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Thread: Morality and ethics: what are your values and why?

  1. #181
    Three Trio Tres Member BozeSG's Avatar
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    I generally get misunderstood a lot because i tend to say things in a more complicated way than normal but.... wtf is this shit i don't even. i've never been misunderstood this much in my whole life, just what kind of person do you think i am? i love peace and kindness. actually, the funny thing is, no matter how much i try to be evil in rpg games, i always end up like some kind of freaking saint...

    Where the hell did law come from? come on guys, you're artists, use your imagination a bit... what i wanted to say in that metaphor (which apparently i failed, again) is that no deed can be generally categorized as evil or good, whenever someone does something, there are consequences and those consequences can be evil or good for you based on your luck and standing in the situation, if we compare a deed with a dice and the consequences with the numbers, then you know that the dice(deed) itself is neither good nor evil, it's the number(consequence) facing up that can ruin your life... now if you understand what i just said read that metaphor again, and if you didn't then i guess it's because my mind (or maybe your's) doesn't follow a normal process in thinking...

  2. #182
    Sir-Mass-a-Lot Sylux's Avatar
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    My life motto is: KISS (Keep it Simple, Stupid). Keep your words plain and get your point across swiftly and with good, easily understable analogy.

  3. #183
    Three Trio Tres Member BozeSG's Avatar
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    Well, what i said looked really simple to me, it came to me as a shock that no one understood it! i mean, it's a metaphor and metaphors are not easy to understand, but this is a debate thread, people should understand that much complication. anyway, did you get what i said or not?

    i ought to clear my name here or else everybody will interpret whatever i say as an evil, freakish and outrageous statement...

  4. #184
    Sir-Mass-a-Lot Sylux's Avatar
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    Sure we're (read: they're) well-educated intelligent people, but that doesn't mean that we can understand elaborate metaphor without metaphor in the metaphor you dig, Cobb?

  5. #185
    Super Senior Member CypressDahlia's Avatar
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    Actually, Boze never said there is good and evil because there is law...Sylux said that. This is like a giant thread of misunderstandings now.

  6. #186
    Super Senior Member Delphinus's Avatar
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    Misunderstandings and poorly-worded arguments...
    Quote Originally Posted by Fenn
    You forgot your F in Modesty.

  7. #187
    101 Dalmations Member neogenstru's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Delphinus View Post
    That's still asserting the existence of a good and evil, though.
    Not necessarily I'm saying different decisions have their own set of consequences and advantages. I suppose some decisions such as Murder or Charity could be categorized as "Evil" or "Good", but those are ideas based on whats acceptable by societies. For example in ancient times the Mayans would sacrifice their children to please the gods which during those times were considered "Good", however if this were to occur in todays society the acts would be considered "Evil". Now obviously sacrificing children isn't a very wise decision not because it's "Good" or "Evil", but simply because it's IRRRATIONAL what good(no pun intended) would it do for you or your family to kill your own kid?

  8. #188
    Super Senior Member Delphinus's Avatar
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    Dunno. You might be a sadist and derive pleasure from tying up and executing children.

    So you're basically arguing for culturally-based moral relativism. Fair enough. There's one problem, though: if we assume that what's considered 'good' by a particular society is, in fact, good, then any rebellion against those values is automatically 'evil' by the standards of that society. This doesn't allow for individuals to have differing moral views: if what society says is good is good, then anyone who holds an 'abnormal' morality is necessarily 'evil'. That means that if a modern man were to go back to Aztec times and attempt to stop human sacrifices, he'd be evil. Except - would he? I'd argue not, because I don't believe morality is based on what society thinks is correct.

    The most obvious argument against moral relativism is that it's based on a logical fallacy, namely the argument from popularity: "If most people think something is good, it's good!" Of course, if you argue the more logical counterpart "If most people in a society think something is good, then it's considered good by their society!" then you have to consider this: a society is comprised of people. It doesn't exist separately from them, as some exterior object: the people are the society. Switch this into your moral statement and you're saying: "If most people in a society think something is good, most people in a society think it's good!" No shit, Sherlock. In philosophical terms - moral relativism is either a fallacy or a tautology, and it's of no practical use to us either way.

    I would argue that it's not what a society decides is 'right' or 'wrong' for an actor to performs that makes those actions correct: it's the actor's own will. All morality derives from what I want. If I decide that child sacrifice pleases me (for some logically justified reason, such as, as I said above, that I'm a sadist and derive pleasure from it) and child sacrifice fits with my other beliefs, then so be it. Child sacrifice is good for me and me alone. However, others may disagree with me. There is no standard for morality outside of my skull.

    EDIT: Pretty good battlecry for my perspective on morals and politics and everything else that's important. "Let's stop praying for someone to save us and start saving ourselves."

    Last edited by Delphinus; 05-31-2011 at 07:40 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fenn
    You forgot your F in Modesty.

  9. #189
    Fenn
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    I believe that in most cases, values are relative. For example, values like politeness/rudeness or honor/cheating are what I call "secondary" values; the person doing the action is not in the wrong for acting either way, and niether is the response, either positive or negative, of anyone to this act.

    However, I have a few key "rules" that I believe should apply to all of society regarding individual actions:
    1. If it harms or risks harming the basic welfare of another human (i.e. health, essential food and shelter, employment), either directly or indirectly, it should be illegal and punishable by law.
    2. If it harms or risks harming no one or only the doer, it should be legal.
    3. A private organization, business, club, social gathering, etc. can enact and enforce other rules so long as they do not infringe upon rule 1.
    4. If a person commits an act breaking rule 1, that person may be subject to surrendering their right to protection from the law by rule 1.

    Outside of that, anyone can hold any values they please. If you want to be rude and deceitful, fine. Miserable, thrifty, selfish? Fine--and others are free to shun you socially and treat you as low as you treat them. Furthermore, if you want to place secondary values on yourself such as honor or charity, do so. Everything is relative.

  10. #190
    Super Senior Member Delphinus's Avatar
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    ^ Justify the existence of the primary values.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fenn
    You forgot your F in Modesty.

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