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Is morality objective or subjective?

Discuss morality and ethics in this message board.
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Belindi
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Belindi » July 4th, 2019, 6:21 am

There is no "mind-brain problem" for those who recognise brain and mind are aspects of the same entity.

Kaz_1983
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Kaz_1983 » July 4th, 2019, 8:26 am

Belindi wrote:
July 4th, 2019, 4:38 am
Kaz_1983 wrote:
July 4th, 2019, 2:01 am
Is the sun rising everyday subjective?
it's subjective . "The sun rising every day" is an example of a form of causation called 'nomic connection'. In the case of the sun rising every day the phenomenon is caused by the movement of Earth round the Sun. The movement of Earth round the Sun is part of larger relativity "General Relativity" which includes natural forces. If there were no humans General Relativity would not exist. Perhaps if there had been no Einstein General Relativity would not have existed.
That makes sense that it would be subjective.

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Felix
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Felix » July 4th, 2019, 11:01 am

Peter Holmes: 'Subjective' means 'based on or influenced by personal feelings, tastes, or opinions'. What has nomic connection - a theory about a causal relationship between the mind (or consciousness) and the brain - got to do with subjectivity?
Name a theory that does not have a subjective basis. Presumably a subject (i.e., an individual) composed the heliocentric theory of the solar system you mentioned earlier, perhaps as the result of a revelation, and then shared his idea with others. When others came to agree with him, when there was general consensus that his subjective opinion was true, it became a fact.

The Geocentric model of the universe, the idea that the sun revolves around the earth rather than vice versa, was a fact for far longer than the current heliocentric model, and the heliocentric model may one day be superceded by some other one, which is just as factual.
Peter Holmes: If instead we recognise that this is a category error - that what we call consciousness or the mind are not such things - the mind-brain problem dissolves.
Woah, simply recognizing the problem as a "category error" puts it to rest?! Think of all the poor misguided neurologists wasting their time looking for the source of consciousness in the brain, when a smidgin of philosophical insight would have solved the problem!
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes » July 4th, 2019, 12:05 pm

1 If a fact is what we say it is, then it isn't a matter of opinion. That the sun revolves around the earth wasn't a fact - a true factual assertion.

2 If, as neurologists are showing, consciousness is produced by the brain, there is no mystery - no strange, non-material thing needing causal explanation.

3 I assume you are Univalence/ Logik / some other dickish persona. So my advice is, as usual, to **** off and bother someone else.

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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes » July 4th, 2019, 12:11 pm

If I misrecognised you, Felix, I apologise. I have history with a troll at another site.

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Sculptor1
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Sculptor1 » July 4th, 2019, 12:19 pm

Peter Holmes wrote:
July 4th, 2019, 12:05 pm
1 If a fact is what we say it is, then it isn't a matter of opinion. That the sun revolves around the earth wasn't a fact - a true factual assertion.

2 If, as neurologists are showing, consciousness is produced by the brain, there is no mystery - no strange, non-material thing needing causal explanation.

3 I assume you are Univalence/ Logik / some other dickish persona. So my advice is, as usual, to **** off and bother someone else.
Actually it was taken as a fact that the sun goes round the earth.
In the same way it was a fact that the body was a receptacle for the soul which animated it.
Copernican turns tend to be big enough to stay turned. And as it would fly against all physics for the earth to be the centre of the universe, so too would we have to overturn vast amounts of patient study, interpretation, and knowledge to take the absurd step to reinstate some kind of dualism - which would answer absolutely nothing.

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Felix
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Felix » July 4th, 2019, 12:22 pm

Nah, I'm much to tall and mild-mannered to be a troll....

My point was that facts too are relative, they change or are even abandoned as our subjective knowledge increases, e.g., the heliocentric theory may in time be superceded by something grander, maybe a solaricentric theory.
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

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Sculptor1
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Sculptor1 » July 4th, 2019, 12:24 pm

Felix wrote:
July 4th, 2019, 11:01 am
Woah, simply recognizing the problem as a "category error" puts it to rest?! Think of all the poor misguided neurologists wasting their time looking for the source of consciousness in the brain, when a smidgin of philosophical insight would have solved the problem!
Actually the root of the problem seems to be that the "MIND" or "SOUL" or "SPIRIT" is seen as a thing in itself. And has been taken as separate.
Rather the "mind" is what the brain does. It is not a thing attached to the brain ,but the activity of the brain like the journey is what a car does. Only separate in a categorical way.

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Felix
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Felix » July 4th, 2019, 12:32 pm

Perhaps the next cosmological theory will be black-hole-centric as astrophysicists have been finding black holes at the center of every galaxy.

"Rather the "mind" is what the brain does."

Or vice versa - but I admit to mystical tendencies.
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

Kaz_1983
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Kaz_1983 » July 31st, 2019, 1:34 am

Belindi wrote:
July 4th, 2019, 6:21 am
Is the fact that every single living organism will look to avoid pain and maximise well-being....

Is it objective or subjective?

Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes » July 31st, 2019, 4:33 pm

Kaz

Sorry if I misunderstand your question - but I think the point is that the fact (living organisms look to avoid pain and maximise well-being) doesn't entail the moral judgement that living organisms should or ought to maximise, etc, or that it's morally right to maximise, etc, other organisms etc.

An 'is' (a fact) can never entail and 'ought' (a moral opinion).

Kaz_1983
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Kaz_1983 » July 31st, 2019, 4:44 pm

Peter Holmes wrote:
July 31st, 2019, 4:33 pm
Kaz

Sorry if I misunderstand your question - but I think the point is that the fact (living organisms look to avoid pain and maximise well-being) doesn't entail the moral judgement that living organisms should or ought to maximise, etc, or that it's morally right to maximise, etc, other organisms etc.

An 'is' (a fact) can never entail and 'ought' (a moral opinion).
Yes your right.. it's scientifically objective tho

Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes » July 31st, 2019, 5:00 pm

Kaz

Trouble is, sometimes some people seek out pain. And what constitutes well-being isn't straightforward anyway. Martyrs glory in a painful death to win eternal well-being in their heaven, for example. Exceptions prove (test) the rule. How about living organisms that sacrifice themselves for their offspring?

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Greta
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Greta » July 31st, 2019, 7:23 pm

Yes Peter, no matter what seemingly objective notion is raised, there are always exceptions. It's easy to enough to "round off" the outliers and declare that majority opinion is objective. That power game has been played for millennia.

For a while I figured that objective good related to growth and entropy. Amusingly, the most derided lines of the old hit song, Macarthur Park, nicely summarises the situation for me:

Someone left the cake out in the rain
And I don't think that I can take it
'Cause it took so long to bake it
And I'll never have that recipe again.

Oh nooooooooooooooooo
:)

We are looking at how difficult it is for something or someone to exist and persist. Who cares about the welfare of building rubble?

It's a matter of uniqueness and replaceability and influence, which is why killing is usually considered an objective wrong ...

no, the killing of a human ...
no, killing a human outside of war ...
no, killing a human outside of war or a siege situation or capital punishment (where there are varying opinions) ...
or killing of someone's pet ...
or another intelligent animal capable of suffering ...
and then there's the debate about whether non-viable foetuses are fully human ...
which raises the question of "what makes us human" ...
but if we say "reason", then we exclude infants, young children and some with severe mental illness or retardation ...
but these days there's too many people anyway ...
and what constitutes "killing"? Understaffing in hospitals leading to worker fatigue and fatal mistakes?

So we humans do what we always do, knowing that absolute precision is impractical, we round off the outliers and act as if they don't exist.

Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes » August 1st, 2019, 7:01 am

Thanks, Greta.

As I've been arguing, I think the expression 'objective wrong' is the mistake, because what we count as right and wrong can only be a matter of opinion, and 'objective' means 'independent of opinion'. But I agree about the danger of claiming moral objectivity.

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