Is God necessary for morality?

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Ginkgo
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Ginkgo »

Immanuel Can wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:45 am
Ginkgo wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:16 am Well, Aristotle's unmoved mover springs to mind.
Okay, we could go with something like that.

I guess what we need to ask about that is whether there are any candidates for non-sentient First Causes. Are you satisfied that there are none?
Aristotle's unmoved mover is sentient because it has an intellect. I can't think of any non-sentient candidates.
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Belinda
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

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Immanuel Can,

The Prodigal Son
So there's no implication at all that the father was in any way "disinterested" or had "lost interest" in what his son had done.
Apparently we use the word differently. The way I use the word 'disinterested' has nothing to do with
'uninterested'.
https://www.grammarly.com/blog/disinter ... nterested/

Regarding the other parable I mentioned 'The Labourers' , everybody has approximately the same needs. This story too is about forgiving, precisely forgiving the debt of labour owed to the master.
In this day and age when some very poor countries are struggling to repay monetary debt to the UK we the UK should forgive that debt, especially in the time of pandemic. The parable The Labourers is the other side of the thematic coin from the story of the money lender who insists on his pound of flesh. The word 'interest' applies to usury. We are admonished "your goods put not to usury".Although we are probably sunk too deep in capitalism to throw it off, we can still ameliorate its worst effects.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

Ginkgo wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 4:48 am Aristotle's unmoved mover is sentient because it has an intellect. I can't think of any non-sentient candidates.
Where that leaves us, then, is here: we know there has to have been a First Cause, one that is eternal, uncaused, and now sentient as well. That leaves us uncertain as to the exact nature of such an entity -- but it gives us a firm certainty about the existence of such an Entity.

And this is as far as the mathematical and cosmological arguments have proposed to take us. Neither claims to be a full exposition of the exact nature of the Supreme Being, but both lead to the conclusion that the Supreme Being exists. "God" could still refer to a deistic being, such as the Unmoved Mover, or to a Personal God. We don't know yet.

From there, we must pick up a new argument if we wish to figure out the identity and precise nature of the Supreme Being...which is why more than one such argument exists in the first place. And my suggestion is that the design argument is the best next candidate, or the teleological argument. Both take us from the mere fact of the existence of God toward a better comprehension of the nature of God -- what kind of "God" are we talking about, in other words.

But we are now where we set out to be, for the moment.

You asked me what was the mathematical argument, and now, I think, you know.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

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Belinda wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:52 am Immanuel Can,

The Prodigal Son
So there's no implication at all that the father was in any way "disinterested" or had "lost interest" in what his son had done.
Apparently we use the word differently. The way I use the word 'disinterested' has nothing to do with
'uninterested'.
https://www.grammarly.com/blog/disinter ... nterested/
I know. But the two are related in this: the absence of particular "interest," or favour to one thing over another. I'm not implying, and don't think you're implying, that the father in the parable was simply bored and indifferent to the question of his son's sin, or had simply forgotten about it. But neither was he operating out of some disinterested state with regard to the identity of his son or to his son's previous behaviour. It was of all the importance that the father was receiving "this son of mine," as he puts it, not just anyone, and that he knew this son had been "lost, and is now found."

That's nothing like mere "disinterest." That's forgiveness.
Regarding the other parable I mentioned 'The Labourers' , everybody has approximately the same needs. This story too is about forgiving, precisely forgiving the debt of labour owed to the master.
Hmmm...I think maybe you've mixed up two parables. "The Parable of the Labourers" has no mention of debts in it at all. Or did you perhaps mis-title the parable to which you did wish to refer...like, maybe you meant "The Parable of the Debtors"?
In this day and age when some very poor countries are struggling to repay monetary debt to the UK we the UK should forgive that debt, especially in the time of pandemic.

Well, neither you nor I has any power over this question. World economic balances are outside our purview. But if any country needs to "forgive" debts, it would clearly be China, not the US or UK. If you've been to the developing world, you'd see that China is putting all kinds of countries too far in its debt to pay their way out, then taking their ports and roads as collateral. So national sovereignty, across the globe, is being bought out by China. If you worry yourself about any of that, worry about China first.

Meanwhile, the world's largest national debt is that of the US, actually...so if anybody is needy of debt-forgiveness, it would actually be the US. :shock:
Belinda
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Belinda »

Immanuel Can wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:04 pm
Belinda wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:52 am Immanuel Can,

The Prodigal Son
So there's no implication at all that the father was in any way "disinterested" or had "lost interest" in what his son had done.
Apparently we use the word differently. The way I use the word 'disinterested' has nothing to do with
'uninterested'.
https://www.grammarly.com/blog/disinter ... nterested/
I know. But the two are related in this: the absence of particular "interest," or favour to one thing over another. I'm not implying, and don't think you're implying, that the father in the parable was simply bored and indifferent to the question of his son's sin, or had simply forgotten about it. But neither was he operating out of some disinterested state with regard to the identity of his son or to his son's previous behaviour. It was of all the importance that the father was receiving "this son of mine," as he puts it, not just anyone, and that he knew this son had been "lost, and is now found."

That's nothing like mere "disinterest." That's forgiveness.
Regarding the other parable I mentioned 'The Labourers' , everybody has approximately the same needs. This story too is about forgiving, precisely forgiving the debt of labour owed to the master.
Hmmm...I think maybe you've mixed up two parables. "The Parable of the Labourers" has no mention of debts in it at all. Or did you perhaps mis-title the parable to which you did wish to refer...like, maybe you meant "The Parable of the Debtors"?
In this day and age when some very poor countries are struggling to repay monetary debt to the UK we the UK should forgive that debt, especially in the time of pandemic.

Well, neither you nor I has any power over this question. World economic balances are outside our purview. But if any country needs to "forgive" debts, it would clearly be China, not the US or UK. If you've been to the developing world, you'd see that China is putting all kinds of countries too far in its debt to pay their way out, then taking their ports and roads as collateral. So national sovereignty, across the globe, is being bought out by China. If you worry yourself about any of that, worry about China first.

Meanwhile, the world's largest national debt is that of the US, actually...so if anybody is needy of debt-forgiveness, it would actually be the US. :shock:
The father of the prodigal son may have forgiven his son despite the suffering his son had caused him. Nevertheless, if the father had been disinterested in his own suffering that would have made it easier for him to forgive his son. It's generally accepted real forgiveness is not easy.

Epictetus said to a student who complained that his brother mistreated him. Epictetus’s answer can be summarized as: “So what? Your task is not to have a brother who loves you, which you cannot hope to succeed in, your task is to be a good brother.

In the parable of the Labourers those labourers who had not put in all the hours of work were paid the same as the labourers who had done the full day's work. The usual thing we assume is labourers are indebted to the employer to put in a given number of hours. The master let them off their debt by paying them the same as those that worked longer hours. Jesus would have supported a basic living wage.

I am not Chinese or American but British and it's the task of citizens to be active in their country's business dealing with other countries.

PS after I read Henry's post below this. When I want my country to forgive debts I mean only those incurred by very poor countries who are struggling even to provide health care---not the US or China.
Last edited by Belinda on Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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henry quirk
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mannie

Post by henry quirk »

Meanwhile, the world's largest national debt is that of the US, actually

yeah, prior to beer flu we owed china big time

now: as far as I'm concerned, we don't owe them folks diddly

we should tell 'em to go pound sand
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

Belinda wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:25 pm The father of the prodigal son may have forgiven his son despite the suffering his son had caused him. Nevertheless, if...
There is no "if" in a parable. It's a story. It is whatever it says. There is no "other way" it "could have been," -- no "if."
It's generally accepted real forgiveness is not easy.
Well, that's true: and the bigger the disparity between the violation of trust committed and the faithfulness of the victim, the harder it is to forgive. That's what makes the forgiveness of God such a miracle. After all, why would a perfect Creator ever be expected to forgive those who have disdained him and indulged themselves in "prodigal" wickedness...and yet, He does, when we repent and stop being "prodigals," and become "sons."
In the parable of the Labourers those labourers who had not put in all the hours of work were paid the same as the labourers who had done the full day's work.
That's the one I thought you meant. There's no mention of "debt" in it at all.
The usual thing we assume is labourers are indebted to the employer to put in a given number of hours.
No, it works the other way. The labourers, in this story, are clearly hired. They don't "owe" anything, but are rather paid at the end for the work already rendered.
Jesus would have supported a basic living wage.
He didn't. It was not an issue He ever mentioned in His teaching. Rather, He advocated, in many places, charity to the poor and the personal responsibility -- and accountability to God -- of the rich. Maybe the story of Lazarus and the Rich Man best reflects that. Lazarus suffers poverty, but is rewarded in eternity; the rich man enjoys riches in life, but then is accountable in eternity.

That's how all this actually plays out.
When I want my country to forgive debts I mean only those incurred by very poor countries who are struggling even to provide health care---not the US or China.
Well, as you wish; but if so, that's certainly not "disinterested" of you.

So we're back to the question, "How does 'disinterest' ground any moral precepts?" Have you discovered an answer to that one yet?
Ginkgo
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Ginkgo »

Sorry, double post.
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Belinda
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Belinda »

Immanuel Can wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 4:01 pm
Belinda wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:25 pm The father of the prodigal son may have forgiven his son despite the suffering his son had caused him. Nevertheless, if...
There is no "if" in a parable. It's a story. It is whatever it says. There is no "other way" it "could have been," -- no "if."
It's generally accepted real forgiveness is not easy.
Well, that's true: and the bigger the disparity between the violation of trust committed and the faithfulness of the victim, the harder it is to forgive. That's what makes the forgiveness of God such a miracle. After all, why would a perfect Creator ever be expected to forgive those who have disdained him and indulged themselves in "prodigal" wickedness...and yet, He does, when we repent and stop being "prodigals," and become "sons."
In the parable of the Labourers those labourers who had not put in all the hours of work were paid the same as the labourers who had done the full day's work.
That's the one I thought you meant. There's no mention of "debt" in it at all.
The usual thing we assume is labourers are indebted to the employer to put in a given number of hours.
No, it works the other way. The labourers, in this story, are clearly hired. They don't "owe" anything, but are rather paid at the end for the work already rendered.
Jesus would have supported a basic living wage.
He didn't. It was not an issue He ever mentioned in His teaching. Rather, He advocated, in many places, charity to the poor and the personal responsibility -- and accountability to God -- of the rich. Maybe the story of Lazarus and the Rich Man best reflects that. Lazarus suffers poverty, but is rewarded in eternity; the rich man enjoys riches in life, but then is accountable in eternity.

That's how all this actually plays out.
When I want my country to forgive debts I mean only those incurred by very poor countries who are struggling even to provide health care---not the US or China.
Well, as you wish; but if so, that's certainly not "disinterested" of you.

So we're back to the question, "How does 'disinterest' ground any moral precepts?" Have you discovered an answer to that one yet?
You may call 'The Prodigal Son' a story ; it is a story. It narrates how a young man left his home and lived immorally. When, repentant, he returned to his father the father received him with open arms.

This story has stood the test of time not only because it has been mediated by the powerful church but also because it is a simple story that described the sort of forgiveness God the Father does.
The forgiveness of God the Father is unqualified and unconditional. There is no question the father wants reparation from his son, and this was a Jewish culture where the family is very important.The father in the story is not bothered about the son's tainting the honour of the family as he is disinterested in questions of family honour on the occasion of his son's return.

Biblical exegesis includes anthropological knowledge of the social structures of the time, and indeed some books of The Bible contain unwitting testimony to family and tribal structures so they add our knowledge.

All good stories can be interpreted at different levels, Jesus' parables are superficially simple , possibly to be accessible to rural people, and can also be interpreted as social or theological generalities.

The story called 'The Labourers' is in my view even more interesting as it grapples with the Problem of Evil. It is a truism the good work that individuals do varies between individuals and some individuals are downright parasites on communities, and in this day and age some individuals are parasites on the world stage, or are guilty of crimes against humanity. How can God forgive them? Does God forgive them? In the story of The Labourers Jesus tells how the master impartially pays everyone the same wages. If you can interpret the symbolism in 'The Labourers' then the master in the story is God and we are the labourers.

For modern examples of how disinterestedness is good practice, there is the jury member in a law court who refuses to be nobbled. Or there is the shopkeeper in the American South early last century who serves all the customers regardless of their race. Or take a popular genre the western where at risk of his own life the good sheriff contests the big rancher to protect the legal interest of the small holders.

The word 'interest' applies 1. to profit from a good investment. 'Disinterested' is cognate and antonymous.
or 2. applies to feelings of alertness , awareness, and pleasure. 'Uninterested' is cognate and antonymous.

'Interest' is the same word in both cases but the etymological histories of the words have separated in usage. A scientific researcher is interested in the research project and the same person also maintains a disinterested attitude to selection of evidence.
Ginkgo
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Ginkgo »

Ginkgo wrote: Sun Aug 02, 2020 5:29 am
Immanuel Can wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 2:51 pm
Ginkgo wrote: Sat Aug 01, 2020 4:48 am Aristotle's unmoved mover is sentient because it has an intellect. I can't think of any non-sentient candidates.
Where that leaves us, then, is here: we know there has to have been a First Cause, one that is eternal, uncaused, and now sentient as well. That leaves us uncertain as to the exact nature of such an entity -- but it gives us a firm certainty about the existence of such an Entity.

And this is as far as the mathematical and cosmological arguments have proposed to take us. Neither claims to be a full exposition of the exact nature of the Supreme Being, but both lead to the conclusion that the Supreme Being exists. "God" could still refer to a deistic being, such as the Unmoved Mover, or to a Personal God. We don't know yet.

From there, we must pick up a new argument if we wish to figure out the identity and precise nature of the Supreme Being...which is why more than one such argument exists in the first place. And my suggestion is that the design argument is the best next candidate, or the teleological argument. Both take us from the mere fact of the existence of God toward a better comprehension of the nature of God -- what kind of "God" are we talking about, in other words.

But we are now where we set out to be, for the moment.

You asked me what was the mathematical argument, and now, I think, you know.
It just dawned on me just now when you asked me if I know of any "non-sentient First Causes." I was thinking in terms of "beings". Actually, I do know of one. There is now proof that quantum fluctuations were responsible for the Big Bang. There is no need for a God or unmoved mover as the first cause, we now have a quantum explanation for the first cause.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

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Belinda wrote: Sun Aug 02, 2020 9:28 am You may call 'The Prodigal Son' a story ; it is a story.
Right. But there are different kinds of "stories," as you rightly point out. Some are trivial, and some are significant. Others, like this one, are so long-standing and powerful that they reappear constantly throughout human history since their first telling.

But my point is only this: stories differ from real life in that there are no "other ways things could have gone" than what the story itself describes. We have to accept a parable on its own terms.
It narrates how a young man left his home and lived immorally. When, repentant, he returned to his father the father received him with open arms. This story has stood the test of time not only because it has been mediated by the powerful church but also because it is a simple story that described the sort of forgiveness God the Father does.
All that is true.
The forgiveness of God the Father is unqualified and unconditional.
Yes, but notice this: that the father didn't go and find the son and force him to come home. Instead, he waited for the son to return voluntarily. The forgiveness was unconditional; but the forgiveness had to be wanted, and sought, by the son.

The point is that God does not force people to come to Him.
There is no question the father wants reparation from his son, and this was a Jewish culture where the family is very important.
That is true. And God does not tell us to do reparations to make ourselves good enough to be accepted. We're already "prodigals"; what we need is that forgiveness. We just need to know we do.
All good stories can be interpreted at different levels.
Yes, but not with infinite flexibility. Each story offers us particular terms on which to take it, and only things that fall within that range are fair interpretations; that's why, in the case of a parable especially, we have to pay close attention to what is said and to what is not said in it.
Jesus' parables are superficially simple , possibly to be accessible to rural people, and can also be interpreted as social or theological generalities.
True. In fact, it's quite clear Christ Himself interpreted them in just that way. They were never "just stories," to speak. They were always about more.
The story called 'The Labourers' is in my view even more interesting as it grapples with the Problem of Evil.
It doesn't, actually. Evil is not even mentioned in it. Nobody did evil at all...guys just went out and did the work they were asked to, and got wages afterward.
In the story of The Labourers Jesus tells how the master impartially pays everyone the same wages. If you can interpret the symbolism in 'The Labourers' then the master in the story is God and we are the labourers.
Oh, I see...you think it's a parable about whether or not God accepts people into Heaven. No, it's not that. After all, it's not that the "employer" in the parable was inviting the labourers into his house. This is about how God is free to reward people as He sees fit -- not as we do.
For modern examples of how disinterestedness is good practice, there is the jury member in a law court who refuses to be nobbled. Or there is the shopkeeper in the American South early last century who serves all the customers regardless of their race. Or take a popular genre the western where at risk of his own life the good sheriff contests the big rancher to protect the legal interest of the small holders.
"Disinterestedness" of that sort is great once we already know what the right or just principle is. For example, once we know that, say, premeditated murder is wrong, an ideal court disregards whether the murder is rich or poor, male or female, Anglo or Chinese, or whatever else is irrelevant. But here's the important point:

Disinterestedness is itself useless if we don't already have that right principle. And disinterestedness can't tell us what the right principle actually is. So it's not the touchstone of morality.

How do we know murder is wrong? Not because murder fails to be "disinterested." And certainly not because we remain "disinterested" in the question. We get the principle "Murder is wrong" from elsewhere, and then use disinterest as a supplementary principle in adjudicating cases. But "disinterestedness" itself tells us nothing about morality.
Belinda
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

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Immanuel Can wrote: Sun Aug 02, 2020 1:52 pm
Belinda wrote: Sun Aug 02, 2020 9:28 am You may call 'The Prodigal Son' a story ; it is a story.
Right. But there are different kinds of "stories," as you rightly point out. Some are trivial, and some are significant. Others, like this one, are so long-standing and powerful that they reappear constantly throughout human history since their first telling.

But my point is only this: stories differ from real life in that there are no "other ways things could have gone" than what the story itself describes. We have to accept a parable on its own terms.
It narrates how a young man left his home and lived immorally. When, repentant, he returned to his father the father received him with open arms. This story has stood the test of time not only because it has been mediated by the powerful church but also because it is a simple story that described the sort of forgiveness God the Father does.
All that is true.
The forgiveness of God the Father is unqualified and unconditional.
Yes, but notice this: that the father didn't go and find the son and force him to come home. Instead, he waited for the son to return voluntarily. The forgiveness was unconditional; but the forgiveness had to be wanted, and sought, by the son.


The point is that God does not force people to come to Him.
There is no question the father wants reparation from his son, and this was a Jewish culture where the family is very important.
That is true. And God does not tell us to do reparations to make ourselves good enough to be accepted. We're already "prodigals"; what we need is that forgiveness. We just need to know we do.
All good stories can be interpreted at different levels.
Yes, but not with infinite flexibility. Each story offers us particular terms on which to take it, and only things that fall within that range are fair interpretations; that's why, in the case of a parable especially, we have to pay close attention to what is said and to what is not said in it.
Jesus' parables are superficially simple , possibly to be accessible to rural people, and can also be interpreted as social or theological generalities.
True. In fact, it's quite clear Christ Himself interpreted them in just that way. They were never "just stories," to speak. They were always about more.
The story called 'The Labourers' is in my view even more interesting as it grapples with the Problem of Evil.
It doesn't, actually. Evil is not even mentioned in it. Nobody did evil at all...guys just went out and did the work they were asked to, and got wages afterward.
In the story of The Labourers Jesus tells how the master impartially pays everyone the same wages. If you can interpret the symbolism in 'The Labourers' then the master in the story is God and we are the labourers.
Oh, I see...you think it's a parable about whether or not God accepts people into Heaven. No, it's not that. After all, it's not that the "employer" in the parable was inviting the labourers into his house. This is about how God is free to reward people as He sees fit -- not as we do.
For modern examples of how disinterestedness is good practice, there is the jury member in a law court who refuses to be nobbled. Or there is the shopkeeper in the American South early last century who serves all the customers regardless of their race. Or take a popular genre the western where at risk of his own life the good sheriff contests the big rancher to protect the legal interest of the small holders.
"Disinterestedness" of that sort is great once we already know what the right or just principle is. For example, once we know that, say, premeditated murder is wrong, an ideal court disregards whether the murder is rich or poor, male or female, Anglo or Chinese, or whatever else is irrelevant. But here's the important point:

Disinterestedness is itself useless if we don't already have that right principle. And disinterestedness can't tell us what the right principle actually is. So it's not the touchstone of morality.

How do we know murder is wrong? Not because murder fails to be "disinterested." And certainly not because we remain "disinterested" in the question. We get the principle "Murder is wrong" from elsewhere, and then use disinterest as a supplementary principle in adjudicating cases. But "disinterestedness" itself tells us nothing about morality.
I said nothing about God inviting sinners into Heaven.This is what you wrote :
This is about how God is free to reward people as He sees fit -- not as we do.
. I agree.

Disinterestedness corroborates what we already have evidence for, and can alert us to good practice.

Not all altruistic acts are entirely disinterested and nothing else. For instance the philanthanthropic mill manager, Robert Owen , made good houses, schools, and working conditions for the workers, immensely better than was usual during the Industrial Revolution. He did so partly because he improved productivity thereby. The right principle in the case of the work of Robert Owen was twofold; increase productivity and increase happiness of the workers.We must remember it will not help anyone to be happier if good intentions are not practicable. However there have been some amazing leaps of faith.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

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Belinda wrote: Sun Aug 02, 2020 8:04 pm Disinterestedness corroborates what we already have evidence for, and can alert us to good practice.
:? :? :?
I don't see how it can do that at all.

You're going to have to give me an example.
For instance the philanthanthropic mill manager, Robert Owen , made good houses, schools, and working conditions for the workers, immensely better than was usual during the Industrial Revolution.

He was also a utopian Socialist, which makes him well-meaning but totally misguided in the long run. Socialism has killed far, far more people than it has ever helped, and caused economic ruin in every single country where it has become the rule. And he was certainly an ideologue, and as you say, not "disinterested" at all.

But what does he have to do with "disinteredness," the subject of our present concern? I still don't see any way it can illuminate morality. You're going to have to explain that to me.

Like, how does "disinterestedness" cause us to believe that murder, or prostitution, or slavery, or child abuse is wrong?
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Ginkgo »

Immanuel Can wrote:
From there, we must pick up a new argument if we wish to figure out the identity and precise nature of the Supreme Being...which is why more than one such argument exists in the first place. And my suggestion is that the design argument is the best next candidate, or the teleological argument. Both take us from the mere fact of the existence of God toward a better comprehension of the nature of God -- what kind of "God" are we talking about, in other words.

But we are now where we set out to be, for the moment.

You asked me what was the mathematical argument, and now, I think, you know.
Ginkgo wrote: It just dawned on me just now when you asked me if I know of any "non-sentient First Causes." I was thinking in terms of "beings". Actually, I do know of one. There is now proof that quantum fluctuations were responsible for the Big Bang. There is no need for a Supreme Being as the first cause, we now have a quantum explanation for the first cause.
I thought that the design argument was a teleological argument.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

Ginkgo wrote: Mon Aug 03, 2020 3:54 am I thought that the design argument was a teleological argument.
That depends on what you mean by "teleological argument."

If you mean that an "end" or "outcome" (telos) has to be implied, it isn't. The design argument follows the pattern of argument-to-the-best-explanation. In that, it's different from the mathematical argument, which is deductive. But no particular "telos" is required to advance it.

Our first conclusion was that there must be an uncaused First Cause.

Our second argument is probabilistic: is it more likely to be an intelligent uncaused First Cause, or a unintelligent uncaused First Cause?

And here's where the various design arguments come online. Design is detectable from features of the designed, such as irreducible complexity, specification, and function. And wherever we have established that design exists, an unintelligent cause, or mere chance, becomes an overwhelmingly improbable hypothesis. So were are drawn, by argument-to-the-the-best-explanation of the data, to the far more probable hypothesis of design...and a Designer as the First Cause.

Now, I had asked what you considered a best hypothesis, and you suggested Aristotle's Unmoved Mover. Okay. Then I double-checked to see if you had any hypothesis involving an unintelligent First Cause, and it seems you didn't. So I was preparing to move on to the question of the identity and nature of this First Cause...but perhaps we're now going back to that, and suggesting that maybe that there is some kind of quantum state that accounts for the origin of the universe...is that correct?
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