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Old 02-17-2009, 08:51 PM   #191 (permalink)
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People can believe whatever their twisted minds can conceive, which is a point of this thread. The point is that since human mental and physical ideas having a set purpose, the same could be said of humanity. Not created for a specific purpose, but the gun-smith seems to find purpose for himself in making an object with no direct purpose. The same could be attributed to the idea of God.
Of course purpose is self constructed, but there are certain things we can't help - things that happen whether we like them or not, whether we can explain them or not, or whether we can recognize a purpose or not. I don't claim there's a purpose to morality, what I do claim is that it exists. It exists so plainly that it's just as difficult to deny as my existence as a physical being. That means we don't need to teach our children to share or to do unto others - you can see at such a young age children doing those very same things without instruction. Nothing philosophical about it. If we attempt to intervene, for example, by subscribing to a religion that contains 2,000 year old moral "teachings", we can succeed in diminishing our morality by smothering it with nonsense, which is why religion should go away.
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Old 02-17-2009, 09:02 PM   #192 (permalink)
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haven't you heard of cannibal tribes?
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Old 02-17-2009, 09:08 PM   #193 (permalink)
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haven't you heard of cannibal tribes?
Of course, that's a bad example. The fact that they're cannibal tribes suggests that it's a cultural norm, possibly first established as a reaction to famine or other extreme conditions. Cannibalism in these cases takes on an almost religious identity, and indeed many of these tribes perform cannibalism in a ritualistic manner.
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Old 02-17-2009, 09:30 PM   #194 (permalink)
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so the horrible vicious behavior stems from social standardization rather than the propensity for evil within the individuals? these things have to start somewhere, you know. people were there before the religion, if the religion has bad things in it it's because the people put it there. if everyone has an innate moral propensity
it doesn't seem like the tribe would be able to hold together
under such amoral conditions
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Old 02-17-2009, 09:37 PM   #195 (permalink)
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so the horrible vicious behavior stems from social standardization rather than the propensity for evil within the individuals? these things have to start somewhere, you know. people were there before the religion, if the religion has bad things in it it's because the people put it there. if everyone has an innate moral propensity
it doesn't seem like the tribe would be able to hold together
under such amoral conditions
No, when did I say that? Of course I realize that social standardization came after whatever started the immoral behavior to begin with, but suppose cannibalism was a reaction to extreme famine. Our survival instincts in this case would be forced to override our moral inclinations (perhaps we could describe this as a sort of temporary insanity), and after some time of living in these same conditions, the people there would basically become desensitized. After all, what good would it do them to live in extreme hunger and also feel guilty after every meal? As far as the tribe holding up, again, it would act in the same way as religion does (and perhaps they're one and the same) and smother the moral instincts of the tribe's members in favor of cultural traditions.
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Old 02-17-2009, 09:50 PM   #196 (permalink)
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i want to take a few steps back from this argument. i can probably concede that morality is something innate in people, or at least something which forms deterministically in their relating to other people. but i also think 'evil,' seen as the desire to propagate suffering, is also innate in people. that because of this, some people need different ways of validating their better half or suppressing their lesser. the temptation to then institutionalize these methods is very tempting, and the fact that a little bit of both sides slips in is inevitable. at the same time though in religion there's something else going on, which is a more fundamental analysis of man in relation to the world, which you have to analyze on a separate level. how does that sit with you?
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Old 02-17-2009, 11:13 PM   #197 (permalink)
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Humans are social animals though. In order to coexist in a productive manner the sense of evil in us has to be suppressed. We can't get a long in the society if there's theft, rape, murder, etcetera. Societies before monotheism and societies without it know this...and if they didn't I sincerely believe there was some sort of preexisting structure (e.g. in a cannibalistic tribe, aside from doing it out of a sense of survival there is some order to the killing I'd imagine if they plan to have any sort of longevity as a society.)
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Old 02-17-2009, 11:25 PM   #198 (permalink)
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i want to take a few steps back from this argument. i can probably concede that morality is something innate in people, or at least something which forms deterministically in their relating to other people. but i also think 'evil,' seen as the desire to propagate suffering, is also innate in people. that because of this, some people need different ways of validating their better half or suppressing their lesser. the temptation to then institutionalize these methods is very tempting, and the fact that a little bit of both sides slips in is inevitable. at the same time though in religion there's something else going on, which is a more fundamental analysis of man in relation to the world, which you have to analyze on a separate level. how does that sit with you?
I can agree with this much more. However, I don't think it's often very difficult to validate good behavior over bad. On the one hand, good behavior seems to by default give us satisfaction, because we do have an innate sense of right and wrong. This is just another component of our built-in sense of morality. In many or most cases, I think this is validation enough. On the other hand, wrong often turns us away from itself, as it gives us a sense of guilt rather than satisfaction. So doing the "right" thing has almost everything going for it: we feel good when we do right, and we feel guilty when we do wrong. I do agree that institutionalizing these methods is very tempting, and I imagine we'd agree that this is one of the more dangerous impulses we seem to have. Religion acts, in my opinion, to justify hideous acts with validation from a so-called God. Not all of it is bad, but that's why it has appeal in the first place: not only does it claim to answer questions that we all have wondered about, it also seems to demand good behavior which we already know to adhere to. But unfortunately, once we believe that God is on our side, there is little left keeping us from acting upon our desire to propagate suffering, which has very clearly permeated every major religion.
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Old 02-28-2009, 06:41 PM   #199 (permalink)
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Fantastic. Think about it how do you feel about killing an ant? Ok well thats murder right? Or is it just getting rid of a pest? Or is it taking life from one of Gods creatures that he put here?

Since we have established that its ok to spray down a bug your question is why dont we kill each other? ha ha ha we do and we do it every day. Wars, gangs, in prison you name it. I know that you dont, because its not moraly right unless you have power and money. Or you are the president declaring war. In ending my true simple answer to why people dont kill each other is Who really wants to die thats mentally stable? Nobody thats who.
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