hard about that? But excuse me, morality can't ever have anything "true" in it, I'm the one that doesn't understand, right?

 

Now say that time doesn't exist out loud and tell me you aren't being silly about this whole thing. I mean, there are mathematics up the anus showing the fourth dimension in relation to time is an actual aspect of the universe rather than a probable one. Sure you can say it's relative, but that doesn't imply that it doesn't exist at all. So maybe you can't prove time exists, but the rest of rational humanity certainly can, and I find it offensive for you to suggest that we can't. However, your lack of basic reasoning disheartens me because you say it would be stupid to think math doesn't work and time doesn't exist if you couldn't prove they didn't work and didn't exist. If math didn't actually work and time didn't actually exist, then our discussion should have been this whole time (I hope you can at least appreciate my wordplay) about how the **** it could be possible for us to even have this conversation. I mean if mathematics were totally unprovable to be true, then assembly code would fail on such fundamental levels that electronic devices could never function to begin with, similar to the fundamental dysfunctionalness you talk about having without morality. You say you already refuted me before the fact, but it looks as if you've refuted yourself brah. I mean you say we'd be so dysfunctional without morality, but that wouldn't be true if morality didn't have any truth in it. GODAMN I AM A MASTER AT WORDPLAY.

 

Also, have fun trying to disprove this lol. Also, I was just playing this whole time, because I know of universally applicable rules like described above, I was playing devil's advocate just to figure out some universals for a couple unclarified things like murder outside of humans, but you're getting mad bro lol. So I think you need to take a step back here and re-analyze your circular logic.

Edited by Matthew Garon
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I would say that happiness is a final end pursuit that is without qualification an objective good and is always desirable for an individual human in and of itself, never chosen for the sake of something else. Happiness is then a final objective good chosen by a human as an end action of behavior, and it is objective because the end is chosen by use of reason to be an action of virtue (i.e., the action that results in happiness is chosen rationally). Read Aristotle and Ayn Rand concerning the argument for objective good.

Edited by Rade
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I would say that happiness is a final end pursuit that is without qualification an objective good and is always desirable for an individual human in and of itself, never chosen for the sake of something else. Happiness is then a final objective good chosen by a human as an end action of behavior, and it is objective because the end is chosen by use of reason to be an action of virtue (i.e., the action that results in happiness is chosen rationally). Read Aristotle and Ayn Rand concerning the argument for objective good.

I have and I quite like the idea, but the means don't justify the ends, or is it the other way around here? You can't have something just "be" without qualification, and even if you could, there are still ways to try to qualify the Objective Good (or in this case, disqualify it). The problem with the Objective Good arises with any long term examination of the argument, which Rand covers in quite some detail and made an entire book about - The Virtue of Selfishness.

 

If happiness is truley the only thing to work for, if it's the "ends" that are objectively good without qualification, then why should I not be happy murdering for fun? You even just said I shouldn't have to qualify my murders, so I don't need any reasons beyond the fact that it makes me happy. With the idea that Rand explores - selfishness being a virtue rather than a vice - it would be totally fair game to murder for fun, even virtuous, if I am happy doing it. This fundamentally grinds against almost the entirety of ethics. Not to mention, it's very difficult to prove or disprove everyone's intent for actions ever, and thus becomes like the fallacy which theists use for their gods: you can't prove it, therefore it cannot be disproven. The thing is though, that which can be presented without evidence can be dismissed without evidence. If you were to say that which is unproven is proven by the negative, then Freud would be correct about every male having sub-conscious desires to sleep with their mothers, along with everything else that can't be proven or disproven. So you do in fact have to qualify goodness, otherwise it's a logical fallacy.

 

So let's tackle this at it's heart. With what Aristotle argues, it becomes more of this game of "selfless good deeds". Many philosophers that argue for the Objective Good make the case that it is impossible to commit a "selfless good deed"; that a person's actions are always with themselves somewhat in mind. For example, saving a person from a burning building is still selfish because either they are someone you know (and family/friendships are based on a love-feedback idea, so it's very selfish) or you were told by society that saving a person would be the right thing to do, so you do it to not receive negative judgments from society. This is usually accepted as an undeniable argument by most philosophers that there can be no such thing as a selfless good deed, HOWEVER, I take exception to this, as does everyone who has ever unknowingly committed an act with a positive outcome. There are good deeds done unintentionally, which circumvents any sort of bias or personal influence you have on the action, making the act "selfless", and as previously stated, a "good deed". So selfless good deeds do exist, and because of their existence you can say it is possible for a person to live their entire life doing nothing but selfless good deeds. Now that we know selfless good deeds are possible to commit, let's say it is also possible for a person to intentionally commit a selfless good deed. Many people do things for no reason at all (you could argue there is subconscious drive, but since that can't be proven or disproven...) and have positive, negative, and neutral consequences to their reasonless actions. This again is selfless, and if the action has a positive outcome, then it was a "good deed". Let's say someone's intentions are to always have positive outcomes for all their actions (positive does not imply it makes them happy, it only implies it is a moral outcome), and they are capable of regularly committing selfless good deeds, then by definition, they live their lives for others (or for the moral good) and are extremely virtuous, but may be terribly miserable. It's very possible to not be happy with any of your choices at all, but to make them because they are moral, and be virtuous because of that, BUT, it is not possible to be happy with immoral choices and be considered virtuous by definition. So selfishness cannot be a virtue, it is not possible by definition, selfishness is a vice.

 

Living life merely for your own happiness is a vice in this sense, and I'd like you to reconsider living life for your own happiness at all. I mean think about all the species of unintelligible animals on the planet that are incapable of really understanding the consequences of their actions. Look at all the organisms that are mentally limited from adhering to an ethical system like we are capable of logically actuating. Almost every single one of them is relatively happy at some point in their lives. All animals are capable of being happy, it's not very special or unique to humans, I mean chimps die happy. Dieing happy will not bring satisfaction, pigs die happy. I'd rather die completely and thoroughly unhappy, knowing I had the choice. As John Stuart Mill said, "I'd rather be a Socrates dissatisfied, than a pig satisfied."

Edited by Matthew Garon
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Now say that time doesn't exist out loud and tell me you aren't being silly about this whole thing. I mean, there are mathematics up the anus showing the fourth dimension in relation to time is an actual aspect of the universe rather than a probable one. Sure you can say it's relative, but that doesn't imply that it doesn't exist at all. So maybe you can't prove time exists, but the rest of rational humanity certainly can, and I find it offensive for you to suggest that we can't.

Yeah, yeah. Time necessitates that my response will be brief. Every sentence counts...

 

The idea that 4-dimensional theories prove the existence of time is called spacetime substantivalism and it is an open question that has been debated for dozes, if not hundreds, of hours on this forum. You are addressing someone who can use spacetime to solve real world relativity problems and who has done so a number of occasions by request, again, on this forum. Time permitted I would heavily insult the arrogance your lack of knowledge takes. As it is, I just suggest you do some reading.

 

However, your lack of basic reasoning disheartens me because you say it would be stupid to think math doesn't work and time doesn't exist if you couldn't prove they didn't work and didn't exist. If math didn't actually work and time didn't actually exist, then our discussion should have been this whole time (I hope you can at least appreciate my wordplay) about how the **** it could be possible for us to even have this conversation.

Again, you're not paying any kind of attention. I said "I would be stupid to assume math doesn't work" and your answer "if math didn't work... blah.. blah..."? Of course it works. It doesn't prove it's universal. Look up "the problem of induction".

 

I have to explain arithmetic in a few short words... uh...

 

Arithmetic starts when someone says "every number has one unique successor" and everyone agrees. It is a convention. It is a way of defining a number line. The convention is defined by the Peano axioms. The axioms are true by definition. You asked earlier where morality is fundamentally, universally, set out as true. Where are the stone tablets that dictate them (allegorically speaking). The answer is that morality isn't so dictated to us by the universe, or god, or any other force. It is a convention that starts when we agree that causing suffering is bad and alleviating suffering is good. Number theory is no different. It is true by definition and no more than that.

 

You won't find a number line in nature on which it is easy to show that one, and only one, number follows every other number.

 

If that doesn't do it you could look up Godel's incompleteness theorem, and, probably more applicable, Tarski's undefinability theorem.

 

As it is, arithmetic, like geometry, like first order logic, like morality, has this quality that they are human concepts. They are "attempts to make sense" (as someone I won't mention put it). They are true in the sense that they help us make sense of the world, but we can't prove they are true aspects of the world, because, as they say, "the map isn't the territory".... and so on... insert insults ad nauseum...

 

~modest

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