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I - an atheist - have an objective standard for Good

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  • #76
    Originally posted by Whateverman View Post
    "Good" is that which reduces the unnecessary suffering of conscious creatures. The unnecessary suffering of conscious creatures is therefore "Evil".

    Suffering can be measured by MRI and other diagnostic technologies

    Necessity should be obvious. Someone who takes a nasty tasting medicine has suffered a bit, but they had to take the medicine in order to get better. Someone who is robbed suffers unnecessarily, because the thief could have gotten the money via some other slower method.

    This standard is objective in that anyone with access to the person and the aforementioned technology can look to see whether the person's suffering has lessened, and therefore, whether Good exists. The observer doesn't need to accept the standard as their own. All they need is to understand this standard, and to recognize when it's been met.
    Your morality amy have objective attributes, but like all the varied cultural moralities it also has a subjective basis and variability. ou inerit mor of your morality than you likely realize.
    Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
    Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
    But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

    go with the flow the river knows . . .

    Frank

    I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

    Comment


    • #77
      Originally posted by JimL View Post
      If, according to Wm's hypothesis unnecessary suffering defines the objective standard of immorality, then the severity of the pain is irrelevant. If the cause of the pain is intentional, then the resulting unnecessary suffering would be the objective immorality brought about by the causer/agent of that unnecessary suffering.
      But that's just another subjective morality, as can be seen by you trying to redifine it to your own interpretation. Thanks for helping to show that Whateverman's idea is just another subjective morality.

      Proud Member of Da Blonde's Axis of Evil, Adam's Dirty Dozen, Dee Dee's Goon Squad, Tweb's In-Crowd, The Brood of Vipers & Exorcised by Ty & Dee Dee, and the only person who ever banned rogue06!

      Comment


      • #78
        Originally posted by Whateverman View Post
        Tough.


        By that logic, so is interpretation of scripture, as well as the average Christian's conscience.

        There's goes Christian objective morality...
        It's not christian objective morality. It is just objective morality.

        Objective morality is the idea that there are things that are objectively wrong even if nobody believed it. Like the world is objectively round. Even when nobody believed it was, it was still round.

        So something like "torturing people for fun" is objectively immoral even if every person on earth, Christians included thought otherwise.

        The bible just purports to tell us what this standard is, directly from God, the guy who actually made this universe. You can either believe it or not.

        On the other hand, your "objective morality" is just an arbitrary rule that you just made up. That by definition is subjective morality. It's no better than if you said you had a better idea for the objective shape of the earth and said it was a cube.

        Proud Member of Da Blonde's Axis of Evil, Adam's Dirty Dozen, Dee Dee's Goon Squad, Tweb's In-Crowd, The Brood of Vipers & Exorcised by Ty & Dee Dee, and the only person who ever banned rogue06!

        Comment


        • #79
          Originally posted by Sparko View Post
          But that's just another subjective morality, as can be seen by you trying to redifine it to your own interpretation. Thanks for helping to show that Whateverman's idea is just another subjective morality.
          How is the fact that unnecesary suffering exists, regardless of the degree, a subjective morality?

          Comment


          • #80
            Originally posted by Sparko View Post
            It's not christian objective morality. It is just objective morality.

            Objective morality is the idea that there are things that are objectively wrong even if nobody believed it. Like the world is objectively round. Even when nobody believed it was, it was still round.

            So something like "torturing people for fun" is objectively immoral even if every person on earth, Christians included thought otherwise.

            The bible just purports to tell us what this standard is, directly from God, the guy who actually made this universe. You can either believe it or not.
            The problem is that the morality of the bible requires interpretation. It can be made to reinforce what the society of the day believes at any given period of history. Demonstrably biblical morality has evolved and varied from culture to culture over time.

            On the other hand, your "objective morality" is just an arbitrary rule that you just made up. That by definition is subjective morality. It's no better than if you said you had a better idea for the objective shape of the earth and said it was a cube.
            False equivalence. The “shape of the earth” can be objectively determined via scientific methodology, whereas “morality” is mostly subjective. It is incapable of arriving at a consensus whereby ANY objective conclusions can be determined nor agreed upon as objectively true.
            “He felt that his whole life was a kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.” - Douglas Adams.

            Comment


            • #81
              Originally posted by Sparko View Post
              So something like "torturing people for fun" is objectively immoral even if every person on earth, Christians included thought otherwise.

              The bible just purports to tell us what this standard is, directly from God, the guy who actually made this universe. You can either believe it or not.
              A rather awful choice of an example given that:
              - the Bible provides no moral commands on the subject of torture
              - the Bible implies eternal torture is something God is going to do to sinners
              - the most (in)famous recent international example of a torture program was that run by the Bush administration - a very self-proclaimed "Christian" administration party in a very "Christian" country

              So your own go-to example of your view about objective morality, is one that your own holy book and religion appears to fail on.

              The bible just purports to tell us what this standard is, directly from God, the guy who actually made this universe.
              This also seems a rather poor choice of words given that the parts of the bible that purport to portray direct moral commandments from God are nearly all in the Old Testament, where there are as many completely silly ones that today virtually no Christians follow or pay attention to as there are sensible ones.

              e.g.
              Leviticus Chapters 19-20
              I am the Lord. You shall keep my statutes:
              You shall not let your animals breed with a different kind;
              you shall not sow your field with two kinds of seed;
              nor shall you put on a garment made of two different materials.
              If a man has sexual relations with a woman who is a slave, designated for another man but not ransomed or given her freedom, an inquiry shall be held...
              You shall not round off the hair on your temples or mar the edges of your beard...
              When an alien resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the alien. The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you...
              You shall keep all my statutes and all my ordinances, and observe them: I am the Lord...
              I am the Lord your God. Keep my statutes, and observe them; I am the Lord
              All who curse father or mother shall be put to death...
              If a man lies with a woman having her sickness and uncovers her nakedness, he has laid bare her flow and she has laid bare her flow of blood; both of them shall be cut off from their people.

              Clearly key insights into objective morality from the creator of the universe...

              Obviously the God of the Bible is clearly so knowledgeable on morality and the best direct guide about it. Only, not even those who purport to be his followers take any of those supposedly-straight-from-God's-mouth moral commandments seriously.

              Instead, we find them spending their time focusing on issues like abortion, which isn't condemned in the Bible. And giving examples of torture as objectively immoral, which again isn't condemned in the Bible.

              So, actually, it seems their morality has almost nothing to do with the bible. Instead they just misuse false claims that their views come from the bible to trick themselves into wrongly believing their own personal moral views are objective morality from God.
              he "decided not to hurt anybody because he did not have the means to kill enough people", Crown prosecutor Chris Lange told the Court.

              Comment


              • #82
                Originally posted by Sparko View Post
                So something like "torturing people for fun" is objectively immoral even if every person on earth, Christians included thought otherwise.

                The bible just purports to tell us what this standard is, directly from God, the guy who actually made this universe. You can either believe it or not.
                A rather awful choice of an example given that:
                - the Bible provides no moral commands on the subject of torture
                - the Bible implies eternal torture is something God is going to do to sinners
                - the most (in)famous recent international example of a torture program was that run by the Bush administration - a very self-proclaimed "Christian" administration party in a very "Christian" country

                So your own go-to example of your view about objective morality, is one that your own holy book and religion appears to fail on.

                The bible just purports to tell us what this standard is, directly from God, the guy who actually made this universe.
                This also seems a rather poor choice of words given that the parts of the bible that purport to portray direct moral commandments from God are nearly all in the Old Testament, where there are as many completely silly ones that today virtually no Christians follow or pay attention to as there are sensible ones.

                e.g.
                Leviticus Chapters 19-20
                I am the Lord. You shall keep my statutes:
                You shall not let your animals breed with a different kind;
                you shall not sow your field with two kinds of seed;
                nor shall you put on a garment made of two different materials.
                If a man has sexual relations with a woman who is a slave, designated for another man but not ransomed or given her freedom, an inquiry shall be held...
                You shall not round off the hair on your temples or mar the edges of your beard...
                When an alien resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the alien. The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you...
                You shall keep all my statutes and all my ordinances, and observe them: I am the Lord...
                I am the Lord your God. Keep my statutes, and observe them; I am the Lord
                All who curse father or mother shall be put to death...
                If a man lies with a woman having her sickness and uncovers her nakedness, he has laid bare her flow and she has laid bare her flow of blood; both of them shall be cut off from their people.

                Clearly key insights into objective morality from the creator of the universe...

                Obviously the God of the Bible is clearly so knowledgeable on morality and the best direct guide about it. Only, not even those who purport to be his followers take any of those supposedly-straight-from-God's-mouth moral commandments seriously.

                Instead, we find them spending their time focusing on issues like abortion, which isn't condemned in the Bible. And giving examples of torture as objectively immoral, which again isn't condemned in the Bible.

                So, actually, it seems their morality has almost nothing to do with the bible. Instead they just misuse false claims that their views come from the bible to trick themselves into wrongly believing their own personal moral views are objective morality from God.
                he "decided not to hurt anybody because he did not have the means to kill enough people", Crown prosecutor Chris Lange told the Court.

                Comment


                • #83
                  Originally posted by Starlight View Post
                  So, actually, it seems their morality has almost nothing to do with the bible. Instead they just misuse false claims that their views come from the bible to trick themselves into wrongly believing their own personal moral views are objective morality from God.
                  As far as torture is concerned, we have "love your neighbor as yourself" (Lev. 19:18), which would forbid that. As far as eternal punishment is concerned, people wonder why God doesn't punish every sin completely and immediately. But that is the definition of hell, and the torment is the punishment for continuing in sin. And as far as abortion is concerned, "You shall not kill" (Ex. 20:13) would forbid this.

                  Blessings,
                  Lee
                  "What I pray of you is, to keep your eye upon Him, for that is everything. Do you say, 'How am I to keep my eye on Him?' I reply, keep your eye off everything else, and you will soon see Him. All depends on the eye of faith being kept on Him. How simple it is!" (J.B. Stoney)

                  Comment


                  • #84
                    Originally posted by Whateverman View Post
                    "Good" is that which reduces the unnecessary suffering of conscious creatures. The unnecessary suffering of conscious creatures is therefore "Evil".

                    Suffering can be measured by MRI and other diagnostic technologies

                    Necessity should be obvious. Someone who takes a nasty tasting medicine has suffered a bit, but they had to take the medicine in order to get better. Someone who is robbed suffers unnecessarily, because the thief could have gotten the money via some other slower method.

                    This standard is objective in that anyone with access to the person and the aforementioned technology can look to see whether the person's suffering has lessened, and therefore, whether Good exists. The observer doesn't need to accept the standard as their own. All they need is to understand this standard, and to recognize when it's been met.
                    If what makes it objective is simply the fact that it is written down, then there can be as many objective standards as there are people willing to write them down. (More, even, since one person could write down more than one standard.) So which standard should we choose, and why? If there isn't some objective way to choose between different standards, then it doesn't really make sense to call the result "objective".

                    If your point is simply that Christians don't have an objective standard either, then I think there is something to be said for a more direct approach.

                    Comment


                    • #85
                      Originally posted by lee_merrill View Post
                      As far as torture is concerned, we have "love your neighbor as yourself" (Lev. 19:18), which would forbid that.
                      "Love your neighbor" forbids torture but not war? It means fighting and killing others in battle (or by drone?) is okay but inflicting some pain on them isn't? Seems an arbitrary interpretation on your part.

                      As far as eternal punishment is concerned, people wonder why God doesn't punish every sin completely and immediately. But that is the definition of hell, and the torment is the punishment for continuing in sin.
                      It's amazing what different Christians totally make up out of whole cloth about hell.

                      And as far as abortion is concerned, "You shall not kill" (Ex. 20:13) would forbid this.
                      "You shall not kill" doesn't forbid killing in war, or killing in self defence, or the state killing a criminal... but it forbids abortion? Your arbitrary interpretation seems to be at it again. Seems very, very subjective.
                      Last edited by Starlight; 08-09-2020, 06:40 PM.
                      he "decided not to hurt anybody because he did not have the means to kill enough people", Crown prosecutor Chris Lange told the Court.

                      Comment


                      • #86
                        Originally posted by Mountain Man View Post
                        Sneering mockery does nothing to solve the moral problem for atheists.
                        Agreed.

                        If atheism is true, then any atheist who expects or demands that others live according to whatever objective standard of morality the atheist has defined is rejecting the logical implications of his own world view.
                        I guess that depends on what one thinks the logical implications of his worldview might be. To my knowledge, there's nothing in my worldview to suggest that one can't expect or demand certain behaviors from others.

                        Why would you do that? Aren't you comfortable with where atheism ultimately leads?
                        It doesn't really matter whether I'm comfortable with where atheism ultimately leads. (Though as it so happens, I am pretty comfortable with it.) Arguing against a position based on the consequences of that position is a fallacy (i.e. appeal to consequences).

                        If it's really the worldview you believe, then why not gladly embrace it's implications and live and let live?
                        You mean, let everyone do what they want, with no laws? There are arguments against anarchism that don't depend on a belief in God.

                        Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow you die.
                        Similarly, there are arguments against hedonism that don't depend on a belief in God.

                        Comment


                        • #87
                          Originally posted by Stoic View Post
                          If what makes it objective is simply the fact that it is written down, then there can be as many objective standards as there are people willing to write them down. (More, even, since one person could write down more than one standard.)
                          Correct.

                          Originally posted by Stoic View Post
                          So which standard should we choose
                          That honestly isn't my problem. This thread was created to disprove the lie that atheists can't have an objective standard of Good(ness). I have one, and thus is the lie disproved.

                          Originally posted by Stoic View Post
                          If there isn't some objective way to choose between different standards, then it doesn't really make sense to call the result "objective".
                          It sure does.

                          Is there an objective way to choose whether to drive the posted speed limit or to drive the speed limits state laws have decided is how fast you should drive when it's not posted? No - but that doesn't change the fact that both the posted speed limit and the state's default speed limit are both objective laws.

                          Originally posted by Stoic View Post
                          If your point is simply that Christians don't have an objective standard either, then I think there is something to be said for a more direct approach.
                          My point is that an "objective standard" is NBD. Everyone can find them, and decide whether to adhere to them or not.
                          I can solve the problem of evil without interfering with anyone's free will. So can your God, but he refuses. This is why I'm His moral superior.

                          Comment


                          • #88
                            Originally posted by Whateverman View Post
                            This thread was created to disprove the lie that atheists can't have an objective standard of Good(ness). I have one, and thus is the lie disproved.
                            It's not a lie if there is an honest disagreement over the meaning of "objective".

                            Comment


                            • #89
                              Originally posted by Starlight View Post
                              A rather awful choice of an example given that:
                              - the Bible provides no moral commands on the subject of torture
                              - the Bible implies eternal torture is something God is going to do to sinners
                              - the most (in)famous recent international example of a torture program was that run by the Bush administration - a very self-proclaimed "Christian" administration party in a very "Christian" country

                              So your own go-to example of your view about objective morality, is one that your own holy book and religion appears to fail on.

                              This also seems a rather poor choice of words given that the parts of the bible that purport to portray direct moral commandments from God are nearly all in the Old Testament, where there are as many completely silly ones that today virtually no Christians follow or pay attention to as there are sensible ones.

                              e.g.
                              Leviticus Chapters 19-20
                              I am the Lord. You shall keep my statutes:
                              You shall not let your animals breed with a different kind;
                              you shall not sow your field with two kinds of seed;
                              nor shall you put on a garment made of two different materials.
                              If a man has sexual relations with a woman who is a slave, designated for another man but not ransomed or given her freedom, an inquiry shall be held...
                              You shall not round off the hair on your temples or mar the edges of your beard...
                              When an alien resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the alien. The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you...
                              You shall keep all my statutes and all my ordinances, and observe them: I am the Lord...
                              I am the Lord your God. Keep my statutes, and observe them; I am the Lord
                              All who curse father or mother shall be put to death...
                              If a man lies with a woman having her sickness and uncovers her nakedness, he has laid bare her flow and she has laid bare her flow of blood; both of them shall be cut off from their people.

                              Clearly key insights into objective morality from the creator of the universe...

                              Obviously the God of the Bible is clearly so knowledgeable on morality and the best direct guide about it. Only, not even those who purport to be his followers take any of those supposedly-straight-from-God's-mouth moral commandments seriously.

                              Instead, we find them spending their time focusing on issues like abortion, which isn't condemned in the Bible. And giving examples of torture as objectively immoral, which again isn't condemned in the Bible.

                              So, actually, it seems their morality has almost nothing to do with the bible. Instead they just misuse false claims that their views come from the bible to trick themselves into wrongly believing their own personal moral views are objective morality from God.
                              Yes. People of faith can read the bible so that virtually any perspective on current issues will find some support in it. They have been doing it throughout Christian history. Much of the bible can be made to reinforce what the society of the day believes at any given period of time in history.
                              “He felt that his whole life was a kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.” - Douglas Adams.

                              Comment


                              • #90
                                Originally posted by Stoic View Post
                                It's not a lie if there is an honest disagreement over the meaning of "objective".
                                There isn't a disagreement, though. All there is - is a willful redefinition of the word to suit cheap internet rhetoric.

                                Sure, if two people disagree about what "objective" means, then any arguments based on that misunderstanding aren't dishonest. Or lies. The problem is that - with many Christian apologists - the word in the term "objective morality" is redefined to mean "according to God's absolute authority". This definition cannot be found in any dictionary, so any accusation that atheists lack objective morality is a dishonest attempt to win a debate via equivocation.

                                If the particular post I based this thread upon had been the only instance of this kind of equivocation from the same person, I probably wouldn't have used the word "lie". Unfortunately, this person routinely posts the same nonsense, no matter how often he is corrected on it. The dishonesty is willful.

                                In this case, the claim that atheists don't have an objective standard for "Good" is an intentional lie by a hateful apologist.
                                I can solve the problem of evil without interfering with anyone's free will. So can your God, but he refuses. This is why I'm His moral superior.

                                Comment

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