Internet Goosing the Antithesis

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Question of the Day #60: Morality and truth

Some people reject God not because they have a logical reason that God cannot exist (or at least likely does not exist), but because they see some injustice in the world that makes the thought of God distasteful. On the other side, there are people who are aware of arguments against God's existence that seem logically sound, but cling to religion due to not wanting to imagine a world without a higher power.

What do you think about choosing a belief system based less on the basis of logic than the perceived moral implications of the belief system or its antithetical?

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At 8/24/2006 10:50 AM, Blogger ollywompus declaimed...

Humans choose things all the time not based on logic or practical value, but rather on some percieved value (or the fear of losing it). This is precisely the PROBLEM with religion.

Clinging to a God because you are afraid of what happens if you don't is just plain stupid. If you TRULY believe in this God thing, then you are still delsional in my opinion, but at least you are clinging to it for a reason. Fear should never be a motivator for decision making.


At 8/24/2006 11:30 AM, Blogger breakerslion declaimed...

"Fear should never be a motivator for decision making."

I'm "afraid" I can't go along with that. Fear is a real element in calculating risk, and can, in proper context, keep you alive. "A man's gotta know his limitations."

In the art of selling, there are ethical and unethical forms of persuasion. Getting buy-in by creating fear of the alternative, or through emotional appeal, or pressure to conform is ... guess which one? Once roped into such emotional decisions, the variants are often controlled by the same emotional construct. This leads people to reverse such decisions only on the basis of the original emotional needs and how well they are being satisfied. Continuation of an emotional course of action can often be expressed as a reinforcement trap, where the emotional need satisfaction is temporary and needs repeating frequently, like every Sunday for example.

I see this kind of decision as based not on perceived moral implications, so much as emotional appeal/anxiety panacea versus logic.

At 8/24/2006 5:04 PM, Blogger Joe Otten declaimed...

The trouble is that religions set out to define their own antitheticals. If you are not a member of X, you might as well be a monster. Non-members have no way of telling right from wrong, etc.

Shit, if you're choosing on the basis of these religions' self-defined antitheticals, by all means join them all.

At 8/24/2006 7:01 PM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

I think it's pretty clear that people would rather be morally justified than intellectually justified. This is why the vast array of intellectual arguments against the existence of God have been largely useless as persuasive tools. Until we can efficiently show that not only does the rejection of a god-belief allow one to be moral, but the acceptance of such a belief prevent one from being moral will me be able to successfully evangelize the average theist.

At 8/25/2006 2:57 PM, Blogger Brucker declaimed...

"Until we can efficiently show that not only does the rejection of a god-belief allow one to be moral, but the acceptance of such a belief prevent one from being moral will me be able to successfully evangelize the average theist."

It's so odd to me that this has to be an issue. My old pastor used to say that we should be aware of the facts and the logic behind the Bible, because in the end, if the Bible is not true, we're all wasting our time with this thing called Christianity. Funny thing is, even the Bible itself says so in ICorinthians 15. I think the Bible is saying that it is VERY moral to reject a faulty belief system based on logic. Yes, even Christianity!

At 8/26/2006 12:50 AM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

The statement that having an incorrect interpretation of reality is pitiable isn't really much of a moral statement. It's a good mark on your part that you infer a value of rationality from that statement, but I really don't see it there. It looks to me just a recognition of a logical consequence, not an exhortation to value logic.



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