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Question for the atheists?

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posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:35 PM
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Originally posted by hotpinkurinalmint
I am interested in how an atheist would answer this question. When I refer to atheists, I am talking about people that believe there is no higher power or moral force that governs the universe. If you believe in some sort of higher power, but have some major disagreements with the organized religions of the world (i) join the huge club and (ii) I would not consider you an atheist.

Imagine you meet a person in the wilderness. The person has a valuable jewel in his body. You are not financially stable, in fact, you are in dire financial straits. If you got the jewel, your financial worries would be over and you and your family would be financially secure for generations to come.

The only way to get the jewel is to kill the person slowly and painfully and rip the jewel from his innards. This person has no friends, no family, and will not be able to do anything for you socially or financially. The person is not an evil person, but he is not particularly likeable either. In fact, he is a bit annoying. If you do kill the person and take the jewel, you will also be able to get away with it without anybody knowing about it and without any worries of any legal liabilities, social stigmas, etc. You will also be able to get therapy that will deal with any trauma or psychological harm you suffer and the therapy will be 100% effective.

My question to you is- do you kill the man and take the jewel?


Lets see, i think killing is inmoral and wrong, i'm an atheist, but my atheist doesn't have anything to do with my moral code.

Now, as an human being trying to secure the future of his offspring?, yes, i will do it, but let me be clear in this with you, even if i were a religion person i'm really sure i still will do it, family or survival in my case override any moral code i may have, religious or not, but that's me, only me.




posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:35 PM
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Originally posted by IAMIAM

That guiding voice which forms your morality IS deity.

With Love,

Your Brother


It is? Why? Because you say it is?

I say it is your brain and its physical/chemical functioning. No outside mysticism required.



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:37 PM
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Originally posted by Annee

Originally posted by IAMIAM

That guiding voice which forms your morality IS deity.

With Love,

Your Brother


It is? Why? Because you say it is?

I say it is your brain and its physical/chemical functioning. No outside mysticism required.


Yes because I say it is.

You do not have to agree.

Call it what you want.

You know you have it though.

With Love,

Your Brother



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:40 PM
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Originally posted by blupblup
You don't give humans enough credit.


You do not give human beings enough credit.

You say they are traveling alone to figure things out for themselves.

I say they are intimately connected to all that they sense, the divine wholeness of the universe, and being taught carefully through those senses that everything is in a divine order.

With Love,

Your Brother



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:42 PM
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"IT"?

I know I have a physical/chemical brain.



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:43 PM
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Originally posted by IAMIAM
That guiding voice which forms your morality IS deity.

I believe in none, and reject all.

Tell me, where is the "morality" in the Christian story of Christ's birth? More specifically -- that we humans have been told we are inherently immoral sinners destined to suffer an eternity in hell with our only hope of salvation being through accepting the God of Abraham's son sent to us via an unwilling virgin.



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:44 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord

Originally posted by hotpinkurinalmint
What is morality? Where does it come from?

An absurd question, based on apparent misconceptions given to you by religious leaders.



People that believe in a god or higher power can say morality stems form the higher power.

I've seen a great deal of immoral things attributed to a "higher power" or inspired by such in religious teachings. Morality is a much more pure concept when the teachings of organized religions are not part of an individual's decision-making process.



If you do not believe in any sort of higher power, you may have to question where morality comes from or if it truly exists.

Relates to my first answer -- an absurd point of view perpetuated by those who promote religious dogma.


You are correct in that organized religion does many immoral things. You are also correct in that morality is much more pure than the teachings or organized religions.

I am just curious where "morality" comes from, in particular, where atheist morality comes from. As I said before, atheists are for the most part moral. Their morality is also purer than religious morality. Christians can point to the Bible, Muslims, the Koran, etc. as the building blocks of their moral framework.

I am just interested where the atheist building blocks come from. I am also interested in knowing what the buidling blocks are.

For example, some Christians may say the golden rule and/or the 10 commandments are the "building blocks" of their moral framework around which any moral dilemna can be resolved. These Christians would say that the 10 commandments say stealing and killing are wrong, therefore I should not steal from the man and kill him.

How does the atheist tackle this problem? The atheists all seem to say stealing and killing are wrong, therefore I should not steal from the man and kill him. Yet I am interested as to ***why** they say stealing and killing are wrong other than saying "it's just wrong," "it's logical for these things to be wrong," and /or "it is practical for society to make these things wrong."



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:44 PM
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Originally posted by Annee




"IT"?

I know I have a physical/chemical brain.



Really? Have you seen it?

Have you touched it?

Have you cut it open to find yourself inside?

Which part of it are you?

With Love,

Your Brother



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:45 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
I believe in none, and reject all.


Truth is truth.


With Love,

Your Brother



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:48 PM
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reply to post by hotpinkurinalmint
 


Apparently you don't know what the golden rule is.

You don't harm others unless you don't mind them harming you.

Morality stems from pragmatism, I think.

In the long run, in social settings, it is usually far more productive and safer to play nice.

Genetic sociopaths have evolved to take advantage of this tendency to prey upon those who abide by the golden rule, using the masses and mobility to mask their presence and predatory nature. They have no morals and no regrets because they aren't physically wired to feel them. No religion in the world will change that.

For the genetic sociopath your question is probably fairly incomprehensible, since the only possible answer is to take the jewel and enjoy the process of doing so.

Thing is, in the past whenever and wherever sociopaths were correctly identified, they have usually been swiftly killed or banished whenever that is an option.

It is said that humanity is the only species without a natural predator: this is completely untrue. Some 4-6% of humanity are genetic sociopaths, truly a predator species evolved to fill the niche. The numbers fit nicely into predator/prey models.

Looking to religion for answers to questions about morality only blurs the landscape and makes it impossible to discern realities among all the foolish nonsense of the various religions.



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:50 PM
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reply to post by SkepticOverlord
 


A "higher power" or "moral force" has nothing to do with religions and superstitions. You could still believe in a higher power without wearing funny hats and burning things.



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:51 PM
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reply to post by MonteroReal
 


You are not killing the man so that others may survive. Nobody's life is in imminent danger and that is a whole different ethical dilema. You care killing the man so you and others may be more comfortable.



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:52 PM
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No, I would not kill the person. Having a sense of right and wrong doesn't have anything to do with believing in "God". Having morals is a personal choice, not something given to you by religion. I will guarantee there are "Christians" out there who would cut his throat and never lose a wink of sleep.
edit on 28-12-2011 by DAVID64 because: spelling error



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:56 PM
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reply to post by hotpinkurinalmint
 


What a stupid question. No I wouldn't take the jewel, in fact if I come across someone injured in the middle of the wilderness their jewelry is the LAST thing on my mind. Trying to call 911 is first on the list, followed by administering whatever first aid I'm capable of (which ain't much admittedly). Most people share the same morality regardless of their beliefs (of course there are some cultural differences) because of the society they live in. For instance most Christians and Jews agree that slavery is wrong, yet the Old Testament God Yahweh openly condones slavery and personally sets the guidelines for it. This proves that people are willing to overturn morality that was once claimed to be ABSOLUTE and divine in origin.

This isn't to mention the fact that your hypothetical scenario makes no sense. Why would you have to kill them to take the jewel, and how in the hell would you know how much the jewel was worth just by looking at it?



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:57 PM
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Originally posted by hotpinkurinalmint
reply to post by MCJustJ
 


Your saying in effect that you would not kill the man because it violates the golden rule. But why should I follow the golden rule? Why should I care if I cause harm to to others?


Again, common sense.

Unless you're a sociopath there is no reason not to follow the golden rule. Why should you care? Because you're human?

Honestly TC, are you trying to tell me that the only reason you aren't out raping and murdering people is because of God? Thats disgusting and I have no respect for you as a human being if thats the case. Though even if you answered yes to that question I wouldn't believe you. You may think that but lets look at it this way.

The reason to be a good person is to get on Gods good side and avoid hell correct? Are negative experiences on earth not an example of what hell would be like(Only worse obviously)? In order for us to understand that hell is negative we have to understand what negative/positive is.

The entire concept of hell and how to avoid it is no different then how to avoid creating a hell on earth.



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 02:59 PM
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Originally posted by hotpinkurinalmint
I am just curious where "morality" comes from, in particular, where atheist morality comes from.

That's what you're having trouble understanding -- it doesn't come from anywhere. Those who reject organized religion typically do so for moral reasons.



For example, some Christians may say the golden rule and/or the 10 commandments are the "building blocks" of their moral framework around which any moral dilemna can be resolved.

Well... the revelation at Sinai is interpreted loosely, at best.

For example...
1) the celebration of Christmas is all about coveting thy neighbor's stuff.
2) Catholics make lots of "graven images" of things in "heaven above"
3) Catholics "bow down" to other entities than God
And...
The commandments only say not to lie about your neighbor... not lie in general
The commandments include adultery twice?
The original translation is "thou shalt not murder," specific to unlawful killing
The original translation of "thou shall not steal" is specific to stealing slaves



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 03:01 PM
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Originally posted by apacheman
reply to post by hotpinkurinalmint
 


Morality stems from pragmatism, I think.

In the long run, in social settings, it is usually far more productive and safer to play nice.



1. You are correct in that much of morality is pragmatic. However, as I previously discussed, morality compells us to do things which are not very pragmatic like taking care of the weaker members of our society.

2. I think it is interesting you divided humanity into sociopaths and non-sociopaths. Of course many sociopaths are devoutly religious and many atheists are not sociopaths. You attribute "morals" to genetics.

If this is the case, are the moral rules literally embedded in our DNA? What re these rules? Are you saying morality is simply a mechanism that prevents an undesireable physiological process in the brain and/or causes desireable physiological processes to occur? If you could hand out a pill to everyone that would make people's brains function as if they were acting morally and living in a moral world no matter what they did or what happened around them, would you hand out the pill?



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 03:02 PM
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100% yes, kill the jewel eating weirdo.

you might think this makes me a bad person, but all of the guilt and everything would be on me and it would set my kids up for life. so hell yeah, id kill one annoying stranger to make sure my kids get the best out of life



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 03:02 PM
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Originally posted by hotpinkurinalmint
reply to post by MonteroReal
 


You are not killing the man so that others may survive. Nobody's life is in imminent danger and that is a whole different ethical dilema. You care killing the man so you and others may be more comfortable.


I quote from the first entry

"Imagine you meet a person in the wilderness. The person has a valuable jewel in his body. You are not financially stable, in fact, you are in dire financial straits. If you got the jewel, your financial worries would be over and you and your family would be financially secure for generations to come. "

It says "Dire", maybe my command of english is not perfect, but as i understand, that mean im pretty much f... up!

Let me se a dictionary:

dire (dr)
adj. dir·er, dir·est
1. Warning of or having dreadful or terrible consequences; calamitous: a dire economic forecast; dire threats.
2. Urgent; desperate: in dire need; dire poverty.

I saw a translation to spanish that is my language, and it says "serio, grave, funesto, nefasto, en una situación desesperada, espantoso, atroz, extremo", and that means "the Sh... FU....... hit the fan"

Now, what i think when i read that is that my family is in danger, maybe their life is not in danger right now, but a little more and they won't have a roof, food, medical care, education, to me that is a lot of danger, and in that case, yes, of course i will kill for the jewel, of course, you say "you and others", but remember that to me those "others" are not "others" but the most important people in the world.

Now, if i have a job, my family don't have problems, a good house, good income, of course killing for it will be only to be more confortable, and in that case i would not do it, but it says dire and to me that means my family first.



posted on Dec, 28 2011 @ 03:03 PM
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First off, this is really a foolish question. To pose it to a specific group while excluding all others... What purpose does it serve?

As for morality, why does it have to necessarily come from a higher power? I think morality is a by product of survival of our species and our intelligence. From the survival aspect, killing indiscriminately weakens the species as a whole. Intellectually, killing without a just cause (defense of oneself or family unit) again, weakens the species.

Our ancestors were smart people. They didn't need an unseen force to tell them that killing was a self destructive endeavor... Simple logic would have informed them of that. The same goes with the abuse of children. Children are the future of the species and to damage them is to, again weaken the species. Over thousands of years, this mindset develops into a code of morals.

So in conclusion, we say it is morally wrong to take a life.... Unless it is in defense of oneself, family unit, or Nation. Them it becomes an issue of survival... And that is morally acceptable... So in that respect, in the name of survival... Of my family, I would probably take his life. I'm not saying with 100% conviction that I would. But with the scenario you have laid out here, I just might do it...

... But it begs the observation, knowing everything I know about this guy... It means that I actually know him... And that is going to make doing the deed even more difficult... Almost impossible...

So again, this is a foolish question... Nobody here can actually answer that question...



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