The March Philosophy Book of the Month is Final Notice by Van Fleisher. Discuss Final Notice now.

The April Philosophy Book of the Month is The Unbound Soul by Richard L. Haight. Discuss The Unbound Soul Now

The May Philosophy Book of the Month is Misreading Judas by Robert Wahler.

Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Use this philosophy forum to discuss and debate general philosophy topics that don't fit into one of the other categories.

This forum is NOT for factual, informational or scientific questions about philosophy (e.g. "What year was Socrates born?"); such homework-help-style questions can be asked and answered on PhiloPedia: The Philosophy Wiki. If your question is not already answered on the appropriate PhiloPedia page, then see How to Request Content on PhiloPedia to see how to ask your informational question using the wiki.
Post Reply
Fooloso4
Moderator
Posts: 3601
Joined: February 28th, 2014, 4:50 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Fooloso4 » April 28th, 2018, 10:35 am

Burke credits Christianity for its role in the refinement of civil manners. I think it did an excellent job of making men obedient and docile. The spiritual and physical methodologies of the the Inquisitions against Jews, Protestants, and Deists, the physical torture in this world and the threat of eternal torture in the next, is a very effective means of imposing order. The Protestant Reformation helped overcome the hierarchical power of the Catholic Church and was a step toward the freedom of the individual, but rather than freeing man it led to novel forms of inescapable spiritual tyranny.

Chivalry created a warrior class that when combined with Christianity produced Christian soldiers willing to do battle against all heretical enemies, including Christians of other sects. The holy war between Catholics and Protestants was not resolved by “Christian love” of “the religion of peace” or “gentle-mannered men”. It was only with the advent of modern philosophy and science, the introduction of the notion of tolerance through the writings of Francis Bacon, the displacement of the Earth as the center of the ordered universe by Copernicus and Galileo, the audacity of Descartes to put the authority of the thinking self above the authority of the Church, and the the natural rights philosophy of Hobbes and Locke that broke the stranglehold of Christianity. Christianity created servants, the Enlightenment freed human beings from this form of slavery which extended to every aspect of their lives, public and private.

Burke’s “natural aristocracy” was nothing more than a defense to conserve the status quo produced and maintained by power politics. Those in power are not superior either by nature or habituation. The best do not naturally rise to the top as long as they are suppressed by those in power. The closest we have gotten to a natural aristocracy in Burke’s time and our own was, in my opinion, with the American founders. They, however, were distrustful of the ideology of rule by a natural aristocracy. They devised a system of checks and balances designed to limits the powers of any group or individual. There are checks and balances not only between governing and legislative bodies but on governing and legislative bodies via the will of the people. History, contrary to Burke’s high flung rhetoric, makes it clear that governance by wise and incorruptible rulers is an exceedingly rare and short-lived occurrence. The people must have a voice if their interests are to be protected.

Dachshund:
In short, unless the West today, comes to understand the absurd folly that the the human rights movement entails and appreciate the urgent need that now exists for it to firmly re-embrace its reverential Christian traditions, I predict that it will simply sink further into the phase of decline that it has already entered; and that it has indeed entered a phase of decline is an undisputed fact.
Substitute Sharia law for “reverential Christian traditions” and perhaps you will hear just how pernicious this idea is. The only difference is that Christianity itself has been been made moderate, civilized, and well behaved by philosophy and science. But its cruelty, hatred, fanaticism, and desire to wage holy wars have not been eliminated. We may agree that we have entered a phase of decline, but those who I would identify as leading culprits you have made clear you would look to as those who in whom we must put our trust if we are to be saved. It is identity politics that fails to identify itself as such. Evangelicalism has been willing to turn its back on what until quite recently it identified as some of its core beliefs in its unflinching support of Trump and autocratic rule. The politically powerful Christian Right is impatient to usher in the apocalypse and so supports Israel with Jerusalem as its capital so that prophesy can be fulfilled.

Belindi
Moderator
Posts: 2445
Joined: September 11th, 2016, 2:11 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Belindi » April 30th, 2018, 11:12 am

Dachsund , the alternative to laws that prefer some individuals over others is equality under the law. There are two problematic issues from preferrence which you may have missed.

One problematic issue from preferential treatment for some individuals is that nobody knows what criteria should be brought to bear upon those choices. What would you have? Intelligence testing? Genetic testing? All criteria are flawed because nobody can define the ideal human.

The other problematic issue from preferential treatment for some individuals is that no individual can be trusted implicitly to make and administer laws. Democracy for all its faults is the best safeguard against elite groups which overleap their usefulness.

Dachshund
Posts: 512
Joined: October 11th, 2017, 5:30 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Dachshund » May 4th, 2018, 2:02 pm

Fooloso4 wrote:
April 28th, 2018, 10:35 am
The Protestant Reformation helped overcome the hierarchical power of the Catholic Church and was a step toward the freedom of the individual, but rather than freeing man it led to novel forms of inescapable spiritual tyranny.
Correct me if I am mistaken but I take it from your comment above that you are a proponent of individualism in ethics ? By this I mean you affirm the so-called "progressive" modern Liberal doctrine of ethical individualism, a doctrine which contends that all value and right reduces to value of, or for, individuals, or to the rights of individuals? If so, I put it to you that individuals abstracted from community are, in fact, nothing more than mere abstractions, and if you believe otherwise you are either a fool or sadly self-deluded.

It was Aristotle, you will recall, who ,in his "Politics" first described man as "Zoon politikon", that is, as a "political animal". Man becomes man Aristotle claimed, by living among others, by living in a society governed by laws and customs; in short, man only develops his potential and only realises his natural end within a SOCIAL CONTEXT. This ancient view of man as a social animal is also a common, fundamental principle that underpins and unites all of the different species of conservative political philosophy. Burke, for instance, repeatedly emphasised that human beings gain their actuality and satisfaction from social identities which confer obligations, standing and fullness of life. Communal obligations, he argued arise from the collectivities to which human beings belong - family, church, corporation, "platoon" and certainly nation and state. The crucial point to note is that these obligations are agent-relative - that is, you have obligations to your family or your nation and I have obligations to mine. So, in order to know what communal obligations you have you need to know who you are in the sense of where and how you belong.

These communal obligations are what Hegel was referring to when he asserted that: "The individual ...finds his liberation in duty". When we start to unpack this notion the first thing we come across is Kant's point about morality and positive freedom, namely, that : you are free when you act from reason and obligations are requirements of reason. It seems to me that you clearly accept the Kantian (Enlightenment) connections between morality, reason and positive freedom when you state:
Fooloso4 wrote:
April 28th, 2018, 10:35 am
It was only with the advent of modern philosophy and science, ... the audacity of Descartes to put the authority of the thinking self above the authority of the Church, and the the natural rights philosophy of Hobbes and Locke that broke the stranglehold of Christianity. Christianity created servants, the Enlightenment freed human beings from this form of slavery which extended to every aspect of their lives, public and private.
But, the essential point to note is that Hegel did not - like Hobbes, Locke, Kant,Rousseau and Co - believe the abstract reason of individuals was capable of delivering duty. For him, - and he was correct -, rationality consisted in understanding and intrinsic/innate appraisal/evaluation of a particular social morality; to achieve freedom was thus to be at home in a community which whose structure of obligations you could rationally be at one. Moreover, it must be kept in mind that those obligations always remained irreducibly communal, and therefore agent-relative. There IS, in sum, no agent-neutral, impartial, universal, ethical standpoint from which they can be derived; and this belief forms a common, core, fundamental principle that unites all conservative political philosophies. Here, for example, is a passage from Burke on liberty as social, not individual:

"Permit me then to continue our conversation and tell you what the freedom is that I love, and that to which I think all men entitled. This is the more necessary because, of all the loose terms in the world, liberty is the most indefinite. It is not solitary, unconnected, individual, selfish liberty, as if every man was to regulate the whole of his conduct by his own will. The liberty I mean is social freedom. It is that state of things in which liberty is secured by the equality of restraint. A constitution of things in which the liberty of no one man, and no body of men , and no number of men, can find means to trespass of the liberty of any person, or any description of persons in the society.This kind of liberty is, indeed, but another name for justice; ascertained by wise laws, and secured by well constructed institutions."


Conservatives are univocal in unequivocally denying that an agent-neutral, impartial, universal, ethical individualism can ever provide any kind of of foundation for ethics. For the political conservative, agent-relative obligations always arise from the value of the collectivities to which the individual belongs; and the crucial point to grasp in this is that their value is both agent-relative and unconditional, irreducible, non-instrumental. That is, the demands placed on me by my membership of a family are agent-relative, yet at the same time they are unconditional ( they do not arise, for example, from any promise on my behalf) and non-instrumental (they do not arise, for example, because if everyone fulfills such duties general well-being will be served).

This combination of agent-relativity and unconditionality cannot in any way be reconciled the kind of ethical individualism that is promoted in the current conceptualization of human rights that is promulgated in legal documents like the UNUDHR, and in the dominant pro-human rights discourse in the West more generally. It is, I put it to you however, a self-evident fact that value is NOT all relative to value for, of, or in a person.Rather, the obvious fact is that there are collectivities - family, church, nation, state - that have innate/intrinsic and non-instrumental value relative to their members; and value for,of, or in a person is necessarily relative to THEM It is nonsensical to deny this.

This deals with one item of muddled thinking in your most recent post on this thread. The other main issue I have with what you have written concerns your offensive hubristic irreverence. What I find particularly deplorable is not so much your intemperate condemnation of of Christianity as a cruel and hateful, etc; religion ( for that is "merely" a consequence of your personal ignorance of the particular subject matter) but rather, the essential nature of the diseased thinking that underpins such an outrageous and dastardly attack.Briefly, it is important, I feel, to expose the utterly false and demonstrably dangerous and destructive philosophical notions that are the root spur of your vicious anti-Christian ressentiment, and I will do so in my my next post on this thread. This post is already too long.

Regards

Dachshund

Fooloso4
Moderator
Posts: 3601
Joined: February 28th, 2014, 4:50 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Fooloso4 » May 4th, 2018, 3:45 pm

Dachshund:
Correct me if I am mistaken but I take it from your comment above that you are a proponent of individualism in ethics ?
You are mistaken, but I see that has not prevented you from arguing extensively against something I did not say.
It was Aristotle, you will recall, who ,in his "Politics" first described man as "Zoon politikon", that is, as a "political animal".
It was me, you will recall, who,on page 2 said:
Man is by nature a social animal that from a very early age displays care and empathy.
It seems to me that you clearly accept the Kantian (Enlightenment) connections between morality, reason and positive freedom when you state:
I do not accept the Kantian connection between morality, reason and positive freedom. Freedom from the domination of Christianity does not mean the acceptance of Kant’s or other Enlightenment views on morality, reason, and freedom.

But, the essential point to note is that Hegel did not - like Hobbes, Locke, Kant,Rousseau and Co - believe the abstract reason of individuals was capable of delivering duty. For him, - and he was correct -, rationality consisted in understanding and intrinsic/innate appraisal/evaluation of a particular social morality; to achieve freedom was thus to be at home in a community which whose structure of obligations you could rationally be at one.

Rather than simpy tell you that you are wrong, see the following. It is long but it addresses your misconceptions and also helps to see how for Hegel was from Burke:
In the Introduction to this work [Philosophy of Right] Hegel explains the concept of his philosophical undertaking along with the specific key concepts of will, freedom, and right. At the very beginning, Hegel states that the Idea of right, the concept together with its actualization, is the proper subject of the philosophical science of right (¶ 1). Hegel is emphatic that the study is scientific in that it deals in a systematic way with something essentially rational. He further remarks that the basis of scientific procedure in a philosophy of right is explicated in philosophical logic and presupposed by the former (¶ 2). Furthermore, Hegel is at pains to distinguish the historical or legal approach to "positive law" (Gesetz) and the philosophical approach to the Idea of right (Recht), the former involving mere description and compilation of laws as legal facts while the latter probes into the inner meaning and necessary determinations of law or right. For Hegel the justification of something, the finding of its inherent rationality, is not a matter of seeking its origins or longstanding features but rather of studying it conceptually.

However, there is one sense in which the origin of right is relevant to philosophical science and this is the free will. The free will is the basis and origin of right in the sense that mind or spirit (Geist) generally objectifies itself in a system of right (human social and political institutions) that gives expression to freedom, which Hegel says is both the substance and goal of right (¶ 4). This ethical life in the state consists in the unity of the universal and the subjective will. The universal will is contained in the Idea of freedom as its essence, but when considered apart from the subjective will can be thought of only abstractly or indeterminately. Considered apart from the subjective or particular will, the universal will is "the element of pure indeterminacy or that pure reflection of the ego into itself which involves the dissipation of every restriction and every content either immediately presented by nature, by needs, desires, and impulses, or given and determined by any means whatever" (¶ 5). In other words, the universal will is that moment in the Idea of freedom where willing is thought of as state of absolutely unrestrained volition, unfettered by any particular circumstances or limitations whatsoever–the pure form of willing. This is expressed in the modern libertarian view of completely uncoerced choice, the absence of restraint (or "negative liberty" as understood by Thomas Hobbes). The subjective will, on the other hand, is the principle of activity and realization that involves "differentiation, determination, and positing of a determinacy as a content and object" (¶ 6). This means that the will is not merely unrestrained in acting but that it actually can give expression to the doing or accomplishing of certain things, e.g., through talent or expertise (sometimes called "positive freedom"). The unity of both the moments of abstract universality (the will in-itself) and subjectivity or particularity (the will for-itself) is the concrete universal or true individuality (the will in-and-for-itself). According to Hegel, preservation of the distinction of these two moments in the unity (identity-in-difference) between universal and particular will is what produces rational self-determination of an ego, as well as the self-consciousness of the state as a whole. Hegel's conception of freedom as self-determination is just this unity in difference of the universal and subjective will, be it in the willing by individual persons or in the expressions of will by groups of individuals or collectivities. The "negative self-relation" of this freedom involves the subordination of the natural instincts, impulses, and desires to conscious reflection and to goals and purposes that are consciously chosen and that require commitment to rational principles in order to properly guide action. (https://www.iep.utm.edu/hegelsoc/)
Dachshund:
What I find particularly deplorable is not so much your intemperate condemnation of of Christianity as a cruel and hateful, etc; religion ( for that is "merely" a consequence of your personal ignorance of the particular subject matter) but rather, the essential nature of the diseased thinking that underpins such an outrageous and dastardly attack.
How about addressing the specifics of what I said. Do you deny the Inquisitions? The threats of eternal damnation? The opposition of the Reformation to the hierarchy of the Church? That Chivalry was based on a warrior class or knighthood? That there were holy wars between Catholics and Protestants? That Galileo was imprisoned and his work destroyed? That Bacon and Descartes had to be solicitous and cautious in opposing the Church in order not to suffer the fate of Galileo? That the New Testament contains the notion of servants and slaves of God?

User avatar
JamesOfSeattle
Posts: 509
Joined: October 16th, 2015, 11:20 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by JamesOfSeattle » May 4th, 2018, 4:07 pm

Quick question for Dachsund. You talk about obligations of agents with respect to specific societal roles. Thus “family, church, corporation, ‘platoon’ and certainly nation and state”. But why do you stop there? Why not take it up one more to species? Human rights would then simply be those obligations which apply at that level.

*

Belindi
Moderator
Posts: 2445
Joined: September 11th, 2016, 2:11 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Belindi » May 5th, 2018, 5:22 am

Fooloso4 quoted:
Considered apart from the subjective or particular will, the universal will is "the element of pure indeterminacy or that pure reflection of the ego into itself which involves the dissipation of every restriction and every content either immediately presented by nature, by needs, desires, and impulses, or given and determined by any means whatever" (¶ 5). In other words, the universal will is that moment in the Idea of freedom where willing is thought of as state of absolutely unrestrained volition, unfettered by any particular circumstances or limitations whatsoever–the pure form of willing. This is expressed in the modern libertarian view of completely uncoerced choice, the absence of restraint (or "negative liberty" as understood by Thomas Hobbes).

This may be the case, however it's not much use to those of us who want and worship as great a degree of equality as fits with " unrestrained volition, unfettered by any particular circumstances or limitations whatsoever–the pure form of willing". The Rational Continental is fine when it remains a servant of social reality.

Christians harboured, through all its evils, the core ethic of the Golden Rule. It may be objected that Islam and any of the world religions did so. However the historical fact is that Christianity with all its nastiness did so in large areas of the world. The social control and the divisiveness of Christianity is no better and no worse than those of other important religions.

It's a mistake to dismiss Christianity entirely for two reasons. One is that Christianity can be divested of the element of conservative and Conservative humility. The second reason is that Christianity throughout its history has accommodated the needs of the elites and can do so now that the elite is so much more representative of the common people. The positive reason to keep Christianity in situ is that the UN too need myths and rituals.

User avatar
SimpleGuy
Posts: 338
Joined: September 11th, 2017, 12:28 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by SimpleGuy » May 5th, 2018, 12:55 pm

Dachshund wrote:
April 27th, 2018, 4:22 pm
Dear Foolosoph4,
This being the case, it follows, Burke concludes, that politicalequality is, in a sense, unnatural, while aristocracy, on the other hand , is, in a sense natural. (And) just as it is a fact of nature that the majority of men are ill-qualified for the exercise of political power, so it is written in the eternal constitution of things that only a few men , from various causes: mental, spiritual and physical, are suited for social leadership. These few men - the aristocracy - are in part, Burke says, "the wiser, the more expert and the more opulent" and they are to conduct, enlighten and protect "the weaker, the less knowing and the less provided with the goods of fortune." He stresses that it is primarily nature ,and not the accident of birth, that has made these men aristocrats; - and that it is, furthermore, wise and just and in accord with the real law of nature that such men should exercise a social influence much superior to that of the average citizen. Moreover, the ascendency of this aristocratic class was truly natural because domination of society by mediocrity is contrary to nature as Providence has clearly revealed human nature to us throughout history.


No; not in the sense that for Burke, the foundation of that "true natural aristocracy", which, as he said in 1791, " formed an essential integrant part of any large body rightly constituted" was the gentleman[/b] - the man of gentle manners. Burke's conception of the gentleman was a blending of the humanistic and social ideals of Aristotle's Ethics with the courtly traditions of chivalry, Castiglione and Elyot, and he saw the gentleman - as natural aristocrat - to be the conserving force of civilization. This natural aristocracy of gentle -mannered men was, moreover, not an ephemeral phenomenon of , as you put it, an "exceedingly rare and short-lived occurrence", but rather one enduring across "all ages". And Burke emphasises in "Reflections on the Revolution in France" just how much European civilization, throughout its history, has owed to the good manners inculcated by Christian chivalry:

"It was this (chivalry) which, without confounding ranks, had produced a noble equality...which mitigated kings into companions, and raised private men to be fellows with kings. Without force or opposition, it subdued the fierceness of pride and power; it obliged sovereigns to submit to the soft collar of social esteem, compelled stern authority to submit to elegance, and gave a dominating vanquisher of laws to be subdued by manners. ... Nothing is more certain than that our manners, our civilization, and all the good things, which are connected with manners and with civilization, have, in this European world of ours, depended for ages upon two principles; and were indeed the result of both combined; I mean the spirit of a gentleman and the spirit of (the Christian) religion."

History records how for centuries in the strongly localised autonomies of medieval life, chivalric manners worked wonders in transforming tyrants into gentlemen who submitted their arbitrary wills to Christian moral manners and laws. There is no need at all here to re-trace the progress of the Christian religion and chivalry upon the social life of Europe. But there is no doubt that Burke conceived the social function of the Church - which was the refinement of civil manners - to be the same in all ages. In all of his defenses of the Church against the French Jacobins and the English Nonconformists, nothing is so evident that Burke's conviction that Christianity and "the ancient chivalry" has established "a system of manners ...which softened, blended and harmonised" the entire character of modern Europe.

Despite all of this, the contemporary West, is currently well advanced in the process of recklessly and precipitously repudiating its Christian traditions; the dominant ideology of so-called "progressive" liberalism is presumptuously substituting in their place a misguided and decadent, atheistic moral and social egalitarianism in the form of what has now acquired the status of a quasi-religion in the false doctrine of universal, equal , individual human rights. These "rights" -set out in legal documents like the UNUDHR - are, as Jeremy Bentham correctly observed, utter "nonsense on stilts". And while they are absolutely impossible to justify, there is, tragically, no doubt that the liberal human rights juggernaut is nonetheless proceeding apace to decivilize and disintegrate modern-day Western society in the nation states of the European Union (including the UK), the United States and other major Western societies like Australia and Canada. In short, unless the West today, comes to understand the absurd folly that the the human rights movement entails and appreciate the urgent need that now exists for it to firmly re-embrace its reverential Christian traditions, I predict that it will simply sink further into the phase of decline that it has already entered; and that it has indeed entered a phase of decline is an undisputed fact.

Regards

Dachshund

It's not about a possible ranking or evaluation in society , it is simply that there is no utility justifying this act state of
corruption that you simply claim to be natural. In natrue symbiotical as well as altruistic processes do happen as well nothing is purely restricted to egoism and hierarchical thinking. This would be a prevention of social cooperation a very important behavioural scientific terminology in biology. You simply reduce terms to independent actions, where no independency is possible. Modern day interdependent actions, do imply with social media , that these terms become more and more important and habermas theory of information and it's role in a social society becomes predominant as a viewport.

Belindi
Moderator
Posts: 2445
Joined: September 11th, 2016, 2:11 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Belindi » May 5th, 2018, 6:03 pm

Dachsund quoted Burke:

"It was this (chivalry) which, without confounding ranks, had produced a noble equality...which mitigated kings into companions, and raised private men to be fellows with kings. Without force or opposition, it subdued the fierceness of pride and power; it obliged sovereigns to submit to the soft collar of social esteem, compelled stern authority to submit to elegance, and gave a dominating vanquisher of laws to be subdued by manners. ... Nothing is more certain than that our manners, our civilization, and all the good things, which are connected with manners and with civilization, have, in this European world of ours, depended for ages upon two principles; and were indeed the result of both combined; I mean the spirit of a gentleman and the spirit of (the Christian) religion."


Social mobility allows low- born men to take up chivalric duties. Chivalric duties are by definition the preserve of the strong . True, there will be a power elite in any society however chivalry is possible for everyone. Have you not seen how some poor man with few worldly advantages can be as strong as a powerful man? I have.

Dachshund
Posts: 512
Joined: October 11th, 2017, 5:30 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Dachshund » May 6th, 2018, 1:23 am

Belindi wrote:
May 5th, 2018, 6:03 pm
Social mobility allows low- born men to take up chivalric duties. Chivalric duties are by definition the preserve of the strong . True, there will be a power elite in any society however chivalry is possible for everyone. Have you not seen how some poor man with few worldly advantages can be as strong as a powerful man? I have.
*What do you mean by "strong" ? Do you mean simply physically strong ; or do you mean morally strong ( i.e. possessed of a decisive/staunch/stoic, etc; temperament; or do you mean both?

*Of course I have seen poor/humble men who are physically strong, many of them. I have also met poor/humble men who possess great moral strength and/or great spiritual strength. ( NB: Graham Greene's famous novel, "The Power and the Glory",tells the story of a man who is poor and utterly humble; who is morally and physically weak and sickened; yet whom we ultimately come to understand possesses (to our surprise), the most remarkable and sublime strength of spirit. I tell everyone to read this little book. It provides an profoundly touching insight into the human condition/human nature that is also very inspiring/edifying; it is, in short, a work of transcendent, eternal, immortal beauty).

*What makes a man a "powerful" man in your view ? Are you referring to political power? Or are you referring to the kind of power that is , for instance, conferred by acquiring great wealth. Trump, for example was a very powerful /influential man before he achieved great political power in 2017 by being elected President of the US.

Finally, re chivalry, ... there is something a lot people tend, (I think), to overlook when they reflect on the likely nature of medieval Knighthood and its chivalric code, especially when they try to imagine ( given the knowledge of the topic they have) - what the , say, 12th or 13th century Knight of Western Christendom was actually like as a person. What they forget to factor into the mental images of the Knight they create and the manner in which he personally comported himself, is that he was very much a bone fide soldier - a Christian soldier ,true, but nonetheless, to put it bluntly, a trained, professional killer in age where the business of killing enemies on the battlefield (in hand-to-hand combat) was a very ugly and bloodthirsty business indeed. Given this, I believe that the authentic medieval Knight was definately not a man to be" trifled with". For of the courtly love he may have lavished on his "Lady Faire", for all of the much -vaunted nobility, gentility and refined civility of his manners, etc; for all of the( metaphorical) "fire-breathing dragons" that he may have slain, or "damsels in distress" he may have rescued , for me, one thing is sure and certain and that is that he -the chivalrous Knight of yore - also possessed a very substantial capacity for utter brutality ,and with it, a chilling potential for the perpetration of ruthless, cold-hearted murder. He was, as the kids in the West today say in their slang, very much a "hard-core dude" (definately not someone to f**k with) :(


Regards

John

Belindi
Moderator
Posts: 2445
Joined: September 11th, 2016, 2:11 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Belindi » May 6th, 2018, 3:43 am

Dachsund, by strong I mean strength of character , courage, duty, kindness, putting self aside to help someone else that's to say gallantry. What I wrote simply and clearly states that I refer to moral not physical strength as in "his heart is pure and so he has the strength of ten ". The true knight of myth is not the same as the knight of history, did you really not know that? Today, women too may be gallant, and children are taught to be kind to each other.
A greedy, lying or self centred act is never gallant. Democracy exists so that the ruling elite may be accused of greed or lies and removed from office. Conservatism (capital C) exists to maintain privilege.

Londoner
Posts: 1783
Joined: March 8th, 2013, 12:46 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Londoner » May 6th, 2018, 6:17 am

It is quite hard to understand the mind of a medieval knight. Of course, judged by their actions, some were simply cynical thugs. I think nearly everyone assumed that violence was simply the way of the world, so one had to have a fighting class. On the other hand, they were aware that this was not how Jesus had told us we should live our lives. So you got the combination of famous and successful warriors also being aware that one day they would have to answer to God for all the men they killed. This also made then open to ideas like 'The Truce of God' which tried to restrict and regulate the conduct of war. But this can be disguised by other aspects of medieval thinking, like draconian punishments for crimes, so that what interpret as brutality they might have seen the delivery of justice.

Dachshund
Posts: 512
Joined: October 11th, 2017, 5:30 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Dachshund » May 8th, 2018, 11:27 am

Belindi wrote:
May 6th, 2018, 3:43 am
Conservatism (capital C) exists to maintain privilege.
Yes, that's right, Belinda. But there is a lot more to it than you might think. Let me use the example of the tremendous legal and other privileges that are still enjoyed by the inherited Crown (the Queen and the members of the Royal family) in Britain in 2018.

Every bone fide Conservative politician in Britain today is a staunch defender of the monarchy and of the legitimate right that the reigning monarch and other members of the royal family have to freely enjoy the privileges that they are currently afforded.

So, what, you may ask, justifies and legitimises the concrete right that Conservatives claim the British Royals possess to freely enjoy the substantial privileges that they are accorded?

In order to properly comprehend this, you will need to understand that this right is not what the father of Conservatism in the modern era - Edmund Burke - would call a natural right, but rather, it is a conventional right , and the freedoms that are defined and sanctioned in conventional rights are, in turn, grounded in the fundamental Conservative principle of "prescription."

Put briefly, the principle of "prescription" entails a presumption in favour of long-standing institutions and customs. When Burke argues that the traditional authority and privileges of an inherited British Crown are prescriptive, he means they reside solely in the fact that they have existed time out of mind. The institution of an hereditary monarchy in Britain's constitution was, that is, one which had emerged slowly over the centuries as a result of countless, small, prudential judgements; given this, it therefore embodied an acquired wisdom that was superior to any alternative rational plan that might be conceived by the design of one, or even by the design of a single generation. Thus, the principle of prescription justifies a legitimate , natural and dutiful reverence for the ancient institution of the hereditary British Crown, simply because it has endured for the length of time that it has and always rendered sound, satisfactory service to the State through the ages.

In his defense of the British tradition of aristocratic privilege and liberty more generally, it is hard to argue, IMO, with the historical survey Burke offers in support of his position...

"You will observe , that, from Magne Charta to the Declaration of Right, it has been the uniform policy of our Constitution to claim and assert our liberties as an entailed inheritance delivered to us from our forefathers, and to be transmitted to our posterity, - as an estate specially belong to the people of this kingdom, without any reference whatever to any other more general or prior right. By this means our Constitution preserves an unity in so great a diversity of its parts. We have an inheritable Crown, an inheritable peerage, and a House of Commons and a people inheriting privileges, franchises and liberties from a long line of ancestors."

Sounds like a very strong and compelling argument to me, Belinda. What do you think ?

Regards

Dachshund

Dachshund
Posts: 512
Joined: October 11th, 2017, 5:30 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Dachshund » May 8th, 2018, 1:05 pm

The traditional "Gentleman" as he ( NOT she, Belinda) was characterised in his native habitat, i.e. civilised, Conservative English society, was indeed a noble and gallant specimen, but these Gentlemen are now an extinct species, Belinda. They were all murdered ( their throats cut) by the mindless blade of rampant gender feminism. The scourge of gender feminism was, (and still is), a diabolical intellectual descendant - a twisted and perverse , unnatural "Frankenstein monster" - created and unleashed by the high priests of Western philosophical liberalism in the modern era and then worshipped by their legion brain-washed disciples; i.e. people like you Belinda. So don't talk to me about your respect for the mythical romantic conception of chivalry.

All I have to say to you is: "Thanks a lot !" Thanks for making the West an: uglier; more skeptical and cynical:more confused,distraught and despairing; more unhappy, more profane, vulgar and irreverent, more disenchanted place.

Dachshund

Eduk
Posts: 2466
Joined: December 8th, 2016, 7:08 am
Favorite Philosopher: Socrates

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Eduk » May 8th, 2018, 2:06 pm

The Royal family are excellent advertising for England.
Most people when exiting a crowded room through double doors will use whichever door the person in front of them is using and not trouble the second door. This causes unnecessary delay to themselves and others. Personally I don't understand why so few people seem to have the ability to make an attempt at the other door thus doubling the capacity of the doorway, which I assume is the point of double doors in the first place. In my opinion most people are deeply conservative, whether consciously or not.
Unknown means unknown.

User avatar
Greta
Site Admin
Posts: 8066
Joined: December 16th, 2013, 9:05 pm

Re: Human Rights- A Challenge for the Forum

Post by Greta » May 8th, 2018, 8:53 pm

Dachshund wrote:
May 8th, 2018, 11:27 am
Sounds like a very strong and compelling argument to me, Belinda. What do you think ?
It's a very interesting argument, but one that is based on the false assumption that nature does not change or impact on human circumstances. It is the mindset that can only emerge at a time of great climatic stability, which of course has famously allowed humanity to flourish to the extent that it has.

This is perhaps why conservatism has failed to deal with the most basic and entrenched of "accumulated wisdom" - the wilds - which they are continually destroying, often not for the sake of wisdom, but simply profit. It's ironic. Environmentalism should ideally be the very most fundamental interest of conservatives seeking to avoid overlaying the organic balance of accumulated wisdom with brash and shallow modernity.

Post Reply