Simon Paynton

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  • #3124

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    @arcus – if people find that that model works for them, then good luck to them.  I’m not going to argue against its correctness, since it’s a cousin of a model that I agree with.  There’s more than one way of looking at a complex situation.

    But if it’s claiming to be a complete moral framework (i.e. an underlying structure on which to hang the rest of morality) then I reject it, because it seems dead and soulless: it reads like a manual for how to run a supermarket or something.  If I thought this was all morality is about, then I would get in my car and drive off a cliff.  (If I could drive/had a car.)

    A moral framework or system needs to make people feel encouraged about being alive.  It should hold out some promise of happiness.  If you look at Buddhism, Christianity and Islam, they all do this.  Morality began life as a survival strategy, and along with survival, this immediately implies making life better.

    #3108

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    In Australia Christian women are having a problem giving headship to their men.

    – I’m not sure if “honest” is the right word.  The Christian feminist lady is trying to polish a turd.  She’s wrong that the passage from St Paul is ambiguous and out of context.  It couldn’t be clearer or plainer.  He’s stating, pure and simple, that women should submit to men and double standards.

    As for the speaker, Carmelina Read, I don’t understand why, but she loves being oppressed.  That’s pretty weird.  I guess she favours cultural values over human values.

    #3105

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    When does such indoctrination start?

    – I think the “Atheist dad” is just being a prissy snowflake.  It’s not going to kill the little girl to say the words “love God” – that’s totally inoffensive.  The school are being reasonable.  I presume she’s not being force-fed Creationism or misogyny.  That would be a different matter.

    #3104

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    In Australia Christian women are having a problem giving headship to their men.

    I find this sad – even honest and well-meaning people spend their lives trapped by having to stick to what they think it says in their holy book.  If they could toss it out of the window, they would be free.

    It also reminds me of this great blast from the past from our long-lost friend kOrsan:

    #3102

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    @strega – “Understanding the distinction between right and wrong – that in itself demands a cohesive definition structure around the words ‘right’ and ‘wrong’.

    – I agree – I think it’s perfectly valid to use the concepts “right” and “wrong” without defining them, but there comes a point when they do need to be defined.

    I define “right” as “when you act, each person affected by your actions is to receive the maximum benefit and minimum harm available to them”.  This encapsulates both the “benefit/harm” and “fairness” foundations, all of second-personal morality.  I think that a good definition of “benefit” is “to increase thriving” and “thriving” can be defined as “a state of physical or psychological health and strength”.  The only conflict is between “physical” and “psychological” – what makes someone feel good may be bad for their physical safety, for example.  “Thriving” has to be split into short term and long term.

    It’s a good question how these first two foundations interact with the others.  This definition of right and wrong implies a definition of “human rights” – since each of us constantly experiences an existential pressure to thrive, and this is the most important goal, it follows that human rights must respect this basic goal.  So to give someone their human rights means to treat them with the maximum benefit and minimum harm available to them.

    This respecting of rights can follow through into the other foundations.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by  Simon Paynton.
    #3101

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    @arcus – “While these models are good, they are a bit convoluted

    – I prefer Haidt’s to Schweder’s model.  I don’t find them convoluted at all – I’ve had no reason to disagree with them, I find that they match up with the overall evolution of morality, starting with the “second-personal” relationships within the small groups of our pre-human ancestors (kindness/fairness) and incorporating the move to large groups (group loyalty, respect for authority).  Also, “sanctity/degredation” is also a “thing” as evidenced by, when we say for example, “you dirty rat” – mixing the metaphors between physical and moral uncleanliness.

    Divinity: Your body is merely a vessel for the soul, which belongs to a higher being and must be protected from degradation and disgrace as this would be an insult to the higher being.

    – this raises an important point.  Organised religion starts to look more and more like a giant moral enterprise.  In religion, the moral and the spiritual – you could say, heaven and earth – are closely intertwined.  They are right about this.  It is a reminder that spirituality can be seen, in one sense, as a purification or distillation of morality.  Any moral system worth its salt has to have spirituality built in from the beginning.

    So it’s possible to use basic evolutionary knowledge to reveal the meaning of some core beliefs in Buddhism, for example.  (unfinished)

    #3100

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    @david – “Does it need to be shared then?

    – I don’t know what you mean.  I think that strictly speaking, morality refers to our relationship with others, or our relationship with the larger group.

    the ‘foundations’ do not measure freedom or equality

    – these foundations are catch-all terms for large groups of related values.  I think that “freedom” falls under the “authority” foundation, and “equality” is part of “fairness”.

    atheist morality

    – one problem with this is that, like Davis says, atheism is not a monolithic block: different people are always going to believe different things.  The other problem is that saying “atheist morality” is like saying “atheist chemistry” or “atheist biology” – it’s just the study of “morality”, which includes the study of religious morality as part of the overall picture.

    Humanism is a great attempt at developing a code but it is bulky and nebulous and impractical.

    – I agree, the principles are good, but when it comes to real life, they suck, because they’re too vague.  Real life is detailed and not vague.  The humanist code does not give me much of a clue about how to treat individuals on an everyday basis.

    @davis

    You cannot use evidence to fully spell out the foundation of a moral code.

    Personally I’ve never read a moral system that was spelled out in less than 100 pages.

    100 pages = doing it wrong.  Here is a moral framework spelled out using evidence in 2 pages:

    part 1

    http://yellowgrain.co.uk/healing_principle.html

    part 2

    http://yellowgrain.co.uk/personal_ethics.html#definition_of_goodness

    http://yellowgrain.co.uk/personal_ethics.html#evolution

    http://yellowgrain.co.uk/personal_ethics.html#advantages

     

    #3064

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    I honestly do not ‘get’ what the purity foundation is.

    – it refers to both physical and moral hygiene, which are processed by the same area in the brain.  At first this is a puzzle, but maybe it’s to do with the fact that morality is all about the benefits or harm of social behaviour, and if you’re forced to live and survive alongside someone with bad hygiene habits – stinky feet, poor wiping – it’s anti-social.

    Ultimately, morality is a survival strategy, and dirt or other poisons reduce thriving or chances of survival.

    #3046

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    I don’t know about 25 words, and I don’t know if this is definitive.  But

    human morality is an evolutionary response to the need to thrive, survive and reproduce in a harsh environment.  The earliest humans began cooperating and acting as a team, as each individual couldn’t make it on their own.  So we have evolved a set of prosocial instincts that make us want to cooperate, get along and treat each other well.  If  we didn’t have these instincts, no laws could impose order on us.  The best religious morality encodes these prosocial instincts.

    #3044

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Thanks Pope Beanie.

    I think “no Brexit” is the best thing, the only alternative is an “act of self-harm” as the Europeans see it.  So we just need someone competent in charge, and they seem to be thin on the ground.

    #3035

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    I’m sticking to Judge Judy from now on.

     

    #3032

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Now how the hell do I start a discussion on this thing? Lol

    – you have to Subscribe to the Forum and then at the bottom of that page you can start a new discussion.

    hung parlament

    – it just gets worse and worse.  I feel like retiring to bed with a bottle of whisky.

    #3029

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    It doesn’t bother me, I can use it and it looks fine.  I just would like some “nested” replies but I believe that’s fixed by the forum package you get, I don’t know.

    We can still get the URL of individual replies, but we can’t quote them in another reply.

    #3001

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    @Reg – sorry, that is too tedious, I’m not going to do that.  If people were to think I was a full-on God-believer, it would mean they’ve misunderstood my plain English arguments.

    @Pope Beanie – I think it’s cute how the two match up so closely.  It’s ground-breaking.  Apparently a “rational” version of morality has been the Holy Grail since the Enlightenment.  It was only a matter of time before someone came up with one, since it’s a natural phenomenon that must have got here somehow.

    I think it’s good to translate from one realm to the other: they illuminate each other, and validate each other.

    I find that both sides can’t handle it – it’s too religious for atheists, and proves that religion is valid in one sense; and for a religious person, it pulls their brain off its hinges.

    So more rationality can only be a good thing.  It gives us a new way to move forward in this field.  It is really surprising how much things open up when you have a key available.

    It also offers the tantalising possibility of a new “universal rational religion” which apparently was another Holy Grail.  But it’s a tall order expecting Muslims to accept any ideas from atheists:  it’s like offering them the “Rolf Harris Book of Etiquette”.

    #2997

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    We’re all atheists here, none of us believes that God exists.  I’m just pointing out some interesting parallels between the moral framework I’ve derived independently, and the Christian one.  I didn’t base mine on the Biblical one.  That just fell out in the course of my work.  You can see how both versions are very simple.

    Morality is not a set of absolute rules.

    – I think that’s kind of true, and nobody’s forced to do anything.  But if we can find moral rules that are universal yet flexible enough to apply in every situtation – that’s the Golden Wonder.

Viewing 15 posts - 1,681 through 1,695 (of 1,762 total)