Subjective Morality page 11

320 posts

Flag Post

Definitely SOME definitions must be outlined clearly.
Yet, the ignorance of those “uninvolved” isn’t precluding the objectivity of that specific rule code.
(If one is ignorant of traffic lights, one is still liable for going on the red light. This is objective, though the wrong/right light being RED/GREEN – isn’t.)

Agreed, of course. Documented morality is objective (the first layer), but if it isn’t communicated properly very few people would know whether it applies to them, or what it even is.

Which means, that murder is objectively BAD

No. The first layer of objectivity regarding to morals within my explanation is entirely related to whether or not your morality system is documented. It has nothing to do with how bad it is. In fact, none of the three layers I used have anything to do with “bad”, as that is a subjective label.

but it subjectively depends on which ACTION should be CONSIDERED murder.

This again has to do with proper documenting and communication. The better your documentation, the more objective you can claim it to be, on the first layer.

Too ambiguous, especially when concerning definitions of actions.

How on Earth could this be ambiguous? Judgment of others is entirely related to the individual people judging others on following their moral code or not. Refer to the first layer, documentation, on definitions. That’s the beauty of these layers.

Technically, these are still murders (cause no actual trial and conviction according to a GENERAL rule-code took place)

What? Murder is illegal killing. If some killing is defined to be illegal, it is murder. If some killing isn’t defined to be illegal, it isn’t murder. You have too broad of a definition.

Judgment and punishment are two parts of the same action – conviction, so kinda…

It is vastly different.

Let’s say we have a firm. This firm has rules. For example, always wear a tie (for men). When you don’t wear a tie, you are being judged by your coworkers. But should an outsider, who does not work at the firm, be judged when he does not wear a tie? No, that is ridiculous. The punishment system goes further than this. If you do not wear a tie at work, you risk being sent home. Can a manager “send home” a person passing by on the street? No, that would be ridiculous.

Now imagine a country with laws. Let’s say it is illegal to perform abortion in this country. Many of these inhabitants, possibly religious, would look down on citizens of another country that does allow abortion. In other words, they judge them. But here’s the key: they cannot punish them for performing abortion in their country. It is outside of their control.

The biggest type of documented morality system is a religious one. Certainly, a religious person rejecting homosexual marriage will judge a homosexual. Furthermore, you can easily find stories of religious people attacking homosexuals simply for their sexual preference, which is the punishment factor.

The first layer is rather easy to understand, but it is important to see the difference between the second and third. And then I’d like to know which of the three we are really arguing about. Is it documented? Then we are at the first layer. Do we use it to judge others that aren’t within that morality system? We’ve arrived at the second layer. Do we punish those acting against the rules even though they are not within our morality system? That’s the third layer.

A final word on subjectivity related to morality: It defines not so much what “is”, but what people do. If your morality system doesn’t punish those outside it, if you don’t judge others, and if it isn’t documented, it is as subjective as it can be. If all three apply, it is as objective as it can be. But note the concepts of “bad” and “good”, I never used them in any of these paragraphs. It is because they are subjective labels, and will always be. Something can and will be bad in one moral system while being good in another (or neutral), but the objectivity appears once you judge those outside of your moral system as “bad” even though their moral system claims it is “good”. The objectivity doesn’t refer to who is right, but it refers to how you apply your moral system.

That is my argument on objectivity and subjectivity of moral systems. It can never be fully objective, but there are certain layers which can make it more or less objective.

 
Flag Post

DR
Objectively nicely said. :D
Though, “bad” aka “wrong” aka “not going by the rules OR going against the rules” – applies aways when there are any rules themselves.
Just another layer of semantics we can’t ignore, hehehe…

 
Flag Post

MyTie,

Clarification: We have original texts. We are not trying to find the “genesis” more accurately. We have good solid representations of those words. I’m saying that I am personally trying to apply the perspective to me life more accurately.

I find that irksome. I feel that something is always lost in translation. There is a whole cultural world, lifetimes upon lifetimes of nuance, buried in each word. There will always be a means to express the same essential basics, but in the translation of ancient languages we may not even be away of some of the connotations.

A little while before we were discussing the use of the word Church in the bible. I find it a pretty flagrant example of problems in translation. Church does not Ecclesius, it carries a directly contrary root meaning and carries nothing of the associative contexts that the original did. Another neat example for you might be the use of the word Elohim within the old testament. It is plural, specifically plural. Nowadays it is translated as the singular “God”. In fact the OT has a much wider array of words used in description of “God”, now they all just get writ as one in the same.

Dark, also really MyTie,

Agreed, of course. Documented morality is objective (the first layer), but if it isn’t communicated properly very few people would know whether it applies to them, or what it even is.

Which is quite apropos to the above. If we are expecting anyone to follow an Objective Morality (as opposed to merely being beholden to it, somehow) then we must also have a means to Perfect Communication, or for it to be Perfectly Innate. Any problems in communication would distort the understanding of our Perfect Moral System and make any pursuit of following it in Orthodoxy impossible – merely shades of grey.

 
Flag Post

Ung / DR
I’ll reuse my example of traffic lights.
Every sane person of “mature” age (in this case, probably 5+, maybe 10+ in rare cases) KNOWS that you MUST cross only on GREEN.
Now, do ALL of them DO so?
Definitely, NOT.
And it isn’t due to “poor” communications – they KNOW the right way to act, they just CHOSE to IGNORE it.
(I’m talking about leisurely breaking that rule, not in case of actual emergency.)
This can be extended to ALL morals and rules – we KNOW them, yet we CHOOSE to IGNORE them occasionally.
Nowadays, RED traffic light is pretty objective (I don’t know of any exceptions, though there might be), yet it is being disregarded on a constant/regular basis.
What would you comment on this example?

 
Flag Post

And it isn’t due to “poor” communications – they KNOW the right way to act, they just CHOSE to IGNORE it.

They are actively breaking the law. This is a very simple setup. When someone steals, that person very much knows it isn’t allowed. He just does not wish to be within the morality system (in this case the law of that country).

This can be extended to ALL morals and rules – we KNOW them, yet we CHOOSE to IGNORE them occasionally.

No, it cannot. Laws in your country apply to you, because you live in that country. We may know the rules of other countries, but whether or not we choose to follow them is irrelevant, as we don’t have to follow them. Those rules do not apply to us. The rules of a random firm do not apply to us, as we do not work there. The rules of a religion we are not a member of do not apply to us. We “choose to ignore them”, because we are not part of it. In the case of laws of your country, you can choose to live somewhere else so you do not have to be part of that morality system. So, either you choose to be within a morality system and follow it, or you choose to be in another morality system and you do not have to follow the rules of another.

Nowadays, RED traffic light is pretty objective (I don’t know of any exceptions, though there might be), yet it is being disregarded on a constant/regular basis.

There may very well be an alien society which uses red as the go sign and green as the stop sign. It’s not objective just because it is the same in our society.

 
Flag Post

DR
Um, your examples drift from right to wrong ones.
Yes, SUBJECTIVE rules of countries and firms (that also MENTION their own limitation to citizens or workers) wouldn’t apply outside of their scope.
But as of religions – and especially speaking of G-d – this leads to another super-important question/definition.
You see, the CRUCIAL difference between the Abrahamic religions and the polytheistic religions, is that there is only ONE Creator-of-everything as opposed to “your deity, my deity”.
The latter is VERY similar to your examples of countries and citizenship.
The former ISN’T in the least.
Unless you can leave this WORLD.
Otherwise, the whole world is its Creator’s “country” by the very definition.
And thus His rules/laws apply to everyone.
Yes, every religion has different SETS of rules, which IS confusing – to a degree.
Now, we must look closely as to WHO exactly is mentioned in those rules as “citizens”.
As far as I know about Christianity AND Islam, they have THIS division:
a. “Citizens” of their religion – must abide by the rules.
b. “Foreigners” – must ACCEPT their religion and then abide by the rules.
c. NO ALTERNATIVE is given for the “foreigners” – EXCEPT to become “citizens”.
NOT SO in Judaism:
a. Jews must abide by the Mosaic Law aka Torah – which were given to JEWS through Moses and became binding on all JEWS.
b. Non-Jews must abide by the Noahic Law aka Seven Commandments – which were given to HUMANS through Noah and became binding on all HUMANS.
c. Here goes the crucial difference between Judaism and Christianity/Islam:
One DOESN’T have to become a “Jewish citizen” to be “in the system” – cause there are two SUB-systems (that cover the WHOLE humanity) and BOTH are valid.
For a Christian, one is either “with them” OR “wrong” – and this ends up with the majority of HUMANITY being WRONG.
For a Jew, one has an equally RIGHT choice, whether one choses to be “with them” or NOT – cause both choices add up to the totality of the humanity.
(Of course, both subsystems have rules, but nobody has to “change” their “status” to be ACCEPTED as a “citizen” – all humans already ARE.)
I hope you understood this, including the logical conclusion it should lead to – there can be an all-encompassing humanity-wide OBJECTIVE moral system, cause all humans ARE “citizens” of it, regardless of their actual obligations.

 
Flag Post

somebody, with regards to your example, a person with red green colorblindness cannot tell which is red and which is green. Therefore they rely on the position of the lights to tell which is red, and which is green. The one on top is red, the one underneath is green.

If we take a traffic light and lay it on its side, there is now no way for them to tell which is red and which is green. At an empty intersection they must guess, and hope for the best.

Even in our society, even with something as simple as traffic light, there is absolutely no guarantee that everyone will be able to interpret them the same way.

 
Flag Post

vika
I think you missed my point.
Anyways, I’d rather focus on the other thread for now, please.

 
Flag Post
Originally posted by somebody613:

vika
I think you missed my point.

Why is it you always say this, when someone provides a valid example of a flaw in your reasoning?

 
Flag Post

vika
Ever heard of “missing the forest because of the trees”?
This happens to you guys constantly, when answering my points…
Dunno, why…

 
Flag Post

I don’t see it that way somebody. You posted what you thought was an example of a system with only one possible interpretation, and I showed you even within normal daily usage, how that system can have many different interpretations. It dealt with your argument completely.

 
Flag Post

vika
Oh, you see, I was right – this WASN’T my idea.
MY idea was to show something “universal” enough to be called objective.
And the objective part there, was “stop on the STOP signal”, not WHAT that signal is or how people can MISUNDERSTAND it.
I did say about that.

 
Flag Post

Yea, I was trying to show how the stop on the stop signal isn’t universal, and not through misunderstanding, but through different visual data being received, the meaning easily changes. As Darkruler also pointed out, red equalling stop is a cultural thing anyway. It is not absolute that red has to equal stop.

 
Flag Post

vika
Nor I ever said so.
But “stop on STOP” – is universal.
And THAT was my whole example, nothing more.
Yup, trees and forest…

 
Flag Post

In which case, yes. You’re using a scientific point, and I agree with that. The instructions in any instructionset system are absolute, within that system.

 
Flag Post

vika

The instructions in any instruction set system are absolute, within that system.

Now, all we need, is to find such a system, that encompasses EVERYONE.
But hey, I already mentioned it before – on the previous page, I guess.
(When comparing Abrahamic religions.)
I’d like you to comment on that specifically.
Just reminding:
There is immense analogy between (lack of effectiveness of) ignorance of traffic lights AND rejection of universal humanity laws.
Saying “this isn’t my religion” is exactly like saying “I ignore these traffic lights”.
In both cases, ignorance and/or rejection is of no importance/value.
(Even more specifically, Bible speaks of COVENANTS in both cases, Moses and Noah. Thus, HUMANS willingly and consciously accepted the responsibility in both cases. To reject it, is akin to rejecting a state’s constitution on a personal whim. Which doesn’t actually work. Cue prison.)

 
Flag Post
Originally posted by somebody613:

Now, all we need, is to find such a system, that encompasses EVERYONE.

The laws of physics would certainly be a candidate there.

The science of human psychology might be another, at least for the time being. Neurology would certainly be a candidate, but does require quite a considerable amount of biology and math knowledge as a prerequisite.

 
Flag Post

vika
Ahem, MORALS, forgot the topic?
We are looking for a MORALS system, not just ANY system.

 
Flag Post

There isn’t a universal morality system. You could however, try to construct something using one of the universal systems we have got. You might have to keep it a bit vague in places though. I was giving you examples of systems that do affect everyone.

 
Flag Post

vika
There is one universal system everyone uses:
“I ignore what I choose to ignore, so you can ignore me too”. :DDDDD

 
Flag Post

Why would I ignore you, just because you ignore every counterargument I put up? If anything, it just shows the fragility of your belief to others.

 
Flag Post

Whatever makes you feel happy. :D

 
Flag Post

And thus His rules/laws apply to everyone.

But the key difference is that the laws are created by people proven to exist.

Non-Jews must abide by the Noahic Law aka Seven Commandments – which were given to HUMANS through Noah and became binding on all HUMANS.

Why “must” they? They also have to choice not to follow your rules (and many indeed do not). If we continue your logic, they shouldn’t be “wrong” either. Judging them is one thing, but your religion can’t even punish all those who don’t follow your rules. A country has a much more powerful force dealing with that.

 
Flag Post
Originally posted by vikaTae:

somebody, with regards to your example, a person with red green colorblindness cannot tell which is red and which is green. Therefore they rely on the position of the lights to tell which is red, and which is green. The one on top is red, the one underneath is green.

If we take a traffic light and lay it on its side, there is now no way for them to tell which is red and which is green. At an empty intersection they must guess, and hope for the best.

Even in our society, even with something as simple as traffic light, there is absolutely no guarantee that everyone will be able to interpret them the same way.

Well actually (I’m nitpicking here) that would be a more “strict” red-green colorblindness, as most normal (or normal as colorblindness goes) people with that type of colorblindness can tell the difference between the light green and the bright red of the lights, it’s just when the green gets darker, even brown that it gets harder. Though, for the sake of argument, if someone couldn’t tell the difference between them (though it would probably be very rare, and they would probably also have a few other colors mixed up, like the yellow light) then your example would still hold true, if a little less possible, or common.

 
Flag Post

DR
So, the recipients are proven to exist – but the Giver must be rejected.
Nice logic, indeed…

According to the covenant (aka binding agreement) of their ancestors, who accepted these laws on them AND their descendants.
Pretty much just another constitution.
Like, why current citizens must abide to the current country laws that were written centuries ago?
Is it ONLY cause their butts would get crisped in prison?
If you think so, I can only sigh…
Also, “religion” isn’t the one that punishes (well, you obviously think of Inquisition, but it’s a very wrong example) – G-d is.
So, being unreachable by “religious powers”, is no security against Divine retribution.
But anyways, I highly dislike how you always turn the topic towards punishment, disregarding benefits of actually abiding.
Well, in out current POLITICAL world, no REWARD is given for being a GOOD man, only punishment for being a BAD one.
Which is why people tend to extend such attitude to religion as well – and end up hating the “biggest punisher ever, Mr. Almighty”.
While totally disregarding numerous BENEFITS that He promises for obeying…
Oh, well…
SIGH