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If God exists.
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Posted 7/16/11
God is often cited as the supreme authority on morality. The source of mores, if you will. Atheists often criticise religion because of that claims of its adherents to the extent that absent religion there can be no morality, absent god there is no reason to be moral. Now, numerous atheist writers have obliterated this argument, so no more time should be wasted on it. A more interesting question is, in a sense, the converse of this. Suppose that there is a god or deities, why should we act in accordance with his/their dictates? Suppose he is omnipotent, omniscient and omnibenevolent (even though omniscience and omnipotence are mutually exclusive, but for the sake of argument), how can he make binding moral claims? He may be able to alter the fabric of the universe, know everything or, indeed, love us all greatly, how do these attributes empower him to pass moral judgement? I see no reason why we should act in accordance with any set of mores even if god exists.
Posted 7/16/11
I do not understand.

Reason? Humans make it up in their minds, don't they?
Or not. I never really had a reason for anything.

God Is God; he can pass moral judgment if he wants.
[Originally] Humans are free to do whatever they want.

either be moral or don't be.
Posted 7/16/11
Easy.....religions are all about interpretations.....dont think of it in literal terms thou.......saying he can judge us all is only a metaphorical way to say there are laws in life u may want to consider before acting on your own will for the sake of your souls/spirituality safety and well being...BECAUSE RELIGIONS BELIEVE THAT THE CLOSER U ARE TO GOD OR THE MORE U UNDERSTAND HIM/HER/IT THE HAPPIEST U BECOME......as to follow up like sheep to many rules 1st of all u need to fall in love with creation and life itself "find inspiration" so u dont look at morality as a burden......no one can really push u to feel stuff......thats why in shamanism a lot a ppl that find it hard to connect to God end up relaying on "drugs" to open up their senses after several meditations called "spiritual initiations".....maybe u are just done with religious theory and need more of the practice side to awaken your "faith"or at least your spiritual curiosity so u can experience more of what reality offers ......
Posted 7/16/11 , edited 7/16/11
If God exists, he can do whatever he wants to, including kill us all or nurture us all. We can't read the thoughts of an omnipotent deity.

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Posted 7/17/11

Honeythief wrote:

I do not understand.

Reason? Humans make it up in their minds, don't they?
Or not. I never really had a reason for anything.

God Is God; he can pass moral judgment if he wants.
[Originally] Humans are free to do whatever they want.

either be moral or don't be.


Yeah, but how can god pass moral judgement? Right and wrong do not, truly, exist. They are merely concepts in peoples' minds, they are abstract.


K2DC wrote:

Easy.....religions are all about interpretations.....dont think of it in literal terms thou.......saying he can judge us all is only a metaphorical way to say there are laws in life u may want to consider before acting on your own will for the sake of your souls/spirituality safety and well being...BECAUSE RELIGIONS BELIEVE THAT THE CLOSER U ARE TO GOD OR THE MORE U UNDERSTAND HIM/HER/IT THE HAPPIEST U BECOME......as to follow up like sheep to many rules 1st of all u need to fall in love with creation and life itself "find inspiration" so u dont look at morality as a burden......no one can really push u to feel stuff......thats why in shamanism a lot a ppl that find it hard to connect to God end up relaying on "drugs" to open up their senses after several meditations called "spiritual initiations".....maybe u are just done with religious theory and need more of the practice side to awaken your "faith"or at least your spiritual curiosity so u can experience more of what reality offers ......


I don't need help, I'm not asking for advice either. I have pretty concrete views on the matter. I am, merely, challenging the religious to answer this question. I think spirituality is nonsense. What reality offers can be experienced by physics.


Half-Bliss wrote:

If God exists, he can do whatever he wants to, including kill us all or nurture us all. We can't read the thoughts of an omnipotent deity.



We need not ascertain his thoughts relying only on ourselves. Gods in revealed religions are really quite willing, if not eager, to tell us what their thoughts are on things.
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30 / M / Japan
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Posted 7/17/11
Technically, that makes it an argumentum ad ignorantium for BOTH sides of the coin. To assume the absence of a God or the undeniable presence of one is as good as making a hypothetical statement, so it does little to actually add to the discussion - be it regarding morality or otherwise. In effect, this simply makes it a dead end of sorts because one is left to a subjective, personal understanding of "God", to which I believe Descartes attributed to quite distinctly with his favoring of the word "Infinite" over a superfluous religious term such as "God".

By "infinite", we have a more objective understanding of something beyond our very existence, which after several courses of denial we realize is a temporal one. For what it's worth, humans are somewhat intoxicated by the abstract idea of the "ideal", as is represented in the arts - for a lack of a better example. As a virtue, therefore, religion is but an offshoot of a search for the infinite through means of embracing morality as a matter of "faith". Atheists, on the other hand, do something similar but by means of "reason".

Before I am shot down by Christians who have actually READ "Gaudium et spes", it is true that the modern appreciation of religion embraces BOTH faith and reason as a means towards religious enlightenment. This is obvious, because man is a rational creature, and therefore does not operate if not upon a level of fixed reason. It would be pompous, therefore, to derive from this point that religion views itself as "a step above reason" to "embrace that which compels us to simply believe" such that it "nurtures reason and thus enlightenment". In other words, faith in the scripture - not because of a devout blindness by means of tradition - nurture's one to reason in light of a "Christian mind" and, hence, reflects outwardly as a morally upright individual. That is religious reasoning at it's best, because it utilizes its religious dogmas as a means to formulate it's moral code.

But that does not mean non-believers do not have their own. Theirs is, as a product of their search for the infinite, present in the form of practical reasoning. They do not see the need for faith to guide reason because it becomes a reasoning outside their being (the God, so to speak), thus limiting their ultimate expression as a truly "free" individual. This starts to point towards Sartre, when you think about it, because God therefore becomes the limiting factor in man's becoming "truly free". The result is a view of religion as "servitude" and accepted "dominion". This is the very reason why atheists detest religion.

So as far as the proposition of "If God exists" is concerned - the answer is that you'll get the same argument as with the question "what if god doesn't exist". It's the reverse argument coming from the Religious camp, and therefore results in the same arguments and reasonings, as I have lengthily described.
Posted 7/17/11

DerfelCadarn wrote:


Honeythief wrote:

I do not understand.

Reason? Humans make it up in their minds, don't they?
Or not. I never really had a reason for anything.

God Is God; he can pass moral judgment if he wants.
[Originally] Humans are free to do whatever they want.

either be moral or don't be.


Yeah, but how can god pass moral judgement? Right and wrong do not, truly, exist. They are merely concepts in peoples' minds, they are abstract.


K2DC wrote:

Easy.....religions are all about interpretations.....dont think of it in literal terms thou.......saying he can judge us all is only a metaphorical way to say there are laws in life u may want to consider before acting on your own will for the sake of your souls/spirituality safety and well being...BECAUSE RELIGIONS BELIEVE THAT THE CLOSER U ARE TO GOD OR THE MORE U UNDERSTAND HIM/HER/IT THE HAPPIEST U BECOME......as to follow up like sheep to many rules 1st of all u need to fall in love with creation and life itself "find inspiration" so u dont look at morality as a burden......no one can really push u to feel stuff......thats why in shamanism a lot a ppl that find it hard to connect to God end up relaying on "drugs" to open up their senses after several meditations called "spiritual initiations".....maybe u are just done with religious theory and need more of the practice side to awaken your "faith"or at least your spiritual curiosity so u can experience more of what reality offers ......


I don't need help, I'm not asking for advice either. I have pretty concrete views on the matter. I am, merely, challenging the religious to answer this question. I think spirituality is nonsense. What reality offers can be experienced by physics.


Half-Bliss wrote:

If God exists, he can do whatever he wants to, including kill us all or nurture us all. We can't read the thoughts of an omnipotent deity.



We need not ascertain his thoughts relying only on ourselves. Gods in revealed religions are really quite willing, if not eager, to tell us what their thoughts are on things.


Still, you can't trust that a god doesn't work in "mysterious ways" for whatever reason. They may decide to override their own conduct for making a difficult decision towards the "greater good" within their morality.
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Posted 7/17/11
After writing my entry and noticing the reference to Sartre, I couldn't help but conjure up his citation of Dostoevsky's character Ivan in The Brothers Karamazov where he explicitly states "If God did not exist, everything would be permitted", such to the extent that Ivan would be tempted to have exclaimed GOD IS DEAD!

Funny enough, I realized that Sartre made a silly mistake. I forgot about that one. Anyway, that line was a very popular quote I've heard left and right regarding the absence of God thus dictating morals, but I find it a puzzling realization of "freedom from bondage", as Sartre would so literally put it. Bondage is a funny term to use for religion in general, but I honestly find using Sartre as a means to displace religion rather unfounded. He wasn't by any means trying to disprove the existence of God; rather, he sought to define morality as a function outside of the infinite and directed towards the "other". I'm a little fuzzy on this topic because my Marcel is a little blurry at the moment. I'll get back to you on that one.
Posted 7/17/11

edsamac wrote:

After writing my entry and noticing the reference to Sartre, I couldn't help but conjure up his citation of Dostoevsky's character Ivan in The Brothers Karamazov where he explicitly states "If God did not exist, everything would be permitted", such to the extent that Ivan would be tempted to have exclaimed GOD IS DEAD!

Funny enough, I realized that Sartre made a silly mistake. I forgot about that one. Anyway, that line was a very popular quote I've heard left and right regarding the absence of God thus dictating morals, but I find it a puzzling realization of "freedom from bondage", as Sartre would so literally put it. Bondage is a funny term to use for religion in general, but I honestly find using Sartre as a means to displace religion rather unfounded. He wasn't by any means trying to disprove the existence of God; rather, he sought to define morality as a function outside of the infinite and directed towards the "other". I'm a little fuzzy on this topic because my Marcel is a little blurry at the moment. I'll get back to you on that one.


Since the real existence of gods cannot be proven, then disproving them isn't necessary. The one thing to remember is that what comes around, goes around. You reap what you sew.
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Posted 7/17/11 , edited 7/17/11

Half-Bliss wrote:

Since the real existence of gods cannot be proven, then disproving them isn't necessary. The one thing to remember is that what comes around, goes around. You reap what you sew.



I don't really understand how that motherhood statement fits into the philosophical discussion at hand. It's not a matter of proof - rather, an existentialist dilemma regarding the meaning of living with a moral figure to which the religious term a "God". In other words, it's precisely what Sartre did.

So in effect, it's not about proving or disproving, because again we return to an argumentum ad ignorantiam. No one will know the answer for sure, so disproving is not simply unnecessary - it is to no effect. Your succeeding statement seems to imply karma, which if anything does not answer the meaning of morality. That is simply a fatalistic statement that assumes all actions contribute to a grand scheme of actions that perpetuate both evil and good in the world - which can easily be formulated into another religious doctrine so far as this grand scheme falls under the omnipotence of a certain "God". In effect, we run back to the original question on morality based on this idea that can either be interpreted as the result of the "existence of a God" or the "non-existence of a God". We're back to square one.
Posted 7/17/11 , edited 7/17/11

DerfelCadarn wrote:

God is often cited as the supreme authority on morality. The source of mores, if you will. Atheists often criticise religion because of that claims of its adherents to the extent that absent religion there can be no morality, absent god there is no reason to be moral. Now, numerous atheist writers have obliterated this argument, so no more time should be wasted on it. A more interesting question is, in a sense, the converse of this. Suppose that there is a god or deities, why should we act in accordance with his/their dictates? Suppose he is omnipotent, omniscient and omnibenevolent (even though omniscience and omnipotence are mutually exclusive, but for the sake of argument), how can he make binding moral claims? He may be able to alter the fabric of the universe, know everything or, indeed, love us all greatly, how do these attributes empower him to pass moral judgement? I see no reason why we should act in accordance with any set of mores even if god exists.
Actually I have another reason that's even more demanding than most atheists'. Throughout Christian religious history, we find that God's often His own cause of religious moral dilemmas and contradictions. This makes morality as "the right thing to do" very problematic and unreliable at the hands of theists, when their own moral authority has a track-record for malevolence in the name of righteousness, arrogance in the name of obedience, and fallibility as well as biases in the name of unconditional love and kindness. IMHO, that's a hypocrite with double-standards for Himself, while He carries mixed-messages as He manages His own God complex. Very much like perception management within a psychopathic corporate culture. That's how I think God would exist based on the religious sense of the world He dictates.


edsamac wrote:


Half-Bliss wrote:

Since the real existence of gods cannot be proven, then disproving them isn't necessary. The one thing to remember is that what comes around, goes around. You reap what you sew.



I don't really understand how that motherhood statement fits into the philosophical discussion at hand. It's not a matter of proof - rather, an existentialist dilemma regarding the meaning of living with a moral figure to which the religious term a "God". In other words, it's precisely what Sartre did.

So in effect, it's not about proving or disproving, because again we return to an argumentum ad ignorantiam. No one will know the answer for sure, so disproving is not simply unnecessary - it is to no effect. Your succeeding statement seems to imply karma, which if anything does not answer the meaning of morality. That is simply a fatalistic statement that assumes all actions contribute to a grand scheme of actions that perpetuate both evil and good in the world - which can easily be formulated into another religious doctrine so far as this grand scheme falls under the omnipotence of a certain "God". In effect, we run back to the original question on morality based on this idea that can either be interpreted as the result of the "existence of a God" or the "non-existence of a God". We're back to square one.
Karma manifesto doesn't need a deity, when it's as real as the Lucifer Effect.
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Posted 7/17/11 , edited 7/17/11

DomFortress wrote:
Karma manifesto doesn't need a deity, when it's as real as the Lucifer Effect.


That still does not refute its possibility (or incompatibility thereof). I stated a conditional so far as one could assume its compatibility with the grand scheme of a greater cause (possibly pointing towards the infinite), then the argument falls to itself. Whether or not karma by extension is the result of purely human action or a greater working of an omnipotent God is a rehash of the religion question in the first place - hence why I pointed it out.
Posted 7/17/11

edsamac wrote:


DomFortress wrote:
Karma manifesto doesn't need a deity, when it's as real as the Lucifer Effect.


That is a conditional. I does not refute its possibility (or incompatibility thereof).
Then read my reply to the OP for my analysis.
Posted 7/17/11

edsamac wrote:


DomFortress wrote:
Karma manifesto doesn't need a deity, when it's as real as the Lucifer Effect.


That still does not refute its possibility (or incompatibility thereof). I stated a conditional so far as one could assume its compatibility with the grand scheme of a greater cause (possibly pointing towards the infinite), then the argument falls to itself. Whether or not karma by extension is the result of purely human action or a greater working of an omnipotent God is a rehash of the religion question in the first place - hence why I pointed it out.


Aliens, I say. Aliens did it all.
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Posted 7/17/11 , edited 7/17/11
Euthyphro much? I would say that he wouldn't make mores because it would be beyond his power to make it good because he says its good, and not because it is, in itself, good and moral. He would, instead, enforce a series of codes whose essence consist solely of being good, and not because it is beloved by him. But then again, I have never read any philosophical works, being, as they are, too confounded in the philosopher's jargon and reference to previous philosophers for the layman to comprehend without an extensive and exhustive study on that noble art, and, being as it is, I am probably the last person to consult on these matters.
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