Absolute Morality

Another thing that grinds my gears happened again: Again a Christian claimed that without god there could not be any true morality. Sorry, but as much as I wish everyone to be happy with their choice of religion, I really can’t stand that nonsense. Warning: Some strong words follow that could shock Christians. You have been warned.

First of all: GOD IS NOT GOOD. Let’s accept for a moment that the the laws of the Old Testament are no longer binding for Christians, that Jesus was a real hippie-pacifist and told a message of pure, unconditional love for everyone and everything, which is, what most liberal Christians claim these days (or course, other, not so liberal Christians claim other things, but let’s ignore them as most people do anyway). Ok, so, Jesus was a nice guy and Christianity is really lovely. But… GOD IS STILL A MONSTER. Because nothing of this means that the Old Testament is not true – not longer valid law, ok, but still true. This means, all the atrocities god committed must be accepted as having really happened. It started when this God, after creating Adam and Eve, with all their flaws, not to forget their whole environment, education, etc. essentially lead them to this tree from which he knew that they would eat, just the punish them for how HE himself had made them. Honestly, who does something like that? Imagine someone getting a puppy, training it to become addicted to chocolate and then punishing it for eating the chocolate on the table. Would you say that the dog was punished because it was a bad dog? No, of course not, the bad person would be the owner, because it would be completely his fault. But of course god doesn’t punish only Adam and Eve, no, he punishes everyone until eternity – most of them to eternal torture. Wow. And it doesn’t end there. You have to think really hard to find a monstrosity „God“ did not commit. Every bad thing men could think of pales before the horrible things god did – according to his holy book. Don’t forget, according to Jesus – not quite the hippie-pacifist Christian want us to see him as – himself told us, that at this very moment, people are being tortured in hell, in some cases for things we wouldn’t even send someone to prison for. Not even Jesus is good, sorry. He’s only good if you’re on his side, otherwise…

Ok, after I got this out of my system, let’s try to be a little bit more constructive. First of all: Yes, there is no absolute morality – exactly as there is no absolute meaning of life. There isn’t any predetermined philosophy that’s 100% correct. But this doesn’t have to mean that we don’t have morality. We simply have to choose a suitable basis for this morality. Some things work good, others not so. To allow everyone to live happily and free seems to be a likely candidate for such a philosophy, as it is simply something we can all agree on, because it’s the best compromise – (almost) everyone wants it and the only thing everyone looses is that ability to make others miserably because they don’t agree with you. Self-Preservation seems a pretty good basis, as this prefers order over anarchy, law over chaos – simply because in anarchy, you could be killed any second.

There simply ARE philosophical thoughts that can be used to create a good moral system. But the really important fact is, that such a system will probably not be perfect. Sounds like a drawback? It isn’t, because we KNOW that. We can work on it. We can improve it, change it, remove it’s flaws. If you accept a religious truth on the other hand, changing it would mean that all the believers before you made a mistake and now rot in hell. I’m not a philosopher, so I am perhaps the wrong person to ask for such a moral system, but at least I am convinced that by understanding human nature in a scientific way, we can also create a system that allows people to live happy and free – which is not an absolute goal, forced upon us by some „God“, but – or perhaps therefore – pretty nifty. Let’s not forget, that the whole bible never mentions once the basic humans rights – it even contradicts them – and we needed the Age of Enlightenment to bring them to us, something that more than 1.500 years of Christianity didn’t succeed in.

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5 Kommentare zu “Absolute Morality

  1. You commented on my post in fellowshiproom.org, about „the truth“ earlier today. You claim in this post that the God of the Bible „is not good.“ But later you claim that „there is no absolute morality.“ But you are claiming an absolute morality when you assert that „God is not good.“ Upon what basis do you make moral judgments? Respectfully yours.

    • Where do I claim an „absolute“ morality? There isn’t one. The only difference between is us, that I accept that, while you believe that a book that doesn’t talk about basic human rights, equality, etc. – but does talk positively about slavery – amounts to „absolute morality“.

      But does the absence of any basis for an „absolute“ morality mean that there can’t be any morality at all? Sorry, that’s only what Christians want to make people think: „If you don’t think like we do, you are EVIL!!!“. You simply need another basis for your moral decisions. A moral system, for example, could be based on the wish to create a stable society. Of it could be based on the idea to allow everyone the same, maximized amount of freedom. None of this choices can claim to be an absolute morality, of course, but why should it? You think about your goal, create a morality system and see if people like it. If people don’t like it, your system will fail anyway… If you are interested in this, read books. Surprisingly, there are books out there that don’t stop at „God wants you to do X, so do X.“.

      So, no, I don’t claim that god can be called „evil“ by some mysterious, absolute standards, as there are none. But I call god evil by my standards, by the standards (liberal) Christians claim to be „good“ today and by standards that many people today agree on. 2000 years ago, these standards were obviously different, as enslaving and killing many, many people simply because they didn’t believe what you believe were acceptable then and not many people could agree that this god was „evil“ – ok, all the non-Israelites would, but that’s for different reasons, of course. I don’t claim that these standards are, on a cosmological scale, for example, absolutely good, but I do think that these standards would lead to a nicer world for everyone.

      • Is it morally wrong for me to assert that God exists? Is it morally wrong for me to state that the Bible came from God? Why, or why not?

      • Could you rephrase that in form of a moral question? I don’t see what moral has to do with these questions. So, no, for me it’s not morally wrong to assert the existence of a god, as this is a completely private matter. As you can do what you want to yourself – imho, of course – there’s not much moral involved. Stating something that you believe is true doesn’t seem morally wrong to me. I may not agree, but simply stating that doesn’t you make an evil person in my eyes. Of course, acting on the bible can be morally wrong – depends on the part, for example selling your daughter into slavery would be morally wrong, but allowed by the bible (Exodus 21:7-11 – and just to make that clear, Jesus also allowed slavery, see Ephesians 6:5).

        And for the why: Because it’s against my personal moral system and the moral system most western people agree upon. The basis for this systems is, for example, the goal of maintaining a stable community while granting everyone as much freedom as possible while doing so. That’s not absolute (which means we can make it even better when we find flaws), but at least it’s better than „Because some shepherds 2000 years ago thought slavery was a nifty idea.“.

  2. Pingback: Absolute Meaning – Nobody cares | Atomic Wasteland

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