Do we need to abandon all moral ideologies because we are atheist?

Why does it seem that there are so many atheists who want to go the exact opposite extreme of religion?  Maybe I’m more of a humanist then because I do still have a very strong ethical code that I decided on using logic and a true sense of compassion towards others.  Moral judgment can be based on the net positives it can provide for the whole of society.  Aren’t we all striving to improve ourselves and our communities? Freedom is a wonderful thing worth fighting for, but if those freedoms are not for the betterment of society then we must question if that particular freedom would be best if regulated instead.

Views: 147

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Hmm, let me ponder... I think I've heard that before... "Since you obviously have no idea what Zen Buddhism Christianity is about, apparently do not wish to learn..." bla bla bla Every single Buddhist I've ever met, no matter their denomination, have been hypocritical about their relationships with other humans.

 

Since I've read about various forms of Buddhism through my 45 some odd years, and found nothing of interest, WHY ON EARTH WOULD I ASK YOU for clarifications on that topic? Are you hoping to convert me???????? You might see your role here as a teacher or as a purveyor of moral guidance, but I come here for respectful discussions, hopefully among people without unjustified dogmas.

OH MY GOSH!  You caught me in an Ad Hominem !  I am SO embarrassed!!!

 

Wait... What's an Ad Hominem again?  "rejecting an argument on the basis of some irrelevant fact."  So, saying that you don't have a clue about Buddhism, and then pointing out WHY and WHERE you are wrong is an Ad Hominem?  "Not having a clue" is common terminology referring to the fact that someone does not have an understanding about a subject, right?  And sine you obviously don't have ANY understanding of the subject that we are talking about, since you actually ADMITTED that in your post...  Wait, how is that an Ad Hominem again? 

"You keep using that word... I do not think it means what you think it means..."  :)

Or are you using the definition "attempt to link the falseness of a claim to a negative characteristic or belief of the person advocating it."  So, because I point out that you are ignorant of structure of Zen and then point out where and how, that is a Ad Hominem?  Or are you using some other definition?
Or maybe you are trying to defect the fact that you don't have any understanding about the subject that you are talking about by pointing out that you didn't like me describing some of your posts as "rants."  Let's see, "rant" is described as "to speak or write in an angry or violent manner."  Hmm, yes, I think I would describe at least some of your posts as "rants."  How does that detract from the fact that you don't understand the subject of which you speak?
I can't believe that "if there was no religion people would still realize that killing each other is wrong" is being refuted... lol and that the human mind hasn't evolved into higher thinking more so than every other animal. With all due respect you are arguing nonsense. Mr Pinster keep it civil and end the name calling and labeling. You're starting to sound like one of those religious folk :)

So you think all the societies that came before us were "wrong" and us modern folk are "right"? Maybe it's because I'm a third generation atheist? but I don't see the world in terms of "wrongs" and "rights", I see the world in terms of undesirable and desirable, subjective values. There are many a politician and business tycoon I would put in jail (and I'm being overly polite here), and many a prisoner I would release from jail...

 

It's not about religion, its about acceptability, coercion, punishment, and group cohesion voir group think. The French, Russian, Chinese, and Cuban revolutions were desirable and had overall good impacts on their respective societies and in the process have shown humanity a world of alternatives, which would not have been achieved without death. Did a minority of the remaining population hate their guts, yes, but overall, the majority won.

 

On a similar note, religion's main benefit to individual humans is happiness, so really, if happiness was the main factor in valuing human endeavours, you'd leave religion alone. Humans are so easily duped into happiness ;( Look at Bhutan, a nation who's main value has long been happiness.

 

My sole objective in life is dying as guilt free as possible, which means contributing to leaving the planet in no worse a state than when I was born onto it.

As a reminder to everyone in this discussion, please abide by all rules in the Guidelines Governing the Use of The Forum and Blogs and the terms of service. Please keep discussions civil and respectful. Language that is deemed otherwise will be deleted. Everyone is entitled to an opinion but it is a goal of this community that we can have these discussions without "virtually yelling" at each other.  If you hare having a problem with a specific member please email us. Thank you.

The Moderators


I've opted out of receiving any more notices of further discussion on this topic as it just got too far off topic and started to resemble a flame war.  Ta'

Morality actually has a basis in reason, oddly enough. Morality also evolves with circumstance, and it's this aspect that seems to trip people up more often than not. Absolute morals don't exist anymore than absolute anything.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mm2Jrr0tRXk  - Who Says Science Has Nothing To Say About Morality? by Sam Harris, speaking with Richard Dawkins later.

 

 

I've seen several talks by Sam.  I think there is a TED talk that discusses this topic, although I'm not sure it was Sam, I think it was someone else.  I'll try to find it and reply to this post.

Well, that was easy.  Yes, it was Sam.  http://www.ted.com/talks/sam_harris_science_can_show_what_s_right.html

 

Here is another by Jonathan Haidt http://www.ted.com/talks/jonathan_haidt_on_the_moral_mind.html 

 

Great talks, both of them.

Of course science can provide us with clues about the global consequences of our actions. But it's still up to our subjective minds to weigh the various costs of our actions.

 

To me, a corporation which is polluting an area with lead, thereby affecting the learning potential of all the children in the neighbourhood is an absolutely horrible consequence as it places the profit-making potential of the few over the health of the many. But obviously, in our society, a vast majority think profit-making is more important than the health of those people. On top of that that corporation may derive a secondary benefit from the lack of learning ability, those kids will likely grow up being non-voters, further enshrining the power of the corporation over the people. Is this moral? Most people think it's just fine though, scientifically minded people less so, but still.

 

Everyone weighs harm differently, it is a subjective matter which science does not provide answers for, it is completely determined by the values taught to us during our formative years, which very few humans stray very far away from later on in life.

RSS

Blog Posts

My Dad and the Communist Spies

Posted by Brad Snowder on August 20, 2014 at 2:39pm 2 Comments

Breaking Free

Posted by A. T. Heist on August 20, 2014 at 9:56am 5 Comments

Services we love!

We are in love with our Amazon

Book Store!

Gadget Nerd? Check out Giz Gad!

Advertise with ThinkAtheist.com

In need a of a professional web site? Check out the good folks at Clear Space Media

© 2014   Created by umar.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service