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A Moral Argument Against God's Existence

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  • #76
    Originally posted by Quantum Weirdness View Post
    Let's say, a person wants to assassinate somebody in my country. Was it morally wrong for the killer(s) to assassinate her? If it wasn't, why wasn't it?
    Originally posted by Quantum Weirdness View Post
    But what if God gave us purpose for existing in our life here? And proclaimed his commands based on his purpose for us and his nature?

    btw, how high are ya?

    Last edited by Pytharchimedes; 04-22-2015, 11:14 PM.

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    • #77
      Originally posted by Pytharchimedes View Post
      btw, how high are ya?

      Not at all?
      -The universe begins to look more like a great thought than a great machine.
      Sir James Jeans

      -This most beautiful system (The Universe) could only proceed from the dominion of an intelligent and powerful Being.All variety of created objects which represent order and Life in the Universe could happen only by the willful reasoning of its original Creator, whom I call the Lord God.
      Sir Isaac Newton

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      • #78
        Originally posted by Quantum Weirdness View Post
        Not at all?
        Oh, my fault, well, carry on.

        Comment


        • #79
          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          So you didn't address it.
          I'm not sure what your point is. Allegedly the majority of Christians have thought differently on this matter. So what?


          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          No, mentioning names works quite fine here. You said:
          "On any plausible worldview that involves theism, God is the source of all moral obligations. On any theistic worldview worth it's salt there are no moral obligations over and above God Himself."
          And I can show that's false by naming theists (and hence people with a theistic worldview) who don't think that God is source of all moral obligations. That's what I did. It'd be the same if you claimed that any naturalistic worldview has to deny that mental states exist. I could rebut that by simply naming naturalists (and hence people with a naturalistic worldview) on who's worldview mental states exist.
          Simply mentioning theists who hold that moral obligations can exist independent of God in no way shows that these theists are correct, just as mentioning naturalists who believe that mental states [can] exist on a naturalistic worldview in no way shows that these naturalists are correct.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          What I wrote was:
          "Third, on a plausible reading of the Jewish Old Testament, God is not the source of all moral obligations. Instead, God serves as an epistemic guide for morality."

          That's true. For example, Gericke discusses the view that the Old Testament involves moral subjectivism in the form of divine command theory:
          "Strong arguments for the presence of DCT in the text include the giving of seemingly unnecessary commands (as to Adam and Eve or the rituals of Leviticus) and even seemingly immoral commands (e.g. the commanding of Abraham to sacrifice Isaac, of the Israelites to plunder the Egyptians, the slaughtering of the Canaanites, Hosea being told to marry a prostitute, etc. […]). In philosophical terms this would mean that the Hebrew Bible took for granted a subjectivist yet universalist form of cognitivism that one might contrast with other forms of ethical subjectivism [emphasis added] (e.g. ideal observer theory, moral relativism, and individualist ethical subjectivism), moral realism (which claims that moral propositions refer to objective facts, independent of anyone’s attitudes or opinions), [...] (306)"

          He then argues against that, and instead for the conclusion I mentioned: on a plausible reading of the Jewish Old Testament, God is not the source of all moral obligations. Instead, God serves as an epistemic guide for morality:
          "Yet because DCT is anachronistic in the context of the Hebrew Bible, the upside is that in the context of the moral–realist trajectories in ancient Israelite religion the Euthyphro’s Dilemma qua dilemma is in fact a pseudo-problem. For while the Hebrew Bible often implies that YHWH commanded something because it is good the deity was not made redundant, thereby as is the case with DCT when this divinity–morality relation is opted for. The reason for this is that, unlike what is assumed in Euthyphro’s Dilemma, the ancient Israelites were not optimists in their religious epistemology. Even though the moral order was believed to have existed independent of the divine, the divine will – if the deity was of the moral type – was still believed to be humanity’s only access to that order. The deity was thus assumed to function in relation to the moral order as an instructor, a mediator, a judge and an authority on right and wrong – not as its creator (308-309)."
          Seems like a lot of unjustified assumptions regarding what's to be considered unnecessary, immoral, topped of with a significant dose of speculation.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          If that's just your definition of God, as opposed to how God must be defined, then your previous claims about "any plausible worldview that involves theism" hold now water. Theists who define God differently that you don't have to hold to your claims.
          "Other theists do not agree with you, therefore you're wrong" is not a valid argument.


          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          Which isn't actually the definition of maximal greatness offered by people like Plantinga, as you note.
          ...

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          All of which shows that you can arbitrarily define a concept. That doesn't show that your concept has an existent referent, let alone that theists need to hold to your concept or that your concept's (supposed) referent is the source of all moral obligations. Otherwise, I could arbitrarily define the concept of an uber-dragon, where an uber-dragon is defined as being the source of all moral obligations. And then try to turn around and act as if anyone who believes in dragons must believe in the uber-dragon, and that my arbitrary definition shows that the uber-dragon is the source of all moral obligations.
          I'm not sure what your point is. My point was never to hold that people must hold to the same concept of God as I do, but rather that it's possible to hold to a concept of God that the argument in the OP fails to address. That I personally think that this concept is more correct than those concepts of God that are (allegedly) invalidated by your argument in the OP is another matter altogether.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          Then you're a moral subjectivist.
          Fine with me. I'd rather hold to a theistic moral subjective worldview where your moral actions actually has some sort of ultimate significance, rather than to hold to an atheistic moral objective worldview where there is no guarantee that your moral actions will matter in the long run. To be frank, quibbling over whether morality is subjective or objective is kind of missing the point IMO, which is that the impact and significance of your moral theory, if it happens to be true, is far more important than whether it's subjective, or objective.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          To say that "X has a moral obligation" is to assign a property to X, just as saying "X has a particular size" is to assign a property to X.
          I disagree. Not all "X has Y" statements are statements of property.


          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          Your statement "they cannot be greater than that being" seems off-based. The relationship between a property and its particular is one of exemplification or instantiation, not one of being greater or lesser. You seem to be using some obscure notion of greatness, where there is some great hierarchy of greatness where properties aren't as great as their particulars. That makes no sense. Please provide a sensible, coherent definition of "greatness", if you're going to discuss greatness.
          Uh, I'm not sure why you think I've argued that properties can be greater, or lesser than its particular when I denied that very claim in the post that you're quoting. I'm not saying that properties aren't as great as their particulars. But given that moral obligations are authoritatively binding on the one who has them it would follow either that the Person who is the source of these moral obligations is authoritatively greater than the person who has these moral obligations (on a view where all moral obligations have their source in God), or that these moral obligations themselves are authoritatively greater than the person that they bind. Of course, since I deny that properties can be greater than their particulars it would follow that I also deny that the statement "X has moral obligation Y", reflects a statement of property.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          Also, you're wrong when you claim that "Properties are things that are intrinsic to that beings nature". First, you overlooked extrinsic properties, which aren't intrinsic. Second, the nature N of X is specified by listing the conditions necessary and sufficient for being X. However, X can have properties that are not apart of X's nature. For example, the nature of a bachelor is specified by "is an unmarried male". However, a bachelor can have additional properties that are not apart of this nature, such as being happy or loved. Properties that are not apart of a thing's nature are non-essential properties, while properties that are apart of thing's nature are essential properties. Your statement erroneously treated all properties a being essential.
          Granted, but that does not show that moral obligations are properties.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          You haven't shown any of that. In fact, it makes no sense. For example: it makes no sense to claim that Bob's moral obligation to do X existed before Bob existed.
          Except Bob doesn't have moral obligations on the account of being Bob. Humans have moral obligations on account of being human, and humanity and our moral obligations exist independently of any particular individual of humanity such as Bob. Humanity's moral obligation to do X under situation Y exists independently of any particular individual, such as Bob, who might find himself in situation Y at one point in time.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          In a meta-ethical context, authority here is usually cashed out in terms of normative reasons, not because some great authority figure said something. So if moral reasons would account for why one has moral obligations.
          I'm not sure why you think you can assert that normative reasons which do not stem from an authority figure are binding without you having to argue from them, when I've given you plenty of indication that I deny such a view.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          Once again, your notion of "greatness" here is nonsensical. "Authority" in a meta-ethical context is not about authority figures, or who's the greatest, or who's most powerful, or... That would be a subjectivist notion of authority, where authority is about the say-so of some powerful figure. Instead, "authority" in a meta-ethical context is about normative moral reasons. And those don't require an authority figure.
          Again, I deny that normative reasons exists, or even can exist, independently of an authority figure. IMO you're the one who's putting forward a nonsensical notion of authority by removing it from it's proper inter-personal context. And just as an aside, my personal notion of why God's commands are authoritatively binding towards us is because we're his creations, and we're living in the world that He created which means that He's the one that sets the rules.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          So, really, you're equivocating on the term "authority" between your subjectivist usage of the term, and the usage relevant to meta-ethics.
          Nope, I'm denying that speaking of authority outside of inter-personal contexts is even coherent to begin with.

          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
          That still simply "God is what God is", and that's a vacuous tautology. For example, if God turned out to be a vicious psychopath, then God would still be good, since God would still be what God is and you've defined "good" as being like God. Similarly so if God were an unconscious ham sandwich; your tautology would still apply.
          Except I hold to the position that the term God defines a referent that has certain necessary attributes that would rule out the possibility that God could even in theory even be a vicious psychopath or an unconscious ham sandwich. Any notion of God that doesn't include omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence, being immaterial and personal does not accurately reflect God. Of course I would also include being the source of all moral obligations in that list, but if anyone described an entity that was omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient, immaterial and personal I would recognize that the person was describing God, even if he did not mention the entity being the source of all moral obligations. However, if someone described a vicious psychopath or an unconscious ham sandwhich I would not recognize the description as referring to God.
          ~Formerly known as Chrawnus~

          Comment


          • #80
            Originally posted by Chrawnus View Post
            I'm not sure what your point is. Allegedly the majority of Christians have thought differently on this matter. So what?
            Then you were wrong in claiming that all plausible theistic views are committed to that.

            Simply mentioning theists who hold that moral obligations can exist independent of God in no way shows that these theists are correct, just as mentioning naturalists who believe that mental states [can] exist on a naturalistic worldview in no way shows that these naturalists are correct.
            The point isn't to show they are correct. It's to show that you're wrong when you claim that all plausible theistic views have to hold that claim. And it shows that, quite clearly. You're erroneously assuming that since you hold a particular theistic position, all plausible theistic positions hold to that as well. And I showed that to be otherwise.

            Seems like a lot of unjustified assumptions regarding what's to be considered unnecessary, immoral, topped of with a significant dose of speculation.
            Which is just you're way of saying I'm not going to bother to address it. It's a common internet apologist tactic. If someone supports claim X with reasoning Y, then just label Y "unjustified assumptions" or the like. And if they then justify Y with reasoning Z, then just label Z "unjustified assumptions" or the like. That way, no matter what's said, you can cast it aside without addressing it. That's called taking advantage of the problem of the regress, and is a cop-out.

            If you're unable to address the point, just say so.

            "Other theists do not agree with you, therefore you're wrong" is not a valid argument.
            Strawman. That wasn't the argument. The argument actually was:
            "If that's just your definition of God, as opposed to how God must be defined, then your previous claims about "any plausible worldview that involves theism" hold now water. Theists who define God differently that you don't have to hold to your claims."

            Even other theists with plausible worldviews disagree with you, then you're wrong when you claim that every theist with a plausible worldview has to agree to your claims.

            I'm not sure what your point is. My point was never to hold that people must hold to the same concept of God as I do, but rather that it's possible to hold to a concept of God that the argument in the OP fails to address. That I personally think that this concept is more correct than those concepts of God that are (allegedly) invalidated by your argument in the OP is another matter altogether.
            No, you were more than happy to say that all theists (that is, all people with a theistic worldview) have to hold to the concept of God that you do:

            And I showed that was wrong, by listing mentioning theists with a theistic worldview where you claims don't apply.

            By the way, later on in your post, you claim that if someone doesn't define God in just the way you do, you're unable to recognize it as God. Which contradicts what you just wrote above.

            Fine with me. I'd rather hold to a theistic moral subjective worldview where your moral actions actually has some sort of ultimate significance, rather than to hold to an atheistic moral objective worldview where there is no guarantee that your moral actions will matter in the long run.
            Fallacious argument from consequence.

            I'd rather hold to positions that are true, as opposed to one's that appeal to positive consequences I might like. After all, though some people might like to hold to the idea that we live in a happy, wonderful world with no undeserved suffering, that doesn't mean that idea is true. Same for the ideas you might like to hold to.

            To be frank, quibbling over whether morality is subjective or objective is kind of missing the point IMO, which is that the impact and significance of your moral theory, if it happens to be true, is far more important than whether it's subjective, or objective.
            Argument from consequence.

            A moral theory does not need to bring about all the positive consequences you might want, in order for that moral theory to be accurate. What I'm interested is what's true, not comforting fictions.

            I disagree. Not all "X has Y" statements are statements of property.
            And I rebutted your reasons for disagreeing.

            Feel free to state a semantic interpretation of "has" on which that is not the case, and show that case applied to "X has a moral obligation". [Hint: treating "has" as meaning something like "possessing/owning" won't work]. I'll go with the standard interpretation in the literature.

            Uh, I'm not sure why you think I've argued that properties can be greater, or lesser than its particular when I denied that very claim in the post that you're quoting.
            Because you wrote:as if discussing of properties being greater (or lesser) than their particulars, is even applicable or makes sense. My point was that it makes no sense. It's akin to talking about blue being more square than red or the number five being faster than the number 6. So even if properties were to "exist independently of the stuff to which they're properties", that wouldn't make properties greater than their particulars, since the whole notion of properties being "greater" or "lesser" than particulars is gibberish.

            I'm not saying that properties aren't as great as their particulars. But given that moral obligations are authoritatively binding on the one who has them it would follow either that the Person who is the source of these moral obligations is authoritatively greater than the person who has these moral obligations (on a view where all moral obligations have their source in God), or that these moral obligations themselves are authoritatively greater than the person that they bind.
            Same equivocation on "authority" which I addressed in the previous post. "Authority" in a meta-ethical context isn't about an authority figure or being in some position of power, but instead about normative moral reasons.

            Of course, since I deny that properties can be greater than their particulars it would follow that I also deny that the statement "X has moral obligation Y", reflects a statement of property.
            And I still can't make heads-or-tails of why you apply notions like "greater" to properties. That's not the relevant relation; instantiation or exemplification is.

            Granted, but that does not show that moral obligations are properties.
            It rebuts your grounds for denying that it is.

            Except Bob doesn't have moral obligations on the account of being Bob.
            Which doesn't address my point that "it makes no sense to claim that Bob's moral obligation to do X existed before Bob existed."

            Humans have moral obligations on account of being human,
            No, we don't. "being human" is a biological property that one has in virtue of membership in a certain species. Children can have it and fetuses can have it. Now, fetuses don't have moral obligations, so being human isn't the grounds of having moral obligations.

            and humanity and our moral obligations exist independently of any particular individual of humanity such as Bob.

            Humanity's moral obligation to do X under situation Y exists independently of any particular individual, such as Bob, who might find himself in situation Y at one point in time.
            Which doesn't help your case at all. Even if groups of humans can have collective moral obligations, that doesn't show that the moral obligations exist before the group does. To put it another way, take the schema:
            X has a moral obligation
            I'm pointing out that the obligation does not exist until X does. You have moved to plugging in a group (humanity) in for X. So in order to rebut my point, you'd need to show that humanity had a moral obligation before humanity existed. But you haven't shown this. What you've instead claimed is that the group (humanity) has a moral obligation before a particular member (Bob) of that group existed. And that doesn't rebut my point.

            Furthermore, you're equivocating on "humanity" between a grouping of humans that does not contain Bob (call this "H1") vs. a grouping that contains Bob (call this "H2"). Pointing out that H1 has a moral obligation does not show that Bob has a moral obligation, since Bob is not apart of H1. Now, H1 transitions into H2 once Bob becomes a member of humanity. So at that point, you might claim that Bob has a moral obligation if H2 has a moral obligation. But that wouldn't rebut my point, since Bob existence would still be needed for him to have a moral obligation.

            I'm not sure why you think you can assert that normative reasons which do not stem from an authority figure are binding without you having to argue from them, when I've given you plenty of indication that I deny such a view.
            I can note that you are equivocating on what the term "authority" means in meta-ethical context, by showing the difference between what you mean by "authority" and what the term means in a meta-ethical context. Which I did.

            Again, I deny that normative reasons exists, or even can exist, independently of an authority figure. IMO you're the one who's putting forward a nonsensical notion of authority by removing it from it's proper inter-personal context.
            And that's implausible. For example, epistemic reasons are a standard example of normative reasons that exist without need for coming from an authority figure. Same for reasons of self-interest.

            And just as an aside, my personal notion of why God's commands are authoritatively binding towards us is because we're his creations, and we're living in the world that He created which means that He's the one that sets the rules.
            Which displays just how flawed your position is. On that position, we'd have a normative moral reason to follow the commands a vicious, psychopathic deity that commanded we rape, as long as we're that deity's creations and we're living in a world that deity created. You've basically fallen back to an implausible might makes right position, where if one is powerful enough to create the world and it's contents, then what one says is right. And that's wildly implausible.

            Furthermore, you've fallen afoul of the standard wrong kind of reasons objection: you've appealed to the wrong kind of consideration in trying to account for moral reasons. It'd be akin to an ethical egoist trying to account for moral reasons through appeal to reason of self-interest. The ethical egoist's project fails, since moral reasons are not the same type of reasons as reasons of self-interest. For example, moral reasons are very often other-regarding and external in the sense of not being about the fulfillment of one's personal goals, desires, etc. In much the same way, your account fails as an account of moral reasons; you're considerations are of a different type from moral reasons. Your considerations focus on obeying a powerful authority figure, as opposed to consideration for other's.

            Nope, I'm denying that speaking of authority outside of inter-personal contexts is even coherent to begin with.
            Which is false. For example, I have an epistemic normative reason to believe that evolution occurs, since I have abundant evidence of evolution. That reason doesn't depend on any authority figure telling me about that evidence. If I'd discovered the evidence on my own, for example, I'd still have an epistemic reason to believe that evolution occurs. And since "authority" in an epistemic context is also about reasons, then this illustrates how authority doesn't depend on some authority figure.

            Except I hold to the position that the term God defines a referent that has certain necessary attributes that would rule out the possibility that God could even in theory even be a vicious psychopath or an unconscious ham sandwich.
            Which doesn't nothing to rebut my point that your God is what God is position is a vacuous tautology, regardless of what God is.

            Any notion of God that doesn't include omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence, being immaterial and personal does not accurately reflect God.
            A theist can define God differently, and still count as a theist. For example, open theists who think God does not know the future.

            And didn't you just say you don't think theists have to hold to your conception of God? Yet here you are, saying they must.
            Last edited by Jichard; 04-23-2015, 02:28 PM.
            "Instead, we argue, it is necessary to shift the debate from the subject under consideration, instead exposing to public scrutiny the tactics they [denialists] employ and identifying them publicly for what they are."

            Comment


            • #81
              Originally posted by Jichard View Post
              A moral theory does not need to bring about all the positive consequences you might want, in order for that moral theory to be accurate. What I'm interested is what's true, not comforting fictions.
              Fictions like moral realism? Have you yet demonstrated why moral realism is true? As opposed to anti-realism? Or quasi-realism which was referenced in one of your links?
              Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

              Comment


              • #82
                Originally posted by seer View Post
                OK, explain the bolded. Or how this gets us to moral obligation.
                Moving the goalposts. Standard apologetic tactic. You're doing exactly what I predicted:
                "And you're just playing a game here. If I make claim X, you'll say that's an assertion. If provide Y to support X, then you'll claim that Y is an assertion. If I provide Z in support of Y, then you'll claim Z is an assertion. And so on, ad infinitum. What you're doing is just taking advantage of the problem of the regress, so you can reject (without reason) anything inconvenient for your position."

                Anyway, the bolded portion was explained in the portions preceding the bolded portion.

                By the way, this is trivial conceptual truth: "one is morally obligated to not do what is morally wrong". I think it says a lot that you overlooked this in your zeal to your apologetic position.

                No it is about actual usefulness. What good is a moral theory when rejecting that theory has no meaning or consequence?
                Fallacious appeal to consequence. As I told you:
                "And it's also an appeal to consequence, where you think a claims truth or falsity (in this case: truth of falsity regarding one's moral obligations) depends on positive or negative consequences."

                Here's a Wikipedia explanation of this for you:

                The issue is whether the account of moral obligations is true or false, not whether you happen to find it useful or think it yields positive consequences or want it's rejection to yield negative consequences or... Your reply makes as little sense as trying to rebut Cell Theory by saying:
                What good is Cell Theory when rejecting that theory has no meaning or consequence?

                This just seems like double talk. If God has a moral opinion or moral theory it is subjective, but it is not when men do the same thing?
                Not double talk, but just standard meta-ethics that you're not addressing, because it's not useful for your apologetics, as discussed below.

                I mean if God says X is wrong it is subjective but if man says X is wrong it isn't subjective?
                I already answered your question:
                Because humans can make ethical theories where statements about moral obligations are not true or false in virtue of an agent's (or agents') attitudes, just as humans can make scientific theories where statements about mammals are not true or false in virtue in virtue of an agent's (or agents') attitudes. So those would not be forms of moral objectivism.


                By the way, it says a lot you avoid points when it suits your apologetic purposes. For example, I clearly asked you:
                Originally posted by Jichard View Post
                Do you know what "moral subjectivism" is? If so, then tell me what it is.
                And even bolded it to help you recognize it. Of course, you dodged the question. And I suspect you dodged it because you wouldn't find the answer useful for your apologetics. For example, here's Wikipedia for you:

                Hence my answer that:
                "It's [divine command theory] subjective because it makes statements about moral obligations true or false in virtue of God's attitudes, as expressed in God's wishes."

                Fairly straight-forward, and consistent with other, more reputable sources on DCT being a form of moral subjectivism. Divine command theory is a form of moral subjectivism. This is no secret in meta-ethics. And yet you call it "double-talk" to avoid the point, while making sure to avoid direct questions about what moral subjectivism is. How convenient.
                Last edited by Jichard; 04-23-2015, 02:47 PM.
                "Instead, we argue, it is necessary to shift the debate from the subject under consideration, instead exposing to public scrutiny the tactics they [denialists] employ and identifying them publicly for what they are."

                Comment


                • #83
                  Originally posted by Jichard View Post
                  Moving the goalposts. Standard apologetic tactic. You're doing exactly what I predicted:
                  "And you're just playing a game here. If I make claim X, you'll say that's an assertion. If provide Y to support X, then you'll claim that Y is an assertion. If I provide Z in support of Y, then you'll claim Z is an assertion. And so on, ad infinitum. What you're doing is just taking advantage of the problem of the regress, so you can reject (without reason) anything inconvenient for your position."

                  Anyway, the bolded portion was explained in the portions preceding the bolded portion.

                  By the way, this is trivial conceptual truth: "one is morally obligated to not do what is morally wrong". I think it says a lot that you overlooked this in your zeal to your apologetic position.
                  But that is the point, you have not made a real defense of your position. You have done nothing but assert that we have moral obligations, not why we have moral obligations.



                  Fallacious appeal to consequence. As I told you:
                  "And it's also an appeal to consequence, where you think a claims truth or falsity (in this case: truth of falsity regarding one's moral obligations) depends on positive or negative consequences."

                  Here's a Wikipedia explanation of this for you:

                  The issue is whether the account of moral obligations is true or false, not whether you happen to find it useful or think it yields positive consequences or want it's rejection to yield negative consequences or... Your reply makes as little sense as trying to rebut Cell Theory by saying:
                  What good is Cell Theory when rejecting that theory has no meaning or consequence?
                  Except it is a fact, in your world nothing changes, happens, or is furthered is your theory is rejected. It is meaningless. At least cell theory can lead to something tangible, and not understanding cell theory can lead to negative consequences.



                  Because humans can make ethical theories where statements about moral obligations are not true or false in virtue of an agent's (or agents') attitudes, just as humans can make scientific theories where statements about mammals are not true or false in virtue in virtue of an agent's (or agents') attitudes. So those would not be forms of moral objectivism.
                  And ethical theories are not subjective? How many ethical theories are there?



                  And even bolded it to help you recognize it. Of course, you dodged the question. And I suspect you dodged it because you wouldn't find the answer useful for your apologetics. For example, here's Wikipedia for you:

                  Hence my answer that:
                  "It's [divine command theory] subjective because it makes statements about moral obligations true or false in virtue of God's attitudes, as expressed in God's wishes."

                  Fairly straight-forward, and consistent with other, more reputable sources. Divine command theory is a form of moral subjectivism. This is no secret in meta-ethics. And yet you call it "double-talk". How convenient.

                  Again, so what? What makes your theory about moral obligations true or false? Be specific please.
                  Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

                  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

                  Comment


                  • #84
                    Originally posted by seer View Post
                    But that is the point, you have not made a real defense of your position. You have done nothing but assert that we have moral obligations, not why we have moral obligations.
                    First, you're engaged in the same goal-post move I noted before.

                    Second, it's false to claim that I "have done nothing but assert that we have moral obligations". So you're either mistaken or lying. I accounted for moral obligations in terms of moral reasons. I then rebutted your erroneous objection to that, and then cited an argument in support of that claim.

                    Except it is a fact, in your world nothing changes, happens, or is furthered is your theory is rejected. It is meaningless. At least cell theory can lead to something tangible, and not understanding cell theory can lead to negative consequences.
                    Appeal to consequences is still a fallacy no matter how man times you repeatedly engage in it.

                    And ethical theories are not subjective?
                    There are plenty of normative ethical theories compatible with moral objectivism, including welfare utilitarianism and forms of virtue ethics.

                    And there are plenty of meta-ethical theories that are objectivist, such as Cornell Realisn and forms Analytic Functionalism.

                    How many ethical theories are there?
                    Red herring. Please stay on topic.

                    Again, so what? What makes your theory about moral obligations true or false? Be specific please.
                    Already accounted for moral obligations in terms of reasons, and explained why that works.

                    And I'm tired of you dodging. Here's the question you've dodged, even though it's been asked twice:
                    Do you know what "moral subjectivism" is? If so, then tell me what it is.

                    You don't get a response from me on this (beyond my repeating the question) until you address that.
                    "Instead, we argue, it is necessary to shift the debate from the subject under consideration, instead exposing to public scrutiny the tactics they [denialists] employ and identifying them publicly for what they are."

                    Comment


                    • #85
                      Originally posted by Jichard View Post
                      First, you're engaged in the same goal-post move I noted before.

                      Second, it's false to claim that I "have done nothing but assert that we have moral obligations". So you're either mistaken or lying. I accounted for moral obligations in terms of moral reasons. I then rebutted your erroneous objection to that, and then cited an argument in support of that claim.
                      No you never told us why moral reasons lead to moral obligations. You never bridged that gap.

                      All you said was: No, on the standard analysis, moral obligations are accounted for in terms of moral reasons

                      But why is this so? Why do moral reasons lead to obligation.


                      Appeal to consequences is still a fallacy no matter how man times you repeatedly engage in it.
                      It doesn't matter a fact is a fact - in your world ethical theories are basically meaningless, in my world they have real meaning.


                      There are plenty of normative ethical theories compatible with moral objectivism, including welfare utilitarianism and forms of virtue ethics.

                      And there are plenty of meta-ethical theories that are objectivist, such as Cornell Realisn and forms Analytic Functionalism.
                      And there are plenty of theories that are based in anti-realism. And I guess it is quite subjective as to which one, one is attracted to.


                      Already accounted for moral obligations in terms of reasons, and explained why that works.
                      No you didn't you just said that we had moral obligation because of moral reasons - not why those reason compel us, rationally, to jump to obligations.

                      And I'm tired of you dodging. Here's the question you've dodged, even though it's been asked twice:

                      Do you know what "moral subjectivism" is? If so, then tell me what it is.

                      You don't get a response from me on this (beyond my repeating the question) until you address that.
                      But you already posted the definition. So now we all know - and?
                      Last edited by seer; 04-23-2015, 05:00 PM.
                      Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

                      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

                      Comment


                      • #86
                        Originally posted by seer View Post
                        No you never told us why moral reasons lead to moral obligations. You never bridged that gap.
                        No, I did.

                        And I predict that you'll just say there's a new gap after that explanation is given to you.

                        All you said was: No, on the standard analysis, moral obligations are accounted for in terms of moral reasons

                        But why is this so? Why do moral reasons lead to obligation.
                        No, I gave you an argument, a rather standard argument. Here it is again:

                        And then you did exactly what I predicted: moved the goalposts an took advantage of the regress problem.

                        It doesn't matter a fact is a fact - in your world ethical theories are basically meaningless, in my world they have real meaning.
                        Incorrect. Ethical theories make statements with semantic content, and thus they have meaning on my worldview. Something doesn't need to be eternal to have meaning. What you wrote is, once again, as impossible as saying that Cell Theory is meaningless unless God exists. That's absurd since Cell Theory has meaning, insofar as it makes claims (with semantic content, where those claims address certain questions/issues.

                        And there are plenty of theories that are based in anti-realism.
                        So what? There are plenty of religions other than the one you hold. Does that bother you? If not, then why would you think pointing out anti-realist positions would bother me.

                        And I guess it is quite subjective as to which one, one is attracted to.
                        You're equivocating on the term "subjective". In meta-ethics, when discussing moral objectivism/moral subjectivism, the term "subjective" deals with the truth-conditions for moral statements, moral beliefs, etc. (or in virtue or what moral statements, moral beliefs, etc. are true or false), not how one comes to reach those moral statements, moral beliefs, etc.

                        No you didn't you just said that we had moral obligation because of moral reasons - not why those reason compel us, rationally, to jump to obligations.
                        Normative reasons don't have to compel one to do anything. I think you're once again conflating motivating reasons with normative reasons, which I addressed with awhile ago.

                        And I already gave you the argument, which you responded to as I predicted.

                        And I'm tired of you dodging. Here's the question you've dodged, even though it's been asked twice:

                        But you already posted the definition. So now we all know - and?
                        And on that definition, divine command theory is a form of moral subjectivism, while various other meta-ethical positions aren't.

                        So this (and other similar comments/questions from you) have already been addressed:

                        So if, in the future, you act like it hasn't been explained to you why divine command theory is a form of moral subjectivism, then I'll take you to be acting in bad faith.
                        "Instead, we argue, it is necessary to shift the debate from the subject under consideration, instead exposing to public scrutiny the tactics they [denialists] employ and identifying them publicly for what they are."

                        Comment


                        • #87
                          Originally posted by Jichard View Post
                          A theist can define God differently, and still count as a theist. For example, open theists who think God does not know the future.
                          I do not believe open theists propose that God does not know the future. Open theism allows for 'Free Will' and allows human choice in individual human events.

                          The extreme contrasting view is Calvinism.
                          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


                          • #88
                            Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                            I do not believe open theists propose that God does not know the future. Open theism allows for 'Free Will' and allows human choice in individual human events.

                            The extreme contrasting view is Calvinism.
                            Maybe I'm wrong, but if I remember correctly, open theists attempt to allow for human free will by denying divine foreknowledge of what future free actions human will take. In short: God wouldn't know what free choice I will make in the future.
                            "Instead, we argue, it is necessary to shift the debate from the subject under consideration, instead exposing to public scrutiny the tactics they [denialists] employ and identifying them publicly for what they are."

                            Comment


                            • #89
                              Originally posted by Jichard View Post
                              Maybe I'm wrong, but if I remember correctly, open theists attempt to allow for human free will by denying divine foreknowledge of what future free actions human will take. In short: God wouldn't know what free choice I will make in the future.
                              Probably better wording helps. Human 'Free Will' has limitations on choices regardless and does not necessarily effect God's knowledge of future events in general.

                              One difference in the Baha'i view God and the relationship is human physical suffering as described in TI is not a meaningful context. Human physical suffering is simply a part of the natural course of human events in the natural world, and has little or no meaning in the spiritual journey of the soul. In the Baha'i believe there is no concept of good versus evil dualism, nor a Divine conflict between good and evil.

                              No Original Sin, no Fall, No evil conspiracy, no God demanding human suffering, humanity has always been naturally human.
                              Last edited by shunyadragon; 04-23-2015, 06:24 PM.
                              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


                              • #90
                                Of course I took advantage of regression, what would you have me do accept it on your authority - I mean really - some "philosophers claim?" This still is no more an assertion, with no basis in fact or reality. It is not true, nor can you show it to be true. It is a fiction, the very thing you chided us for.


                                Incorrect. Ethical theories make statements with semantic content, and thus they have meaning on my worldview. Something doesn't need to be eternal to have meaning. What you wrote is, once again, as impossible as saying that Cell Theory is meaningless unless God exists. That's absurd since Cell Theory has meaning, insofar as it makes claims (with semantic content, where those claims address certain questions/issues.
                                Of course your moral theory is meaningless, since we are ultimately meaningless.


                                So what? There are plenty of religions other than the one you hold. Does that bother you? If not, then why would you think pointing out anti-realist positions would bother me.


                                You're equivocating on the term "subjective". In meta-ethics, when discussing moral objectivism/moral subjectivism, the term "subjective" deals with the truth-conditions for moral statements, moral beliefs, etc. (or in virtue or what moral statements, moral beliefs, etc. are true or false), not how one comes to reach those moral statements, moral beliefs, etc.
                                No, I'm speaking of subjective in that it is mind dependent. And which moral theory to accept is certainly subjective.



                                And on that definition, divine command theory is a form of moral subjectivism, while various other meta-ethical positions aren't.

                                So this (and other similar comments/questions from you) have already been addressed:
                                So you invent a moral theory, that has no basis in fact or reality, and call it objective. I see that is how the game is played.
                                Last edited by seer; 04-23-2015, 07:27 PM.
                                Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

                                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

                                Comment

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