Is morality objective or subjective?

Should you think about your duty, or about the consequences of your actions? Or should you concentrate on becoming a good person?

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Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Belinda wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 11:15 am
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 7:49 am
Terrapin Station wrote: Thu Jan 20, 2022 5:13 pm
If meaning is objective, then we should be able to show an occurrence of objective meaning, right? That is, show an occurrence of meaning where meaning isn't a mental phenomenon. So what would we show?
1 A location-criterion for what we call subjectivity and objectivity doesn't work. It's a legacy from the dualist idea of mind-dependence and mind-independence.

2 Meaning isn't a kind of thing that exists with a location, such as inside or outside brains. That's a metaphysical delusion, as is the idea that mentalist talk is any more than metaphorical.
The location of meaning is the subject who means. The subject who means is an accumulation of experiences one of which is the subject at one time learned some science.
Why not say the location of meaning is the object that means something- such as a sentence? Is that a hopelessly deluded, philosophically illiterate thing to say? 'Ordinary folk use these words in this way, but we philosophers actually know what their referents really are. Meanings exist in brains and can't exist outside them.' And so on, and on, and on, and on.

Or: 'Only brains can know things, so knowledge can't exist in books and libraries.' Blah-di-blah-di-blah.

To repeat, what we call the meaning of something isn't a thing of some kind that exists somewhere, somehow. That idea is a deep and powerful metaphysical delusion.
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Terrapin Station
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Terrapin Station »

Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 7:49 am 1 A location-criterion for what we call subjectivity and objectivity doesn't work.
It's exactly what I'm talking about when I talk about this stuff. The terms don't matter. What I'm talking about, whatever terms we choose to use for it, is the location of meaning phenomena and the upshots of that.
2 Meaning isn't a kind of thing that exists with a location,
On my view, "x exists but x does not have a location" is incoherent.
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Terrapin Station
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Terrapin Station »

Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 2:08 pm
Belinda wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 11:15 am
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 7:49 am
1 A location-criterion for what we call subjectivity and objectivity doesn't work. It's a legacy from the dualist idea of mind-dependence and mind-independence.

2 Meaning isn't a kind of thing that exists with a location, such as inside or outside brains. That's a metaphysical delusion, as is the idea that mentalist talk is any more than metaphorical.
The location of meaning is the subject who means. The subject who means is an accumulation of experiences one of which is the subject at one time learned some science.
Why not say the location of meaning is the object that means something- such as a sentence? Is that a hopelessly deluded, philosophically illiterate thing to say? 'Ordinary folk use these words in this way, but we philosophers actually know what their referents really are. Meanings exist in brains and can't exist outside them.' And so on, and on, and on, and on.

Or: 'Only brains can know things, so knowledge can't exist in books and libraries.' Blah-di-blah-di-blah.

To repeat, what we call the meaning of something isn't a thing of some kind that exists somewhere, somehow. That idea is a deep and powerful metaphysical delusion.
This kind of seems like you're campaigning for not really doing philosophy about stuff after all.
Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Terrapin Station wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 2:42 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 2:08 pm
Belinda wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 11:15 am

The location of meaning is the subject who means. The subject who means is an accumulation of experiences one of which is the subject at one time learned some science.
Why not say the location of meaning is the object that means something- such as a sentence? Is that a hopelessly deluded, philosophically illiterate thing to say? 'Ordinary folk use these words in this way, but we philosophers actually know what their referents really are. Meanings exist in brains and can't exist outside them.' And so on, and on, and on, and on.

Or: 'Only brains can know things, so knowledge can't exist in books and libraries.' Blah-di-blah-di-blah.

To repeat, what we call the meaning of something isn't a thing of some kind that exists somewhere, somehow. That idea is a deep and powerful metaphysical delusion.
This kind of seems like you're campaigning for not really doing philosophy about stuff after all.
What I'm saying is that, pending evidence for the existence of so-called abstract things - such as meaning, truth, knowledge, and so on - belief that they exist - and therefore have a location and can be described - is irrational.

So yes, I think philosophy is and has been nothing more than talk about so-called abstract things - which is why we're still asking the questions that Plato's Socrates asked, and why we're no nearer to answering them.

To repeat: a theory of [insert abstract noun] can be nothing more than an explanation of how we do or could the word [insert the same abstract noun], its cognates and related words, in different contexts.

And such a theory is nothing like a theory of thermodynamics or gravity, and so on - a physical theory about what we call reality.
Belinda
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Belinda »

Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 2:08 pm
Belinda wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 11:15 am
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 7:49 am
1 A location-criterion for what we call subjectivity and objectivity doesn't work. It's a legacy from the dualist idea of mind-dependence and mind-independence.

2 Meaning isn't a kind of thing that exists with a location, such as inside or outside brains. That's a metaphysical delusion, as is the idea that mentalist talk is any more than metaphorical.
The location of meaning is the subject who means. The subject who means is an accumulation of experiences one of which is the subject at one time learned some science.
Why not say the location of meaning is the object that means something- such as a sentence? Is that a hopelessly deluded, philosophically illiterate thing to say? 'Ordinary folk use these words in this way, but we philosophers actually know what their referents really are. Meanings exist in brains and can't exist outside them.' And so on, and on, and on, and on.

Or: 'Only brains can know things, so knowledge can't exist in books and libraries.' Blah-di-blah-di-blah.

To repeat, what we call the meaning of something isn't a thing of some kind that exists somewhere, somehow. That idea is a deep and powerful metaphysical delusion.
Objects such as sentences are not the sort of entities that mean . Sentences' meanings are the use of the sentences, without which sentences are meaningless. The meaning of a communication is its use, which is normally within some social situation.
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Terrapin Station
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Terrapin Station »

Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 3:24 pm What I'm saying is that, pending evidence for the existence of so-called abstract things - such as meaning, truth, knowledge, and so on -
if you wind up arguing that words, symbols, etc. do not have meanings, that there is no knowledge, etc., then you should realize you've royally f---ed up somewhere.
Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Terrapin Station wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 6:58 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 3:24 pm What I'm saying is that, pending evidence for the existence of so-called abstract things - such as meaning, truth, knowledge, and so on -
if you wind up arguing that words, symbols, etc. do not have meanings, that there is no knowledge, etc., then you should realize you've royally f---ed up somewhere.
I'm obviously not saying that at all. Think about it. What evidence is there for the existence of an abstract thing that is a meaning? For example, what and where is a meaning? Saying it's a mental phenomenon explains precisely nothing.
Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Belinda wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 5:58 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 2:08 pm
Belinda wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 11:15 am

The location of meaning is the subject who means. The subject who means is an accumulation of experiences one of which is the subject at one time learned some science.
Why not say the location of meaning is the object that means something- such as a sentence? Is that a hopelessly deluded, philosophically illiterate thing to say? 'Ordinary folk use these words in this way, but we philosophers actually know what their referents really are. Meanings exist in brains and can't exist outside them.' And so on, and on, and on, and on.

Or: 'Only brains can know things, so knowledge can't exist in books and libraries.' Blah-di-blah-di-blah.

To repeat, what we call the meaning of something isn't a thing of some kind that exists somewhere, somehow. That idea is a deep and powerful metaphysical delusion.
Objects such as sentences are not the sort of entities that mean . Sentences' meanings are the use of the sentences, without which sentences are meaningless. The meaning of a communication is its use, which is normally within some social situation.
And it's because Wittgenstein was right - meaning is use - that meanings aren't things in minds or brains. That's why it's wrong to say 'the location of meaning is the subject who means'. Or that meaning is a mental phenomenon.
Age
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Age »

bahman wrote: Sun Oct 24, 2021 3:23 pm
Age wrote: Sun Oct 24, 2021 8:43 am
bahman wrote: Sun Oct 24, 2021 4:36 am
I cannot make it easier than this.
You cannot make 'what' easier?
bahman wrote: Sun Oct 24, 2021 4:36 am Do you want me to make it in form of syllogism?
Yes.
bahman wrote: Sun Oct 24, 2021 4:36 am It is simple.
Okay, so then making 'it' into syllogism form, for you, will not be hard at all.
bahman wrote: Sun Oct 24, 2021 4:36 am How do you define a good nature by the way?
That was what I was going to get to with you, which is why I use the words, ' so called "good nature" '. But to me EVERY one is born with the 'natural tendency' to just be 'good'. However, EVERY adult ends up doing 'wrong' because of the Wrong way they have been brought up in childhood.
bahman wrote: Sun Oct 24, 2021 4:36 am Once you understand what good nature means then you understand what evil nature is, the opposite of good.
So, how do you define 'good nature'?

By the way, does ANY of this end up leading to you informing us whether morality is objective or subjective?
First, we have to agree on what a good nature is for example. Could we agree that good nature is when you don't like pain or don't like to cause pain?
Yes we could.
Age
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Age »

To find what is morally right, or wrong, then all one has to do is just work out what you would want done to you, if you were 'in their shoes', as they say.

And, to find out the difference between what is morally objective from what is just morally subjective is done by just working out what the difference could be.

If 'morality' is just what is classed as being what is Right and what is Wrong human behavior in Life, then to uncover, and thus discover, if 'morality', itself, is objective or subjective is a Truly simple and easy process.

If ANY one would like to discuss to FIND OUT and SEE what thee ACTUAL Truth is here, then let us BEGIN.
Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Age wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 10:29 am To find what is morally right, or wrong, then all one has to do is just work out what you would want done to you, if you were 'in their shoes', as they say.

And, to find out the difference between what is morally objective from what is just morally subjective is done by just working out what the difference could be.

If 'morality' is just what is classed as being what is Right and what is Wrong human behavior in Life, then to uncover, and thus discover, if 'morality', itself, is objective or subjective is a Truly simple and easy process.

If ANY one would like to discuss to FIND OUT and SEE what thee ACTUAL Truth is here, then let us BEGIN.
1 What I want done to me is morally right; and what I don't want done to me is morally wrong.

2 Morality can be objective - there are moral facts, regardless of what anyone thinks or wants done to them.

Spot the contradiction?
Belinda
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Belinda »

Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 9:20 am
Belinda wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 5:58 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 2:08 pm
Why not say the location of meaning is the object that means something- such as a sentence? Is that a hopelessly deluded, philosophically illiterate thing to say? 'Ordinary folk use these words in this way, but we philosophers actually know what their referents really are. Meanings exist in brains and can't exist outside them.' And so on, and on, and on, and on.

Or: 'Only brains can know things, so knowledge can't exist in books and libraries.' Blah-di-blah-di-blah.

To repeat, what we call the meaning of something isn't a thing of some kind that exists somewhere, somehow. That idea is a deep and powerful metaphysical delusion.
Objects such as sentences are not the sort of entities that mean . Sentences' meanings are the use of the sentences, without which sentences are meaningless. The meaning of a communication is its use, which is normally within some social situation.
And it's because Wittgenstein was right - meaning is use - that meanings aren't things in minds or brains. That's why it's wrong to say 'the location of meaning is the subject who means'. Or that meaning is a mental phenomenon.
But meaning is synonymous with intention. If Alicia means to do such and such she intends to do such -and- such. When Alicia say to Delicia "I mean to give you my car." or " I actually saw a reindeer in the garden." " God exists." Alicia intends to do something about her own future behaviour (including her ideas), and Delicia is a passive receiver of Alicia's communicated meaning.
Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Belinda wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:47 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 9:20 am
Belinda wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 5:58 pm

Objects such as sentences are not the sort of entities that mean . Sentences' meanings are the use of the sentences, without which sentences are meaningless. The meaning of a communication is its use, which is normally within some social situation.
And it's because Wittgenstein was right - meaning is use - that meanings aren't things in minds or brains. That's why it's wrong to say 'the location of meaning is the subject who means'. Or that meaning is a mental phenomenon.
But meaning is synonymous with intention. If Alicia means to do such and such she intends to do such -and- such. When Alicia say to Delicia "I mean to give you my car." or " I actually saw a reindeer in the garden." " God exists." Alicia intends to do something about her own future behaviour (including her ideas), and Delicia is a passive receiver of Alicia's communicated meaning.
The expression 'meaning (intending) to do something' uses the word 'meaning' in one way. The expression 'the meaning of a sentence' uses the word 'meaning' in a different way. And, as Wittgenstein pointed out, there may be a family resemblance between the uses we make of a word. But the claim that meaning is synonymous with intention is obviously false. He called it bewitchment by the devices of our language.
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Terrapin Station
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Terrapin Station »

Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 8:22 pm
Terrapin Station wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 6:58 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 3:24 pm What I'm saying is that, pending evidence for the existence of so-called abstract things - such as meaning, truth, knowledge, and so on -
if you wind up arguing that words, symbols, etc. do not have meanings, that there is no knowledge, etc., then you should realize you've royally f---ed up somewhere.
I'm obviously not saying that at all. Think about it. What evidence is there for the existence of an abstract thing that is a meaning? For example, what and where is a meaning? Saying it's a mental phenomenon explains precisely nothing.
if there are meanings, if there is knowledge, etc. then those things exist, right? That's the way that "there is x" works. Whatever is x there, if there is some of it, it exists.

You're not arguing that "there is meaning but it doesn't exist" are you, because that would suggest that you don't even understand how to use language, and we'd have to wonder what the hell you could possibly be saying.
Belinda
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Belinda »

Belinda wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:47 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 9:20 am
Belinda wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 5:58 pm

Objects such as sentences are not the sort of entities that mean . Sentences' meanings are the use of the sentences, without which sentences are meaningless. The meaning of a communication is its use, which is normally within some social situation.
And it's because Wittgenstein was right - meaning is use - that meanings aren't things in minds or brains. That's why it's wrong to say 'the location of meaning is the subject who means'. Or that meaning is a mental phenomenon.
But meaning is synonymous with intention. If Alicia means to do such and such she intends to do such -and- such. When Alicia say to Delicia "I mean to give you my car." or " I actually saw a reindeer in the garden." " God exists." Alicia intends to do something about her own future behaviour (including her ideas), and Delicia is a passive receiver of Alicia's communicated meaning.
Yes, I know.

But what I intend, when I conflate intention and meaning, is to show that intention is the basis of all that we can call 'meaning'. And intention is subjective.
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