Well, of course. This is patently obvious.
This is really 'moral relativism' when scientifically applied with no
God based moral standards.The 'morality' will ebb and flow with
the changing winds of modern life.Sounds nice though...
Oh no!! Religions isn't the source of all things moral? Woe is me, woe is
When a person learns how to think in staid of what to think morality will be
lost with the books you read and the people you are with.
A high degree of correlation between Science & morality is due to Critical
thinking and deductive reasoning.
"Morality is doing what is right regardless of what you are told. Religion
is doing what you are told regardless of what is right." -- Anonymous"...role of religious moral imperatives... emerged only as an
addition to our natural instincts for cooperation and empathy." - Bonobo and
the Atheist by Frans De Waal
@Fred T – “This is really 'moral relativism' when
scientifically applied with no God based moral standards.”It’s simply not the case that without a belief in God all morality will
be relative (which I take you to mean no more solid than whims or popular
attitudes). Objective morality is based on reason, sympathy and our
evolved capacity for empathy, and is grounded in human well-being (and
conversely, not causing meaningless suffering). And there have been objective
ethical schools of thought throughout history that do not rely on a belief in a
celestial “law giver” – see Buddha, Confucius, Aristotle, the
Stoics, Spinoza, Hume, Kant, JS Mill, and in recent times folks like (the
dubious) Ayn Rand, Peter Singer, Michael Martin, and Sam Harris.Conversely, if you still believe God (the Bible) is our only source of
absolute morality I would urge you to read the book again – the Bible is
full of moral relativism. As one of many examples: Slavery – bad when the
Egyptians were doing it to the Israelites, not so bad when the Israelites were
later doing it to all of their neighbors.
I can't resist pointing out here that all morality is relative. Yes, even
the Ten CommandmentsNo graven images -- unless you're a
religious artist. Remember the sabbath -- even Jesus himself said this one
was relative.Honor your parents -- what if your father is a murderer?
Should you still honor him?Don't kill -- unless you support the death
penalty. Unless you're killing in self-defense. Unless you want to start a
war with another country.No adultery -- What's your definition of
"adultery"? According to the Bible, a man who divorces and remarries is
an adulterer.Don't steal -- Taxes, anyone? False witness -- No,
honey, of COURSE those pants don't make your butt look fat.Don't
covet -- Please, a large part of our society is devoted to "keeping up with
the Joneses". Ambition is seen as a GOOD thing.Somebody please
tell me -- where is all this NON-relative morality that people keep talking
This article is sparse on details of the study, so apparently comes to some
unjustified conclusions. The problem appears to be that there are
far too many variables, when it comes to the study of people, to arrive at any
reliable, tidy little theory. Hence sociology, for example, cannot be an
"exact science" and arguably not a science at all. There are other
fields, of course, regarded as pseudo-scientific and yet great "faith"
is placed in them.I think that some "comments" here are
based on just such a neat division of people into scientific and religious.
That doesn't work with some of history's best scientists, modern and
earlier scientists; I did a study on this and found it to be instructive.My own observation tends to confirm one of this study's findings,
though: the difference between "religious" and "scientific"
people is connected with whether one has faith, primarily, in God or in man.
The fallibility of man has been, and continues to be, well demonstrated,
although that does NOT mean that the scientific method, when strictly followed
and where the subject permits, is of no value. Quite the contrary.
If morality is relative, why is crime continously increased dramatically from
the days of “social liberation” of the 1960s to rapid advancement of
worldly disciplines today? Is that merely population relativism saying the more
people occupying a space, the greater the probability for crime?There are absolutely many consequences evident that negate moral relativism.
More unhappy people exist today who self-medicate with anything from illegal
drugs to prescription drugs to over the counter drugs and other addictive
substances. Many are addicted to virtual experiences where in their
minds, they become someone else, but in reality, they haven't moved an inch
toward self-improvement or serving others. Then there are the general
tendencies to be selfish, self-absorbed, self-indulgent with seeking power,
money, violence, fame, and all sorts of things that boil down to worshipping
idols and philosophies in the world today.The greatest trick the
devil ever did pull off was to convince the world he didn't exist. Today
he has done much more as now he persuades many of faith to disbelieve.
Everything is interrelated, yet also easily rationalized away by so called
enlightened thinking. Hence, endless debates go nowhere and God remains real.
@EternalPerspective --"If morality is relative, why is crime
continously increased dramatically from the days of “social
liberation” of the 1960s to rapid advancement of worldly disciplines
today?"Actually, US violent crime rates have been FALLING for
decades.There goes your theory.
@Gildas;You bet that man is fallible. Since "god" was
invented by man, he too is certainly fallible, and since religion is also based
on the ideas of man guess what that makes religion?Fallible.
@ TNGraven images: read the 2nd commandment and 3rd together in
context. Don't worship the works of your own hands is the message.Remember the sabbath: Jesus both remembered and kept the sabbath,
though not as the Pharisees commanded.Don't "kill": the
Hebrew word in the original is MURDER.No adultery: your view is
almost right but un-Christian laws say otherwise or are not enforced.Don't steal: DittoFalse witness: AGAINST thy neighbor.Don't covet: Agreed. Your humorous comments often point out that
our society, and our laws, fall short of the ten commandments.
@ RanchHandYou bet that man is fallible. [Quote]There we
agree RanchHand, but God is not an invention of man.We live in a
man-made society that mocks beliefs that are obviously true, andmandates
views that are ridiculous.
@Gildas --"Don't worship the works of your own hands is the
message."Ehhhhhh, no."You shall not make for
yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth
beneath or in the waters below." (Exodus 20:4)-- period, end of
commandment. You shall not make images, period.-- incidentally, the
Muslims take this one much more seriously than most Christians do. They have NO
representative religious art."You shall not bow down to them or
worship them" (Exodus 20:5)-- AND you shall not bow down to images
either.-- Stained glass windows? Statues of Jesus? Paintings of saints?
Crucifixes?And I left this one out before -- “You shall not
misuse the name of the Lord your God" (Exodus 20:7)-- what counts as
"misuse"? If I say "My God!" have I "misused" the name?
How about when Jesus said those same words -- was he misusing it?"Jesus both remembered and kept the sabbath"-- Jesus himself
said that keeping the Sabbath was relative.continued next post!
continued from previous post --"The Sabbath was made for man,
not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath."
(Mark 2:27)"If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on
the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? How much more
valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the
Sabbath." (Matthew 12:11-12)"Don't "kill": the
Hebrew word in the original is MURDER."-- So how do you define
"murder"? Here's a hint: any restriction on "killing"
immediately makes this commandment relative."un-Christian laws
say otherwise or are not enforced."--- oooooo, you really believe that
all remarriage is un-Christian? That's rather extreme of you."False witness: AGAINST thy neighbor."-- Define
"against". Warning again: any restrictions on that "false
witness" immediately make it relative."Don't covet:
Agreed. Your humorous comments often point out that our society, and our laws,
fall short of the ten commandments."-- It's not just a matter of
"falling short". Our society sees ambition and acquisitiveness as
actively GOOD things.
The fact that some things are moral and some are immoral proves to me there is a
God. He is God based on His ability to be perfectly moral.
@ anyone interestedI don't think God called them "The Ten
Commandments", even if we do, so I don't know if there have to be
ten.I do believe, at any rate, that the second and third
commandments are inextricably connected: Thou shalt not make graven images; thou
shalt not worship them. Look, the Lord, in designing the temple and the Ark,
included the forms of angels over the Ark of the Covenant which contained those
"Ten Commandments", and designs of palm trees etc in the temple itself.
So it is clear that the commandment concerning "graven
images" referred to objects of worship, the idols of men and women, the
idolatry of mankind of their own paltry creations. No one, then, should have
thought of worshiping the angels or the palm trees, that embellished the temple.
We need to use some common sense in understanding these
commandments which are, even now, absolutely basic to godly living.
"We need to use some common sense in understanding these commandments which
are, even now, absolutely basic to godly living."Which means
even believers understand that "common sense" and the intuitive, human
morality endemic to us is more fundamental and has priority over religion.
@Gildas --"I don't think God called them "The Ten
Commandments", even if we do, so I don't know if there have to be
ten."Errrr....I don't think you're going to get many
people, Christian or not, to agree to calling them the "Nine
Commandments". ;-DBut in any case, you're just adding even
more ammunition to my argument about moral relativity. You can't even agree
on the absolute number of commandments!Since you haven't even
tried to rebut anything else in my most recent two posts, I'll let it rest
there.Morality is relative. Even the Commandments.
Mankind comes to its own opinions about what is moral or not, independently of
religion. Some religious fanatics (such as the Taliban) obey the morals of
their religion (which is actually pretty much the same as commanded in the Old
Testament), but we Westerners have for the most part rejected many of these
moral commandments. The fact that we have rejected the commandment to stone the
disobedient child proves that we have not accepted the moral code that our
religion commands.Even if you tell me that I'm not
understanding the Old Testament vs. the New Testament properly, do you want to
claim that what was morally valid 3000 years ago became invalid 2000 years ago?
The unchanging morality of God seems to have changed. I claim that it was just
as much a moral error to stone a disobedient child 3000 years ago as it is now.
absolute statements are not truth, nor can they justify moral relativism in the
eyes of the thinking person who reads comments here. Truth is not man-made, yet
many today esteem the intelligence of humankind to be superior to that of God,
and even replace it.I seek not to debate endlessly, but affirm
God's truths in enemy territory where faith in God to fight the good fight
is becoming less and less attractive to those who refuse to see because the
philosophies of men are esteemed higher than the wisdom of God. Anyone can
advocate truth and stand by statements with conviction, but does it make them
true?My hope ever shall remain to help someone who is sincerely
looking for answers to life's questions and purpose to ponder what they may
not have considered previously. The invitation to come unto Christ is a clarion
call to all who desire to know God. No amount of secular / atheist rhetoric and
rumor can negate the eternal truths of God. One simply must be willing to
receive what the world cannot give to know of truth beyond human intelligence.
The rest is simply noise.
@EternalPerspective --"Sharp absolute statements are not
truth"Hey -- We agree on something!You are correct.
"Sharp absolute statements" are NOT truth. And that's just as true
with absolute statements of morality as with any other absolutes."No amount of secular / atheist rhetoric and rumor can negate the eternal
truths of God."Watch out -- there you go with those absolute
statements again. And as we already agree -- sharp absolute statements are NOT
truth. You said it yourself.
Truth is not relative nor is morality. Science contains many truths but of what
context does Science operate? Or what governing force has defined the
principles of truth that belong to Science? Such a proposition boils
down to 2 beliefs. On the one hand "chaos" theory is advocated as
correct. Here, something essentially comes from nothing by the reaction of
atomic elements that evolve into what we see today.On the other,
there is a "Grand Designer" of the universe that has created an expanse
of space and organic matter that is so complex, Science has scarcely scratched
the surface because we can comprehend only so much of God's works. But, how about another twist? Maybe the reason why we don't know
with certainty "everything" about the universe, world, and life forms is
because it wasn't meant to be understood fully in this life. Science,
medicine, technology and many other worldly disciplines have made enormous
strides in a short amount of time to further define the world around us.But, even the greatest scientists of the world who conduct truly
empirical objective experiments are compelled to ask themselves at some point,
how could God not exist?
@EternalPerspective --"Truth is not relative nor is morality.
"That's a nice sharp absolute statement. And you already
told us that sharp absolute statements aren't truth. You're contradicting yourself.Also, you haven't offered
us any evidence for your bold assertion that morality isn't relative.
Please show us ONE absolute moral principle. A **moral** absolute, not a
religious claim like "God exists". " "chaos"
theory is advocated as correct. Here, something essentially comes from nothing
by the reaction of atomic elements that evolve into what we see today."It isn't just "chaos" -- it's chaos, plus physics,
plus logic, plus selection pressure, plus a whoooooooooole lotta time.We already KNOW, for instance, that the building blocks of life -- amino acids
and other organic compounds -- can be created without a Superior Being. All it
takes is the elements of the "primordial soup" and energy. That has been
demonstrated many times."even the greatest scientists of the
world who conduct truly empirical objective experiments are compelled to ask
themselves at some point, how could God not exist?"Scientists
ask themselves about lots of things -- that doesn't mean that any of those
things actually exist. ;-)
No one could say God is false unless all subjectivity were to be removed from
the experiment. Since this cannot be done without bias for input variables,
nothing emphatic can be offered up as quantifiable evidence.How do
you know the building blocks of life exist without a Supreme Being? You
don't know where they came from in the first place before they were
building blocks. How does the primordial experiment then implicitly negate God?
Where is the empirical evidence beyond opinion? The reality of God
can only be known only by those who will receive Him. Does that make God false
because such prerequisites are not so easily demonstrated to the world? Just
because something is “deemed” not real because belief is lacking in
the first place does not mean existence is “false”. Think how often science has been wrong in the past, only to be replaced with
greater “accuracy” in the future because inputs changed. How is
belief in God proportionate to a person's preparatory "shaping"
life experiences that allow them to at last seek Him correctly any different?Perhaps your experiment has assumed the wrong context the whole time...
"Sharp absolute statements are not truth"Except when they
are blurted out by religious folks? (Who agree with Mormonism?)
@EternalPerspective --"No one could say God is false"So what? I've never claimed that God is false.It is not
objectively possible to prove that God is false OR true, given our current state
of knowledge. Both claims require faith."How do you know the
building blocks of life exist without a Supreme Being? "I never
said they did. Here's a hint: I'm not an atheist. In the meantime, you still haven't shown us even one single
absolute moral principle.Keep trying. Surely it
shouldn't be all that hard to find even one single moral absolute?Anyone?
@Contrariuser – “Surely it shouldn't be all that hard to find
even one single moral absolute? Anyone?”Here’s
one… in fact the only one I have ever been able to deduce from the
Bible.Obey God!I admit it’s not a very satisfying
answer given some of the "morally relative" not to mention atrocious
things the God of Abraham has commanded over time. Also, it’s really more
of an edict than a moral principle.
@Tyler D --"Obey God!"Nice try -- but
that's a command, not a moral principle."Also, it’s
really more of an edict than a moral principle."Right.Still no moral absolutes?? Anyone? Anyone?How can so many people
claim that morality is absolute, when nobody can even come up with a single
absolute moral principle??
Science is man's attempt to explain the physical world aroung him.
Religion is man's attempt to communicate, relate, and understand his
Creator. They deal with different concepts and dimensions.God
exists. He created all of us. That you cannot prove this in the physical world
is no suprise to me. If you could, there would be no need for Faith. Only the
foolish would deny God and His commandments if there were tangible, physical
proof of His existence.All I know is that I am a better man because
of religion and my relationship with Jesus than I was as an extreme left-wing
deist. My family knows that, too, becasue I treat them better.If I
am wrong and there is no God, then I still lived a better life by believing in
Him. If the atheist is wrong, it will be a long eternity for him or her....