Science and morality

Discussion in 'The Alley' started by KOzS, Sep 1, 2013.

  1. x calibur

    x calibur

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    actually, I just thought of a decent counter-argument, but it relies on a what-if and mysticism.
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  2. Joro DiGiorno

    Joro DiGiorno Active Member

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    And the writer knows that any counter-argument would have to. That's why he's putting his money up.
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  3. Superman70

    Superman70 edited

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    his point is that there is no counter-argument, so it makes sense that you wouldn't be able to think of a good one.
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  4. Joro DiGiorno

    Joro DiGiorno Active Member

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    You must believe in god, Super, the amount of faith you place in this writer's reason. You could think of a pretty obvious counter-argument if you wanted to.
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  5. reggie jax

    reggie jax Well-Known Member

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    i dunno... i'm not convinced by his argument. as i understand it: morality is based on promoting the well-being of conscious beings. actions can then be judged through science as more or less moral based on their effect on the suffering or well-being of conscious beings.

    why that's not convincing to me:
    1. his actual definition of morality (promoting well-being in conscious beings) is not derived from anything scientific. it's basically just utilitarian morality.
    2. well-being isn't sufficiently defined. maybe he does that in his book. but you do need a specific way to measure criteria in order for it to be objective/scientific.
    3. assuming that well-being is sort of an opposite of suffering... i.e. happiness. you can easily come up with scenarios where this leads to counter-intuitive moral conclusions. for example.. say you are a psycho that enjoys killing unloved hobos in a quick, unexpected, painless manner. by the well-being model, it might actually be morally right for you to pursue your murderous desires.
    4. the same applies if you apply that logic to entire societies/civilizations. net well-being might be increased through seemingly immoral means. if a few suffer for the benefit of many then i assume that's a net increase in well-being? in such a dilemma we either have to abandon our current ideas on morality or dismiss the proposal that well-being is the objective criteria by which morality should be measured. i think this kind of thing is why utilitarian morality falls short of completely explaining why we find certain things right vs wrong.
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  6. Joro DiGiorno

    Joro DiGiorno Active Member

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    Here you go:

    Authentic morality is subjective. It deals with the mystery at the center of each individual. Any morality alleging to be "objective" is superficial to the individual and really just ethics. And subjectivity and science are mortal enemies....they can't even debate cordially.
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