Author Topic: In a Godless society  (Read 8882 times)

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Offline Zankuu

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #29 on: March 28, 2012, 07:59:57 AM »
And here's another perspective: Nazi attempts to rid the world of inferior races. Was this abhored only because their judgement of which races were inferior was falwed...or was it abhored because it was just plain evil?

False dichotomy.

And congratulations, miles! Right out of the gate you gunned straight for the Nazi comparison in your second reply. A fine example of Godwin's Law if I do say so. I'm really not even sure how this applies to my post at all, but hell, I'll bite.

I think you know the correct answer, yet this makes no sense from an evolutionary perspective does it?

I think the concepts of good and evil do exist, but they have evolved and exist subjectively as a higher functioning survival mechanism. I can go into more detail if you'd like. I think, and I could be wrong here, there is an atheist or two on the boards that believes there is an objective morality which consists of certain laws in the way there are mathematical laws. But again, I could be thinking of another board since I can't cite a source or member.

I don't understand why atheists are so scared to concede that there is good and evil in the world....it won't make you Christians you know.

And jetson has covered this quite easily already.
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Offline orpat

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #30 on: March 28, 2012, 08:06:54 AM »
Why should i be bothered with the survival of my own species?

 Your genetic make-up, which you've accumulated over millions of years, is running your survival script. That's why you don't haphazardly go on same species murder sprees, which applies to all other fellow mammals in the Animal Kingdom.

Could I beg to differ? Humans can and do go on haphazard same species murder sprees. Humans are self-aware living organisms who can do anything they want. They can make rockets to go to the moon, create bombs to destroy the  planet, in fact do anything that they want to do. We are not merely any other mammal. We don't just kill to survive, we kill to enjoy.


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Offline magicmiles

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #31 on: March 28, 2012, 08:07:45 AM »
There is strength in numbers, even if those numbers are "disabled". We could also run experiments on the disabled, to advance our understanding of ourselves and maybe make us impervious to illness and such.
The point is that ending lives is highly inefficient when it comes to preserving and/or improving our species.

Try other crimes. Maybe you'll have a better chance with theft.

EDIT: Just in case someone asks, the answer is no. I do not think that what I am saying is good. I am simply pointing out holes in magicmiles's argument.

Lucifer, whether or not you can find creative ways to demonstrate that preserving all life is good from a continuation of the species perspective is not the main thrust of my argument.

My argument is that we do not in reality consider certain things as being wrong only because they might conceivably threaten long term survival of the species.

You are yet to agree or disagree with that as far as I can see.
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Offline One Above All

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #32 on: March 28, 2012, 08:09:01 AM »
My argument is that we do not in reality consider certain things as being wrong only because they might conceivably threaten long term survival of the species.

You are yet to agree or disagree with that as far as I can see.

You have yet to support your argument. Do it, and I will consider it.
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Offline changeling

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #33 on: March 28, 2012, 08:11:52 AM »
lets just tackle one thing at a time Lucifer.

Killing disabled children  - could only help the species, right?

So why is that 'wrong'?

Tell Stephen Hawking that being disabled makes him of no value
to the human species.
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Offline sun_king

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #34 on: March 28, 2012, 08:12:40 AM »
Orpat, MM, you are both playing around the subjective nature of the word "evil", nothing more.

Once you give you meaning for that word, this mild attempt to appear to be on top will be shot down instantly. We all know that, evidence is your own refusal to define the term "evil"

I ask again, give your definition of "evil"

Mr. Penfold, if you are following this thread, this is what we were speaking about, inability to give a civil reply. And yet we are polite so far...

Offline magicmiles

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #35 on: March 28, 2012, 08:17:40 AM »

And congratulations, miles! Right out of the gate you gunned straight for the Nazi comparison in your second reply. A fine example of Godwin's Law if I do say so. I'm really not even sure how this applies to my post at all, but hell, I'll bite.

Godwin's law my arse. Godwin made an observation..clever Godwin. It's sad that his observation is seen as humorous....it's really bloody sad that something so evil existed that it is used as a reference point regularly. Wouldn't you say?



I think the concepts of good and evil do exist, but they have evolved and exist subjectively as a higher functioning survival mechanism. I can go into more detail if you'd like. I think, and I could be wrong here, there is an atheist or two on the boards that believes there is an objective morality which consists of certain laws in the way there are mathematical laws. But again, I could be thinking of another board since I can't cite a source or member.

Again with the linking of morals to survival. It just doesn't explain our reactions to certain crimes and injustices.
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Offline One Above All

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #36 on: March 28, 2012, 08:18:32 AM »
Again with the linking of morals to survival. It just doesn't explain our reactions to certain crimes and injustices.

WHICH crimes, magicmiles? You've failed to give an example of such crimes and injustices.
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
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Offline Zankuu

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #37 on: March 28, 2012, 08:19:19 AM »
Could I beg to differ? Humans can and do go on haphazard same species murder sprees.

I was referring to you specifically. You aren't a mass murderer. Thank your genes.

Humans are self-aware living organisms who can do anything they want. They can make rockets to go to the moon, create bombs to destroy the  planet, in fact do anything that they want to do. We are not merely any other mammal. We don't just kill to survive, we kill to enjoy.

We certainly do kill to survive. Unless your body runs on electricity, you've been consuming killed plants and animals.
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Offline magicmiles

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #38 on: March 28, 2012, 08:23:14 AM »
You have yet to support your argument. Do it, and I will consider it.

I don't feel like I need to support the proposition that we as humans react with horror and repulsion to gross crimes and injustices. It's so clearly present, it would be like me asking someone to support the argument that certain things make us laugh.

I don't mind if you're unwilling to answer me.

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Offline sun_king

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #39 on: March 28, 2012, 08:25:19 AM »
MM, if BS is a religion, then you are the pope.


Edit: Removed typo
« Last Edit: March 28, 2012, 08:30:51 AM by sun_king »

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #40 on: March 28, 2012, 08:27:26 AM »
Well, quite. 

So like sun-king suggested, before you can say "this is a good thing, that is a bad thing" you need to consider what you mean by a "good" action.  Is it an action that makes people happy?  Something that makes people live longer?  Something that makes people drunker?

Too often, people talk about good and evil actions without considering what they actually mean by the terms.

I think you did not get it. Good and evil itself is man-made.

As for what I mean by the terms, this is what I mean-"Two terms invented by humans which changes from society to society, taking on new meanings in new places at new times."

Oh, I got it entirely.  And I agree.

At its broadest "good" means "things this group approves of", and "evil" the reverse.  Often however you'll find that the answer as to why some things fall in one or other camp is not adequately addressed - as I pointed out.  Theists, of course, can simply say "because our god sex so", often ignoring that they then place themselves in a situation where they have labelled "good" several things that their "good" god does that are (by their own criteria) "evil".

Like I said before, before we start labelling whether something is good or evil, we have to distill what it is we mean by "good".  Like I said - does "good" mean "survival of the species"?  Does "good" mean "that which produces the most happiness"?  Or does "good" mean "that which results in the most games of Halo being played"?

EVERYONE has some idea of what they call "good" - even if that is as basic as "things that make me feel pleasure".
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
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Offline One Above All

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #41 on: March 28, 2012, 08:30:10 AM »
I don't feel like I need to support the proposition that we as humans react with horror and repulsion to gross crimes and injustices. It's so clearly present, it would be like me asking someone to support the argument that certain things make us laugh.

Your idea is wrong and your god isn't real.
I don't feel the need to support those propositions, but I expect you to admit I'm right anyway, because it's just so clearly true.

If you don't see what's wrong with that, you really need to read what an argument is.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2012, 08:32:00 AM by Lucifer »
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
We choose our own gods.

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Offline Omen

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #42 on: March 28, 2012, 08:30:57 AM »
Correct me.

Evolution is not a philosophy.

Atheism is not a belief system.

The default position for ethical systems is not derived out of beliefs in supernatural agencies.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2012, 08:33:11 AM by Omen »
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Offline Zankuu

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #43 on: March 28, 2012, 08:31:13 AM »
Again with the linking of morals to survival. It just doesn't explain our reactions to certain crimes and injustices.

It does. Empathy is an emotion evolved from self-awareness.
Leave nothing to chance. Overlook nothing. Combine contradictory observations. Allow yourself enough time. -Hippocrates of Cos

Online jaimehlers

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #44 on: March 28, 2012, 09:22:42 AM »
Murder is considered wrong because of empathy, or right because of lack of empathy.  It was "okay" for someone to kill a black person in America when people didn't have empathy for black people, but it wasn't "okay" for someone to kill a white person, because people did have empathy for white people.  It was easy to put themselves in the shoes of the white person who was murdered and to think, "it would be wrong if done to me, so it was wrong when done to this person".  But for a long time, if it was a black person, or a Native American, or an immigrant, they weren't part of the group that it was easy to empathize with, and therefore, most people were willing to overlook such things.  Basically, since they were not black people (or whichever out-group you prefer), they did not feel that killing a black person was the same as killing a white person.

Even today, we still have problems with empathy between various groups in America.  Yet I think there is a direct correlation between how empathetic a person is and how likely they are to commit a crime that harms someone else regardless of punishment, even if it is a crime they could otherwise get away with.

Offline Hatter23

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #45 on: March 28, 2012, 09:38:57 AM »

I don't understand why atheists are so scared to concede that there is good and evil in the world....it won't make you Christians you know.


I don't have to fear it, I know it isn't actually true. Do I use the words, yes. But, both the terms are often used to say there is objective morality, which would mean there would be a supreme judge.

An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

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Offline joebbowers

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #46 on: March 28, 2012, 10:27:52 AM »
OP, this is a Godless society. All societies are Godless as all gods are imaginary. Any morals, values, or goodness that come from religion are man made, and do not require God.

The best proof that people can be good without God is that there are good people, and there are no gods.
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Offline Hatter23

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #47 on: March 28, 2012, 10:49:29 AM »

Again with the linking of morals to survival. It just doesn't explain our reactions to certain crimes and injustices.

It can. When extended family tribes existed, those that convince the other member of a particular tribe that another tribe, competing for the same resources, are not worthy to extend empathy to: that increases the likelihood that the tribe that does not extend its empathy to have those resources and propagate.

That is the essence of humanity; we have the instincts for selfishness, and because of our nature of cursorial hunter, which requires cooperation we have instincts for empathy. It is the interplay of the two conflicting instincts that has led to our complex and subjective views on morality.

Almost all special homo-whatever traits come from the fact we are one of only two cursorial hunters land dwellers on the planet. The other are canines. Cursorial hunter benefit from communication to coordinate, the ape lips and throat are more well suited to it, leading to us being the superior hunter over dogs, even though their elongated snouts, with the superior nasal receptors offer dogs certain advantages.
An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

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Offline screwtape

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #48 on: March 28, 2012, 11:33:24 AM »
And here's another perspective:

Your perspective is too ignorant to contribute to this discussion.  Go outside and play while the adults talk.
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Offline Tero

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #49 on: March 28, 2012, 12:38:00 PM »
Many Eropean countries operate with no input from religion. Some of them do not allow hand guns at all.

Raising the standard of living takes out a lot of evil.

Next problem?

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #50 on: March 28, 2012, 12:43:42 PM »
That which we call "evil", or define in other ways as just wrong, exists both because different groupings of people have different standards and because individuals within groups often feel free to customize what they want to do to us. For some, evil also takes the form of earthquakes and tornados, and the mindset that requires external forces to be in collusion with nature for such events is pretty pathetic. Such distortions typify the unnecessary complexity religion introduces to an already rickety and foible racked human world. By externalizing evil as either a product of the devil or as some unseen factor in all lives, the search for solutions is handicapped because so many believe in that fantasy.

When one looks at life through the lense of science, the reason for one species killing another is obvious. All lifeforms have to eat, and all food is organic. Even vegetarians kill carrots. Some species take killing further and do it to protect territories or gain new ground. Others do it for or because of sex. But ther appears to be little need for uncontrolled behavioral aberrations in humans. I'm pretty sure that Florida's Mr. Zimmerman had no intention of eating Trayvon Martin when he shot him. But the combination of personal and social factors that led to that tragedy did not include the participation of Mr. Evil and his really really obnoxious sidekick, the devil.

The peaceful among us are more perplexed about evil than than the dastardly. Why I have not chosen to rob and steal and stab and shoot seems to clear to me, but I suspect I don't know the half of it. This is not an easy subject to figure out because people are involved. And as long as a large percentage of us keep insisting that the fall did us in or give some other external excuse for the wrongs in this world, we're going to experience a long series of bad days. Because until enough people are willing to take personal and social responsibility for our failings, too many will spend their spare time blaming others.
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Offline ungod

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #51 on: March 28, 2012, 01:31:27 PM »
You have yet to support your argument. Do it, and I will consider it.

I don't feel like I need to support the proposition that we as humans react with horror and repulsion to gross crimes and injustices. It's so clearly present, it would be like me asking someone to support the argument that certain things make us laugh.

I don't mind if you're unwilling to answer me.

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Offline Frank

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #52 on: March 28, 2012, 07:02:03 PM »


Correct me.

OK.

The only reason you are not living in a godless society is because you think you're not. You live in America. Your country doesn't even have a state religion. So how do you figure you are not presently living in a godless society?
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Offline One Above All

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #53 on: March 28, 2012, 07:04:52 PM »
Isn't it interesting that the "godless" societies are "better"[1] than the theocracies ("godful" societies)?

orpat, if you have such a problem with these godless societies, perhaps you could move to a theocracy, where they take gods very seriously.
 1. Meaning "more good".
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Offline Frank

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #54 on: March 28, 2012, 07:25:36 PM »
Isn't it interesting that the "godless" societies are "better"[1] than the theocracies ("godful" societies)?

orpat, if you have such a problem with these godless societies, perhaps you could move to a theocracy, where they take gods very seriously.
 1. Meaning "more good".

This is the point. They can never make up their minds just how much god they want in their "godfull" society.
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Offline orpat

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #55 on: March 29, 2012, 05:14:35 AM »
I was referring to you specifically. You aren't a mass murderer. Thank your genes.

I am also referring to me specifically. I am not a mass murderer. And it isn't because of my genes but because I don't have the weapons, skills and power.

Quote

We certainly do kill to survive.

We certainly do kill to survive. But not only to survive.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2012, 05:20:23 AM by orpat »
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Offline One Above All

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #56 on: March 29, 2012, 05:18:30 AM »
I am also referring to me specifically. I am not a mass murderer. And it isn't because of my genes but because I don't have the weapons, skills and power.

Sociopathic theist. Somehow I'm not surprised.
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Offline orpat

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Re: In a Godless society
« Reply #57 on: March 29, 2012, 05:26:00 AM »
Sociopathic theist. Somehow I'm not surprised.

Somehow I'm also not surprised with your conclusion. :)
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