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Thread: Atheists and morality

  1. #11
    Fundamentalist Dumuzi's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    Many forget that we are all humans. An Atheist is just like a Hindu is just like a Jew. I think all humans have 'goodness' hardwired into us or at least it's the default setup. I do not believe we are born evil.

    So even if one is born into 'x' religion, they are still able to recognize universal values of 'goodness'. There are exceptions, of course, and humans are known for committing very evil acts, but even the most evil of acts are almost always justified with some greater good type of justification. Not that I agree with it, just pointing it out.

    So saying Atheists are immoral by nature is both factually wrong and also quite bad.

    With that said, and this is not what's being said there, I have yet to see a good argument about objective morality coming from an atheist point of view. That is NOT saying that atheists are immoral, it's a whole other discussion.
    Do they not, then, ponder about the Qur‘an? Had it been from someone other than Allah, they would have found in it much discrepancy. [4:82]

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    The Gaze of the Abyss B. de Corbin's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    Quote Originally Posted by Dumuzi View Post
    With that said, and this is not what's being said there, I have yet to see a good argument about objective morality coming from an atheist point of view. That is NOT saying that atheists are immoral, it's a whole other discussion.
    I'd be willing to give it a try, but I'm not sure what you're looking for, exactly. Do you want an atheist to argue that "all morality is subjective"?

    If so, I'm not sure I can do that because I'm not sure I believe it, except in the abstract sense that a person, without an exterior authority, could - in theory - argue that any statement (like "It is good to torture your small children to death, then eat them") is equal to any other moral statement. I call this "abstract" because this rarely, if ever, happens except in accedemic exercises that never carry over into actual practice.

    Or are you looking for an atheist to argue no "morality is objective"?

    I can't do that either because I am pretty sure that there is some point beyond which a sane person does not go, so, somewhere, I accept that some sort of objective morality exists.

    The best I can do is suggest that some of what we call "morality" is subjective, while some is objective. It's a mixed bag.

    Maybe you need to find a less thoughful atheist
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  3. #13
    Fundamentalist Dumuzi's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    Quote Originally Posted by B. de Corbin View Post
    Maybe you need to find a less thoughful atheist
    Haha

    I'm saying that if someone is really an atheist then they cannot make an argument to support objective morality. According to atheism all morality is subjective.

    And again, I'm gonna repeat myself, because this gets confused, I'm NOT saying atheists are immoral or bad people because of their atheism!
    Do they not, then, ponder about the Qur‘an? Had it been from someone other than Allah, they would have found in it much discrepancy. [4:82]

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    The Gaze of the Abyss B. de Corbin's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    Quote Originally Posted by Dumuzi View Post
    I'm saying that if someone is really an atheist then they cannot make an argument to support objective morality. According to atheism all morality is subjective.
    That I can deal with - as a humanistic atheist, I would say that the objective morality come from the concept of "compassion," where moral decisions are based on the needs of actual humans (not abstract "humanity," but on real individuals). That's how this one atheist would do it, understanding that atheists aren't necessarily going to agree on much, except that they fail to believe in a literal entity-diety.

    And again, I'm gonna repeat myself, because this gets confused, I'm NOT saying atheists are immoral or bad people because of their atheism!
    Absolutely! We said nearly identical things, if you look back at the post I made just before yours. I totally agree with what you've said (well, except that I'd add that people not only have an inclination toward good, they also have a competing inclination to act horribly selfish. It's the pull between these inclinations that require us to discuss morals, IMHO).
    Last edited by B. de Corbin; 16 Mar 2017 at 14:50.
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    sea witch thalassa's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    Quote Originally Posted by Dumuzi View Post
    I'm saying that if someone is really an atheist then they cannot make an argument to support objective morality. According to atheism all morality is subjective.
    I have yet to see anyone effectively, with any actual evidence, argue in support of objective morality, regardless of their theistic bent (or lack thereof). They can try, but I've yet to see one that is not a logical fallacy minefield.
    “You have never answered but you did not need to. If I stand at the ocean I can hear you with your thousand voices. Sometimes you shout, hilarious laughter that taunts all questions. Other nights you are silent as death, a mirror in which the stars show themselves. Then I think you want to tell me something, but you never do. Of course I know I have written letters to no-one. But what if I find a trident tomorrow?" ~~Letters to Poseidon, Cees Nooteboom

    “We still carry this primal relationship to the Earth within our consciousness, even if we have long forgotten it. It is a primal recognition of the wonder, beauty, and divine nature of the Earth. It is a felt reverence for all that exists. Once we bring this foundational quality into our consciousness, we will be able to respond to our present man-made crisis from a place of balance, in which our actions will be grounded in an attitude of respect for all of life. This is the nature of real sustainability.”
    ~~Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

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    ~~Stephen Jay Gould, Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

    "Humans are not rational creatures. Now, logic and rationality are very helpful tools, but there’s also a place for embracing our subjectivity and thinking symbolically. Sometimes what our so-called higher thinking can’t or won’t see, our older, more primitive intuition will." John Beckett

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    Nihilistic Goddess Medusa's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    I don't kill people because I don't want to go to jail. That's pretty much it or allot of people would be dead in the blink of an eye.
    Satan is my spirit animal

  7. #17
    Live and learn anunitu's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    Sounds like a good reason to not kill everybody..I have always considered not going to jail a sound idea.
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    The Gaze of the Abyss B. de Corbin's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    Quote Originally Posted by Medusa View Post
    I don't kill people because I don't want to go to jail. That's pretty much it or allot of people would be dead in the blink of an eye.
    There ya go - that's solid objective morality right there. The law is my moral compas
    Those who have suffered understand suffering and therefore extend their hand.

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  9. #19
    sea witch thalassa's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    Quote Originally Posted by B. de Corbin View Post
    The law is my moral compas
    Ye gods, I hope not. I mean, the law is often a terrible moral compass!
    Last edited by thalassa; 17 Mar 2017 at 02:41.
    “You have never answered but you did not need to. If I stand at the ocean I can hear you with your thousand voices. Sometimes you shout, hilarious laughter that taunts all questions. Other nights you are silent as death, a mirror in which the stars show themselves. Then I think you want to tell me something, but you never do. Of course I know I have written letters to no-one. But what if I find a trident tomorrow?" ~~Letters to Poseidon, Cees Nooteboom

    “We still carry this primal relationship to the Earth within our consciousness, even if we have long forgotten it. It is a primal recognition of the wonder, beauty, and divine nature of the Earth. It is a felt reverence for all that exists. Once we bring this foundational quality into our consciousness, we will be able to respond to our present man-made crisis from a place of balance, in which our actions will be grounded in an attitude of respect for all of life. This is the nature of real sustainability.”
    ~~Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

    "We are the offspring of history, and must establish our own paths in this most diverse and interesting of conceivable universes--one indifferent to our suffering, and therefore offering us maximal freedom to thrive, or to fail, in our own chosen way."
    ~~Stephen Jay Gould, Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

    "Humans are not rational creatures. Now, logic and rationality are very helpful tools, but there’s also a place for embracing our subjectivity and thinking symbolically. Sometimes what our so-called higher thinking can’t or won’t see, our older, more primitive intuition will." John Beckett

    Pagan Devotionals, because the wind and the rain is our Bible

  10. #20
    Fundamentalist Dumuzi's Avatar
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    Re: Atheists and morality

    Quote Originally Posted by thalassa View Post
    I have yet to see anyone effectively, with any actual evidence, argue in support of objective morality, regardless of their theistic bent (or lack thereof). They can try, but I've yet to see one that is not a logical fallacy minefield.
    Oh, that's really interesting. So you don't think there's such a thing as objective morality, thal?
    Do they not, then, ponder about the Qur‘an? Had it been from someone other than Allah, they would have found in it much discrepancy. [4:82]

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