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Where do Morals come from?

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posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 02:09 AM
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Have you ever wondered where your morals originated from? Are they inbuilt into your genes, due to the environment in which you were raised, or mirrored behaviour learned from your role models? It's a question we don't often ask ourselves, despite the fact that our sense of morality plays a key role in our decision making in many areas of our lives. Despite the few people in this world who are amoral (without morals), discovering the origins of our morals gives us insight into how society shapes our views.

I contend that the society in which we are raised gives us our sense of morality. It is true that life experience and environmental factors play a role, but even these are largely influenced by the views of society as a whole. That lesson your parents taught you or that experience you had that showed you stealing is wrong both took place within the confines of a society. Both the experience and lesson were passed down by the collective moral compass of society.

Think of the most basic of moral dilemmas, such as being at the convenience store and seeing a magazine you really want for which you do not have the money to buy. Besides the legal ramifications, why is that most people will not steal the magazine? Perhaps it is because you sympathise with the owners of the store, that they will lose money and are a good family. Or because you don't want to be found out and known as somebody that steals. Maybe even because your conscience will not permit you to do such a thing.

No matter the reason, society has shaped your views. Through the use of fables, stories, nursery rhymes and lectures when you are young, to school administrators, motivational speakers and TV personalities when you are a teenager, morals have been implanted into your mind by society by the time you reach adulthood. This begs the question: is it possible to have your own set of morals that have not been influenced by society in some manner?

I believe the answer is no. Society influences our most basic to our most complex moral decision making, whether we want to admit it or not. The capacity to influence the morals of developing minds rests with those bodies that are in positions of power.


edit on 7/7/2012 by Dark Ghost because: (no reason given)




posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 02:23 AM
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is it possible to have your own set of morals that have not been influenced by society in some manner?


It is, only when you've realized and relearned everything without the bad influence.

It's possible, pretty rare, and not likely. Morals seem to come from outside influence programing.
Wish it wasn't true but it is in most countries.

Most people think with their heads, not their hearts.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 02:52 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 


I agree that the answer is no. We are shaped by those who raise us. I was raised by a strict father with mean Nordic blood. He passed on to me excellennt moral coviction, but with that cam the meanness that i strive to bury it deep somwhere where I can not access it. My father was hard on us but be we are better people today because of it.

We respect other humans more, and even though my father was and still is an ignorant bigot, he has realized his sons are not and that we have grown to love all humans no matter where they come from. My grandfather also taught us to work hard and to never give up on our families. I look at myself as being fortunate for the role models I had growing up. I learned to work hard and that if you do so you can be rewarded.

I beleive that those who grow up without the proper moral instruction often fail in life and add to the problems of our scociety. It is no their fault, but we must find a way to include everyone in the advancement of out civilization or we most surely will fail.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 03:14 AM
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It comes from your ego. People choose who they want to be in life. Every emotion, feeling, actions are all a result of your ego. Mainly because your perception of reality is an illusion and that's what ego is. The greatest illusion that blinds us the most from our true reality.

There is also a thread on why Free will is an illusion. If our ego makes up for most of our actions, choices, emotions. Then free will must also be an illusion. Some one had a thread on it, and they were right. Just like I consider ego to be our biggest illusion in this reality, I also consider free will to be an also as well since all actions, thoughts, emotional feelings come from the ego itself.


edit on 7-7-2012 by TheProphetMark because: (no reason given)

edit on 7-7-2012 by TheProphetMark because: Spelling, ugh..



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 03:17 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 


I believe that with time and the desire to seek the the truth we can come up without or own morals. For instance, a man might not steal because it's against the law and they're afraid of getting caught. This means that if it were 100% guaranteed that he would NOT get caught, he would steal.

Yet, I have figured out that if it's okay for me to steal anything, then I'm claiming that it's okay for others to steal from me. Plus, I would have to look in the mirror and see a thief, and someone that can't be trusted.

Same moral, but the fiber of one is stronger than the other.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 03:18 AM
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Morals - are they ours or instilled upon us by society.

I think the answer is one and the same. We know right from wrong, society knows right from wrong. So we are aligned together in that.

The errant few who have disregard for right and wrong and choose themselves over the well being of another, need to be restricted by law.

Law was once a harsh and brutal system - eye for an eye, compensatory law, he who smite you shall be smitten two fold...

So even society has had to learn morals.

In your heart you know it is wrong to harm another without just cause. And just cause must be justified.

Society today leans more on power and rule than it does on morals. Soceity has let it's fear of the unjust, create injustice.

We get our morals now, from each other, our family, our friends. This is why I believe that society is as stable as a house of cards, held up by force of law - it will fall one day, and soon given the things I see almost every day.

edit on 7-7-2012 by mainidh because: god damn typos



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 03:18 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 


Youtube has a few videos of debates involving William lane craig and Sam harris about this exact topic. Sam harris himself wrote a book called "the moral landscape".

I personaly find that my morals are dirived from my experiances. Luckly those experiances have created a moral person. Others are not so lucky.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 04:13 AM
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This begs the question: is it possible to have your own set of morals that have not been influenced by society in some manner?


Nope. Society has an influence on everything. Even if you find something to be awful that the general public is permissive about.

Your question about shoplifting. That's a good question. I used to do Asset Protection. I forget the percentages but it was something like 10% will always try to steal, 80% will given the opportunity and 10% never will. I may be off a bit.

My morals came from my parents. My Mom won't eat a grape that she hasn't paid for yet (even though she always threatens to steal people's plants from there yards). Society certainly has had it's influence on my morality, but really who I am morality wise (hyphen?) came from my wonderful parents, and there insistence I listened to that little voice in my head. Was that little voice nurtured and prodded by my parents? Of course. By society, yeah.

I've known some people that have had parents that were less than ideal. Some of them grew up with what I consider awful parents, in awful throw away parts of society where morals were considered a weakness. I'm lucky to call them friends, and find them more competent morally than a number of the privileged punks I grew up with.

Shoot I should have a point here. I guess my point is that morality has a number of influences, and even someone growing up in some of the most awful conditions imaginable can still be a shining light of good. I think it's in the soul more than anything else.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 04:16 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 



Answer;

Biological imperatives.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 04:24 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 


They Come from the Understanding about the Differences Between Good And Evil .



An Example ......



i297.photobucket.com...

i297.photobucket.com...



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 04:33 AM
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Originally posted by Dark Ghost
Have you ever wondered where your morals originated from? Are they inbuilt into your genes, due to the environment in which you were raised, or mirrored behaviour learned from your role models? It's a question we don't often ask ourselves, despite the fact that our sense of morality plays a key role in our decision making in many areas of our lives. Despite the few people in this world who are amoral (without morals), discovering the origins of our morals gives us insight into how society shapes our views.

I contend that the society in which we are raised gives us our sense of morality. It is true that life experience and environmental factors play a role, but even these are largely influenced by the views of society as a whole. That lesson your parents taught you or that experience you had that showed you stealing is wrong both took place within the confines of a society. Both the experience and lesson were passed down by the collective moral compass of society.

Think of the most basic of moral dilemmas, such as being at the convenience store and seeing a magazine you really want for which you do not have the money to buy. Besides the legal ramifications, why is that most people will not steal the magazine? Perhaps it is because you sympathise with the owners of the store, that they will lose money and are a good family. Or because you don't want to be found out and known as somebody that steals. Maybe even because your conscience will not permit you to do such a thing.

No matter the reason, society has shaped your views. Through the use of fables, stories, nursery rhymes and lectures when you are young, to school administrators, motivational speakers and TV personalities when you are a teenager, morals have been implanted into your mind by society by the time you reach adulthood. This begs the question: is it possible to have your own set of morals that have not been influenced by society in some manner?

I believe the answer is no. Society influences our most basic to our most complex moral decision making, whether we want to admit it or not. The capacity to influence the morals of developing minds rests with those bodies that are in positions of power.


edit on 7/7/2012 by Dark Ghost because: (no reason given)


You're right, I don't like to admit it but indoctrination is real. I would like to think people are capable of building their own morals, or that morals are self-evident, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't affected, for better or worse, by my experiences within society.

The foundation of our morals extends backwards for thousands of years. If mankind could agree to re-assess and re-evaluate all values, merely for the sake of upkeep, we may get a clearer picture of what we're doing wrong.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 10:52 AM
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I am convinced the first "morals" came about of necessity. Humans quickly learned they couldn't live like animals and survive as a group. So the first morals were rules set in place to allow that group to live together and thrive. As the group grew larger, new rules were set in place to insure the continuation of an ever growing group.

The problem started when those morals, or rules of conduct, became corrupted by those who decided an external or invisible threat was needed to manipulate people into compliance. Hence, God will get you if you don't toe the line. Then of course, it became God who was setting the rules. And his minions were there to mete out punishment for non-compliance. And if they didn't get you, God himself would. If not now, then when you die.

So from that point, peoples morals became based in fear, rather than in understanding. Fear jades and corrupts everything. Fear keeps the individual, and the group from being able to discern and rid themselves of oppressive rules that are not conducive to the welfare and continuation of the species. But rather benefit the few over the many.



Yet, I have figured out that if it's okay for me to steal anything, then I'm claiming that it's okay for others to steal from me. Plus, I would have to look in the mirror and see a thief, and someone that can't be trusted.

Same moral, but the fiber of one is stronger than the other.

This is an example of understanding how a moral benefits the whole, instead of oppressing both the individual, and the group.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 04:31 PM
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Morals are concerned with the judgment of goodness or badness. Morals are often conflated with ethics, but there is a distinction between the two. Living as a misanthrope is not immoral, but is unethical. Forming a group which then uses their collective might to undermine or drown out other groups is not immoral but it is unethical. Some...actually many...would like to relegate ethics to a "professional standard" but this misses the point of ethics. Ethics are the strategies we employ to obtain the greater good. The greater good can be reasonably defined as the greatest good to the greatest amount. In this regard, ethics is not concerned with badness, only goodness. Morality, on the other hand, requires judgement of both.

There is language, such as "unethical" that gives an impression of judgement of both bad and good, but again, this term "unethical" is generally used when discussion a "professional standard". Aristotle declared that the greater good is that thing of which all things aim. I believe this is correct. We all aim towards ethical behavior and as such all of us are ethical. The problem is not ethics, but aim. Shooting for the greatest good to the greatest amount requires perfect aim. Most of us aim and miss. The problem becomes even more exasperated by our own level of awareness. The lower level of awareness we are at, the more likely we are going to miss that which we aim towards. This is ethics.

Morality, that judgement of bad and good, generally has its aim too, but it lies more in pro-survival behavior versus anti-survival behavior. It is arguable that smoking cigarettes as a habit is immoral. It is arguable that drinking too much, and especially daily, is immoral. It is arguable that having sex with multiple partners is immoral. These behaviors tend to be anti-survival. This survival can be instinctual but also can be learned. In that regard, morals are both instinctual and learned. Ethics, on the other hand, are not learned, in spite of what any "professional standard" might say. Ethics are our aim and what we all aim towards is the greater good. Hitting that mark - the greatest good to the greatest amount - requires marksmen type expertise, and the necessary vision to hit that mark, but do not allow my analogy to be mistaken as practice.

We do not need to practice ethics. We do not need to learn how to be ethical. We only need to allow ourselves the space to be keenly aware so that we may hit our mark. Part of being ethical requires some sense of morality. We not only have a responsibility to ourselves to survive, we have a responsibility to others to survive. That is the ethics of morality.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 06:38 PM
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Originally posted by Jean Paul Zodeaux
Morals are concerned with the judgment of goodness or badness. Morals are often conflated with ethics, but there is a distinction between the two. Living as a misanthrope is not immoral, but is unethical. Forming a group which then uses their collective might to undermine or drown out other groups is not immoral but it is unethical. Some...actually many...would like to relegate ethics to a "professional standard" but this misses the point of ethics. Ethics are the strategies we employ to obtain the greater good. The greater good can be reasonably defined as the greatest good to the greatest amount. In this regard, ethics is not concerned with badness, only goodness. Morality, on the other hand, requires judgement of both.

There is language, such as "unethical" that gives an impression of judgement of both bad and good, but again, this term "unethical" is generally used when discussion a "professional standard". Aristotle declared that the greater good is that thing of which all things aim. I believe this is correct. We all aim towards ethical behavior and as such all of us are ethical. The problem is not ethics, but aim. Shooting for the greatest good to the greatest amount requires perfect aim. Most of us aim and miss. The problem becomes even more exasperated by our own level of awareness. The lower level of awareness we are at, the more likely we are going to miss that which we aim towards. This is ethics.

Morality, that judgement of bad and good, generally has its aim too, but it lies more in pro-survival behavior versus anti-survival behavior. It is arguable that smoking cigarettes as a habit is immoral. It is arguable that drinking too much, and especially daily, is immoral. It is arguable that having sex with multiple partners is immoral. These behaviors tend to be anti-survival. This survival can be instinctual but also can be learned. In that regard, morals are both instinctual and learned. Ethics, on the other hand, are not learned, in spite of what any "professional standard" might say. Ethics are our aim and what we all aim towards is the greater good. Hitting that mark - the greatest good to the greatest amount - requires marksmen type expertise, and the necessary vision to hit that mark, but do not allow my analogy to be mistaken as practice.

We do not need to practice ethics. We do not need to learn how to be ethical. We only need to allow ourselves the space to be keenly aware so that we may hit our mark. Part of being ethical requires some sense of morality. We not only have a responsibility to ourselves to survive, we have a responsibility to others to survive. That is the ethics of morality.



I haven't read anything better regarding ethics and morality in a long time. Well done. I wish I could save it somehow.

It seems the principle of the greatest good to the greatest amount, doesn't extend beyond the boundaries of mankind. The greatest amount does indeed contain the entire world—flora and fauna included. I don't think Aristotle's principle has yet to be properly applied or attempted. Hence, we're not only unable to properly aim, but we're shooting at the wrong target in the first place.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 06:43 PM
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If I attempt to mug someone, the expected loss outweighs the expected gain. I deem it not worth my effort to mug someone. One might be more inclined to mug someone under ignorance. "Good" morals come from having more information. "Bad" morals come from ignorance.



posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 11:36 PM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 


They have done studies with primates and they seem to share a sense of right and wrong. For example one test allowed a monkey to select either a red chip which he could exchange for food for himself or a green chip which he could exchange for food for himself and food for another monkey housed nearby. The monkeys always desired to feed the fellow monkey chose the green chip. They also have a sense of justice and fairness built into their genes. It is theorized that much of morality is inherited. I am sure much is learned as well.



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 12:43 AM
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To me morals are logical and can have an objective basis. We know enough about cause & effect to modify our moral compass after careful analysis. Most people's moral's are passed down by elders and they follow along without understanding why. As for me, I removed all preconceptions 13 years ago and started reforming my beliefs including my morals using the simplest logic I could imagine. Too many passed down morals seemed wrong.



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