Morality is a product of evolution

June 6, 2016, 6:58 am

Agree48 Disagree38

56%
44%

The debate "Morality is a product of evolution" was started by truce_jttm on June 6, 2016, 6:58 am. 48 people are on the agree side of this discussion, while 38 people are on the disagree side. That might be enough to see the common perception. It looks like most of the people in this community are on the agreeing side of this statement.

JGM posted 1 argument, DonnyM posted 1 argument, debatabillity posted 1 argument, truce_jttm posted 1 argument, Daffa8799 posted 1 argument, neveralone posted 5 arguments, Nemiroff posted 3 arguments to the agreers part.
fadi posted 1 argument, TheExistentialist posted 14 arguments, neveralone posted 5 arguments, Ematio posted 6 arguments, Nemiroff posted 1 argument to the disagreers part.

truce_jttm, prajjwal, SueAnnMohr, JGM, cmt11, DB8101, sickboyblonde, Schnuupi, DonnyM, PoliticsAsUsual, debatabillity, Daffa8799, JakobBoghora, Yanksxx21, moserman, tony, human, redstar, soccer19 and 29 visitors agree.
Nemiroff, fadi, dalton7532, Apollo, leftyg1111, TheCanadianRepublican, bruff21, wdz, moneybagboyz, TheExistentialist, jack_tim_45, Ematio, neveralone, thereal, UnderdogMike, NJ150 and 22 visitors disagree.

Nemiroff
replied to...

well if someone believes morality is a product of evolution it's a forgone conclusion that neither you, nor any specific person, made any of it up. in fact, if morality is a byproduct of evolution (an external force) then it would be objective. I will have to change by vote.

rather, the need and desire to define and enforce some form of morality was a product of evolution, not the values themselves.

3 weeks ago

i am a proponent of morality coming from a standard beyond human consienceness. the very standard of what we know as good, justice, love, and righteousness. AKA objective morality. I stand that morality is guided by a standard of moral values. i simply will not say i made it up. it is an ingrained characteristic i know and i wont take credit for it. morality is like a book. u can read a book and know what it says and deny an author, but there would be no book unless there is an author. good and evil exist and if it didn't we would not have a morality.

3 weeks, 1 day ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

i dont know what this gansle said so I can't confirm or deny it but we are handling the morality of horrors in another thread. objective morality has its own problems i can gladly point out. are you a proponent of divine command or natural law morallity? (both are god related).

3 weeks, 1 day ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

evolution is a theory.
so is gravity, cell theory, atomic theory, the theory of motion. a theory in science isn't a guess, it's a well tested and consistently accurate description of the world.
it is not the colloquial definition of "a guess".

we have seen evolution in action right before our eyes, and not just in bacteria, but also in multicellular rapidly reproducing insects.

http://www.natureworldnews.com/articles/17860/20151030/speciation-fruit-fly-evolution-causes-cascading-changes-wasp-species.htm

evolution is real. It's the only theory that explains everything we see. You can point to irrelevant "gaps" but you will never provide an adequate replacement. guess what, there were no "steps of evolution", evolution is a continuum. And there are no number of fossils you can find to fill a smooth continuum.

if God did create us and the world as is, he seriously screwed up. if you want to go down that path I'll make it impossible for god to be both good and perfect. Cause there are just some absolutely stupid results he created. on the other hand, creation through evolution seems to be the closest thing to perfection in an ever changing imperfect world. It's the only logical path for a perfect god to take.

so, shall we debate this with science or theology cause I'm quite confident in both. Evolution is the only realistic answer.

3 weeks, 1 day ago
Najam1
replied to...

Christianity is not forcing men to all live as undercover homosexuals named Romeo that are permitted a maximum of one wife before death.
Christianity is not hiding the fact that US jails and prisons are welcome places used to force homosexuality and homosexual sodomy by false god police who pretend to be Christians destined for heaven.
Christianity is not lying on Jesus in order to claim he permits mankind to tattoo human flesh, nor is it lying to claim he came on the Earth and then he banished all wives from heaven.
Jesus never wrote that Bible in the first place, but I can't prove that all homosexuals wrote it either.

3 weeks, 1 day ago

Ganssle rightly notes that the evolutionary theory of morality ?does not explain morality.? Setting aside one?s acceptance or rejection of the evolutionary theory, this moral theory does nothing to define morality. For the evolutionary theorist, morality coincides with survival of the human species. This brings us to another flaw. Many societies have sought to destroy other groups of human beings. Catastrophic wars do not seem to help the human race survive. Rather than helping the species survive, war often threatens human existence. Wars are fought with both sides thinking they are correct. Therefore this theory tends to find itself in a form of cultural relativism which we have already denounced.

So where does this leave us? It leaves us with the final theory of morality which appears to be the clear choice.

Objective Morality

3 weeks, 1 day ago

evolution is a theory and has never been proven. u cant take evolution, bring it into a labratory, stick it in a test tube, and prove its existance. it is nothing morr than a thereoy we have yet to prove. there are so many gaps in evolution that we can not conclude it as true. also i have yet to hear how evolution even exists. by what scientist? By what degree? By what schools?

3 weeks, 1 day ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

no one said evolution disproved god. god can easily work through evolution. can you show me where in the bible it says god created everything as is?

And if we have to prove evolution before claiming it created morals, good luck cause now you have to prove god before you can make your claim.

3 weeks, 5 days ago

evolution was proven a long time ago. if you think otherwise you went to a really terrible school.

3 weeks, 5 days ago

before anyone says morality comes from evolution, they would have to prove evolution to be true. and you cant do that. i would ask, what evidence do you have that evolution is true and how does evolution disprove morality, or in bigger perspective, disprove God.

3 weeks, 5 days ago
Ematio
replied to...

And if there's no objective morality, isn't it very arrogant to say that Christians have done wrong?

9 months, 1 week ago

If you look at christianity for the people, you'll be sorely dissapointed. Humans are hypocrites, but Jesus was not. Part of being a christian is trying to live like how Jesus lived. Are you gonna judge a religion for its followers or for its teachings?

9 months, 1 week ago
neveralone
replied to...

that was punishment. not what was wrong .

9 months, 1 week ago

objective morality doesn't exist period. Christian morality said burning people at the stake was morally just. Christians today disagree, I would hope. all morality changes over time. objective morality is a fantasy.

9 months, 1 week ago

Objective morality does not exist in an atheistic worldview

9 months, 1 week ago

Just because other people agree doesn't mean it's right. Was it right to kill millions of Jews just because the germans thought it was right?

9 months, 1 week ago

Why is murder wrong?

9 months, 1 week ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

As @historybuff has said, killing is not intrinsically wrong. We will always find reasons to kill others, be it war, punishment, self defense, etc...

You can say "murder" is "wrong" though. However, "murder" is defined by the unlawful taking of someone's life. So the law precedes the notion of right or wrong and is established based on preferences.

So if we say "I prefer to live in a society which doesn't allow for senseless killing", we can agree to this notion and make killing generally illegal (with exceptions of course). Killing someone in a way that violates that law is then murder and would be considered "wrong" since you are violating the agreement you made with society and are thus liable to the punishment agreed upon (justice).

9 months, 1 week ago

no. there are scenarios where killing is morally acceptable. self defense or war for example.

these are reasons our society is OK with killing. 500 years our society thought it was OK to kill people for believing something different from other people, they called it heresy or apostasy.

killing people has never changed, but our opinions of it certainly have. morality evolves over time.

9 months, 1 week ago
blue_rayy
replied to...

yes

9 months, 1 week ago

Is it wrong to kill a person?

9 months, 1 week ago
Blue_ray
replied to...

oh iam so sorry.

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

sure...if we were talking about molarity....if you look up top though it says Morality

1 year, 1 month ago

molarity is division of no of moles by volume in litres.

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

2 debates settled in 1 day. We're on a roll....

1 year, 1 month ago
neveralone
replied to...

OK then I would agree

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

Again, because I reject right and wrong as meaningful terms, being just isn't good or bad, it is simply a preference in a society (for me and some others). However, this preference is subjective. For example, if you have a huge amount of income, you may prefer a society that doesn't require you to pay a "fair share" in taxes. Meaning that a tax structure which doesn't levy a heavy punishment for tax evasion/tax fraud, has a cap on income taxes, or some mechanism by which you can avoid paying a just share may be preferable by some. It means that those who don't have the same income to take advantage of these loopholes are treated un-justly.

1 year, 1 month ago
neveralone
replied to...

but generally speaking the world society wants the world to be fair am I right? if so is it such a big leap to call it good? I agree that without an objective source like God right and wrong don't matter because a)they both end up dead and b) all the problems u stated for this argument below.

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

I figured as much. Defending morality based on God is extremely difficult. Even guys like William Craig fail most of the time. I do applaud you for trying to rationalize it.

As far as justice goes in a nihilistic world view:

First, justice and just aren't the same. Something which is just is something that is fair. Justice is an attempt to correct a violation of agreed upon norms.

Justice is simply the consequences we accept for violating preferences in a society. Justice is then an exercise of power. Meaning that we, as a society, decide how to punish violations of our agreed upon norms. This means that justice doesn't have to be just. This view exposes the nature of power and the consequences we can levy upon each other. Individuals with more political power can then decide to levy less harsh punishments for violations they are likely to commit while levying more harsh punishments for violations they are less likely to commit. So politicians may choose to punish corruption less harshly than drug use. This isn't necessarily just (as in fairness) however, it is justice.

As a nihilist I have to accept that justice isn't necessarily fair. This is because like anything else, fairness isn't right or wrong, it is simply preferred. So justice can only be fair insofar as a given society values fairness as a preferential outcome to resolving conflict.

1 year, 1 month ago

top part was jokingly

1 year, 1 month ago
neveralone
replied to...

I do this only because we will go in circles forever.

OK that is understandable. but on ur side u say nothing is good or bad. if this was true how can we have justice?

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

Ok, so we're eliminating God as the source of morality for the sake of this debate then?

subjective morality based on consequences is also problematic. You have to know the consequences of your actions before acting. So you cannot lie or tell the truth unless you know what is being done with the information you provided. Let's say a person is at your door and asks for your roommate (let's assume your roommate is home). If you tell the truth, but the person asking intends your roommate harm, you have just committed a morally wrong act. If you lie, but your roommate misses out on a great opportunity because of it, you have again acted morally wrong.

1 year, 1 month ago

consequence base might be the one I would go with since contextual is cumbersome

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

We don't all agree that murder is wrong. I maintain the position that murder simply is. It is neither right or wrong. I maintain that right and wrong are arbitrary measures of preference. So when we say murder is wrong, we're really saying, I prefer a society in which there is no murder. I, however, reject the notion that there is an objective standard by which one can determine right from wrong.

The mainstay of religious morality is that claims like "murder is wrong" are grounded in objectivity and thus we can know that murder is wrong as opposed to simply agreeing that murder is wrong. If we simply agree that murder is wrong, then we can change our minds and say murder is OK at any point. The same goes for any other moral claim.

Essentially, objective morality means that there is some standard by which we measure right and wrong. In the case of religious morality, that standard is a deity. I've already pointed out the problems with these types of theories. The problem of the deceptive God, the problem of the arbitrary God, the problem of whimsical God.

In the case of Kant's philosophy it would be the "categorical imperative" (this would be an independent standard, not God).

In subjective morality, we assign moral values to action in the context in which they are taken. In subjective morality, we have a few different approaches. We have consequence based morality; meaning that we measure actions by the consequences they produce. So murder is wrong if it produces more harm than joy. We have intention based morality; meaning that murder is wrong if the intent is to cause more harm than joy. Conversely, murder would be right if the intent is to cause more joy than harm. We have contextual morality, meaning that each action must be looked at in the context in which it was performed. The last is generally considered too cumbersome to be useful.

Then we have nihilism (my school of thought). In nihilism, the concepts of right and wrong are meaningless. They serve no purpose other than to express preference. So stealing isn't right or wrong (by any measure), I would simply make the statement that I prefer people not steal for various reasons. I would then argue that these preferences are grounded in the social contract we enter into when living in a society and that the obligation to act in accordance with those preferences is based on the violence society can enact upon any individual caught violating these preferences.

1 year, 1 month ago

yeah that's for a dif. debate.

yeah u can't really go up and ask Him.OK.

we all already agree murder is wrong so I will skip that. most of society believes stealing is wrong as well. you have essentially entered a contract when u marry somone and u break that contract when u have an affair and society believes it's wrong to break a contract so that is wrong. let's see what u say about these before I go on.

I guess there could be.a possibility technically nut I have never seen that side.

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

1) The universe, if it existed ad infinitum would not need a God to have been created, therefore, one of the strongest arguments (at least for theism) would be moot. The prime mover argument. Although this is sort of irrelevant to this topic since God's existence isn't really the issue. We're more talking about the nature of God and whether or not morality can really come from God. My position here remains that morality is arbitrary and stems from social contracts.

2) The example I gave with person claiming "x" as true also included the stipulation that you were unable to verify "x" independently. Meaning there is no way to validate "x" outside of the claim made.

Since you answered the Euthyphro dilemma with the 2nd horn, you already conceded to there not being an independent standard by which to measure God. This means that's God's nature is arbitrary at best and unverifiable by necessity. This in turn means you will never be able to eliminate the possibility of a deceitful God (again, this is logic 101). You can therefore never make any truth claims about God's goodness.

As to what would constitute "proof" of God's goodness, it would require an independent standard by which to measure God's commands by. Essentially you would need to prove that murder, stealing, adultery, etc.... are wrong in and of themselves by some standard other than God and therefore you can say that God commands just and good things. Essentially, answering the second horn of the Euthyphro dilemma means you have to accept the possibility of a deceitful God. Answering the Euthyphro dilemma with the first horn means you can rebuke the deceitful God problem, but you make God trivial.....hence the fact that it's a dilemma.

1 year, 1 month ago

very interesting but just like it says in our beliefs God was always here (u scratching ur head yet?ha ha) I honestly can't understand it all which is why faith is there.
yes I would agree it is frustrating and wonderful at the same time.
so exactly what would u like? a guy who has physically seen God? that will be hard to achieve. also it's fine I should have realised that.
OK let's say u trust the guy saying "x" info and it turned out right and he keeps giving u info and again it turns out right would that not be the opposite of deceit?

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

1) by definition I am an atheist. However, I do not claim any knowledge about the existence of God. I simply hold the position that given the evidence, a belief in personal God is unreasonable (I.e I have yet to be presented with sufficient evidence to believe in any personal God). A non-personal God is irrelevant, so I don't really concern myself with that subject.

2) As far as the origins of the universe goes, you may want to keep an open mind about the whole, "it had a beginning thing". The big bang theory comes from mathematical trajectories in relativity. The singularity is unavoidable given these trajectories. However, quantum corrections eliminate the singularity. This would mean an ever existing universe.

http://m.phys.org/news/2015-02-big-quantum-equation-universe.html

I don't really care if you can answer all of my arguments. My aim in making the arguments that I'm making is simply to demonstrate how little knowledge one can have about God, morality, and their nature. That faith is not knowledge of God, but rather believe in the absence of knowledge.

3) I'm sorry to have to point this out to you again, but the source you provided cites Bible verses as a justification for the nature of God and knowledge of that nature..... That's circular reasoning.

If you can't know God's nature by some source outside of his Word (scripture) then you have to acknowledge the fact that you only know God insofar as he tells you. Meaning that you cannot know that he is not a deceitful God, you can only believe.

If you met someone random on the street and they told you, I have knowledge of "x", I'm an honest person, therefore you can trust that "x" is true, however you have no way of verifying the person's honesty or verify the claim of "x" independently, would you say you have knowledge of "x" ?

1 year, 1 month ago

1)these we can agree are good. r u atheist or did I assume too much? if so I apologize.
2) we all know that the universe began somehow. now there's many theories and mine is God. probably the closest thing would be the big bang theory. because it was almost instant. and in my faith God spoke the universe into existence.s o if this theory prove true it offers creditability but not fact that the rest is true. also I won't have all the answers and it seems no one else does so I simply won't be able to answer everything how u would like but I will try.
3)https://bible.org/seriespage/1-evidence-gods-existence
that is Tue but sometimes u won't be able to answer something definitely and u will have to take said leap. I happen to choose God.

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

1) I freely admit my bias; I've not had experience of every religion. I'm perfectly fine admitting that. My bias however is towards critical thinking, logic, and evidence...not atheism
2) anecdotal evidence is not evidence. This is logic 101
3) You cannot prove that God is not a deceiver without independent verification....again logic 101

I never denied that working strictly off of facts is not possible, especially when it comes to philosophy.....which is what this is all about. However, there are rules to logic and reason. Truth claims cannot be made if the supporting arguments do not follow logic and reason.

1 year, 1 month ago

1) not all but a reasonable amount. I doubt even u have been exposed to all. I would say I'm bias because I'm Christian but the same could be said about u since ur atheist.
2)my source is my life.
3)again God will not decieve because it's wrong.so a personal relationship is relevant.
science and God were not what I'm talking about. I was rating that all u deal in is facts and that won't get u far as a scientist. scientist sometimes have to take a leap of faith. for example, Tesla got the idea of the 2-way generator when he was walking with a friend and no one believes it could work but he took a leap of faith to find someone to help him then Alfred brown and Charles peck agreed to finance him which has decided the fate of the 20th century

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

1)again, I doubt you were exposed to every religion to the same degree as Christianity. This creates bias. If you can't acknowledge your own biases then you're not being intellectually honest with yourself. It's not a knock on you as a person to say you have an intrinsic bias towards Christianity, it has very little to do with you as a person. It simply is a reflection of the culture you grew up in.

2) You're using circular reasoning. Using the Bible to prove any aspect of God is a fallacy. Essentially you're saying "God is good because the bible says he is, and the bible is true because God is good and wouldn't lie about his nature, he wouldn't lie about his nature because the bible says he's good, ad infinitum". In order to present a case for the nature of God being good you need a source outside of God's authority to verify. If I were to tell you that the prophet Mohamed was correct in his teachings because the Koran said he was you'd laugh at me. Your reasoning is no different.

3) If it is impossible to not be deceived, then you can be deceived by God. If you can be deceived by God, then a personal relationship cannot verify the nature of God. if a personal relationship cannot verify the nature of God, then a personal relationship with God is irrelevant as it pertains to his nature.

Morality is not something to measure. It's a matter of logical consistency and application. Science may inform our morality, but cannot dictate it. So you're point about science is a non-sequitur for the context of this debate. This is a debate about the metaphysics of morality not science vs God.

1 year, 1 month ago

1)I have been exposed to other religions I just chose Christian.
2)http://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/God,-Goodness-Of. thereby God is good.http://biblehub.com/2_timothy/3-13.htm. thereby making decieving bad. good can't do bad. so God can't deceive. also a personal relationship does mean something. I search for and yes sometimes get it wrong but usually see God's will in my life and I'm better for it.
3) it is impossible to not be deceived in anything so what u have said holds no ground.
some things u will never be able to measure in a lab. someday u are going to run out of things to measure someday u are going to have to get out of ur house of facts and the known so that u can explore the great world outside.

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

1) bias is simply a matter explanation (christian countries will have a bias towards raising their kids christian); exposure is a product of explanation (i highly doubt you've had the same exposure to zen Buddhism or Hinduism as you had to your religion)

2) You cannot make that claim. In order to claim that God is objectively not deceptive, you'd have to prove the nature of God. The only claim you can make is "I don't think my God is deceptive". However, to go beyond that is to be intellectually dishonest. A personal relationship is irrelevant to whether or not a God is deceptive since humans are subject to being deceived and thus a personal relationship means nothing.

3) Again, a personal relationship is only relevant if you are immune to being deceived.

While you may hold the position that God is the source of morality; you cannot defend the position due to the inherent logical contradictions that arise from an unknowable agent.

Social contract theory married with moral nihilism is the only logically consistent position to hold

1 year, 1 month ago

1)I mean that personally. I am not demanding u to believe just to acknowledge that it is what I believe.personal preference is the only one u got right on that.
2)God is not deceptive. also that is why u need a personal relationship.
3)which is again why u need a personal relationship. also God is too complex to entirely know. I never said that what I say comes from His mouth. that would make me the anti-christ.lol

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

@neveralone:
1. You cannot positively claim that the God you chose is the only one for it requires proof that a god exists, and it requires proof that no other God exists. You can only claim that you choose the God you believe based on cultural bias, exposure, and personal preference. That is the only claim you can make if you are intellectually honest

2. A) The bible is not proof of the nature of God. If it was, then by the same logic, every theological text is a description of the nature of God. These are often contradictory description and so can't be relied upon. If the Bible is truly the word of God, it remains impossible to derive the nature of God from it. If God is deceptive, then the Bible may very well be false. You need an independent account of the nature of God to know the nature of God.
B). A personal relationship with God does not negate the possibility of an evil or deceptive God. You need independent accounts to verify the nature of God.
---------This is logic 101.

3. You're relying on the nature of God to make this claim. Since you cannot know the nature of God, this is an intellectually dishonest claim to make and you are relegating yourself to arbitrary morality without obligation to act. It also means that God's goodness is arbitrary. To say that something is good because God commands it is to say that God is good because he follows his own commands. This places God's nature in an even more questionable position.

1 year, 1 month ago

1) I choose the God that I believe in because He is the only one
2)that is why a)He made the Bible through men and b)u require a personal relationship with Him.
3) I would do the 2nd and my God isn't whimsical He is eternal and unchanging. and that is how we have free will

1 year, 1 month ago
TheExistentialist
replied to...

@neveralone
You run into several logical problems by believing morality coming from God.

First you don't know which God is real, therefore you can't know which moral code you should adopt.

The second is that you don't know the nature of God and therefore you cannot know if you should trust the moral code that a given god describes.

The third is the Euthyphro dilemma. Essentially the dilemma arises from the unknowable nature of both God and objective morality. It usually takes on a form like this:
"is what is morally good commanded by God because it is good, or is it commanded by God because it is morally Good". The problem of answering either horn of the dilemma is that it either minimizes God or it minimizes the concept of "good".

If you agree with the first horn: "God commands it because it is good". God is made irrelevant to the nature of morality. It means morality is objectively true and God is simply a messenger. It also means that moral standards exist beyond God, meaning they are knowable without God. Furthermore, it means that God is not sovereign, but is rather subject to independent concepts. It also means that God is not needed to understand morality.

If you agree with the second horn: "It is good because God commands it". You have to accept that morality is arbitrary. A whimsical God may change his mind as to what is good and what is bad and so these concepts become meaningless. "Good" then becomes "that which is commanded" and "Bad" then becomes "that which is forbidden". It also means there is no obligation to act morally as commands do not create obligation; only authority does.

I would argue that morality stems from our social contracts. I would however argue that there is no objective morality. I would further argue that the only obligation we have to act morally are the consequences we can levy against another. So morality is a social construct.

1 year, 1 month ago

it can't be done by man because what's right to u can be wrong for me so I believe that it came from God

1 year, 1 month ago

I think morality is some sort of cultural revolution that started in ancient years of evolution

1 year, 5 months ago

where did that come from!?

1 year, 5 months ago

How can a book written by a human or alien explain morality?.

1 year, 5 months ago

How else would morality come to be? Also, what's your definition of morality?

1 year, 5 months ago

i don't think so

1 year, 6 months ago

I think that if a group has a certain moral behavior, they have more possibilities to survive.

1 year, 6 months ago
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