• Leontiskos
    1.1k
    However, the more I have thought about egoism, I would say that you are absolutely right that egoism and altruism blend together when properly understood; because being purely selfless is to just take advantage of oneself—to not see one’s own worth—and being purely selfish in a narcissistic way generally is incoherent. But being both egoistic and altruistic, in a balance, allows for optimal flourishing.Bob Ross

    Right.

    Truly overcoming egoism, in all its forms, requires the individual to transcend their own good and do things for the sole sake of the good of something which is not themselves. If one does something for someone else for their own sake, then they are not doing for that person’s sake.Bob Ross

    This is where we disagree. Take marriage, for example. In the traditional Judeo-Christian understanding of marriage, the two become "one flesh," thus becoming one (quasi-)organism and acting simultaneously for themselves and for their spouse (at least in large part). It is the idea of symbiosis, or of symbiotic organisms. Such a metaphor comes from the sexual act, which is itself a symbiotic act. The idea that I must act for the other's sake and not for my own is a largely Kantian idea, and it is problematic. It is not impossible to do this, but it is difficult and rare, and such an idea should not form the basis of realistic ethics. I think that, more than anything, it has confused us.
  • Bob Ross
    1k


    Interesting. Well, that's just crazy. And it is of course born of subjectivist delusion, but I do not want to just throw a no without reason.

    I mean, come on, you're the one trying to defend subjective morality.

    I am not arguing for moral subjectivism. This position (in my OP) is a form of moral realism.

    That means if I believe the word flourish means killing babies with x traits on that basis alone is possibly moral or a principle of only 'my morality'.

    Nope: we don’t define what flourishing is other than the word to semantically refer to it.

    So, your postion is based on the rough equivalence of desire and morality.

    Not at all. This moral realist theory posits that The Good is identical to flourishing, and The Good is analyzed within contexts; and the smaller the context the lower the Good, and the larger the context the higher the Good.

    Hilarious. Myself and at least one other person here have pointed out that you are sweeping the second order issue under the rug. You just tied like 6 goals into that definition

    Flourishing is just the fulfillment of something relative to its purpose. I don’t think this is all that controversial.

    What “second order issue” are you referring to? Normativity?

    The good is all virtues. So you could have a dimension for each virtue and then any choice must include n-level complexity (and it does). The word 'goals' is your rug that you are sweeping all of truth into as to hard to look at. Stay messy. Stay real.

    The Good, in this view, is flourishing: it is not virtues. Virtues are habits of character that are good.

    By ‘goal’, I just mean ‘purpose’; and I think I have been really open about that flourishing is sufficient fulfillment of something relative to its purpose. I don’t think I am sweeping it under the rug at all.

    this statement taken at the meta level is telling and horrifying. Wear you hair shirt on your own time. This is said in humor.

    I am not following.

    Wisdom is only ever earned via suffering

    One can be flourishing in insufferable conditions; and I never said that we can’t use suffering to flourish more (in the long term).

    Also, wisdom is not The Good. This is a separate issue, but I am assuming you are also leveraging this critique against The Good as well.

    Necessary suffering is wise to inflict upon people in order to facilitate them earning wisdom

    I do not necessarily agree with this, if you are implying we should torture people to give them “more wisdom”.

    You're the subjectivist. I will instead tolerate the many subjectivist errors towards wisdom because the intent to become wise seems present.

    I think you have misunderstood the OP: this is not a thread about moral subjectivism. I have a separate thread for that metaethical theory if you would like to discuss that there. If you are accusing this theory of truly being a form of moral subjectivism, then I am not seeing yet why that is the case.

    Does it not also include growth? What about accuracy? Is beauty a part of your flourish. It's so unclear really

    Flourishing, being the fulfillment of something relative to its purpose, is not necessarily, in -itself, dependent on anything other than the purpose being fulfilled. That purpose can be anything. For most people, yes, personal growth is going to be a part of that. I am not sure to what extent beauty factors in for most people, and I am not sure what you mean by accuracy: accuracy of what?

    You again included the goal. That is the meta second level of distinction that I was referring to.

    The Good, as flourishing, is not dependent on a goal itself: it is the objective relation between a thing and its purpose such that it has been sufficiently fulfilled.

    OK, so there is no way for us to be objective. We can only try to be objective.

    That is irrelevant to what I said, which was that I deny that the Good is subjective. That our striving towards the good is subjective does not entail whatsoever that the good itself is subjective.

    it is not the highest good.' What? Seriously? YOU can't say that. There is no good to you.

    The highest Good is universal flourishing, which is the flourishing of everything harmonously (with one another). Again, I think you misunderstood the OP. Perhaps you were forwarded here from someone in the TFP that was asking you to analyze my other thread about moral subjectivism. This thread is about a moral realist position I have come up with.

    You say 'factually wrong' and I am thinking you think facts are objectively correct.

    A fact is a statement about reality that properly corresponds to it. Facts are objective insofar as their agreement with reality is mind-independent. When I say ‘factually wrong’, I mean that there is a state-of-affairs or arrangement of entities in reality in virtue of which make it true that it is wrong. This is objective, not subjective.

    Due to experience, everything, even existence itself, is subjective

    You are conflating experience being subjective with everything being subjective.

    Lol, so again, you are back to declaring my argument, objective morality. I can't tell. Maybe you are a moral realist.

    I would like to ask, and I mean this with all due respect: did you read the OP? I usually give people the benefit of the doubt, but I am now suspecting you may have jumped into this thread from someone else who notified you of my moral subjectivist metaethical theory that I defended in a different thread (or actually multiple threads). Am I right? If not, then I apologize. If so, then I would suggest reading the OP: it is a pretty quick read and you will probably understand better what this moral realist position is (and what it isn’t); and, that way, we can hone-in on our conversation to the OP itself.

    You ARE a moral realist and you just don't realize it.

    I am still confused at why you think that this theory (I have presented) is purporting to be a moral anti-realist position; let alone moral subjectivism.

    Secondly, there is no such law of the universe that dictates that we have free will: it is a biproduct of our ability to cognize. — Bob Ross
    (This is a) Wildly conceited and egoic point of view. We did this? Really? The same people that invented twinkies and cigarettes? I see (backs away slowly).

    My claim (that you quoted) never attempted to say that we invented free will. It is a biproduct of our ability to cognize.

    Free will is what causes physical reality to occur.

    It seems as though, and correct me if I am wrong, you are think that there is a natural law of morality which actually forms things, like a force. I don’t see why that is the case.

    I will say that I disagree with most of what you said about moral subjectivism, but this thread isn’t meant to debate that; so if you want to discuss that then shoot me a message on the moral subjectivism thread of mine.
  • Chet Hawkins
    82
    Interesting. Well, that's just crazy. And it is of course born of subjectivist delusion, but I do not want to just throw a no without reason.

    I mean, come on, you're the one trying to defend subjective morality.

    I am not arguing for moral subjectivism. This position (in my OP) is a form of moral realism.
    Bob Ross

    Ha ha! Well mea culpa. Two people arguing the pro at the debate. Run Away!
    I feel now like Rosanne Rosanna-danna on the old SNL

    'Nevermind!'

    That means if I believe the word flourish means killing babies with x traits on that basis alone is possibly moral or a principle of only 'my morality'.

    Nope: we don’t define what flourishing is other than the word to semantically refer to it.

    So, your postion is based on the rough equivalence of desire and morality.

    Not at all. This moral realist theory posits that The Good is identical to flourishing, and The Good is analyzed within contexts; and the smaller the context the lower the Good, and the larger the context the higher the Good.
    Bob Ross
    OK so now, the whole rest of this post will be you and me mostly agreeing. I was fairly sure you stated that you posted an argument for moral realism to DESTROY it with your 'real' argument.

    Hilarious. Myself and at least one other person here have pointed out that you are sweeping the second order issue under the rug. You just tied like 6 goals into that definition

    Flourishing is just the fulfillment of something relative to its purpose. I don’t think this is all that controversial.

    What “second order issue” are you referring to? Normativity?
    Bob Ross
    Yes and that would be only 'meeting desires ends by attaining them.' In other words morality redefined as desire only.

    Normativity is (pardon) bovine poo revisionism for objective morality. It's just another way of saying moral subjectivism has merit in and of itself. It does not.

    It doesn't matter what people believe because what is good is a law of the universe, objective.

    The good is all virtues. So you could have a dimension for each virtue and then any choice must include n-level complexity (and it does). The word 'goals' is your rug that you are sweeping all of truth into as to hard to look at. Stay messy. Stay real.

    The Good, in this view, is flourishing: it is not virtues. Virtues are habits of character that are good.
    Bob Ross
    Well yes, I follow your distinction here. But no, you are sidestepping a dangerously important issue. If you fail to realize that virtues ARE the quantum discrete parts of goodness, you fail (in general).

    That is to say something like this:
    Flourish -> Good
    Flourish?
    Accuracy (is part of) Flourish
    Judgement (is part of) Flourish
    Beauty (is part of) Flourish
    ...
    therefore something like:
    (Accuracy, Judgement, Beauty, ... ) -> Good

    Now assume there are 16 discrete virtues discoverable (not saying there are that number)
    But now we can get dirty and correct:

    (Accuracy, Beauty) -> missing 14 virtues, e.g. not GOOD, not even by half
    etc

    And
    (62% accurate, 78% beautiful, 10 others at some value above 50%, 2 at like 2%) - > Obvious Room for improvement

    And then:
    Current societal standards = 40% objective perfection (guess)
    Above example % are ONLY within THAT already immoral societal aim.
    Egregiously immoral as in fairly damn immoral.

    Hopefully that nonsense symbolic logic is followable.

    By ‘goal’, I just mean ‘purpose’; and I think I have been really open about that flourishing is sufficient fulfillment of something relative to its purpose. I don’t think I am sweeping it under the rug at all.Bob Ross
    But you miss a critical point that CANNOT be missed unless you are wrong (you are wrong):
    That is that flourishing IS NOT informed by opinions. Flourishing is objective.

    Opinions are only degrees of error away from perfection.

    this statement taken at the meta level is telling and horrifying. Wear you hair shirt on your own time. This is said in humor.

    I am not following.
    Bob Ross
    Well you did what the other guy did and did not put your part my part refers to that you are referring to here with your response. That makes it too hard to respond. I have no idea. I dont want to back trace it. Please quote the WHOLE thing each time. Computers carry forward the cumbersome whole easily. That's their purpose.

    Wisdom is only ever earned via suffering

    One can be flourishing in insufferable conditions; and I never said that we can’t use suffering to flourish more (in the long term).
    Bob Ross
    Good, then we agree on this. Again, your earlier part is not included so I dont know what I was really commenting on.

    Also, wisdom is not The Good. This is a separate issue, but I am assuming you are also leveraging this critique against The Good as well.Bob Ross
    Wisdom is many things. It is a trait that as shown above is ALL, repeat ALL, bar none virtues combined, both in belief and in expression of belief as action. Wisdom is the know, do, want of GOOD.

    If one knows wisdom but does not do it or want it one is not wise.
    If one does wisely but does not know it or want it one is not wise.
    If one wants wisdom but does not know it or do it one is not wise. - John Cusack (not really)

    Necessary suffering is wise to inflict upon people in order to facilitate them earning wisdom

    I do not necessarily agree with this, if you are implying we should torture people to give them “more wisdom”.
    Bob Ross
    I said necessary. But yes, if it is necessary. It is not torture as that implies negative intent, negative wants. But because I know one must suffer to decide that it will act in alignment with objective moral aims and that one must also decide to want these aims, I will inflict necessary suffering on one. That one includes myself. What is necessary is not then rightly called torture. But it will be deemed torture by the weak.

    If you shrink back from this then here is the result of such a whiny and ineffectual point of view. It will breed the next level of don't go this far spoilage of the choosers. They will choose over and over again ad infinitum to suffer less and less and thereby will declare more and more subtle nuances of action as torture, relegating what is necessary to nothing. This is simply more pandering to desire.

    Your path leads to alien encounters that mortify and render our species useless because we have forgotten how to 'keep it real', what real pain is, what real suffering is. Our scions of your would be world will collapse into PTSD when their virtual avatars are unplugged and the scent generator in their pod malfunctions.

    The wise understand that suffering must be real, exquisite and rather constant to maintain awareness and self-restraint against the weakening influence of over expressed desire.

    Certainly at least a grand portion of society (mayhap the soldiery or some analogous force) must be made to suffer more to be the hand of action for the corpulent pod lifers. But then, you are separating wisdom by separating virtues and no one is then truly wise. It is only a sort of hive mind wisdom that emerges. I suppose it is a possible approach.

    I aim more to the Renaissance man style, jack of all trades and aiming at master of all trades also. The cross pollination of the virtues is the only real goal.

    You're the subjectivist. I will instead tolerate the many subjectivist errors towards wisdom because the intent to become wise seems present.

    I think you have misunderstood the OP: this is not a thread about moral subjectivism. I have a separate thread for that metaethical theory if you would like to discuss that there. If you are accusing this theory of truly being a form of moral subjectivism, then I am not seeing yet why that is the case.
    Bob Ross
    I missed that admittedly and I apologize. No wonder at all then. I thought you were basically saying things that sounded like realism and that your intent was to say things that were subjectivism.

    Does it not also include growth? What about accuracy? Is beauty a part of your flourish. It's so unclear really

    Flourishing, being the fulfillment of something relative to its purpose, is not necessarily, in -itself, dependent on anything other than the purpose being fulfilled. That purpose can be anything. For most people, yes, personal growth is going to be a part of that. I am not sure to what extent beauty factors in for most people, and I am not sure what you mean by accuracy: accuracy of what?
    Bob Ross
    Beauty and accuracy are objective. That is part of the problem of subjectivism. It does not admit to this. In wanting what is immoral it decides that all wants are equal in 'goodness'. That is dangerous lie.

    Lets take beauty. What is it? It is an expression of a pattern within reality that shows a more pure instantiation of objective moral truth, of the GOOD. This is why beauty is compelling. Beauty is an image, a representation of what might be, so it partakes of desire. But, is here, instantiated, and that is anger/being. So its presence angrily 'demands' attention. That is what beauty is. The more it is a match for the beauty of perfection the more it pulls on our hearts with desire. The more it is a match the more we perceive it to force our attention. It is not actually graceful. It is raw, commanding. If there were no objective end, beauty would not be a thing.

    Subjective errors towards beauty are caused by bad choices, just like other erroneous choices. The signal of love is being misinterpreted. Often this is because some part of us knows on some level that we cannot attain it, therefore immorally we denigrate it. We turn away from beauty because it shows clearly what is right. Right is only in one virtue. Ugly is an objective instantiation of a more immoral form. I am completely serious.

    You again included the goal. That is the meta second level of distinction that I was referring to.

    The Good, as flourishing, is not dependent on a goal itself: it is the objective relation between a thing and its purpose such that it has been sufficiently fulfilled.
    Bob Ross
    The which says NOTHING about morality at all. If my goal is to kill Asians, then if I succeed I am flourishing. That is subjective morality. Objective morality says that killing people just because they are Asian is incoherent immoral nonsense. So, objective morality would claim that it matters not how well you flourish killing Asians, you missed the point of morality.

    OK, so there is no way for us to be objective. We can only try to be objective.

    That is irrelevant to what I said, which was that I deny that the Good is subjective. That our striving towards the good is subjective does not entail whatsoever that the good itself is subjective.
    Bob Ross
    Ok, as expected there will be a lot of me saying 'nevermind' because I thought you were saying here that the good is subjective. You are claiming that in another thread so these arguments are still valid for you to respond to.

    it is not the highest good.' What? Seriously? YOU can't say that. There is no good to you.

    The highest Good is universal flourishing, which is the flourishing of everything harmonously (with one another). Again, I think you misunderstood the OP. Perhaps you were forwarded here from someone in the TFP that was asking you to analyze my other thread about moral subjectivism. This thread is about a moral realist position I have come up with.
    Bob Ross
    Now you just added another component, 'harmoniously'. You cant do that either. You didn't say that before. Saying that is a meta level difference and I can almost agree. But no, people are often harmoniously evil together. So, wrong again. More is needed. That more is objective. It is all good virtues combined.

    You say 'factually wrong' and I am thinking you think facts are objectively correct.

    A fact is a statement about reality that properly corresponds to it. Facts are objective insofar as their agreement with reality is mind-independent.
    Bob Ross
    Oh lordie! The mind-independent thing again. As shown later that is a rug and a bad one. nothing is mind-independent in the way you seem to suggest. We are all connected.

    I guess I can agree about your fact definition but its a weak definition. Here is a far far better one:
    "A fact is only a belief for which some moral agent has perhaps even arbitrarily decided there is enough evidence to declare that fact close to truth, NOT reality." Truth and reality are different. Truth is superior because it is objective. Morality is part of truth. Reality is the what we can interpret of truth, only, e.g. beliefs. Reality is subjective delusion. Truth is objective.

    When I say ‘factually wrong’, I mean that there is a state-of-affairs or arrangement of entities in reality in virtue of which make it true that it is wrong. This is objective, not subjective.Bob Ross
    Nope. Reality is subjective delusion. Truth is objective. Facts are only currently held as 'true' beliefs about truth. They never describe truth accurately. Their correctness is only scale of how wrong they are, often relative to one another.

    Due to experience, everything, even existence itself, is subjective

    You are conflating experience being subjective with everything being subjective.
    Bob Ross
    Truth is the only thing that is objective.

    We can infer that truth is objective, but never prove it. We are left only and always with hopefully better and better beliefs about reality amid truth.

    Everything that we call reality is subjective. Truth alone is not.

    Lol, so again, you are back to declaring my argument, objective morality. I can't tell. Maybe you are a moral realist.

    I would like to ask, and I mean this with all due respect: did you read the OP? I usually give people the benefit of the doubt, but I am now suspecting you may have jumped into this thread from someone else who notified you of my moral subjectivist metaethical theory that I defended in a different thread (or actually multiple threads). Am I right? If not, then I apologize. If so, then I would suggest reading the OP: it is a pretty quick read and you will probably understand better what this moral realist position is (and what it isn’t); and, that way, we can hone-in on our conversation to the OP itself.
    Bob Ross
    Agreed and admitted.
    I did read and understand it.

    But I am a person who cares too much about a person's real positions. So I was naturally gravitating towards your subjectivist belief that is more real that this fake objectivist post. I admit the error and apologize.

    I suppose I will now have to contend with your actual subjectivism in the other thread. Yoiks and Away!

    You ARE a moral realist and you just don't realize it.

    I am still confused at why you think that this theory (I have presented) is purporting to be a moral anti-realist position; let alone moral subjectivism.
    Bob Ross
    Again, you are right. It was because I can only ever focus on the real. If you present a front, a fake realism, and I read before as I did that you are a subjectivist, I can't help but speak to you, the real you, that is a subjectivist. Also the sheer length of some of this made me lose my awareness of the former position as a stance only, a pretense. Again sincere apologies.

    I was like WTF this guys arguments are all moral realism. How can he claim subjectivism? Oops!

    Youth In Asia! Something must be done!

    Secondly, there is no such law of the universe that dictates that we have free will: it is a biproduct of our ability to cognize. — Bob Ross
    (This is a) Wildly conceited and egoic point of view. We did this? Really? The same people that invented twinkies and cigarettes? I see (backs away slowly).

    My claim (that you quoted) never attempted to say that we invented free will. It is a biproduct of our ability to cognize.
    Bob Ross
    It is not. It is a law of the universe. It is the only law, really. All else can be derived from it.

    Free will is what causes physical reality to occur.

    It seems as though, and correct me if I am wrong, you are think that there is a natural law of morality which actually forms things, like a force. I don’t see why that is the case.
    Bob Ross
    That much is clear. We will meet again, when you are you. Luckily for you, morality is objective.

    I will say that I disagree with most of what you said about moral subjectivism, but this thread isn’t meant to debate that; so if you want to discuss that then shoot me a message on the moral subjectivism thread of mine.Bob Ross
    Will do! Thanks for understanding!
  • Bob Ross
    1k


    I think it might be best if I give a brief elaboration of this moral realist theory, and see what you disagree with. So far, it seems as though most of your critiques and points are irrelevant to the OP.

    This theory posits that morality is objective—i.e., that there are states-of-affairs or arrangements of entities in reality that inform us of what is moral or immoral. It posits that what is good (viz., The Good, in the sense of an objective goodness) is flourishing—i.e., goodness is identical to flourishing. Flourishing is, at its core, the fulfillment of something relative to its purpose. Flourishing is contextual and objective: it is contextual insofar as one must posit a context in which one is assessing flourishing (e.g., I am flourishing, you are flourishing, we are flourishing, society is flourishing, etc.) and objective insofar as it is a mind-independently existing relation between a purpose and fulfillment thereof (viz., one’s psychology has nothing to do with flourishing being identical to the fulfillment of purposes). This relation, however, contains an element of subjectivity insofar as purposes are subjective (i.e., what it means for something [within a context] to fulfill its purpose is relative to the psychology of one or more subjects): this does not make flourishing itself subjective but, rather, merely that that very objective relation is that of (subjective) purposes being fulfilled. Each context one could posit, for evaluating flourishing, which is infinite in amount, is hierarchical in the sense that larger contexts have more flourishing and smaller contexts have less flourishing (in total); and, consequently, the larger the context of flourishing, the greater the good (i.e., the greater the flourishing). Thusly, the highest good is universal flourishing, because it has the greatest amount of flourishing being the largest context. The highest good has the most good and is, therefore, the best good: it is the ultimate good. Therefore, if one is committed to being good, then they should strive for this best good, this highest good, this universal flourishing, instead of a lower one.

    With that being said, what do you disagree with in that theory?

    I would like to also disclaim that this position is not “fake”, as you implied multiple times in your response: by noting that I have a separate thread for moral subjectivism, I was not meaning to imply I am a moral subjectivist. Personally, I hold this theory instead; but I am more than happy to discuss moral subjectivism, as I think it gets a very bad wrap by most people who, quite frankly, do not fully understand the theory.

    Normativity is (pardon) bovine poo revisionism for objective morality. It's just another way of saying moral subjectivism has merit in and of itself.

    I don’t think removing normativity from the good makes moral subjectivism itself have merit. Instead, it just fixes a lot of problems with moral realist theories which posit the contrary and makes more realism more plausible.

    Another thing I would like to disclaim is that when I say flourishing has that subjective element of being the fulfillment of a (subjective) purpose: I am referring to the depths of the soul and not whimsical day-to-day opinions or desires a person has.

    It doesn't matter what people believe because what is good is a law of the universe, objective.

    So, this is not something posited in my theory; and I don’t see any evidence to support the good being a natural law.

    Well yes, I follow your distinction here. But no, you are sidestepping a dangerously important issue. If you fail to realize that virtues ARE the quantum discrete parts of goodness, you fail (in general).

    I didn’t follow any of this: what is a ‘quantum discrete part of goodness’? Virtues are habits of character that are good: they are not identical to goodness.

    Well you did what the other guy did and did not put your part my part refers to that you are referring to here with your response. That makes it too hard to respond.

    Correct. I am not going to quote everything you say, because there is too much. I only tag the portion relative to what I am responding to, and trust you will be able to navigate your own responses.

    I said necessary. But yes, if it is necessary. It is not torture as that implies negative intent, negative wants.

    It is immoral to torture someone (or torture them absent of this ‘negative intent’ you mentioned) for the sake of building their virtue.

    Beauty and accuracy are objective.

    What do you mean by accuracy? Accuracy of what?

    I don’t think beauty necessarily instantiates objective moral truth. Being ugly has nothing to do with what is moral or immoral. There could be a reality with universal flourishing and every person therein is uglier than a bat.

    If my goal is to kill Asians, then if I succeed I am flourishing. That is subjective morality

    The first sentence is in principle correct, the second is not implied from the first. In the smallest, or one of the smallest, contexts of flourishing, of good, if one has the purpose of killing asians, then they would thereby flourish if they are sufficiently killing asians. However, the buck does not stop here: the highest good is universal flourishing, and killing asians clearly violates that. So, colloquially, my theory would state “it is immoral to kill asians for the sole sake of fulfilling one’s own desire”.

    Nevertheless, flourishing is not subjective; so even in the example you gave, it does not follow that morality is subjective.

    Objective morality says that killing people just because they are Asian is incoherent immoral nonsense.

    No it does not. Objective morality (i.e., moral realism) is a three-pronged thesis:

    1. Moral judgments are propositional (moral cognitivism).
    2. Moral judgments express something objective (moral objectivism)
    3. There is at least one true moral judgment.

    Moral realism itself does not entail that moral anti-realism is internally incoherent, although a particular theory may advertise that, nor that it is nonsense; but, rather, just that it is objectively wrong to do so.

    Now you just added another component, 'harmoniously'. You cant do that either

    It is implied by the highest good: universal flourishing requires, nay presupposes, universal harmony.

    Oh lordie! The mind-independent thing again. As shown later that is a rug and a bad one. nothing is mind-independent in the way you seem to suggest. We are all connected.

    You cannot claim that moral is objective and turn around and deny that objectivity is ‘that which is mind-independent’.

    I will stop here for now, so that we can hone in on our conversation to the OP.
  • Bob Ross
    1k


    The idea that I must act for the other's sake and not for my own is a largely Kantian idea, and it is problematic.

    I guess it depends on what you are referring to by 'egoism' and 'altruism'; and, to me, in a marriage one is acting for one's own sake and another's sake--so there is an element of egoism there (albeit it not narcissism). Acting truly as if the two partners are one organism isn't how marriage usually works in practice. E.g., one does not divorce their partner to save the marriage, like one would chop off their arm to save their body: they don't do this precisely because marriage presupposes that each partner is trying to find the right balance between themselves and the other person. Obviously, divorcing to save a marriage makes no sense, but if it truly is just a matter of two people being fused into one person, then they should have no problem sacrificing one for the sake of the other in a dire situation.

    My point is just that marriages are about finding the right balance between one's own needs and another person's, not some relationship where egoism has been completely overcome.
  • Banno
    22.9k
    ...finding the right balance between one's own needs and another person's,Bob Ross

    Isn't that the very nature of ethics? How we ought treat others?
  • Moliere
    3.9k
    The idea that I must act for the other's sake and not for my own is a largely Kantian idea, and it is problematic. It is not impossible to do this, but it is difficult and rare, and such an idea should not form the basis of realistic ethics. I think that, more than anything, it has confused us.Leontiskos

    That's pretty close to how I think.

    Though I'd extend the range to include all forms of Christianity.

    It's a nice thought, but for the wrong species.
  • Moliere
    3.9k
    Seems so, to me.
  • Bob Ross
    1k


    That is a part of ethics, the other is: what is good?
  • Leontiskos
    1.1k
    That's pretty close to how I think.Moliere

    :up:

    Though I'd extend the range to include all forms of Christianity.Moliere

    Christianity says, "Love your neighbor as yourself," not, "Love your neighbor, not yourself." Without self-worth sacrifice is unintelligible.

    It's a nice thought, but for the wrong species.Moliere

    I actually don't think it is a nice thought for any species.

    ---

    Acting truly as if the two partners are one organism isn't how marriage usually works in practice.Bob Ross

    I don't think our culture takes marriage very seriously, so this is no surprise. But the point is that humans simply aren't forced to choose their own good at the expense of others, nor are they barred from promoting the good of others in a symbiotic manner.
  • Chet Hawkins
    82
    I think it might be best if I give a brief elaboration of this moral realist theory, and see what you disagree with. So far, it seems as though most of your critiques and points are irrelevant to the OP.Bob Ross
    That is your assessment, not mine. Of course I mention them only because to me they are relevant in the case of my stance FOR moral realism. I suppose I could take the con to moral objectivity and argue that, but that is not my belief, and I prefer genuine argument meaning arguing only for that which one does actually believe.

    This theory posits that morality is objective—i.e., that there are states-of-affairs or arrangements of entities in reality that inform us of what is moral or immoral. It posits that what is good (viz., The Good, in the sense of an objective goodness) is flourishing—i.e., goodness is identical to flourishing. Flourishing is, at its core, the fulfillment of something relative to its purpose. Flourishing is contextual and objective: it is contextual insofar as one must posit a context in which one is assessing flourishing (e.g., I am flourishing, you are flourishing, we are flourishing, society is flourishing, etc.) and objective insofar as it is a mind-independently existing relation between a purpose and fulfillment thereof (viz., one’s psychology has nothing to do with flourishing being identical to the fulfillment of purposes).Bob Ross
    I mean you did not answer my earlier critiques and instead retreated back into your 'jargon' I prefer to believe I refuted, actually answering your comments.

    I mentioned before many ways and explained it perhaps in a less than best way that it does not matter how you attempt to define 'flourish'. Yet you keep going back to that as if repeating the same thing I objected to as an error works. It certainly does not help.

    Whether you or I or anyone believes that they are flourishing is not relevant if morality is objective. All beliefs are partially in error. So there is wrongness amid even overall correct claims. This situation in fact underscores the objective nature of morality. The unchanging and pristine nature of perfection, of objectivity, of truth, as opposed to belief, is what we should be debating.

    Finally, the issue between subjective and objective goals is only that the objective ones do not change. They cannot ever change. They are truth and truth does not change.

    A subjective morality requires that indeed fundamental laws of the universe must change on a moment to moment basis. I say that indeed because as mentioned, I assert that morality is a natural law. Its truth was true at the dawn of time and perhaps before, depending on if a before could exist.

    The only possibly objective things, or true things, can only be so if they are always true (reiteration). This means that morality was objectively true at the dawn of time. The one thing logically requires the other. So, only a moral subjectivist can claim that morality is not a natural law. I have explained my position with these statements. Theoretically, amid real discussion you must provide a substantive reason why you disagree.

    Assertion set tentative:
    1) Truth is eternal and ubiquitous. To write a truth assertion you must show or contend that this assertion was true at the dawn of time, and never has not been true at any point in time.
    2) States are not ever truth. If something can change it is a state and not truth. A truth can be distilled into a principle, often called first principles, a useless term because truth already suffices.
    3) States are best referred to as transitional and therefore effectively delusional. They are not truth, they never were truth, and dwelling on them is missing the point of truth-seeking. It is (objectively) disingenuous immoral behavior.
    4) Perfection is the only real ideal, and is effectively synonymous with truth.
    5) Moral perfection can have a special name and that is the GOOD. It just means perfection. So Ideal, perfection, truth, and objective (and even the term God) can all mean the same thing. In my belief model and writings here, they are always all the same things. There is no need to separate them and that act of separation by intent is in and of itself suggested and can be discussed as immoral and bound to have immoral consequences therefore.
    5) Consequences are only state fallouts of intents. Intents are synonymous to me with the term 'choices'.
    6) Perfection is a state and a final choice consequence as well as an ideal. It can be considered a strange duality of delusion and truth and it is the only exception to all rules. Its distinction on this basis is critical to all thought, all definitions, all discussions.

    I am not trying to derail the thread at all. I still intend to discuss it more, although I think I have made great points already that have been ignored because they do not fit the OP. But that is not correct, so, what am I to do? They do fit any OP that has any bearing on the 6 assertions I detailed here and any sub-assertion that conflicts with the 6 here amid that OP is in fact being challenged on that basis. My reasons were explained and my explanations were not addressed. That leaves me reiterating until they are addressed. One does not properly address an assertion by merely saying, 'that does not obtain', or similar dismissive non-helpful attempts at countering an argument by mere negation statements.

    This relation, however, contains an element of subjectivity insofar as purposes are subjective (i.e., what it means for something [within a context] to fulfill its purpose is relative to the psychology of one or more subjects): this does not make flourishing itself subjective but, rather, merely that that very objective relation is that of (subjective) purposes being fulfilled.Bob Ross
    I can agree that because I believe morality to be objective that to me flourishing is objective. But that merely means that subjective opinions on flourishing are all always wrong in some way. They simply can never be perfect.

    And this inability to arrive at objectivity is super relevant. It leaves us all sitting in our subjective error pool of beliefs still 'doomed' to want perfection because that objective moral truth gives rise to desire itself, but eternally unable to arrive there.

    This situation is the juxtaposition of moral duty. Amid moral duty, an objective aim at perfection only, we must both seek perfection and acknowledge that it is impossible to arrive there. That is in fact, wisdom. It could be called as well the source of humility itself.

    Subjective experience makes choice errors likely, despite the pull of perfection, because desire itself is distorted by the immorality and weakness present in the state/choice mix. State is current only and choice is the next pulse to the next new state. State can be and is always immoral/imperfection and by degrees. Choice can be and is always immoral/imperfection and by degrees.

    Nothing but free will exists in any state. The state is just an accumulation of free will consequences, and free will manages the choice which is the next pulse to the next new state. Nothing is in action but free will.

    I will add for completeness although I mentioned this before, that all instantiation is possessed of free will. Even though the moral agency of an atom seems ridiculous or infinitesimally small, it simply has to be there because that seed via evolution gave rise to greater and greater moral agency. So, Animism was always the best belief system, and later religions were a backslide only. I am still just framing my arguments for you. The internal consistency of my belief system is very high in my opinion. If someone wants to say it is wrong they need to have a logic reason why and explain it here. They should not just link to someone else's argument or even their own from elsewhere or Wikipedia as an example. I am providing enough information here to allow for meaningful debate.

    Each context one could posit, for evaluating flourishing, which is infinite in amount, is hierarchical in the sense that larger contexts have more flourishing and smaller contexts have less flourishing (in total); and, consequently, the larger the context of flourishing, the greater the good (i.e., the greater the flourishing). Thusly, the highest good is universal flourishing, because it has the greatest amount of flourishing being the largest context. The highest good has the most good and is, therefore, the best good: it is the ultimate good. Therefore, if one is committed to being good, then they should strive for this best good, this highest good, this universal flourishing, instead of a lower one.Bob Ross
    Yes, my system of belief is in alignment with that, except in one way that should be stated.

    That is saying 'highest' and 'lowest' does have proper inferences but it implies something that is not true. Striving for a lower good can only be a relative determination. The default point of comparison is what you are calling the highest good, and what I call perfection. Perfection must be specified (in my opinion) as an n dimensional intersection of dimensions that by definition will all only intersect at one point and that is perfection. To say 'highest' therefore is misleading. That is a scalar uni-dimensional term. It is entirely insufficient to describe the objective moral good.

    Another way to say it that between any two state/choice comparisons, one is always both:
    1) Originating from a better state because perfect state matches are impossible ... AND
    2) One choice n-dimensional matrix value is always better than the other.

    This is effectively a writ small description of judgment, a single virtue. Choices that are judged as wise or good should always point directly to perfection and they are 'bad' by the degree that they are missing in this vector aim.

    With that being said, what do you disagree with in that theory?Bob Ross
    I just stated why. I am a moral realist so I do not disagree with what I define that to be, in general. Any model that ends up supporting the tenets I defined as moral realism, because that is what I understand and believe it to be, is fine with me.

    But some of the language used indicates the belief system assertions are not all agreed upon and therefore must be stated, as I did.

    I would like to also disclaim that this position is not “fake”, as you implied multiple times in your response: by noting that I have a separate thread for moral subjectivism, I was not meaning to imply I am a moral subjectivist. Personally, I hold this theory instead; but I am more than happy to discuss moral subjectivism, as I think it gets a very bad wrap by most people who, quite frankly, do not fully understand the theory.Bob Ross
    As mentioned, we should both be able to easily agree that all understanding is incorrect when compared to perfection. So, we do not have to harp on that.

    What we should be dealing with is the fact that moral realism put a tremendous and increasing burden of free will onto the chooser. The reason it does so is only because as moral states rise in moral value, in goodness, it gets harder and harder to make more and more moral choices. This truth is critical to acknowledge as part of any useful moral realism set of assertions.

    It takes greater and greater virtue states and greater and greater aim accuracy at perfection to increase the moral state value of the next state after a choice pulse. Accomplishing that is harder and harder because you are requiring the chooser to do it all at the same time.

    Normativity is (pardon) bovine poo revisionism for objective morality. It's just another way of saying moral subjectivism has merit in and of itself.

    I don’t think removing normativity from the good makes moral subjectivism itself have merit.
    Bob Ross
    And I never said that it did.

    Normativity is just moral subjectivism redefined. It takes the viewpoint off of perfection and normalizes to an error based standard. There is no point to that. It is immoral counter wisdom. So, do not do it. Do not admit that normativity is useful. If you do, you are inherenity supporting subjective morality.

    Instead, it just fixes a lot of problems with moral realist theories which posit the contrary and makes more realism more plausible.Bob Ross
    Indeed not. Normalizing to an imperfect standard is merely immoral. It is an error, just like moral subjectivism. There is no need even giving pretense to errors, finally.

    I guess I would say, it is more perfect to just call it subjective morality, to build a thought-of-as-perfect for now, best guess, standard of perfection, and then try aiming at that. Then you can identify where in the intent dimensions your 'normative' new subjective standard originates from and you all know and admit you are discussing moral errors only.

    None of this implies that the guessed at perfection currently is anything but a normative standard. That can be confusing. But there can only be 1. We should agree on what a best guess is and use that as the universal default standard. Anytime debate moves a virtue scale or consensus, the 'authority' shifts the normative perfection. But all sub perfection guess normalizations are just and only even worse error including deviations.

    I am trying to be clear with my meanings here.

    Another thing I would like to disclaim is that when I say flourishing has that subjective element of being the fulfillment of a (subjective) purpose: I am referring to the depths of the soul and not whimsical day-to-day opinions or desires a person has.Bob Ross
    There is zero difference in these things you claim as partially different. No single choice is neutral. There is nothing in this universe but morality of state and accuracy of moral aim towards objective moral perfection. Those are the core tenets of objective morality.

    Maybe you mean depths of the soul to be belief which is state only.
    Maybe you mean day to day opinion to be intents which is choice only.

    But, It sounded to me like you were opening up a new category of important choice and unimportant choice, and that is a delusional lie.

    Correct me if I am wrong.

    It doesn't matter what people believe because what is good is a law of the universe, objective.

    So, this is not something posited in my theory; and I don’t see any evidence to support the good being a natural law.
    Bob Ross
    The entire universe is evidence but I know that is a dodge.

    As mentioned earlier though and unless that earlier but is refuted this position of yours is merely wrong. Since morality is objective, it is a natural law, a truth, by definition. To remove it as natural law is to remove objective morality entirely. That or the very concept of objectivity is not properly understood 9is my contention).

    Well yes, I follow your distinction here. But no, you are sidestepping a dangerously important issue. If you fail to realize that virtues ARE the quantum discrete parts of goodness, you fail (in general).

    I didn’t follow any of this: what is a ‘quantum discrete part of goodness’? Virtues are habits of character that are good: they are not identical to goodness.
    Bob Ross
    And I did not say they were. They are however, as mentioned, parts of goodness. And the way they are arranged or add value to perfection is discrete meaning objective. But this is objective in multiple ways at the same time. People do not realize that virtues have discrete structure and value. People will often devalue one virtue compared to another. That is a moral error. All virtues that I am referring to, that can be properly named as such, have a discrete interaction between them. And they are all equal, precisely perfectly equal.

    I do not claim perfect knowledge, only better moral awareness than most, hence an interest in philosophy and such and spreading the 'good' word from my normative perfect moral value set. Ostensibly others here are at least interested if not possessed of their own normative belief set. And possibly they could also have less interest in spreading the 'good'.

    Well you did what the other guy did and did not put your part my part refers to that you are referring to here with your response. That makes it too hard to respond.

    Correct. I am not going to quote everything you say, because there is too much. I only tag the portion relative to what I am responding to, and trust you will be able to navigate your own responses.
    Bob Ross
    That is sad because it is just as easy to quote the whole thing and avoid this problem, facilitating all of our efforts at communication.

    I said necessary. But yes, if it is necessary. It is not torture as that implies negative intent, negative wants.

    It is immoral to torture someone (or torture them absent of this ‘negative intent’ you mentioned) for the sake of building their virtue.
    Bob Ross
    And yet it is moral to inflict suffering on others to help them earn wisdom in a 'safer' setting. Otherwise there is no need to teach, ever. There is no need to communicate ever. This forum is purposeless without that tenet in place. Suffering the exposure to others ideas is the potential for communication/teaching/learning and the best incidence of those is the earning of wisdom.

    As previously mentioned, the only real debate is whether or not some inflicting of suffering was necessary (teaching) or whether it was unnecessary (torture) and since morality is objective, that line is also objective and never ever no matter opinions to the contrary subjective. People are just wrong about what they think torture is because being wrong in part is a tautology. Therefore it is always best to have a scenario wherein we compare two different assertions on exactly the same issue and judge them for where that line is drawn between necessary and unnecessary. That is the whole point of any debate and choice.

    Beauty and accuracy are objective.

    What do you mean by accuracy? Accuracy of what?

    I don’t think beauty necessarily instantiates objective moral truth.
    Bob Ross
    And I did not say it did. Any given beauty is a partial error and there would then be a perfect beauty that would then instantiate objective moral truth. The fact that imperfect beauty can still be quire moral and amazingly beautiful is included and fine. But no beauty we see except all is perfect and we cannot grasp all, ever. So, although we experience all, we sit within it, we cannot really perceive it yet. We are evolving to perceive it accurately.

    Being ugly has nothing to do with what is moral or immoral. There could be a reality with universal flourishing and every person therein is uglier than a bat.Bob Ross
    I disagree and for the reasons stated already and not refuted in any way.

    Although such instantiations are in some moral state, if they are not perfectly beautiful, they are in a partially immoral state. Beauty is both a state and is also involved as a virtue amid choice. All virtues double dip in this way.

    The subjective belief that ugliness (immoral non perfect beauty) is neutral with respect to morality like you just suggested is immoral. It allows for laziness and panders to immoral desire and in a want, a choice, to remain or accept the immoral state and not will towards perfection.

    Rev Bem, the Magog Wayist monk from Andromeda
    Rev Bem Image
    Great, now i cannot get image inserts to work right. Rev Bem is batlike making this funny. He is also a moral Wayist monk, making it poignant.

    If my goal is to kill Asians, then if I succeed I am flourishing. That is subjective morality

    The first sentence is in principle correct, the second is not implied from the first. In the smallest, or one of the smallest, contexts of flourishing, of good, if one has the purpose of killing asians, then they would thereby flourish if they are sufficiently killing asians.
    Bob Ross
    So, you are wrong here. So far, YOU are correct, and now you will say the incorrect part.

    However, the buck does not stop here: the highest good is universal flourishing, and killing asians clearly violates that. So, colloquially, my theory would state “it is immoral to kill asians for the sole sake of fulfilling one’s own desire”.Bob Ross
    And THAT is the second order distinction I have been talking about.

    Any definition of flourish that aims at errors about flourishing less than aiming at perfection are just immoral errors and never were flourishing. So disincluding Asians is what I claim it is, a subjective moral delusion and no, you are wrong, it is not some after the fact correction, because no one can do that, change perfection. One cannot do that and be accurate.

    The only reason the vector to objective perfection changes per person, giving rise to the delusion of subjective morality, is that current moral states can be different, and if perfection does not move/change, then the vector from two different states is different. That is the trouble that must be overcome. That is the trouble you refuse to address. It is therefore your trouble in belief, and not mine by my standards and by the standard you seem to be professing, moral objectivism, if properly understood.

    Objective morality says that killing people just because they are Asian is incoherent immoral nonsense.

    No it does not. Objective morality (i.e., moral realism) is a three-pronged thesis:

    1. Moral judgments are propositional (moral cognitivism).
    2. Moral judgments express something objective (moral objectivism)
    3. There is at least one true moral judgment.
    Bob Ross
    I do not claim to know moral cognitivism. It is not necessary to know it to assert what I refer to as my objective morality, perfection. The one true moral judgment is perfection, to me, so there is no need to say that either. Thus only item 2 pertains to me. And I contend that it is all that is needed.

    I will add regarding moral cognitivism that as I understand it, it is rather useless. That is to say non-cognitivism claims that moral statements are all errors and I agree but only because perfection is elusive, nigh unto impossible. That is not dauting to me at all. It is perfection and acceptable. Yet and still cognitivism is a refutation of non-cognitivism, supposedly only. It essentially confirms moral realism by claiming that some moral statements can be true and although I have no idea how they qualify or disqualify a moral statement, I agree.

    So the trouble with uselessness of both cognitivism and non-cognitivism is precisely that they expressive only together of perfection. That is to say ... and I can just repeat myself ...
    1) Perfection is effectively impossible to arrive at and all opinions are partial errors (true) non-cognitivism
    AND
    2) Perfection is simultaneously the only maximally worthy goal. (That statement IS a moral statement and IS true). That is cognitivism or what I would conclude from it.

    Wisdom is finally the ability to hold seemingly (but actually not) contradictory statements as both true simultaneously. But such statements have an additional caveat to be wisdom. They must aim at best guess perfection, to be better and finally only at perfection to be perfect.

    Moral realism itself does not entail that moral anti-realism is internally incoherent, although a particular theory may advertise that, nor that it is nonsense; but, rather, just that it is objectively wrong to do so.Bob Ross
    And I disagree.

    Moral anti-realism is a contention that morality is not objective (to me). If there is some other definition it is intentionally deceptive.

    Moral anti-realism would be an immoral stance, clearly less than perfect if indeed morality is objective.

    So I assume we just disagree and you have stated no reason why it could be otherwise.

    Now you just added another component, 'harmoniously'. You cant do that either

    It is implied by the highest good: universal flourishing requires, nay presupposes, universal harmony.
    Bob Ross
    I covered that earlier. Flourish is from any state, a different vector but that differing does not support subjective morality.

    Discussing lower versions of flourishing is only discussing subjective morality is my claim. I explained why. Perfection is a single point within n-dimensional intent space.

    Oh lordie! The mind-independent thing again. As shown later that is a rug and a bad one. nothing is mind-independent in the way you seem to suggest. We are all connected.

    You cannot claim that moral is objective and turn around and deny that objectivity is ‘that which is mind-independent’.

    I will stop here for now, so that we can hone in on our conversation to the OP.
    Bob Ross
    I agree the OP intends to be discussing objective morality, not subjective morality as I thought earlier.

    But your interpretations of the concepts of what could be objective morality are not correct, to me. I have explained why very well. If you do not want to discuss why your claim towards objective morality is not in fact objective morality, I argue there is no reason for discussion at all.

    Again, the morality model you described at least in this post is not possibly an objective moral model at all.
  • Bob Ross
    1k


    Firstly, I want to say that I really appreciate your responses, as I can tell you are putting in a lot of effort to convey as much as possible about your position to me.

    However:

    I mean you did not answer my earlier critiques and instead retreated back into your 'jargon' I prefer to believe I refuted, actually answering your comments
    ...
    zI am not trying to derail the thread at all. I still intend to discuss it more, although I think I have made great points already that have been ignored because they do not fit the OP. But that is not correct, so, what am I to do?

    I am having a hard time keeping up with the critiques you are making, because they are so sporadic. In order for us to continue discussing productively, I would like to ask you to give me one critique you have of the OP: any one of them--but just one; and then we can dive into it and, once we have discussed it at length, then we can move on to another critique (point) you have; and so and so forth. Does that sound good?

    I am not trying to thwart your “attack” or beat-around-the-bush: I simply want us to have a productive conversation that I can manage; so that I can adequately respond to your thoughts. My brain operates very systematically: I need to be able to at least infer where to start and connect my way to where to end and, unfortunately, I am unable to sufficiently parse your responses.

    I want to disclaim that I know, from your perspective, it may be frustrating that I am not responding to everything you are saying; but I started to (even in this last response you made I wrote up a draft) and there is just so much material I disagree with and most of it isn’t actually relevant (or perhaps it is and I have failed to grasp it yet).

    For now, give me one critique, one point, you have with the theory; and I will do my due diligence to adequately respond. Then we can move on to the next, then the next, etc. I think that is a better plan, go forward, for us to tackle this conversation optimally. Let me know what you think.

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Chet Hawkins
    82
    Here is a new metaethical theory I am working on that is a form of moral realism, and, since I find it a worthy contender of my moral anti-realist position, I wanted to share it with the forum to see what people think.Bob Ross
    Very well, from the start.

    You say this theory represents moral realism. So, you must then agree that the reader must agree that this theory indeed can possibly describe moral realism. Does it feel like or seem to be moral realism? If it bears little resemblance to moral realism, the debate is ended because you are demanding us to lose our minds and believe that black is white as a starting point.

    I do not have a name for it yet, so I will just explicate it.Bob Ross
    On we go, in good faith ...

    For the sake of brevity, and because I have already covered arguments in favor of them in my moral subjectivist paper, I am presupposing moral cognitivism and non-nihilism in this thread.Bob Ross
    I have already given my argument for the uselessness of moral cognitivism. That applies here. To assert uselessness is useless.

    I can give the same argument again?!?!?!

    The brief is this:
    1) All beliefs are in error partially because perfection is impossible (anti-cognitivism)
    2) Some moral statements are possibly true because they embrace the concept of limits towards infinity as infinity. (cognitivism)

    This ... proves ... to me ... that moral cognitivism (and anti-cognitivism both) are useless. They are simultaneously false and true meaning they are both true and juxtaposed. This state of things is normal. It is found in all truth worthy of the name. It is found in all wisdom.

    So, THAT would be your one thing. Start there and only there if you wish. I will continue to respond JUST to the OP though to offer more. Respond only to one at a time if you wish.

    If anyone would like me to elaborate on them, then I certainly can; and I suggest anyone who is interested in that to read the relevant portions of my discussion board OP pertaining to moral subjectivism on those two metaethical positions. I will focus on a positive case for moral objectivism, which I deny in my moral subjectivist (anti-realist) view.Bob Ross
    Here you are throwing out two entire models and expect people to read all and follow. I only expect one post at a time and you are expressing difficulty.

    My acceptance and balance with chaos is unusual to this forum. It is misunderstood. That is because academia and classical logical approaches are not inherently chaotic. They often dismiss chaos as the enemy. Chaos is an integral and required part of morality. You are not allowed to dismiss it. You must deal with it. That so far, in my opinion, is a large part of your ... problem.

    Heaven knows, I am only one small man. If I alone in a single post offer up too much to deal with, what hope is there of tackling something as wiley and wonderful as objective moral truth or let's just say, the truth, in general? Not much I'm afraid.

    On we go ...

    The core of this theory is that ‘the good’ and ‘the bad’ are not determined by mind-independent states-of-affairs or arrangements of entities in reality but, rather, are abstract categories, or forms, of conduct.Bob Ross
    There is so much wrong with this paragraph that it might take infinite time to detail it.

    1) There is no such thing as a mind-independent state of affairs. That's the biggest issue.
    2) If the good is a form, that is mind-independent, in the only way I think you mean it, which means more properly stated that the GOOD does not depend on opinion or choice, but is preset, a law of the universe, then I agree, you are talking about objective morality. But you later suggest that you are NOT talking about a law of the universe making your premises unclear (entirely).
    3) This means you are asserting that these 'forms' which you do not define yet, are mind-independent. But you also have said in other posts that you are not referring to a law of the universe. So you are contradicting yourself and not in a good way.

    For now, let's leave that complaint as this section and move on.

    The (mind-independent) states-of-affairs, or arrangements of entities, in reality inform us of what is right or wrong in virtue of being classified under either category.Bob Ross
    You are unclear here as to the 'categories'. I assume you mean good and evil as the only categories. That is confusing because we all know there is a continuum there. If one is dealing with a continuum one must/should specify the dividing line between them. So what precisely denotes good and what evil? What filter do I use to distinguish between them? How does a behavior fall into one category or the other?

    For example, there is no mind-independent state-of-affairs (or arrangement of entities) in reality that makes it true that “one ought not torture babies” but, rather, it is true because it corresponds appropriately to the mind-independent category (i.e., abstract form) of ‘the good’.Bob Ross
    This paragraph explains NOTHING OF USE about the former paragraph and yet that is what it purports to be doing. No help. Why?

    It is no help because you just basically gave no filter and expect that we can decide what makes something good or evil. You have not even said that there is a continuum. What relates the good to the bad?

    This paragraph only has use if of course, as assumed by it, everyone, sort-of agrees on what good means. They do not. In fact, that is the entire point of this discussion. Is what is good or evil objective or subjective?

    So, in light of this and in an attempt to contrast with my other moral anti-realist theory, I would like to point out the flaw, from the perspective of this theory, of my moral subjectivist argument; so let me outline it briefly again:Bob Ross
    And you wonder why I got confused. No. Stick with one theory at a time. You are laying out tenets of a subjectivist theory in an objectivist thread. People will of course respond to each/both.

    I'm here to hear your ostensible realism theory and the first thing you start explaining is subjectivism. What? Can we talk about the thing before we talk what isn't the thing?

    P1: The way reality is does not entail how it should be.Bob Ross
    Wow! There is nothing to support this wild conjecture at all up to this point. In fact I would offer a much more reasonable proposition which is this:
    Anti-P1: The way reality is currently is clearly the best example of how it should be because it's the only example we have. Guess what? That's a tautology. Have fun with that.

    P2: Moral facts are statements about states-of-affairs which inform us of how reality should be.Bob Ross
    No they are not.

    Better P2: Moral facts are statements about what choices should be made by any and all choosers.

    To be is a horrible verb. It is misunderstood and misused constantly. States can change. Truth cannot. So if moral statements are true they cannot change. So, if there is something that IS, the verb to be, the suggestion is that it is that permanently. If it can be something else, then it IS NOT (only) what we are saying it IS. This is the trouble with is-a. It's ALWAYS a lie. So everything is a delusion? Yes. Except for one thing, truth.

    Moral statements are possibly true. That means they do not change.
    Choices result in consequences that are states. States can change.

    If something 'should', then the something that 'should' can only be a state.

    Hence, my better P2.

    C: TF, moral facts cannot exist.Bob Ross
    I do not know what you mean here. What is TF, true, false? By the way this statement undoes YOUR P2 completely so you have two contradictory premises. You say what a moral fact is and then say they cannot exist. Again, putting TF in front of this statement with no explanation is messy at best.

    Analyzing this argument from this theory, as opposed to moral subjectivism, P2 is false; because moral facts are not only about states-of-affairs, in the sense that they are made true in virtue of corresponding to some state-of-affairs in reality, but, rather, are made true in virtue of how the state-of-affairs sizes up to the abstract category of ‘the good’ and ‘the bad’.Bob Ross
    I like that. It's not discrete but it says the right things to be considered in support of realism.

    So, the key misunderstanding of moral subjectivism, or so the argument goes (:, is that a fact is a statement that corresponds to reality and not solely states-of-affairs in reality—as abstract categories are still mind-independently true insofar as, although we can semantically disagree, the actions are subsumable under more general classifications and this is not stance-dependent—and thusly P2 is false.Bob Ross
    Smaller sentences might help. This is hard to follow. You merely claim it is a misunderstanding and although this sentence is perhaps one of the longest in history it does not say why there even is a misunderstanding.

    You do not offer these 'more general classifications' so why was time wasted with P2 in the first place?

    As I more cleanly mentioned in my earlier post and I even explained it, STATES are not truth. If something can change it is not truth. This does not deny the existence of truth. If we find any stability in reality it is because of truth.

    Here is one for you: Logical:
    Nothing can depend on anything that is not truth, finally.

    Therefore nothing can depend on a state that can change. Stand on quicksand if you like, I do not like it.

    Likewise, P1, if taken as true, only refers by 'reality is' to states-of-affairs or arrangements of entities in reality and not abstract categories of events or actions in that reality (nor what potentially could occur in that reality).Bob Ross
    You do not say what this means. So what if P1 only refers to states and not truths? And this is wrong anyway.
    And realize what you did there. You just said that P1 changes. Its therefore not true. Why bother discussing what is not true. What is the point of that?

    The meat of any matter of discussion on objective anything is only and always discussion of what does not and cannot change. States are right out! Do not proceed from state to state unless you reference them within a frame of truth that is unchanging. If the frame changes, discussion is useless. Do you understand the problem?

    Discussing subjective morality is only possible in an objectively stable universe. Thankfully that is what we have. Properly understood that is the end of the discussion. On to determining what is objectively a should.

    But instead we continue with delusions and since that is the process of growth, I accept this burden.

    Although there is a lot I would like to say, I want to keep this brief—so I will say only one last thing: this is not a form of platonism. By abstract form or category I do not mean that there exists an abstract object, or a set of them, in reality that in virtue of which makes moral judgments (which express something objective) true—as this falls into the same trap that they are indeed states-of-affairs, or arrangements of entities, in reality and this violates P1.Bob Ross
    Is that a sentence? Smaller is better. Discreet! You asked me to address ONE thing instead of a complex and interweaved response to you, but sentences like this are a tornado through a trailer park. Wreckage abounds.

    Don't use the word virtue the way you do. It confounds the issue. And it is wrong as stated. Virtue is an ideal, and that ideal is objective or, let's say, can indeed be imagined as such. Any given state is only a point along a continuum which has its end in perfection of that virtue. This does not deny the form. A state cannot deny truth.

    It sounds like you are suggesting that because states exist, truth cannot. That is patently absurd. This is caused by the fact that P1 is incoherent in the way I mentoined.

    Instead, by form or category, I just mean an abstract category we derive by validly subsuming actions or events into more general classifications.Bob Ross
    This is nothing more finally than conceit.

    It is the conceit of thought, of a thinker, to think that, in thinking, all else came from thought alone. It is a ruination of 'Cogito ergo sum!' The latter explains that thinking is only one aspect of being. The former is an elevation of thinking to being and is simply obviously nonsensical.
  • Bob Ross
    1k


    So, you must then agree that the reader must agree that this theory indeed can possibly describe moral realism.

    Any theory can possibly “describe” moral realism. That it is a form of moral realism depends on if it is purporting at least the following thesis:

    1. Moral judgments are propositional [moral cognitivism].
    2. Moral judgments express something objective [moral objectivism].
    3. There is at least one true moral judgment [moral non-nihilism].

    Does it feel like or seem to be moral realism? If it bears little resemblance to moral realism, the debate is ended because you are demanding us to lose our minds and believe that black is white as a starting point.

    I agree with this. Rhetorically, even if the theory is a form of moral realism, people will not be convinced if it seems counter to moral realism.

    I have already given my argument for the uselessness of moral cognitivism.

    Moral cognitivism is the metaethical theory that moral judgments are propositional, which is a required position for moral realists to take. You cannot reject moral cognitivism and be a moral realist.

    1) All beliefs are in error partially because perfection is impossible (anti-cognitivism)
    2) Some moral statements are possibly true because they embrace the concept of limits towards infinity as infinity. (cognitivism)

    Beliefs being fallible does not entail that moral judgments are non-propositional. Saying moral judgments are propositional means that one can formulate them into statements which are truth-apt. If you reject moral cognitivism, then, for example, “one ought not torture babies for fun” is incapable of being true or false.

    This ... proves ... to me ... that moral cognitivism (and anti-cognitivism both) are useless.

    They are defined such that they are foils to each other and, thusly, you have to either accept one or the other (or suspend judgment): you cannot sidestep the issue by claiming they have low practical utility—even if it is true.

    They are simultaneously false and true meaning they are both true and juxtaposed

    That is logically impossible, because non-cognitivism is the negation of cognitivism. You are saying X and !X are both true, which is the definition of a logical contradiction.

    Here you are throwing out two entire models and expect people to read all and follow. I only expect one post at a time and you are expressing difficulty.

    Correct. Moral cognitivism and non-nihilism are metaethical theories which are not themselves the same as the debate about realism vs. anti-realism; rather, they are subcomponents of the moral realist thesis, and, for the sake of brevity and because I have already outlined them in full in my moral subjectivism thread, I refer the reader there. This OP is about a moral naturalist theory that presupposes moral cognitivism and non-nihilism and ventures to prove objectivism.
    1) There is no such thing as a mind-independent state of affairs. That's the biggest issue.

    Are you an idealist? I am a realist (ontologically), so I think that most events are mind-independent.

    2) If the good is a form, that is mind-independent, in the only way I think you mean it, which means more properly stated that the GOOD does not depend on opinion or choice, but is preset, a law of the universe, then I agree, you are talking about objective morality. But you later suggest that you are NOT talking about a law of the universe making your premises unclear (entirely).

    To clarify this a bit, another way of thinking about it is that the Good under this view is identical to flourishing, and flourishing is objective. The methodological approach to determining that is two-fold: (1) the analysis of acts such that they are conceptually subsumed under general categories and (2) the semantic labeling of a particular category as ‘the good’.

    That is what that paragraph of mine is getting at.

    3) This means you are asserting that these 'forms' which you do not define yet, are mind-independent. But you also have said in other posts that you are not referring to a law of the universe. So you are contradicting yourself and not in a good way.

    That which is mind-independent is not necessarily a law. A law is a force of nature that dictates particular behaviors of objects. The action of a cup smashing to pieces is a mind-independent state-of-affairs, but it is not itself a law.

    I assume you mean good and evil as the only categories.

    At least those two, there could be more. Such as a neutral category.

    So what precisely denotes good and what evil?

    The good is flourishing, and the bad is the negation of that. In action, what is good is progressing towards The Good (i.e., flourishing) at its highest level (i.e., universal flourishing) and evil is the regression from it.

    How does a behavior fall into one category or the other?

    It will be whether or not the action progresses or regresses from a world with universal flourishing—i.e., the highest Good.

    It is no help because you just basically gave no filter and expect that we can decide what makes something good or evil. You have not even said that there is a continuum. What relates the good to the bad?

    This has nothing to do with that quote of me, which was:

    For example, there is no mind-independent state-of-affairs (or arrangement of entities) in reality that makes it true that “one ought not torture babies” but, rather, it is true because it corresponds appropriately to the mind-independent category (i.e., abstract form) of ‘the good’

    I was referring to, here, is that, in simplified terms, normativity is not objective; but the good is. The good is flourishing—which is the abstract category I was referring to—and this is objective. I do grant that I need to refurbish the OP to be more clear. If it helps, then use my summary I gave a couple responses back instead of the OP itself.

    In the OP, I focused too much on the methodological approach to determining what goodness is and not in clarifying the end result (of it being identical to flourishing).

    And you wonder why I got confused. No. Stick with one theory at a time. You are laying out tenets of a subjectivist theory in an objectivist thread. People will of course respond to each/both.

    The problem with that is that you argued as if I was arguing for moral subjectivism, which is not what is happening in the OP. For those tracking my threads, of which many have been, I wanted to provide clarity on how I overcame my main argument for moral non-objectivism.

    Wow! There is nothing to support this wild conjecture at all up to this point. In fact I would offer a much more reasonable proposition which is this:
    Anti-P1: The way reality is currently is clearly the best example of how it should be because it's the only example we have. Guess what? That's a tautology

    P1 wasn’t supposed to be incredibly elaborate: it was meant to re-iterate the syllogism from my moral subjectivism thread. The elaboration of that premise is found there.

    As for your ‘anti-P1’, it doesn’t negate P1 and it isn’t tautological.

    No they are not.

    Better P2: Moral facts are statements about what choices should be made by any and all choosers.

    We have entirely different theories of truth and, subequently, of facticity.

    Facts are statements that agree with reality.
    Truth is the correspondence of thought with reality.
    By states-of-affairs, I do not just mean temporal processes: I also mean atemoral arrangements of entities in reality.

    Moral facts are morally signified statements which agree with reality.

    Moral statements are possibly true. That means they do not change.

    This is a non-sequitur.

    What is TF, true, false?

    Sorry, that is shorthand for ‘therefore’.

    By the way this statement undoes YOUR P2 completely so you have two contradictory premises

    C follows logically from P2 and P1.
    You say what a moral fact is and then say they cannot exist.

    One can define something and in the next breath claim that something cannot exist: there’s no logical contradiction nor incoherence with that.

    Instead, by form or category, I just mean an abstract category we derive by validly subsuming actions or events into more general classifications. — Bob Ross
    This is nothing more finally than conceit.

    It is the conceit of thought, of a thinker, to think that, in thinking, all else came from thought alone

    Categories are conceptual, and conceptualization is the process of subsuming things under more general concepts. I never claimed everything came into being from thoughts.

    It is a ruination of 'Cogito ergo sum!'

    That is not what the cogito argument means: it is not that “thinking is the one aspect of being”. It is the argument that one exists because they can think.

    Bob
  • Chet Hawkins
    82
    So, you must then agree that the reader must agree that this theory indeed can possibly describe moral realism.

    Any theory can possibly “describe” moral realism. That it is a form of moral realism depends on if it is purporting at least the following thesis:

    1. Moral judgments are propositional [moral cognitivism].
    2. Moral judgments express something objective [moral objectivism].
    3. There is at least one true moral judgment [moral non-nihilism].
    Bob Ross
    So, you went right back to a requirement that I do not believe in. I suppose that's a hard thing to get past. If you want to HIDE behind an academic construct instead of addressing the issue, that is not going to help. It does not matter, by the way, if you are right. The fact that even everyone but me agrees that the above is true is irrelevant.

    In fairness, what you do not know about me is a lot of things. One that I am a software developer with 30+ years experience and so although I am not a philosophical logical guru, I do understand logic. I also chafe when people offer up the 'I've been a so and so for so many years' thing that I just did. I get it. Academic pursuit. But no, it isn't. Reality is academically interpreted and yet not only possessed of such considered structures. The trouble with science and academia is the same, every time, its odd constructions are considered right, until every single time, someone proves them wrong, or just not detailed enough to be useful. That's where I am at, trying to do that. And I face a true believer in the status quo, entrenched in a singular approach I know is masking the problem for him and others.

    Nowhere in reality can I find and point to the tree of moral realism to verify that these 3 propositions must be true. I have to depend on you and this body of academic work that contends that these three are the right requirements. I do not. I refuse. If that makes me a caveman or a fool, I accept that danger. You have to let me know if that means I should no longer post here, because retreating (yes, it is a retreat) behind such structures is not helping anyone. But it is to be expected. My model predicts it. More on that in a bit.

    It's one of those conundrums that's really sticky. Lots of moving variables and if you get even one wrong the whole thing looks like spaghetti instead of a string.

    Does it feel like or seem to be moral realism? If it bears little resemblance to moral realism, the debate is ended because you are demanding us to lose our minds and believe that black is white as a starting point.

    I agree with this. Rhetorically, even if the theory is a form of moral realism, people will not be convinced if it seems counter to moral realism.
    Bob Ross
    And I am not convinced. I am not even convinced now that moral realism matters at all if it must answer the 3 propositions. I am trying to argue for objective moral truth. That has ramifications that disagree entirely in my opinion with those three propositions as stated. It does not help at all that you keep regurgitating them back to me. I will try to address your comments about why they are necessary below.

    I have already given my argument for the uselessness of moral cognitivism.

    Moral cognitivism is the metaethical theory that moral judgments are propositional, which is a required position for moral realists to take. You cannot reject moral cognitivism and be a moral realist.
    Bob Ross
    Yes, I can. I just did. I do again. If that makes me incoherent, so be it. Maybe I am not whatever a moral realist is but I do believe that morality is objective and does not change, so you tell me, what is that WITHOUT the other requirements? What is that called? Because that is what I believe and my current state.

    1) All beliefs are in error partially because perfection is impossible (anti-cognitivism)
    2) Some moral statements are possibly true because they embrace the concept of limits towards infinity as infinity. (cognitivism)

    Beliefs being fallible does not entail that moral judgments are non-propositional. Saying moral judgments are propositional means that one can formulate them into statements which are truth-apt. If you reject moral cognitivism, then, for example, “one ought not torture babies for fun” is incapable of being true or false.
    Bob Ross
    Well, ok, so, I think that statement is true, so, that means I must be for what you call moral cognitivism, but, the idea of anti-cognitivism is then the issue. But you for some reason did not do the redefine of that one here.

    I suppose that is the one I most reject then and I am a moral cognitivist by ... someone's ... definition. Who cares is my answer. Morality is objective. I can offer arguments as to why.

    I do not want to go into the deeper basis of my theory or model yet, because it is not only about morality being objective. It's about so much more, everything in the universe, indirectly. But I am one that believes effectively that there is nothing in the universe but truth and all of it is based only in morality. Indeed, morality is the reason for physical existence. I just want to get to a place where I can understand why and how anyone could argue against objective morality. So, on we go.

    This ... proves ... to me ... that moral cognitivism (and anti-cognitivism both) are useless.

    They are defined such that they are foils to each other and, thusly, you have to either accept one or the other (or suspend judgment): you cannot sidestep the issue by claiming they have low practical utility—even if it is true.
    Bob Ross
    OK, If I must decide, it does indeed seem that moral cognitivism is, within reason, acceptable. I know we will have to revisit that issue though. So, hopefully my objection is noted.

    They are simultaneously false and true meaning they are both true and juxtaposed

    That is logically impossible, because non-cognitivism is the negation of cognitivism. You are saying X and !X are both true, which is the definition of a logical contradiction.
    Bob Ross
    So, what is deemed a contradiction is often not. I understand you are saying that these are not interpreted phenomena that seem contradictory but that the negation was DERIVED from the opposite. Well, ok. But when in the history of mankind has the wording not been wrong on something? Never. I do not want to just digress into confusion either. On we go.

    Here you are throwing out two entire models and expect people to read all and follow. I only expect one post at a time and you are expressing difficulty.

    Correct. Moral cognitivism and non-nihilism are metaethical theories which are not themselves the same as the debate about realism vs. anti-realism; rather, they are subcomponents of the moral realist thesis, and, for the sake of brevity and because I have already outlined them in full in my moral subjectivism thread, I refer the reader there. This OP is about a moral naturalist theory that presupposes moral cognitivism and non-nihilism and ventures to prove objectivism.
    Bob Ross
    I can accept for now, with the objection in place.

    1) There is no such thing as a mind-independent state of affairs. That's the biggest issue.

    Are you an idealist? I am a realist (ontologically), so I think that most events are mind-independent.
    Bob Ross
    I consider myself both an idealist and a realist. So, about now you are shaking your head. Yes, I mean it. I am dedicated to balance. Balance and wisdom REQUIRE in my ethics that idealist is correct AND that pragmatism is correct at the same time. The contradiction is not there even though people erroneously believe that it is. Sounds familiar right?

    Pragmatism is prone to realism, which is based in logic, yadda yadda. Idealism is based in mostly the idea of perfection, in various forms, which I am sure you are familiar with given your verbiage so far. The error of academia is that in pursuing only the realist or pragmatic path, they are almost guaranteed to fail. That is what, in my opinion, you are doing, and probably most people on this forum are doing. The paths of being and of desire (idealism) are being neglected. They do not have equal weight in your considerations. The trouble is that if truth were known, then logic would agree with my complaint. It is a 'childish' or imperfect logic that cannot find its way past this conundrum. Academia in its entirety has that flavor.

    The thing is, and this is a case in point, I can argue with the academics some on their home turf and not be offended by their blindness. Most balanced types just hand wave the tediousness. Most idealists can't even do they because they lose it in the face of logic and reason. My question is to the rigorous academic, can you entertain the notion that you are merely wrong? That is to say, the structure that you are relying on to make these models is built on an incorrect base? Because that is what I will end up contending I think. If you can't and I can, I understand. You don't believe my strange tubes are cannons yet and you hide in your fort and think I don't have the holy hand-grenade.

    2) If the good is a form, that is mind-independent, in the only way I think you mean it, which means more properly stated that the GOOD does not depend on opinion or choice, but is preset, a law of the universe, then I agree, you are talking about objective morality. But you later suggest that you are NOT talking about a law of the universe making your premises unclear (entirely).

    To clarify this a bit, another way of thinking about it is that the Good under this view is identical to flourishing, and flourishing is objective. The methodological approach to determining that is two-fold: (1) the analysis of acts such that they are conceptually subsumed under general categories and (2) the semantic labeling of a particular category as ‘the good’.
    Bob Ross
    And this is a retreat to jargon again.

    No

    If you think that flourishing can be defined by two different cultures, and that either one could be correct, you are not what I call a moral objectivist. It is required by my belief model that neither can be correct. That is not relevant either. Truth is not at all related to anything but perfection. Moral objectivity is truth to me. No one can be perfect and knowing is the understanding or aware part of perfection. So, that is why knowing is not possible. The fact that virtues like knowing or being accurate are not perfectly possible to us is fine and it actually proves or is evidence for objective morality. The math of this phenomenon which is demonstrable within reality can be represented by the limiting force. That means it is a limit as intent approaches perfection, and asymptotic. There can be no belief strong enough to arrive at perfection in intent. When we see this effect in reality, we know we are near to truth, yet cannot arrive.

    Your flourishing example is terrible and cannot be used. That is because either the intent is to the aim of the perfect good or it is abject failure. So, despite the fact that two differing cultures have nuances of that definition that they are both aiming at and succeeding in, flourishing by your (subjective) definition, the fact that they answer the objective progress towards what is my objective GOOD is not finally relevant. Progress is fine, sure. But both are still errors. They are not perfect. So we cannot be objective in intent. We can only try to be objective in intent.

    Further, since there is an objective truth about flourishing, that objective truth is the ONLY real truth, the perfection of that concept. Everything else is just an error. But between the two sub-cultures one error is always objectively closer to the perfect aim by intent. This is relative morality (not subjective). It allows us to possibly use judgement. We can say this or that belief is better or worse than the other. With your way, it is my assertion that because you say, I think, that they are both objectively flourishing despite their possible amazingly different aims, you are saying they can be equally moral. They cannot. It is impossible. If you believe they can that is what I call subjective morality or moral subjectivism. That is in fact the definition of it.

    For me all that is necessary for moral objectivism are these propositions:
    1) Morality is objective and represented by a perfect intent, which is unique.
    2) Moral perfection is all truth at once. Nothing that is possible is left out.
    3) Between any two beliefs, one is always better than the other, because it is intended along a vector more proximal to objective moral truth.

    Now the thing is these propositions are not academic. I am not schooled in how to craft them. I almost want to thank the fates that that is true. I see the closed mindedness that is prevalent when realism and structure, order, is too highly favored over chaos and balance. It is not pretty and those rocky walls will fall even if they are sorcerously smooth like Orthanc. Truth has better cannon than that.

    3) This means you are asserting that these 'forms' which you do not define yet, are mind-independent. But you also have said in other posts that you are not referring to a law of the universe. So you are contradicting yourself and not in a good way.

    That which is mind-independent is not necessarily a law. A law is a force of nature that dictates particular behaviors of objects. The action of a cup smashing to pieces is a mind-independent state-of-affairs, but it is not itself a law.
    Bob Ross
    You say it is not a law and that is not relevant at all. It depends entirely on law. Everything does. There is nothing in the universe but truth, and that is what philosophy is about discovering. We do not create truth. We can only discover it. If we make something, it is flawed. Same argument I used before. Perfection is a limit and we cannot arrive, only intend to make progress towards it by aiming directly at it the best we can.

    But, again, as mentioned, and still not addressed, there is no such thing as mind independent. You did not confirm my refinement of that. You refuted it. So we have no common ground yet in shared understanding. We do have common ground in reality. So one of us is more correct and one less.

    Mind is ubiquitous. Every iota of this universe contains it. There is no state for which there is not a mind component. That component is not zero, ever. The seed of our human mind is in inorganic matter. The fact that science does not yet understand this is irrelevant. The fact that an academic can go on and on about mind-independent states when they cannot exist is ... terrifying.

    There are plenty of believers out there that assert consciousness is all there is. I am one of them. And although mind is only precisely one third of reality, it is ubiquitous and there is no mind-independent state. It is ironic in the extreme that the realist, taking the path of the mind to truth, suggests almost comically that there is such a thing as a mind-independent state. It's ludicrous from my perspective.

    I still think you mean that there seems to be a respectable barrier between one mind and another. I think that is what you mean. Please confirm what you mean. I need some term or understanding I can follow. our minds are NOT actually separate from one another. We are just currently unable to muster the will or connection because it is too hard for us. We are not in a state of being that facilitates this awareness enough. We are making progress towards that state. But these many failures do not deny my assertion. The reality though DOES deny your assertion of any mind-independent state, despite the seeming support of the current limit of our being. The seed of any mind, of all minds, was present as a law of the universe at the start of time and will always be so. It is the only way mind could emerge and be deluded enough to consider itself laughably separate.

    I assume you mean good and evil as the only categories.

    At least those two, there could be more. Such as a neutral category.
    Bob Ross
    Holy lack of clarity batman! Pow! Ok! Well, I think you should state the list of categories and also mention that they are a single value on a sliding scale if they are. Because these things are all different conceptually, yes?

    But, no, I deny it. As soon as you went there I was like, nope. I was ready for that. My model shows and for now this is unsupported entirely, that there is no such thing as a balance between good and evil. This also speaks directly to your (what I would call incoherent) ideas on flourishing. Good is only in a singular direction. If two things, aims, intents, disagree; then one is objectively better than the other, always. This means there is no way to balance good and evil for the good. The only way is not a balance at all. Its all one way. That is in fact the meaning of objective. Perfection itself as a concept is synonymous with objective.

    There is a balance amid the progress towards the good that is helpful. But it is not good and evil. It is order and chaos. And I will go ahead and say clearly, the path of logic and reason is only the path of order. The path of idealism is the path of chaos. And balance is the third way, neutral with respect to those two only. But the evil and good bit is not a balance at all. It's one way only. That confusion, of a possible balance between good and evil is rampant in moral subjectivism. It has no merit.

    So what precisely denotes good and what evil?

    The good is flourishing, and the bad is the negation of that. In action, what is good is progressing towards The Good (i.e., flourishing) at its highest level (i.e., universal flourishing) and evil is the regression from it.
    Bob Ross
    This can only be true if all definitions of flourishing are perfect, e.g. precisely the same. That is not to say that progressing towards what someone erroneously considers as good is acceptable. No, that that they consider as good must itself also be exactly the same. Otherwise, flourishing is not good. And perfection is quite demanding, I assure you.

    So, I still think your flourishing maze of reasoning is wrong, unless you clarify it.

    How does a behavior fall into one category or the other?

    It will be whether or not the action progresses or regresses from a world with universal flourishing—i.e., the highest Good.
    Bob Ross
    Yes, as long as the 'highest' Good, and I already warned you about the term 'highest', is the same for everyone. No two people can differ on what flourishing is, because that is subjective morality.

    It is no help because you just basically gave no filter and expect that we can decide what makes something good or evil. You have not even said that there is a continuum. What relates the good to the bad?

    This has nothing to do with that quote of me, which was:

    For example, there is no mind-independent state-of-affairs (or arrangement of entities) in reality that makes it true that “one ought not torture babies” but, rather, it is true because it corresponds appropriately to the mind-independent category (i.e., abstract form) of ‘the good’
    Bob Ross
    This is classic jargon and obfuscates understanding. It does not help in understanding.
    There is no such thing as mind-independent.
    Abstraction is caused by the virtual nature of perfection only. This is the limiting issue mentioned earlier. It is called virtual in honor of the virtues which have that quality. Each is perfect and an unattainable ideal only. Yet and still, the sum of all virtues combined is a perfection of perfections. It was always singular, but that is a way to say it to facilitate understanding.

    There is in fact a mind-dependent state of affairs (objective morality) that makes it absolutely true that one ought not to torture babies. It must depend on mind, because everything amid truth does. The term torture includes the negative intent to me, so, it's evil by definition. The whole situation gets much more dicey if you said instead 'cause suffering' for 'torture'. As examples and conundrums go, that is vastly superior to yours. That is because the wise should indeed inflict suffering on the unwise to facilitate their earning wisdom. And then we should be led to speak about such a concept as, 'is harm really harm, as long as it is necessary suffering only?' THAT is a much better set of arguments and such. The term torture is too evil committed.

    I was referring to, here, is that, in simplified terms, normativity is not objective; but the good is. The good is flourishing—which is the abstract category I was referring to—and this is objective. I do grant that I need to refurbish the OP to be more clear. If it helps, then use my summary I gave a couple responses back instead of the OP itself.Bob Ross
    Well, I think you should realize by now what my issue with flourishing is. It does not work as an example for the reasons I have stated many times now. You have not addressed my concerns in that sense. You are still just repeating it. I do not know what else to do to get you to address it.

    In the OP, I focused too much on the methodological approach to determining what goodness is and not in clarifying the end result (of it being identical to flourishing).Bob Ross
    Which it isn't. Your flourishing is not the good as described. That is unless no two people can differ in any way on precisely the details of what flourishing is, not the fact that they are making progress towards their goals. That can be progress towards evil. It can be evil for one and less evil for another making the latter more objectively moral in their intents. Is that agreed?

    And you wonder why I got confused. No. Stick with one theory at a time. You are laying out tenets of a subjectivist theory in an objectivist thread. People will of course respond to each/both.

    The problem with that is that you argued as if I was arguing for moral subjectivism, which is not what is happening in the OP. For those tracking my threads, of which many have been, I wanted to provide clarity on how I overcame my main argument for moral non-objectivism.[/.quote]
    We are past that.
    Bob Ross
    Wow! There is nothing to support this wild conjecture at all up to this point. In fact I would offer a much more reasonable proposition which is this:
    Anti-P1: The way reality is currently is clearly the best example of how it should be because it's the only example we have. Guess what? That's a tautology

    P1 wasn’t supposed to be incredibly elaborate: it was meant to re-iterate the syllogism from my moral subjectivism thread. The elaboration of that premise is found there.

    As for your ‘anti-P1’, it doesn’t negate P1 and it isn’t tautological.
    Bob Ross
    This is classic you so far. You just state these things and do not say why. That means I ignore you. I say it does negate P1 and it is tautological and round and round we go until you deign to explain WHY.

    No they are not.

    Better P2: Moral facts are statements about what choices should be made by any and all choosers.

    We have entirely different theories of truth and, subequently, of facticity.
    Bob Ross
    Yes, but, the twain shall meet. We are both within reality. One of us is onto a better set of assertions and beliefs. This is collaborative. But explanation is needed. If you just assume the work without showing it, we all lose. I admit I am trying to learn here. Are you?

    Facts are statements that agree with reality.Bob Ross
    They are not. They never do. They cannot.
    Perfection is unattainable. Any lack of agreement is lack of perfection. No fact has ever agreed with reality. They only SEEM, SEEM, SEEM to agree with reality. It's always a delusion.

    The mind path to truth is always delusional. It must be balanced by the other two paths, chaos and balance, in order to attain perfection.

    A fact properly defined is only a belief that a chooser has decided is supported enough with evidence to deem it true. Each chooser is a local authority. Facts sadly often bear little in common with reality or truth.

    Truth is the correspondence of thought with reality.Bob Ross
    Said like a mind path only advocate for sure.

    No

    Truth is objective and dependent of mind, yes, in all cases, but just as dependent of chaos and balance.

    Truth is unknowable, unattainable, and unchanging.
    It can be approached, in thought, in being, in will. That is good, to do so. The degree of miss to that perfect approach is the degree of evil, which is only properly defined as less good.

    By states-of-affairs, I do not just mean temporal processes: I also mean atemoral arrangements of entities in reality.Bob Ross
    I know that. I agree.

    States are possibly three kinds:
    Being state
    Thought state
    Intent/will state

    There are no other states. These three states combine to form the state.

    Moral facts are morally signified statements which agree with reality.Bob Ross
    There are no other facts apart from moral.
    Morality encompasses everything. Nothing is devoid of meaning. Everything is only meaning. That is non-Nihilism, to me.

    But no, as mentioned, facts are all errors. So they never agree with reality. That makes your last statement false.

    Better to say:
    Moral statements agree with truth. Reality is only truth. All else is delusion.

    We swim in a sea of delusion supported by free will. Only morality is true. Only morality is objective.

    Moral statements are possibly true. That means they do not change.

    This is a non-sequitur.
    Bob Ross
    Why? You should not just say that and not explain.

    What I meant was that if truth does not change and a moral statement is made and is accurate to describe truth, then there is no reason to change that moral statement. And if you do, it becomes false.

    What is TF, true, false?

    Sorry, that is shorthand for ‘therefore’.

    By the way this statement undoes YOUR P2 completely so you have two contradictory premises

    C follows logically from P2 and P1.
    You say what a moral fact is and then say they cannot exist.

    One can define something and in the next breath claim that something cannot exist: there’s no logical contradiction nor incoherence with that.
    Bob Ross
    I disagree. There is no way to define something that does not exist. To try is insane.

    The concept is perhaps approached only when defining 'nothing'. That one is really hard. But when you defined nothing you do run up against the truth of my assertion and not yours. Defining something that does not exist is worse than useless. Its insane. It has no relevance. It cannot be proved, disproved, or meaningfully discussed. It's just confusion.

    Instead, by form or category, I just mean an abstract category we derive by validly subsuming actions or events into more general classifications. — Bob Ross
    This is nothing more finally than conceit.

    It is the conceit of thought, of a thinker, to think that, in thinking, all else came from thought alone

    Categories are conceptual, and conceptualization is the process of subsuming things under more general concepts. I never claimed everything came into being from thoughts.
    Bob Ross
    Interesting. I do claim that everything comes into being from thoughts. But being is another path, just like intent and will is. The structure and order is thought.

    It is a ruination of 'Cogito ergo sum!'

    That is not what the cogito argument means: it is not that “thinking is the one aspect of being”. It is the argument that one exists because they can think.

    Bob
    Bob Ross
    The which is exactly what I was saying and missed by you for no known reason. I can also use the other two paths to make similar theoretical statements:

    I am because I think.
    I am because I intend.
    I intend because I think.
    I intend because I am.
    I think because I intend.

    This set of statements encircles all the possible equivalent statements at that level. Without these statements the understanding is less than best. It highlights the think side only, a problem I detect amid most of academia.

    It's compelling, tempting, and entirely wrong to pursue truth only through thought. It is fast, better in every way, more alive, to use all three paths. We cannot avoid finally using all three paths, but that is not the issue. The issue is stress or priority. In prioritizing thinking over being or intent/will/passion; we will fail more often and in very patterned ways. The failure of the mind path is cowardice.
  • AmadeusD
    1.3k
    Sincere good luck @Bob Ross
  • Michael
    13.9k
    Morality is objective.Chet Hawkins

    What does this mean if not "some moral propositions are objectively true"?
  • Chet Hawkins
    82
    Morality is objective.
    — Chet Hawkins

    What does this mean if not "some moral propositions are objectively true"?
    Michael

    I mean, I agree.

    I am only in this thread like ... for ... moral objectivity. But if there is something called moral realism that is different for glossy technical reasons, I am trying to understand so that I can either agree or disagree there.

    The moral cognitivism issue was one I either just misunderstood or disagree with parts of it.

    I guess then the clarity I think I am trying to obtain for myself and maybe others, is, ...
    1) Morality is objective (all that assertion may not be to assert moral realism)
    2) Once that happens, I have more to say, as in, how was this concept obtained? How can it be derived from reality? Why is it that this is the case, and of course then, had to be the case?
  • Michael
    13.9k
    I mean, I agree.Chet Hawkins

    If some moral propositions are objectively true then:

    a) moral propositions are truth-apt and b) some moral propositions are true.
  • Michael
    13.9k
    I am only in this thread like ... for ... moral objectivity. But if there is something called moral realism that is different for glossy technical reasons, I am trying to understand so that I can either agree or disagree there.Chet Hawkins

    It's useful to separate a moral theory out into its constituent parts. There are, roughly speaking, three considerations when discussing meta ethics:

    1. Are moral propositions truth-apt?
    2. If moral propositions are truth-apt then are any true?
    3. If there are true moral propositions then are they objectively true?

    We can set out these three considerations as affirmative claims that are then either accepted or rejected:

    a) Moral propositions are truth-apt
    b) Some moral propositions are true
    c) Some moral propositions are objectively true.

    (c) entails (b) entails (a).

    If you reject (a) then you are a moral non-cognitivist. If you reject (b) then you are an error theorist. If you reject (c) then you are a non-objectivist.

    Some say that you must accept (c) to be a realist, others say that you need only accept (b) to be a realist, and that to accept (c) is to be a "robust" realist.

    Although I wouldn't get too caught up in labels, they're just pragmatic tools with no real philosophical significance. What matters is whether or not (a), (b), and (c) are true.
  • Bob Ross
    1k


    In terms of “hiding” behind moral realism, it cannot be hiding if the OP is an exposition of a moral realist theory. If you have disputes with moral realism, or the underlying framework within metaethics, then we can discuss that.

    He seem to use the terms ‘objective’ and ‘truth’ very differently than me and the contemporary literature, which is fine; but I need more clarity from you on what you mean by them. I have already explained what I mean by them.

    Maybe I am not whatever a moral realist is but I do believe that morality is objective and does not change, so you tell me, what is that WITHOUT the other requirements? What is that called? Because that is what I believe and my current state.

    By something being ‘objective’, are you just meaning that it is ‘immutable’?

    Who cares is my answer. Morality is objective. I can offer arguments as to why.

    The purpose of this thread is to discuss the view outlined in the OP, not your ethical theory insofar as it doesn’t relate thereto. My position is a form of moral realism, and a part that is the affirmation of moral cognitivism. Are you a moral cognitivist or non-cognitivist?

    I consider myself both an idealist and a realist

    By ‘idealism’ and ‘realism’, I was referring to metaphysical, specifically ontological, outlooks—not whether or not you like following ideals. Idealism, traditionally, is the position that reality is fundamentally made up of minds, and realism is the view that it is fundamentally made up of mind-independent parts.

    I was thinking perhaps you are an idealist, and that would explain why you seem to think that nothing in reality is mind-independent.

    If you think that flourishing can be defined by two different cultures, and that either one could be correct, you are not what I call a moral objectivist.

    It cannot be defined by two different cultures in the sense that they are both correct about what flourishing is while simultaneously having contradictory accounts. There is only one way there is to be flourishing.

    Moral objectivity is truth to me

    So this would entail that what is true is equivocal to what is moral, which seems very implausible. If it is true that Gary raped that woman, then is it thereby moral? Of course not. If it is true that 1+1=2, then is it moral? Of course not.

    Truth is correspondence of reality, or perhaps the whole, or what is, but certainly not equivalent to what is moral.

    Your flourishing example is terrible and cannot be used. That is because either the intent is to the aim of the perfect good or it is abject failure

    You are importing your own views and then simply demonstrating mine are incompatible with them; instead of analyzing my position on its own merits. This ‘perfectness’ being ‘goodness’ doesn’t exist in my theory: should it? I don’t think so.

    1) Morality is objective and represented by a perfect intent, which is unique.

    I don’t know why morality is ‘represented by a perfect intent’, or what that means.

    2) Moral perfection is all truth at once. Nothing that is possible is left out.

    Again, this just equivocates truth with morality.

    3) Between any two beliefs, one is always better than the other, because it is intended along a vector more proximal to objective moral truth.

    Why would this be a part of the thesis?

    There is no state for which there is not a mind component. That component is not zero, ever. The seed of our human mind is in inorganic matter. The fact that science does not yet understand this is irrelevant.

    Hence why I thought you may be an idealist. Anyways, you are confusing ontology with epistemology: our knowledge of the world is always mind dependent, but that does not entail that what fundamentally exists is mind-dependent.

    There are plenty of believers out there that assert consciousness is all there is. I am one of them.

    Ok, so you are an idealist.

    There are plenty of believers out there that assert consciousness is all there is. I am one of them. And although mind is only precisely one third of reality

    That is a flat-out contradiction. You can’t say X is all there is and X is one third of what all there is.

    I still think you mean that there seems to be a respectable barrier between one mind and another. I think that is what you mean. Please confirm what you mean. I need some term or understanding I can follow. our minds are NOT actually separate from one another.

    I mean that it seems as though, and we have good reasons to believe that, our minds are emergent from mind-independent parts and that the universe is fundamentally mind-independent.

    The which is exactly what I was saying and missed by you for no known reason. I can also use the other two paths to make similar theoretical statements:

    I am because I think.
    I am because I intend.
    I intend because I think.
    I intend because I am.
    I think because I intend.

    This set of statements encircles all the possible equivalent statements at that level. Without these statements the understanding is less than best. It highlights the think side only, a problem I detect amid most of academia.

    It's compelling, tempting, and entirely wrong to pursue truth only through thought.

    I never was, nor will I be, arguing for the cogito argument. I don’t see the relevance of this to my moral realist position. I do not hold cogito ergo sum: I don’t buy the descartes argument for it. ‘I’ do not exist simply because something thinks.

    For the sake of brevity, I am going to stop there for now; and see if that helps.

    Bob
  • AmadeusD
    1.3k
    You can’t say X is all there is and X is one third of what all there is.Bob Ross

    FWIW, I think he's attempting to make 'consciousness' and 'mind' two different things. I guess I don't flatly reject that, but i have a feeling he doens't quite know what he's saying and you're right to call it out.
  • Chet Hawkins
    82
    In terms of “hiding” behind moral realism, it cannot be hiding if the OP is an exposition of a moral realist theory. If you have disputes with moral realism, or the underlying framework within metaethics, then we can discuss that.Bob Ross
    Well, perhaps I need to detail more of my model, but, I agree that this is kind of derailing this thread because of the way everyone, including me of course, is choosing to discuss it. I am a free form theorist, but I can learn this way, I think; assuming it's not just repugnant once I do get more of it. For now I think I'll read more of what others say here on these forums and digest it. Maybe I can. Who knows.

    I am certainly not here only to annoy you, which is all I seem to be accomplishing now.

    He seem to use the terms ‘objective’ and ‘truth’ very differently than me and the contemporary literature, which is fine; but I need more clarity from you on what you mean by them. I have already explained what I mean by them.Bob Ross
    Well, If I explain more of my model it would help. But I surmise that it would be rejected from start to finish here, although I think its way more useful to people in its verbiage and formulation than what I seem to need to do and say here to interact with you successfully.

    I had hoped that interaction with lay and professional philosophers or logicians would be less problematic, that my rather unorthodox approach would be more what was missing perhaps, a theme that follows me wherever I go in life. So, far that is not the case.

    Truth to me is all that is objective, the summation of it. It of course does not change. It is pointless to call anything that can change truth. You may make a truth statement about something in a state and that statement is true. It is not especially wonderful or meaningful to me. It's just as cool as saying, it's hot, or it's cold. Who cares? I mean I know people care about temp and I do to. That's not what I mean. Useful truth is only about laws of the universe that never change. Effectively, there are no other truths. There are only states. The laws of truth govern the state changes. So, that's truth.

    Objective is the nature of truth, unchanging, eternal, conceptual. Only truth can be objective. If something can change, it is a state. Truth statements about states are less useful than truth statements about objective laws of the universe. So, that's objective.

    That's a short sweet and easy to understand synopsis of the system. There is a lot more detail, but that is the highest level, the monad.

    Maybe I am not whatever a moral realist is but I do believe that morality is objective and does not change, so you tell me, what is that WITHOUT the other requirements? What is that called? Because that is what I believe and my current state.

    By something being ‘objective’, are you just meaning that it is ‘immutable’?
    Bob Ross
    Well, no. It does not change. So, to me you can also say, TF it is a law of the universe. It is truth or part of truth. And there are many such laws. But one can also say 'Morality is truth' or 'Morality is objective' or 'Objective morality is a law of the universe'. The 'rules' of morality do not change. Opinion is only error. Choice always contains error. Belief always contains error. Fact is just a certain type of belief, so, facts always contain error.

    Who cares is my answer. Morality is objective. I can offer arguments as to why.

    The purpose of this thread is to discuss the view outlined in the OP, not your ethical theory insofar as it doesn’t relate thereto.
    Bob Ross
    That makes no sense to me at all. It's like you started talking about microscopic portions of the wall and their dimensions and such, but I am not allowed to discuss that same wall my way. It's ridiculous to me. Of course all opinions about the wall should be entertained when speaking about the wall. I mean moral objectivism is indeed what we are both talking about, just two apparently quite different models of that same thing. I do not mind leaping into such a discussion and saying, no, that's not what 'red' means to me. Here is what it means to me. I will tell you why and how I support my belief. I will not just say, 'Hey we are only discussing this way to moral objectivism.' I suppose if that is how it is, I need a new thread of my own.

    That's what I tried to do with the first post on happiness and was told that moral objectivism was being discussed here. Apologies if that is also wrong. It seems I have nowhere to be me.

    My position is a form of moral realism, and a part that is the affirmation of moral cognitivism. Are you a moral cognitivist or non-cognitivist?Bob Ross
    As discussed already in great detail I suppose I would have to be a cognitivist.

    I consider myself both an idealist and a realist

    By ‘idealism’ and ‘realism’, I was referring to metaphysical, specifically ontological, outlooks—not whether or not you like following ideals. Idealism, traditionally, is the position that reality is fundamentally made up of minds, and realism is the view that it is fundamentally made up of mind-independent parts.
    Bob Ross
    Well then tradition is not so useful to me. I'm more fluid.

    To me there is the path of mind. That path is also the path of a single emotion, fear. Fear is entirely responsible for realism, Pragmatism, and what might be referred to as the limiting force amid moral objectivism.

    I was thinking perhaps you are an idealist, and that would explain why you seem to think that nothing in reality is mind-independent.Bob Ross
    Everything in reality, all iota of matter and even dreams, all of it, yes, everything, partakes of fear. It cannot avoid it. It is objectively true. It is a law of the universe. But, yeah, assuming there is interest, I need another thread to discuss it it seems.

    If you think that flourishing can be defined by two different cultures, and that either one could be correct, you are not what I call a moral objectivist.

    It cannot be defined by two different cultures in the sense that they are both correct about what flourishing is while simultaneously having contradictory accounts. There is only one way there is to be flourishing.
    Bob Ross
    Ah, then we agree. Perfection is singular.

    Moral objectivity is truth to me

    So this would entail that what is true is equivocal to what is moral, which seems very implausible.
    Bob Ross
    No, because you will now go off into state changes that do not matter to truth at all.

    Free will allows for errors in choice and state. One cannot be moral. One can only TRY to be moral. To be moral would be to be perfect. It cannot happen. When it happens I am guessing that would 'end' the universe in all dimensions we are capable of discussing.

    If it is true that Gary raped that woman, then is it thereby moral? Of course not. If it is true that 1+1=2, then is it moral? Of course not.Bob Ross
    Again, truth does not apply to states. I would even use another word and clear up logic itself on that basis. A true state is a goofy thing to say/discuss. States can change.

    If this model is correct, it accurately describes reality. I contend that it does. I have of course only put fear here in very low detail. And there are chapters of this treatment that flow into every aspect of reality.

    Truth is correspondence of reality, or perhaps the whole, or what is, but certainly not equivalent to what is moral.Bob Ross
    Yes it is, to me. To me there is nothing but morality in the universe and that is synonymous with truth, or God, or Love; choose your delusion.

    And note the word certainly there in your verbiage in light of my fear treatment above. It can become quite telling if you know what to look for. There is no certainty.

    Your flourishing example is terrible and cannot be used. That is because either the intent is to the aim of the perfect good or it is abject failure

    You are importing your own views and then simply demonstrating mine are incompatible with them; instead of analyzing my position on its own merits. This ‘perfectness’ being ‘goodness’ doesn’t exist in my theory: should it? I don’t think so.
    Bob Ross
    Yes, I agree. I am discussing objective morality as I understand and believe it to be. But that should be useful to you. If I have even some shred of a point, at all, you can use my model and assertions to fuel thought and discussion on yours. Clearly I was confused at the examples you gave and admittedly I thought you were on the track of subjective morality and then what you were saying sounded like objective morality.

    If you build a tight model, I mean, you can make it, but does it really answer to reality? How can you judge two different models, then? How do you compare one to the other? Is intuition involved at all?

    1) Morality is objective and represented by a perfect intent, which is unique.

    I don’t know why morality is ‘represented by a perfect intent’, or what that means.
    Bob Ross
    Well it's not hard to imagine, is it?

    Assume there are 16 discreet virtues for example. And assume there is a harmonic amid choice for each of these. There is a perfect vibration to choice for each virtue separately and then if you get all 16 perfect at the same time, you have a single perfect choice, the entire and only purpose of the universe. Does the universe end? Probably! Its conjecture of course, but that's the general idea.

    2) Moral perfection is all truth at once. Nothing that is possible is left out.

    Again, this just equivocates truth with morality.
    Bob Ross
    And again, that is precisely correct. I assert that is true. They are the same thing.

    3) Between any two beliefs, one is always better than the other, because it is intended along a vector more proximal to objective moral truth.

    Why would this be a part of the thesis?
    Bob Ross
    We need as choosers, as moral agents, some capacity to judge the error level of a choice or state. Due to the nature of the limiting force and the seeming impossibility of perfection, this 3rd contention becomes true and interesting. It means if we have a morality meter no two choices or beliefs could ever be precisely equal in moral value, goodness value. This all depends on, you guessed it, moral objectivism.

    There is no state for which there is not a mind component. That component is not zero, ever. The seed of our human mind is in inorganic matter. The fact that science does not yet understand this is irrelevant.

    Hence why I thought you may be an idealist. Anyways, you are confusing ontology with epistemology: our knowledge of the world is always mind dependent, but that does not entail that what fundamentally exists is mind-dependent.
    Bob Ross
    The physical reality we think we know, is not known. It is delusion. It is just emotion, just consciousness. The model I am getting to is a theoretical 'proof' for this truth.

    There are plenty of believers out there that assert consciousness is all there is. I am one of them.

    Ok, so you are an idealist.
    Bob Ross
    Not in my model, I am not.

    Idealism is just as much of an error, a moral error, as Pragmatism is. Only wisdom is the right path. Wisdom is the middle path between these two, combining the order of Pragmatism and fear with the chaos of Idealism and desire.

    There are plenty of believers out there that assert consciousness is all there is. I am one of them. And although mind is only precisely one third of reality

    That is a flat-out contradiction. You can’t say X is all there is and X is one third of what all there is.
    Bob Ross
    I agree. That is only because I am not saying it quite right. But, unlike logicians I am more comfortable with that. So, I need your help actually.

    I want to learn how to say it right, if that is possible.

    I still think you mean that there seems to be a respectable barrier between one mind and another. I think that is what you mean. Please confirm what you mean. I need some term or understanding I can follow. our minds are NOT actually separate from one another.

    I mean that it seems as though, and we have good reasons to believe that, our minds are emergent from mind-independent parts and that the universe is fundamentally mind-independent.
    Bob Ross
    And of course, I disagree entirely. I would say there is precious little reason, the limit as x approaches none, to suspect that. It is in fact a horrid suspicion, and groundless. It is much more likely that all seeds of emotive capacity were part of natural law. We only see discrete breakpoints because we are still deeply deluded. We do not have enough awareness yet. We are going there.

    The which is exactly what I was saying and missed by you for no known reason. I can also use the other two paths to make similar theoretical statements:

    I am because I think.
    I am because I intend.
    I intend because I think.
    I intend because I am.
    I think because I intend.

    This set of statements encircles all the possible equivalent statements at that level. Without these statements the understanding is less than best. It highlights the think side only, a problem I detect amid most of academia.

    It's compelling, tempting, and entirely wrong to pursue truth only through thought.

    I never was, nor will I be, arguing for the cogito argument. I don’t see the relevance of this to my moral realist position. I do not hold cogito ergo sum: I don’t buy the descartes argument for it. ‘I’ do not exist simply because something thinks.
    Bob Ross
    Whereas Descartes fits my model well and indeed my model would allude to the other statements I made as equivalent and necessary as a full closed set.

    I would also say that to think without existing is entirely incoherent. Why would you try to defend that? Yes, something exists because it can think. Any I that thinks, must exist.

    For the sake of brevity, I am going to stop there for now; and see if that helps.Bob Ross
    I mean, I think I get you. I am not at all sure you get me. I would like to discuss the whole topic of objective morality.

    I tried to trim this down after the fact. It was like 3-4 times larger before. Hopefully its still succinct and coherent.
  • Chet Hawkins
    82
    a) Moral propositions are truth-apt
    b) Some moral propositions are true
    c) Some moral propositions are objectively true.

    (c) entails (b) entails (a).

    If you reject (a) then you are a moral non-cognitivist. If you reject (b) then you are an error theorist. If you reject (c) then you are a non-objectivist.

    Some say that you must accept (c) to be a realist, others say that you need only accept (b) to be a realist, and that to accept (c) is to be a "robust" realist.

    Although I wouldn't get too caught up in labels, they're just pragmatic tools with no real philosophical significance. What matters is whether or not (a), (b), and (c) are true.
    Michael
    Well. ok, yes.

    Clearly by these descriptors I am a moral objectivist.
    But I am interesting in the gray area that arises when people do not pay attention to details, and yet often enough people think improperly that I am the one missing the details.

    That is to say, states cannot be true, meaningfully. They are too transitional.

    That is also to say what a person 'is', is not finally good or evil. They actions and intents are done on a choice already made. This means that the choice CAN be determined as good or evil, assuming one also believes morality itself expresses good and anything else is evil.

    Evil is in fact merely a lack of perfection. All aspects of reality partake in some degree of evil as expressed. That is every state of every thing and every being in the universe. It's unavoidable. It's true.

    So, one cannot discuss things like killing babies as making one evil. They are evil choices only.

    ---

    Why do I bother making such distinctions? Why indeed is it typical for people of all cultures to entertain these notions? Why do so many make moral propositional statements if they are not truth-apt?

    It is only the nature of existence itself, a law of the universe, which we refer to as morality, that causes this tendency, just like gravity. Morality is another law of nature. It is no more ephemeral nor less compelling than that.

    Gravity itself actually is morality in action. All laws of nature are only morality. There is nothing happening but morality.

    Gravity is a pull one experiences towards mass. The greater the mass, the more the pulls. Literally, this yields a compelling moral proposition which is the basis of the physics:

    'What matters, will draw you to it, and that is morally correct.'

    Then we would be tempted by delusion and foolishness (immorality) to say things like,

    'Yeah ok, wise guy, let the black hole pull you in.' or
    'I feel my porn, calling to me. It must matter and be moral.'

    But these do not deny the truth of the first statement. What happens is, other virtues are involved and they split the need for choice, bend it, in another direction.

    Loosely,
    'Matter that expresses higher moral agency, matters more, at this time, but not finally.'
    and
    'Some patterns are self-destructive. Fear must rise to balance desire in these cases.'

    Morality is the hardest thing there is to understand. It is only worth understanding at all because:

    Morality does not change. It is objective.

    An interesting possible corollary proposition:
    'It is not important to understand any state or being. It is only important to understand morality.'
  • Michael
    13.9k
    Why do so many make moral propositional statements if they are not truth-apt?Chet Hawkins

    Moral non-cognitivists will say that a sentence such as "this is wrong" actually means something like "don't do this", and that the sentence "don't do this" isn't truth-apt.
  • wonderer1
    1.5k
    Why do so many make moral propositional statements if they are not truth-apt?Chet Hawkins

    Why does the monkey throw the cucumber, if the researcher is not a bad person?

  • Chet Hawkins
    82

    Ha ha! The researcher is not a bad person. But the researcher is BEING a bad person currently.

    They have a monkey trapped in a cage, for heaven's sake. That's just horrid, almost no matter the reason. And then they are experimenting on it by feeding its buddy better food or more desired food. That is not exactly a moral aim.

    I mean I know they rationalize that they are learning behavioral things by doing this in a 'controlled' way, but I don't think you can escape it being fairly wrong.

    Choices, of course, not people, are possibly bad or evil or immoral, use your favorite term.
  • Chet Hawkins
    82
    Moral non-cognitivists will say that a sentence such as "this is wrong" actually means something like "don't do this", and that the sentence "don't do this" isn't truth-apt.Michael

    Well, I would say instead to be more clear:
    <this action> is morally wrong according to what can be guessed about objective moral truth.
    That means <this action> will objective contribute less to happiness than <some similar action> which is more in alignment with objective moral truth.
    And then I have to be vague here because you were, but, then you would state the moral proposition for review.

    Of course, we all can contend different and immoral things and we do all the time. And people are not even aware of how to judge these actions because they are not deep thinkers or deep feelers and they exist in a pool of easy prosperity and are mostly only concerned with shallow consequences like a giddy high, rather than genuine happiness. But leave that same person on a desert island for a year with 10 other people and it's probably the best thing that ever happened to them, if they live.
  • baker
    5.5k
    Why do so many make moral propositional statements if they are not truth-apt?Chet Hawkins
    Possibly because moral propositional statements can have a predictable effect on people, and this predictability is useful somehow.
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