• Christoffer
    486
    I don't know if we can so categorically say that religious faith is a bad thing. Religion has been a cause of many atrocities but they also kept the flame of morality burning until philosophers took the responsibility of studying it in earnest. In fact I'd go so far as to say that moral theory arose from religion, faith based as it is.TheMadFool

    I'm more with Sam Harris when it comes to moral, in that we can find parameters around moral that does not have anything to do with the reasons found in religious text. At the same time there are some obvious truths about what not to do in a society with people within these religious texts, like "thou shall not steal". To say that this idea derived from the religious text seems like an after-thought on moral theory when the idea itself does not need religion to be found sound, as a moral thing to do.

    I agree that without religion it would be hard to keep morality in check throughout a history where people needed to make sense of a world that didn't make sense. But I think that as a contemporary argument, with the knowledge we have today, it has lost its reason for existence and is so inferior that it would more likely cause harm than do good. Even when trying to do good, because it's so easy to find different perspectives today, when a parent tells their child "do this" and they ask "why?" and that parent just tells them, "because I say so", this can lead to a fierce counter-reaction, even later in life when that child gets knowledge of the thing not needed to be done as the parent asked. Such unwillingness to explain or justify their belief by the parent, religious or otherwise does no good for the child, both then as an adult.

    I would argue that as a sense of calm, meditation, pillow of comfort towards the complexities of life, especially for people who lack the intellect to examine their own ideas, religious belief can be a positive effect. But it can also lead to those people hiding in that comfort and never interacting with the rest of the world, ending up in a negative position both for themselves and others around them. So I think the problem lies more in that we haven't figured out how to find comfort in the meaninglessness of life outside of religious belief.

    We need more than just a moral system outside of religious moral theory, we need an entire framework of living without God that keeps our sanity and empathy. This is essentially what Nietschze feared, that we would fail to create such a contemporary framework and everyone would instead become narcissistic assholes. Well, safe to say that he was right about that thing in a if we look at the world today, but he was wrong that it would collapse our society. The most peaceful nations with the highest quality of life are the ones with the highest level of atheism, primarily because they truly separate the church and state. The US, for example, doesn't really have God separated from the state. The president needs to be a believer in God, at least on paper, so that's how corrupt that "separation" is

    I think there's a good reason to move away from religion altogether. To create a new foundation for the entire society that is based on rationality rather than doctrines. That realize the long term dangers of unsupported belief and its effect on people.

    This is what my argument is about, that the belief itself is causing anti-intellectualism, causing pain and suffering because it focuses our attention on wrong things and distort reality to make monsters out of people. It's also the reason why people like anti-vaxxers keep popping up.

    Why do these people hold onto their belief and dismiss everyone's counter-argument and all the evidence around them? It's not only because of cognitive bias and a lack of rational intellect. I think that religion has taught us that personal belief is sacred and that we can believe whatever we want.

    I think this is wrong. We always affect other people with our personal belief and that's why the anti-vaxxer movement grew and became a danger to all children. The fine balance, however, is to find a way to steer people into thinking "correct" without going Orwellian 84 on society. It's not about thought-crime, but "thought-virtue".

    To make unsupported belief to be unethical and supported belief to be ethical, we have a foundation of thinking about everything that will always focus people on trying to be right rather than just believe. Instead of teaching people that their belief in their own and their religious ideas are a good thing to have, show them that it is wrong to hold on to a belief that is unsupported because it can affect many people down the line, even if you can't see that causality at the moment.

    Instead, teach children to think critically, have foundational teachings in school to be that of how to rationally think about things. How to examine your own thought and belief. We don't teach children to think for real, we just fill them with knowledge and leave them to figure it out by themselves or let parents do all the teachings of how to understand life.

    It's flawed. That's why my argument demands unsupported belief to be unethical because it will eventually lead to negative outcomes, maybe not for you, but someone else, sometimes even whole societies and nations. Epistemic responsibility should be a virtue for all and unsupported belief should be a sin.
  • Christoffer
    486
    For myself, the idea of being responsible for what is happening now is the most interesting thing.
    Whether that happens through the register of religion or something else is not as interesting as the idea by itself, that individuals influence what is happening now.
    So, how does one get to that place?
    Valentinus

    I would say that epistemic responsibility is the first thing. That is a virtue to follow in the now. That responsibility demands that you do not make choices lightly and you are responsible for bad outcomes if you didn't think them through. But per my argument, that would mean that if you believe in something that you cannot support rationally, you are breaking epistemic responsibility and therefore you are responsible for negative outcomes of that. I would also argue, as I do in one of the premises, that if your belief affects people into doing bad things you are responsible for spreading that belief. Just like if someone is confusing someone into murder.

    Supported belief has a lower probability of distorting reality for you and others, and is, therefore, the ethical choice. Unsupported belief has a high probability of distorting reality and could lead to negative outcomes for you, others around you or influence people after your death to do things according to that belief. It's unethical to be the source of such causality. You cannot know the causality, but you can minimize the probability of it happening.

    This applies to all belief, not just religion. My example is anti-vaxxers who by justifying their belief in defending personal belief while not caring to rationalize their belief according to evidence, spread their ideas willingly or unwillingly to others susceptible to those ideas. This has caused almost eradicated diseases to come back and threaten the lives of children or even kill them.

    If we destroy the idea that "personal belief" is sacred because it rather intentionally or unintentionally has a high probability of causing negative outcomes when that belief lacks rational reasoning; And make epistemic responsibility a virtue while condemning belief that lacks rational reasoning, we have a system of ethical thinking that at a large scale has a positive effect on society and people.

    It may sound complicated, but it's really about changing how we handle day to day thinking. If we accept that current morality is positively limiting us and our freedom in thinking so that we function better towards other people instead of harming them, then we can also positively limit our way of handling the freedom and concept of belief in order to prevent harm as a result of distorting reality with that unsupported belief. We follow common morals to the best of our ability, like: not killing, not stealing, not harming others. We can therefore also follow epistemic responsibility as a moral guide towards our handling of knowledge in life, not accepting an unsupported belief that could distort our and others way of looking at reality.

    For me, that is a responsibility of what is happening in the now.
  • papaya
    17
    At what point do you demand evidence that your Mother and Father - are your Mother and Father?
  • papaya
    17
    Point being that your opening post demands evidence for something being true. On a human level how do you demand evidence that your partner loves you whilst maintaining that romance?
  • papaya
    17
    Or to put it more bluntly do you believe your mother and father are your mother and father and can you evidence this? Likewise can you evidence that someone loves you.
  • Christoffer
    486
    demands evidence for something being true.papaya

    No, it demands examining your belief instead of accepting it as truth without reason.

    Or to put it more bluntly do you believe your mother and father are your mother and father and can you evidence this? Likewise can you evidence that someone loves youpapaya

    What does this matter to this argument? I see no relation
  • papaya
    17
    What does this matter to this argument? I see no relationChristoffer

    Perhaps if you try to answer the question, you will see the relation.
    I repeat:
    do you believe your mother and father are your mother and father and can you evidence this?
  • tim wood
    2.2k
    No argument has ever been able to prove the existence of God or gods through evidence. Religious belief is therefore based on belief in something that is unsupported by evidence or rational deduction.Christoffer
    Undefined terms, therefore this premise is DOA. In particular, because you do not make clear what you mean or what you wish to be understood by your use of "God," you make of it an unqualified term. You may as well have said, "Whatever anyone means or understands or ever did mean, or will ever mean, or understand by the word "God," is based in 'something unsupported by evidence by evidence or rational deduction.'"

    Even within this, your conclusion is unjustified. At this point you ought to take stock of just what it is you're attempting to do. Your argument is suggestive but not conclusive, and it's an injustice to you to decide for you what you're doing. What are you doing?
  • papaya
    17
    Undefined terms,tim wood

    More importantly "evidence" is mixed up with and confused with "rational deduction". 2 completely different concepts - ask Columbo or Poirot for clarification

    I'd still like to see the OP respond to
    do you believe your mother and father are your mother and father and can you evidence this?
  • Christoffer
    486
    Perhaps if you try to answer the question, you will see the relation.
    I repeat:
    do you believe your mother and father are your mother and father and can you evidence this?
    papaya

    This has no relation to the argument. This is an ethics argument. Make your point clear please.
  • papaya
    17
    You prefer not to answer this then?
  • Christoffer
    486


    I prefer you to make your counter-argument clear. Stop being intentionally difficult. This is philosophy.
  • papaya
    17
    Belief 1, my mother is my mother with no evidence = bad things = false
    Surprised you didn't make that simile!
  • Christoffer
    486
    Undefined terms, therefore this premise is DOA. In particular, because you do not make clear what you mean or what you wish to be understood by your use of "God," you make of it an unqualified term. You may as well have said, "Whatever anyone means or understands or ever did mean, or will ever mean, or understand by the word "God," is based in 'something unsupported by evidence by evidence or rational deduction.'"tim wood

    Not sure what you mean here, it seems clear, there has never been any clear evidence or rational reasoning behind the existence of God. That's the premise, meaning there is nothing but faith and belief behind the "existence" of God.

    What is the actual problem with the premise here? What is not clear? Is there evidence for a God you mean?

    Even within this, your conclusion is unjustified. At this point you ought to take stock of just what it is you're attempting to do. Your argument is suggestive but not conclusive, and it's an injustice to you to decide for you what you're doing. What are you doing?tim wood

    What is your objection? What is the problem with the conclusion? Unsupported belief is unethical, supported belief is ethical, that is the conclusion.

    I'm seriously interested in your points, here but I'm not sure if you are criticizing out of fear for the conclusion or by the logic not holding up. I want the logic to be solid, it's part of a moral theory.
  • Christoffer
    486
    Belief 1, my mother is my mother with no evidence = bad things = false
    Surprised you didn't make that simile!
    papaya

    This isn't a clear counter-argument. What premises or what about the conclusion is problematic. You are too vague in your criticism.
  • papaya
    17
    Unsupported belief is unethical,Christoffer

    I ASK AGAIN AS AN EXAMPLE - do you believe your mother is your mother and your father is your father, and what is your evidence? please do not evade the question
  • Christoffer
    486
    I ASK AGAIN AS AN EXAMPLE - do you believe your mother is your mother and your father is your father, and what is your evidence? please do not evade the questionpapaya

    What is the point of this question? Make a counter argument that has a relation to the argument presented. I cannot evade what I do not understand as related to my conclusion, ok?
  • tim wood
    2.2k
    Not sure what you mean here, it seems clear, there has never been any clear evidence or rational reasoning behind the existence of God.Christoffer

    Clear enough: you apparently define "God" in way that serves your argument. Now it's up to you to offer some rigorous definition. In particular, I believe in God, and it (my belief) is well supported by both evidence and rational deduction; beyond that, my belief is unassailable by either doubt or rational argument. To be sure, though, there are lots of people who prefer the supernatural God supported by irrational beliefs. Do you begin to see your problem?
  • papaya
    17
    ah - but you have evaded answering the simple question that a child could answer!
  • papaya
    17
    give it a shot Christoffer and help human kind - is your mother your mother?
  • Christoffer
    486
    ah - but you have evaded answering the simple question that a child could answer!papaya
    give it a shot Christoffer and help human kind - is your mother your mother?papaya

    I understand you are new here, maybe you don't get the rules of this forum?
    Stop trolling and do the discourse correctly.
  • papaya
    17
    Christoffer, a basic premise of philosophy is asking questions and reviewing answers to glean a better understanding. You seem to miss some basic principles. Father - is the symbolic equivalent of God - Mother is a more contemporary symbolic equivalent of God. So far you have evaded answering any questions about your Mother and Father. Particularly your belief in them - be it symbolic or literal. Perhaps if yous started examining some of these metaphors you would glean a better understanding of the metaphysical.
  • papaya
    17
    To levy with your basic premise, does an unfounded belief in God lead to bad things? Any more so than an unfounded belief in ones Mother and Father?
  • Christoffer
    486
    Christoffer, a basic premise of philosophy is asking questions and reviewing answers to glean a better understanding. You seem to miss some basic principles.papaya

    You still need to be clear on what premises you are referring to or in what way you counter-argue the conclusion. You cannot be vague, that is trolling.

    Father - is the symbolic equivalent of God - Mother is a more contemporary symbolic equivalent of God.papaya

    This is irrelevant to the argument.

    So far you have evaded answering any questions about your Mother and Fatherpapaya

    Irrelevant to the argument.

    Particularly your belief in them - be it symbolic or literal. Perhaps if yous started examining some of these metaphors you would glean a better understanding of the metaphysical.papaya

    You are answering an ethics philosophy argument, not metaphysics. You are also not clear on how it relates to either premises or conclusion for the argument presented.

    Make your case clear in relation to the argument presented.
  • papaya
    17
    Christoffer you liber me with trolling as if you live in a universe that exists without Courts and Barristers! :joke: Further you try to constrain me to an ill thought out argument with an opening premise that confuses evidence with rational deduction. The two things are completely different!
  • papaya
    17
    To address your points- most things on this planet should be criticised. Specifically - critiqued.
  • papaya
    17
    This should not be confused with the label unethical.
  • papaya
    17
    Because a person has an unsupported belief - that does not make this action unethical.
  • papaya
    17
    Again I come back to my previous points which you discard as irrelevant and trolling - belief in a mother and father, however unsupported is not by default unethical or to be criticised.
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