Humanism

Pretty much sums up the frustration of modern academics

This topic contains 175 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  Reg the Fronkey Farmer 4 months, 1 week ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 151 through 165 (of 176 total)
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  • #31871

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Deontological … utilitarian … Virtue ethics

    Deontological means duties, right?

    All of these come into play in human morality, and in fact in an evolutionary framework, fit together perfectly.

    Utilitarianism can be reframed as “all those affected by my actions are to receive the maximum benefit and minimum harm available to them”, which is very much like fairness.  We have a duty to be fair (i.e., a sense of duty to be fair) as well as a duty to fulfil other ideal standards – because in making an agreement to collaborate, we form a cooperative unit, and agree to help everyone fairly in the cooperative unit.

    Virtue, as Ayn Rand put it, is a policy for achieving one’s values or goals.

    #31872

    Karuna
    Participant

    In my opinion

    Appeal to Nature is an argument and informal fallacy where something is believed to be good because it is natural, or bad because it is unnatural.

    Evolution and biology  are non-moral.

    ( It’s not in the same category as morals)

    It’s a category mistake to equate the two.

    In this current universe cooperation in humans  exist because this is what the environment was to create this particular evolved fitness phenomena.

    If the environment was different ( what determines the environment are physical processes) then a different type evolved fitness phenomena would arise potentially with no cooperation.

    Think of the Dinosaurs and the random event which led to their end which changed the environment from which mammals evolved. If that never happened then there potentially would be no humans.

    Biology Evolution and the natural world has no teleology. If you did happen to think that there is a purpose for evolution, to create humans to then for morality to develop.

    Then it’s kind of like saying the physical world has a purpose to create humans and their morality. It’s just another way of expressing a belief in God.

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by  Karuna.
    #31874

    Davis
    Participant

    I’m with Hume: morality is an evolved psychological matter.  I think Kant went wrong by trying to insist it’s rational and moreover, absolute.

    Hume’s writings on ethics are vague and are not well developed. Kant’s works were, in part, a response to the many problems with both Hume writings. Kant only talks about absolute “within” the moral system. In other words he is not claiming absolute moral truth, but absolute laws within a deontological system. They aren’t the same. It’s absoluteness is only meaningful it you adopt the principles of deontological ethics. In no way does forming a deontological moral law, make claim that it is an absolute moral truth. You would know that if you read a short book on ethics.

    #31875

    Davis
    Participant

    Deontological means duties, right?

    That is a gross oversimplification. Pick up a book and read it…please.

    #31876

    Davis
    Participant

    Utilitarianism can be reframed as “all those affected by my actions are to receive the maximum benefit and minimum harm available to them”,

    That depends. There are multiple utilitarian systems that would not be characterized as such.

    #31877

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Appeal to Nature is an argument and informal fallacy where something is believed to be good because it is natural, or bad because it is unnatural. Evolution and biology are non-moral.

    I agree, but evolution and biology give rise to all kinds of things, including moral psychology.

    In this current universe cooperation in humans exist because this is what the environment was to create this particular evolved fitness phenomena.

    If the environment was different ( what determines the environment are physical processes) then a different type evolved fitness phenomena would arise potentially with no cooperation.

    The evolutionary hypothesis is that human morality only arose once the human family tree left the forests, moved into the savannah, and the intelligent social creatures were forced to begin cooperating.  Interestingly, other creatures (like baboons) already lived in the savannah, but they are not intelligent enough to develop a morality of cooperation and fairness.  They probably have norms of expected behaviour.

    If that never happened then there potentially would be no humans.

    Then there would be no human morality.

     

    #31878

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    That depends. There are multiple utilitarian systems that would not be characterized as such.

    That may be so, but this is the version that is actually used by people.  It links very well with the rest of an evolutionary framework, and what’s more, represents a general formula for how to behave.

    #31879

    Davis
    Participant

    That may be so, but this is the version that is actually used by people.

    How do you know that Simon. You are virtually illiterate in all things ethics.

    #31881

    Unseen
    Participant

    Forgive me for giving up on the usual quotation structure and using a you said and I say sort of approach. Additionally, I think I’m done with this discussion.

    Unseen wrote:
    a principle that is so widely held that everyone agrees it must always be followed. (I can’t think of one, but just for the sake of argument…) Does it follow ipso facto that it actually must be adhered to by all people under every circumstance?

    SP wrote:
    That’s the nature of normativity or ought-ness – it exists in the minds of people. So, if everyone thinks something must be adhered to, then it must. What happens if someone fails to adhere to it? That’s their free choice.

    Unseen wrote:
    “Ought-ness”? That can’t be a technical terrm or actual jargon…can it? Does it mean the same as “must-ness”?

    Anyway, so now we have wandered away from the binary world of facts where things are true or false, into a discussion of how laws are propounded(?). Not the kind of laws of the universe you originally asserted existed, which are objective, inescapable, and undeniable, but the kind of laws we call “legislation,” which must be adhered to because if you don’t, you get fined or put into the slammer.

    (blah blah blah)

    Unseen wrote:
    So, to summarize (what you are saying), being human on planet earth is an eternal objective fact.

    I deny that. It’s simply not true and is, additionally, beside the point.

    SP wrote: It’s true, unless some of us are snails living on Mars. It’s entirely the point, since it means that we all share commonalities in our existence, and these commonalities can plausibly give rise to at least a common structure for morality.

    Unseen wrote: I’m missing the part where eternality fits in. It seems to me that we will come and we will go. Nothing eternal about it.

    And “we all share commonalities (which) can plausibly give rise to at least a common structure for morality.”

    If you say so. Show us this common structure, then. One that the Spartans who murdered babies and Quakers who can’t ever kill anyone for any reason must (as you say) adhere to.

    My first thought is that it would almost have to be something primarily of interest to academicians and of little practical use. Or value.

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by  Unseen.
    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by  Unseen.
    #31884

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Does it mean the same as “must-ness”?

    Yes.

    this common structure

    Cooperation.  Either within groups, or between groups.

    #31885

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    How do you know that Simon. You are virtually illiterate in all things ethics.

    Let me know when “ethics” comes up with something that ordinary people can use – something that religion has been doing for 2600 years.

    #31886

    Karuna
    Participant

    In summary of this discussion? pretty much sums up the frustration of modern atheists!

    #31887

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    I think @unseen might be right if he thinks that the workings of morality are too abstract and difficult for the average person to get into.  It took me three years to understand and be able to add to Michael Tomasello’s book, A Natural History of Morality.

    However, I also think that the ethical/spiritual force: the pressure to thrive, survive and reproduce, and the ethical formula, Perfect Compassion (as I have named it: maximum benefit and minimum harm available, to all those affected by my actions) are simple and easy for people to use.  Having learned the rest of it, I can say that it is beneficial in everyday life, since it is accurate.

    I don’t think the same can be said of traditional “ethics”.  The ancient Greeks had a lot of good ideas; Hume and Kant gave us some fragments.  That’s it as far as being useful goes.

    #31892

    Davis
    Participant

    Simon it baffles my mind how you won’t read a single book about a topic you discuss so much. I’m with unseen. I’m done discussing this with you.

     

    #31893

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    My bibliography runs to about 9 pages.

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