1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

The Official Erik Mesoy KOs Religio-Morality Thread!

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Erik Mesoy, Jun 17, 2005.

  1. Ayatollah So

    Ayatollah So the spoof'll set you free

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2002
    Messages:
    4,389
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    Why is a moral code that stems from the nature of social animals, subjective? Compare the statement: "the function of the heart is to pump blood." Suppose that the heart evolved by a combination of chance mutation plus natural selection, rather than created directly by God - does that mean that the function of the heart is subjective? If I say that the function of my heart is to make cool noises, is that "true for me"?
     
  2. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2005
    Messages:
    45,443
    Location:
    Pale Blue Dot youtube=wupToqz1e2g
    The majority of my problem with the Catholic Church's position on cloned stem cells is that "the natural function of an egg is to make a person, so the result of using an egg to make a cloned cell is making a person". However, in a subjective sense, an egg doesn't have a purpose (other than what we give it), so its product is not de facto a person
     
  3. Ayatollah So

    Ayatollah So the spoof'll set you free

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2002
    Messages:
    4,389
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    OK, now let's apply the same idea to heart-function and morality. To continue with my made-up example, I have the ability to ignore the pumping-blood function of my heart, in favor of its sound. I can take drugs to alter the sound of my heartbeat, making its sound even cooler - but if I ignore the pumping-blood issue, it might come back to bite me. But even if it doesn't, it remains an objective fact that the function of my heart is to pump blood, regardless of how I (ab)use it.

    Similarly, I could ignore the "social animal" function of morality. But the community around me won't, and they probably won't stand for it if my behavior becomes antisocial. But even if nothing happens to me ...

    Well, I don't want to say on the strength of this analogy that morality is objective, just like heart-function. To lay a few of my cards on the table, I'm not very sympathetic to a purely sociobiological definition of morality. But - and here is my point - it doesn't follow from what we've discussed that morality is subjective, either.
     

Share This Page