I'm Greek so I'll go with them! :-)
Finally! @nellyj you're new, right?
@lynnihendrix he's asking all the right questions, dude knows what he's doing. But yea his profile shows this is his 1st
@nellyj But what about people who do not believe in God but have strong moral values regardless?
@caratara Why do you call them strong moral values? Sounds as if you are making a claim of absolute Truth and morality.
@nellyj you are equating objective truth and morality with absolute truth and morality, and those things are different for me. By strong moral values I am referring to your debate statement and not "absolute truth". People can be objectively moral without the existence of a God
@caratara my point wasn't that you can't be moral without believing in God but that morality doesn't exist without God. It was that the mere idea of objective morals require an outside, transcendent being to set down moral laws, a Moral Law Giver. Morality is prescriptive and thus requires a prescribed. Ravi Zacharias puts it this wayEvil => Good => Moral Law => Transcendent Moral Law Giver .
@nellyj so I'm not religious, my parents are not religious.. but I still have strong moral values, how do you explain this?
@caratara again, I am absolutely not saying irreligious people can't be moral but where do you get that idea or definition of morality you claim to live by? What is the source and who decides what is "moral"?
Truth, Morality, Right and Wrong can also be defined based on the society that you live in, the local laws etc not necessarily by God, right?
@andersonisawriter THe argument was that if Absolute morality exists there must be an outside prescriber. Society can't make up its won right and wrong because it could then never make judgements on other societies. Suppose R&W were up to society. Then Hitler was Right because it was right to his society and it was written in the laws.
@nellyj I'm not outright disagreeing with you here, just trying to get a better understanding. I would argue that while one society may not be able to come up with a system for moral right and wrong, the collective intelligence of all societies can produce an objective system. Checks and balances
@andersonisawriter few issues. 1- what is collective intelligence? Who defines it and how do we prove its true or works? The basis of perfect reason without a transcendent being, this another topic, would need to be first established before we can say it could ever develope a basis of Truth2- it wouldn't be objective or truly absolute. It would be based on the subjective desires of certain people in those societies and would be a simple majority rules and they could then violate actual truths of Right and Wrong. Example: the Soviet Union came up with rules and R&W for a large section of the world. Had they taken over the entire world murderous communism would have become the new 3- it would never let4- this is the basic idea of Nietzsche's Ubermach
@nellyj Fair enough but even the acceptance of a common higher power/ God needs to be collectively agreed. So I think that objectivity comes from the common collective understanding of a group of people mainly. This could be due to the belief on a common God or just social norms that they agree
@andersonisawriter Well not necessarily. It needn't be commonly accepted nor collectively agreed upon. A transcendent being would devote the moral laws and install them, using a common tech term, in the people's hearts and minds. This I believe is evident in the universality of certain moral laws on murder, theft and certain behaviors
That was Great Fun. Thanks, Julian, for the debate and to all who watched.
Question for all the "Con" People:I would still like to know the argument for the existence of morality without a higher power. Julian never defended this at all as, despite his action in taking the debate proving he did believe in Absolute Truth, he claimed he didn't believe in it and made no argument against the claim So I would like to know how anybody believes that he "won" this debate?
@julian_cennamo that was NOT a knock on you. I was hoping for something from the 48%.
@julian_cennamo you didn't say that I had to "prove" it but I shouldn't anyways. It's a preponderance of the evidence. If neither show a case it would be a draw.
@nellyj I said that my bias would be against absolute truth and morals, but I'm hearing some good arguments here that they do exist, one of which I later use. So I admit to my fallibility and willinglyness to change my opinion. You do not. Coupled with refusing to admit the statements flaws of not naming or defenning a diety, or deities or how they create these things there was no productive conversation that could come about.The old book that is falling apart behind me in the video is Neitzche. Like Makeveli he is saying the ends justify the means. You might checkout fallacy files online and see how logicians chart and define informal fallacies. And the rules of fair debate of course.
@nellyj I think this debate was hard to assess because the debate itself seemed very different from the debate statement you put forward. I voted as a tie so I don't really have a side here but maybe that caused some confusion
@nellyj I think you both did a good job but I didn't find your argument clear and like @andersonisawriter said, the debate itself was different from the statement which got confusing. Also, you equate objective truth with objective morality and I do not think these things are equal. I just got confused...
@erica_binz55 thanks for the feedback. The debate was on the idea that a higher power is required for these things to exist not that they exist. I pointed out the fact that he showed up proves he believes In Absolute Truth even as he denied it. By merely showing up he claimed I was wrong then said he didn't believe wrong existed and later said 1+1=2, another absolute Truth claim. But the main point is he continually avoided the topic and tried to argue something not in the question. I took great issue with this as he never even addressed it in any way but misused the term fallacy continually.
@andersonisawriter thanks. that was the same problem I had. He refused to ever address the issue, which I assumed he would and so addressed that in my opening statement, he wanted me to prove God's existence (not the debate issue), "how he made these morals"(not the issue) and which God (specifically not the issue).
@nellyj how am I misusing the term fallacy? I actually try to avoid post debate comments and leave it on the field unless there is misrepresentation BTW.
It was an argument for the basis of absolute Truth not if it exists or what god/God or .... made it and how. That's far to detailed and impossible to debate as it's a series of debates that couldn't reasonably happen with a single person at once. I again point out that if absolute Truth doesn't exist than you have no platform to call me wrong or even yourself right as that in and of itself would be a claim that absolute Truth exists thus contradicting your statement. So Of course it exists and is assumed in every action and statement made and you coming on proves that you do believe it exists, at least in practice. For me to to say perhaps it doesn't would be a self contradictory statement and the Law of Non contradiction says it's impossible. Basic logic says I cannot reject that it exists. Read the Nietzsche's The Mad Man and some analysis on that. Its a truly brilliant piece of philosophy.
@nellyj again, the burden of evidence was/is on you. You tried to ignore the fallibility of your argument by not acknowledging those things, and in fact tried to fast track that position by quickly moving on to something else, which was not part of the debate title, to create an unfair playing field. I didnt need to take an affirmative position on absolute truth because you had the burden of proof. In fact, it's more fair that way because I am seeking truth through debate. Please read the rules of fair debate.
I cannot discern what point nellj was trying to make. The comments about beauty and subjectivity made me think of the end of the famous Twilight Zone episode "Eye of the Beholder." The TV in the background talks about a single morality, norm, and virtue."Nellyj's point may be that there are certain behaviors such as theft or murder that we can generally agree are wrong. But if so, the point needs more to connect it to the thought that a higher power must define what is right and wrong. Individuals might recognize these behaviors as wrong simply because broader society defines them as wrong. Organized societies may view them as wrong because they allow for stability. You get to reap what you sow; you don't have to worry about someone taking it from you.Most people across societies would likely would agree theft and murder or wrong. Julian correctly points out that the line is not so black and white. We would generally agree people have a right to self defense. We would probably also agree that a starving man may have some right to steal bread from someone that has too much bread.Hindus once practiced "Sati." The widower would burn herself on her husband's funeral pyre. The British tried to do away with the practice they colonized the country. The custom shows the objectiveness of morality. It is also often credited for demonstrating that there might be some higher truth. The argument being that the British did a good thing.
@jc173799 do you want to debate this as well?
@nellyj don't have time.
@jc173799 if you like the subject I suggest you listen in the car (or twin) to my same debate vs Ben in this topic. @jc173799 if evil exists, and everybody believes it does in practice if. It in theory, then it's complement, good, must exist. But if good exists, implying a universal and objective truth, then this means universal moral laws must exist but universal moral laws are prescriptive and therefore require a Universal Moral Law Giver. Universal moral laws are ideas that exist in all places and at all times in the hearts of Men whether suppressed or not, around the world such as the torture of small children or, something that really makes no sense outside of a Creator being making Mankind special, that Man shall not eat Man like he eats other animals as it's abhorrent to to us even when given the options of cannibalize or starve, The assumption of the topic was that Truth Does exist and this is proven by the mere fact that anybody takes up the debate. My opponent in the beginning says he doesn't believe in Truth Yet not only did he acknowledge it's existence by challenging my proposal but in another debate he says that 'The purpose of a debate is a search for Truth' and if Truth doesn't exist than there is little more wasteful than debating issues with no truth to be found. If 'Truth' is determined by societies preferences at a specific time than not only can they not condemn the Nazis like virtually everybody does but they can't condemn slavery either. Little more important than ethics and morals and education does not answer this problem. Education without ethics and morals - Ravi says educate a RR Rail thief he'll steal the whole RR
@nellyj You seem like a decent guy that has been researching this subject, and you have the guts to test your ideas against others.The topic of the debate is that absolute truth would have to come from higher being. You might start the debate with the assumption that absolute truth exists. You can say your opponent is wrong, but that doesn't necessarily make you right.I personally do not have a viewpoint on if all truth is subjective or objective. I would not rule out that there could be an absolute truth, but at the same time, I believe that most things are relative. Recognizing a subset of fundamental human rights does not mean that society cannot except a plurality of thoughts and beliefs. Freedom of speech and religion are widely recognized themselves as fundamental rights.You are delineating better here your argument, but I still think its weak (I mean that in the nicest way possible).The talk of an absolute good makes me think of the form of the good in Plato's Republic. Plato was reaching a truth through dialogue, not some higher being. In talking about slavery or genocide being wrong, I'm reminded as well of Rousseau. Rousseau pointed out that human beings, unlike animals, have the power to show empathy for each other. It's from this ability that we can draw that slavery, murder, and theft are wrong. These are not ways that we would want to be treated.
@joe630 The debate assumes its existence as does the behavior and actions of every single person. But for the purpose of hte debate it was very straight forward regarding the source of Truth not if it exists or not. That would have to be a separate debateThe statement "there are no absolutes" is obviously a self refuting one as it itself is a statement about an absolute. So its rather clear that absolutes exist and absolute Truths exist- that is things that are true in all places and at all times. Individuals are free to think and believe as they wish but as soon as they start telling others how they "ought to" behave or believe they are making truth claims as to the "best method" of belief/behavior. Even your own points on slavery are Truth claims. Why should I not have a slave? Nietzsche said without the idea of God Truth is dead and Power rules so if I'm able to enslave somebody, whether I would want to be enslaved is immaterial to the facts, why not? Simply because you don't like it doesn't mean its "wrong" in a context where objective Right and Wrong don't exist. I of course wouldn't want to be enslaved but thats why I would then build up my wealth and army to enslave others.
@jacksonk Thanks, @jacksonk