Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

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Divine Insight
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Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

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Post by Divine Insight »

In another thread The Tanager has requested a separate thread for his argument for the existence of a Non-Subjective morality.
The Tanager wrote: You made the claim that subjective morality exists in that other thread and this one. I am responding to that claim. I'm also willing afterwards to offer my own reasons for believing in non-subjective morality. If and/or how would one come to know what the non-subjective morality is would be an additional question, but it does not settle this one that we are talking about because of the claims you have made. After this discussion, start a thread on that and I'll share my thoughts.
I would be very interested to hear these arguments.
The Tanager wrote: If and/or how would one come to know what the non-subjective morality is would be an additional question
I agree. First we need to have reasons to even suspect that such a thing exists. I would like to hear those arguments first.

But yes, if those initial arguments are compelling (which I confess to being skeptic about already), a far more important question would be the question of how we could come to know what those moral rules are.

Without this additional knowledge the existence of a non-subjective morality would be useless. A system of morality whose content cannot be known would be meaningless.

So yes, we not only need to have arguments for the existence of a non-subjective morality, but we then need to know precisely what it contains without ambiguity.

Any ambiguity would bring us right back to having to subjectively guess what we think it might contain anyway. So that would hardly be useful and would instantly return us right back to a state of subjective morality.

So yes, we don't just need to know that an objective morality exists, but we also need to know precisely what it contains.
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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

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Post by Divine Insight »

2ndRateMind wrote: My contention is that where the world is affected, that is where we begin talking objectivity, rather than subjectivity.
The problem is that even that perspective is subjective.

For example, consider the objective question, "Should we eat the flesh of other animals, or should we all become vegans?'

Obviously come some imagined "Judgement Day", the answer to the objective question of whether or not we were vegans can be answered objectively. We either ate animal flesh or we didn't.

But that is not a moral question. The moral question is whether or not eating meat is right or wrong. And we can't answer that question objectively. We can only offer our subjective opinions on that question.

You say,
So I would say that our ethics depend not so much on what we do, or what we know or believe, but fundamentally on the way we are. It might well be that, come Judgment Day, irrespective of what belief system we subscribe to, or what good works we have managed, God makes His decision on the dispersal of our souls, heaven- or hell-wards, simply on how we are.
"

So now you are left with a God who has to make the subjective moral call on whether or not he thinks a carnivore is worthy of heaven or should be cast into hell.

There is no getting away from subjective morality. Morality cannot be made objective. In the end some conscious mind needs to make a "subjective judgement" on what what that mind deems to be moral or immoral.

A theist can try to claim that God's subjective opinions are "objective". But that actually becomes a grave philosophical problem. If God's opinions are objective, then God cannot have any free will to have a subjective opinion that isn't already carved in stone. This would be a God who cannot think outside of a pre-programmed objective box. Now we end up with a God that is nothing but a robot.

In fact, this is a huge problem for any theology that wants to try to claim that there exists such a thing as objective morality. At best all that can exist is a dictator God who will force his objective moral opinions onto everyone else.

So even the existence of a God doesn't help at argument for objective morality.
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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #112

Post by Purple Knight »

Divine Insight wrote:There is no getting away from subjective morality. Morality cannot be made objective. In the end some conscious mind needs to make a "subjective judgement" on what what that mind deems to be moral or immoral.
A system of laws gets pretty darn close, probably as close as humanly possible.

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