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PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:51 pm 
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Science of Morality, Anyone?

Where, in American culture, is the domain of knowledge that we would identify as morality studied and taught?

I suspect that if we do not quickly develop a science of morality that will make it possible for us to live together on this planet in a more harmonious manner our technology will help us to destroy the species and perhaps the planet soon.

It seems to me that we have given the subject matter of morality primarily over to religion. It also seems to me that if we ask the question ‘why do humans treat one another so terribly?’ we will find the answer in this moral aspect of human culture.

The ‘man of maxims’ “is the popular representative of the minds that are guided in their moral judgment solely by general rules, thinking that these will lead them to justice by a ready-made patent method, without the trouble of exerting patience, discrimination, impartiality—without any care to assure themselves whether they have the insight that comes from a hardly-earned estimate of temptation, or from a life vivid and intense enough to have created a wide fellow-feeling with all that is human.” George Eliot The Mill on the Floss

I agree to the point of saying that we have moral instincts, i.e. we have moral emotions. Without these moral emotions we could not function as social creatures. These moral emotions are an act of evolution. I would ague that the instinct for grooming that we see in monkeys is one example of this moral emotion.

We can no longer leave this important matter in the hands of the Sunday-school. Morality must become a top priority for scientific study.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2009 5:16 am 
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Why does morality have to be determined by either the church, or science?

As a naturally occuring trait, you are born with the ability to learn right from wrong, which is under the direction of the parents. Knowing that churches are more and more immoral, as are world leaders etc., all of whom compromise their morals for personal gain, why do you assume that morals are not evident regardless.

Perhaps it is more that people choose not to follow these instincts, but don't need to be told that they have them, they already know this. That so many choose not to live by moral rules, does not mean they are not capable, or that they aren't fully aware they have this ability.

It is not lost. People who behave in an immoral way, choose to. I can't see how science can have any more effect on morals than the church has had.

Tim

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PostPosted: Thu May 07, 2009 5:27 pm 
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Growing up I was taught things in a certain manner, and was taught that certain people are not to be trusted, certain group are always wrong, stay away from different people or you'll find yourself dead on the street some place.

I was taught to have opinions of different people before I was smart enough to go out into the world on my own and find out things that were totally different from what I was taught.

I learned on my own how to respect every person on this planet, no matter their state.

I am a person who learned to be kind and gentle, and I know that since I did this, every person out there has the ability to learn on their own, and do not need the church or science to do so.

The mind is a very strong intrument that is within your body, and perhaps a little of my kindness may some day rub off on others, but until that person takesthe initiative to become kind and stop the moral wars, we are depending on only ourselves.

I hope this was explained properly, and please excuse the spelling.

Jeff


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PostPosted: Thu May 07, 2009 9:08 pm 
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Well said Jeff.

In particular, the moral wars. What an oxymoron.

Tim

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2009 6:17 am 
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Jeff, ME, too! If I had stayed true to my religious childhood programming, I would not have had the good life I have enjoyed over the 48 years I've been away from it..

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2009 7:30 am 
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Having respect for life regardless of who or what it is...is not something that can be taught in a class room or a church...it is a learned by doing thing...encountering life on its own terms and facing the reality that nature imposes on all life forms.

Nature dictates the conditions and you either respond to the situation or die. Doesn't take a lot of study to figure it out and it certainly doesn't require a PhD to tell you the answer.

A respect for nature is a respect for life...all life is sacred.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 2:09 am 
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Well said David and Tim, morals are not taught in a classroom. Granted anything can be taught in a classroom but certain things need to be lived in order to be learned and some people onlylearn what they think they need to know.
I think the catholic church was in with the powers that be and they made up certain moral codes to get the masses to do what they wanted them to do.
I think we are all born with a sense of right from wrong, good from bad and as we grow many things shape our opinions on things.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 6:34 am 
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I have had many experts tell me young children lack the capacity to know right from wrong and I wonder how they came to this conclusion?

At one time it was believed by many that babies were born blind much like kittens and animals were incapable of emotion not that long ago.

They only learn what they think they need to know....that is some statement Fearless!!!!

But if they don't know what they need to know they aren't going to learn what they need to know...which seems to be the case by observing the conditions existing in the world today.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 7:53 am 
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I believe that less than .001% of children are born without a conscience, which is probably caused by a genetic defect, or some kind of problem that occurs while in their mothers' wombs. But, .001% is probably 70,000 (IF my math is correct - if not, feel free to correct me), and whether it's 70K or 700K, that's a LOT of people who may be suffering from a prenatal defect, and they can wreak HAVOC on the world. Think about it - even 7,000 people, scattered over all the countries of the world, can indoctrinate others who have had terrible life experiences by the time they're12, or 14, or 18, and are malleable... can be molded into doing terrible things while under the influence of someone and somethings.

One of my best friends grew up with, went to school with, one of Charles Manson's women. Suze still, to this day, finds it hard to believe that one of the "best friends" she had all through school, ended up as a Manson Murderer. They both had a good family; they had good friends. They made good grades all through school. Suze thinks it must have been the hard drugs, because Suze cannot fathom anything else that could have turned her friend from a happy, fun-loving, 17-year-long friend, into someone who would kill. So there was a weakness within that girl, although in school and in their social lives, it wasn't apparent, before they graduated.

So, while we want to believe that EVERY child is born perfect in spirit, whatever other deformities they may have, it's not always the case. And then there are those who are not spiritually strong enough to know when a cult or some other religious-based organization, or someone they just simply "admire" is leading them astray, until it's far too late. Clydes and a whole bunch of Bonnies... They walk among us. BEWARE. Not all people are as they seem.

And people like Ted Bundy - intelligent, handsome, well-educated, conniving... can lure even smart girls to their deaths. And the same goes for some women who are just as bad.

But I DO believe that most children are born with an innate sense of what's right and wrong. Abuse during their childhoods can make all the difference. Bullying by classmates can cause good kids to strike back, or commit suicide... especially if they have gender issues.

And, although I hate to say it, our world is getting uglier by the day. Too many people out of work, living under bridges and in cars with their entire families - this takes a toll. And those who have just enough to survive, are unwilling to give anything, these days, because they blame one political party or another. It's everyone for themselves. And that's so sad. America should be better than this. And so should every other country in the world.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:20 am 
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Hi Tweaked, is it ever getting strange or stranger...first it was by the day and now it's by the hour.

I can't imagine living under a bridge, living in the forest is one thing but living under a bridge is something else altogether.

Yes, some people are not what they appear to be..you only have to consider Canada's Col. Russel to realize how invisible many of these dangerous people are until it's too late.

The strange part of all this is that one of them could live right next door and you'd never know unless they got caught, but unfortunately many of them never do get caught...they simply remain invisible to everyone but their intended victims for the entirety of their lives.

And I agree that there are thousands of them and for the most part we have no idea who they are. They make deception an art form and perfect their deceptive skills to the level of a master artist. Appearance is everything to these folks and they work hard at it because their freedom to operate without restriction or suspicion depends on that thin veneer of appearance...the appearance of normal respectability.


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