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  • #46
    Re: Zakath,

    Originally posted by Becky

    Using a scenario (especially an emotionally charged one) is a great way to get at the heart of an issue.
    Not necessarily, sometimes it's merely a form of ad populum fallacy with little or no logical utility.

    There are two reasons why you could not answer “no” to his scenario...
    Becky, you can attribute motives to other people all day long but "sayin' it's so, don't make it so". Asking a moral relativist if any action is morally absolute is akin to asking an atheist whether one deity or another is "really god".

    For example, I cannot judge whether Vishnu or YHWH is really god, since I do not believe in the existence of deities. The question is essentially meaningless to me.

    How can you define “right” or “wrong” without circumstances? Sorry if I’m not understanding this point. Could you elaborate?
    How do you define right or wrong? Well, one who believes in moral absolutes would point to the absolute standard... (Which Knight refused, or was unable, to do.)

    If the God of the Bible is true, then these particular instances are not crimes and cannot be condemned based on human terms. You are free to accuse Him, but since you don’t believe in Him, it seems kind of pointless.
    Since "god did it", the the crimes mentioned are not absolutely wrong since they can be committed without wrongdoing. The use of multiple standards based on situatiosn is moral relativism, Becky.

    As for my question about justice, I assume you believe that there is no such thing? [/QUOTE]Since you have actually demonstrated yourself to be a moral relativist, it would be helpful if you defined what you mean by "justice"...

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    • #47
      Posted by Becky:

      "Using a scenario (especially an emotionally charged one) is a great way to get at the heart of an issue."

      I disagree. I think it's when one fails to have much of a case that they resort to "preaching" to the choir. The person obviously knows they have no way of convincing the relativist so why not "shelter the flock" and prevent them from wandering by using the same emotive examples that have worked in the past. Belief in absolutes isnt about logic. It's about "common sense" and those other variables that cant quite be defined by examples people agree on. How convenient.

      And if the law of gravity is "proven" by what is seen in the world then certainly Zakath has proven that morals are relative. He showed numerous examples of morals that vary from person to person and from age to age. What else is needed?

      Absolutes can never be proven in the same way as other beliefs. The "proof" is not of the same kind. I did enjoy the debate but felt that going in Knight was given a pocket knife and Zak an ak-47. I would love to see another debate in the future on morality but with a different topic that gives both participants an equal footing.

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      • #48
        How can you define “right” or “wrong” without circumstances? Sorry if I’m not understanding this point. Could you elaborate?
        If moral absolutes do exist (or ethical absolutes), then you must necessarily be able to define them outside of and without circumstances. There would be no possible circumstances that could alter the rightness or wrongness of an action. If, as you contend, they are dependent upon circumstances to be judged as right or wrong, then they are relative by nature.
        Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs!

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        • #49
          If moral absolutes do exist (or ethical absolutes), then you must necessarily be able to define them outside of and without circumstances. There would be no possible circumstances that could alter the rightness or wrongness of an action.
          This is a bunch of hooey. This is equivalent to saying, "All actions are wrong or right without reference to the action itself." This would mean that NOTHING is morally wrong or right.

          If, as you contend, they are dependent upon circumstances to be judged as right or wrong, then they are relative by nature.
          Circumstantially relative, yes. Imagine that 500 years ago, somebody kills an innocent person. Imagine that happening today. Imagine that 500 years ago(for the sake of arguement only) it was okay to do this. Today, it is not okay to do that. Absolutely, the action is wrong. Relatively, you would have to judge that it is right.

          Relatives say that morals are defined by society, which is relative from place to place. Absolutes say that morals are the same no matter what society or place you are. Morals determine which actions are right and wrong, not the other way around as you would have us believe.

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          • #50
            Great point Ciris.

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            • #51
              When principles that run against your deepest convictions begin to win the day, then battle is your calling, and peace has become sin; you must, at the price of dearest peace, lay your convictions bare before friend and enemy, with all the fire of your faith.

              we need to remember we are at war and we know the outcome!! We win..so we need to be soilders that our Savior will be proud of and fight the battle to the end!

              "Diversity and division is infinitely more precious than a satanic unity. The problem God's people are facing today: Satan wants unity in what? -- in error. God would infinitely prefer division because of truth. Do you know what Jesus said in Matthew 10? He said, 'I have come not to bring peace, not to bring unity, but to bring division, to set a son against his father, a daughter against her mother, so that people within their own households will be enemies of each other.' That is what Jesus said he came to do ... God's smashing of satanic ecumenical unity was an incredible blessing [Genesis 11: the Tower of Babel] ... The potential for satanic depravity is infinite, as long as what continues? -- a unity in error -- organized blasphemy. Measure this friends. Grasp it. Satan will, in his brief hour, at the end of this world, be given his opportunity to demonstrate what total unity is like in the human race, when every person will have a mark on the forehead or right hand, and will walk lockstep under incredible blasphemy ...


              Annie

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              • #52
                I found the debate interesting in that we got to see how two diverse schools of thought hold to their own thinking while each asks the other to step over into their thinking. Of course Zakath has already been there, and perhaps, Knight has already been on ther other side also?

                Zakath for the sake of argument was more willing on individual biblical points to jump over and open up new battle fronts; but, Knight decided to hold his defense and offense to his secure ground.

                I think that Zakath has given Knight some food for future thought in that Knight needs to be able to answer the questions brought up concerning the Biblical verses. I think Knight can do it. When it comes to the Bible--- school never ends.

                I really liked the altar call in the end. When all is said and done, I can't help but think that Zakath was most impressed by it over any other part of the debate.
                Though I be the least of all His servants, nevertheless I am a servant.

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                • #53
                  Originally posted by cirisme

                  This is a bunch of hooey. This is equivalent to saying, "All actions are wrong or right without reference to the action itself." This would mean that NOTHING is morally wrong or right.
                  In general I think Eirann was clarifying the difference between absolute morals and relative morals, so I'm not sure why you said it was a bunch of hooey. Given your example, if it is absolutely wrong to kill an innocent person, then it is wrong to kill an innocent person regardless of when, where, why, and how it was done (these being the circumstances). If it is dependent on when, where, why, and how it was done, then it is not absolutely wrong to kill an innocent person.

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                  • #54
                    Originally posted by cirisme
                    This is a bunch of hooey. This is equivalent to saying, "All actions are wrong or right without reference to the action itself." This would mean that NOTHING is morally wrong or right.
                    And thus you have stumbled onto the paradox that is moral absolutism.

                    Morals determine which actions are right and wrong, not the other way around as you would have us believe.
                    Morals only determine which actions are accepted or not accepted by your society. They also determine how society will react to you if you perform said actions. Ethics determines which actions are right and wrong, and some morals derive from those ethical considerations, but not all of them.
                    Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs!

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                    • #55
                      If it is dependent on when, where, why, and how it was done, then it is not absolutely wrong to kill an innocent person.
                      It is absolutely wrong to murder an innocent person. However, in order to determine whether it was a murder or not, you must know the circumstances. The circumstances will tell you whether it is an accident, or intentional. And that will tell you whether it was murder or an unfortunate killing.

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                      • #56
                        Originally posted by cirisme
                        It is absolutely wrong to murder an innocent person.
                        Personally, I would tend to agree with you that it is wrong, and probably always wrong to murder an innocent person. But this is a statement based entirely on opinion and belief; you lack the criteria for being able to demonstrate with full knowledge that this is an absolute. Again, the most you can say is, "I believe it is absolute." You can't go beyond the "I believe."
                        Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs!

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                        • #57
                          Hello relativists,

                          One aspect of this debate that has been overlooked has to do with a different, but related meaning of the word “wrong”.

                          wrong n. An unjust or injurious act

                          When we “wrong” someone, it carries with it the idea of injury. Laws are made to protect individuals from injury and to restore justice in the case of injury. This “injury” as far as it affects the injured party, is independent from societal opinions or norms. The injured party may or may not be defended legally by his/her government, but that has no bearing on the actual injury itself. It is absolute to the one who has been injured. Good, moral laws attempt to recognize and protect individuals and to provide justice in the case of injury.

                          Take Samantha Runnion, the little 5 year-old who was kidnapped, raped, and murdered recently. The injury to her and to her family is an absolute. How can it be viewed as relative? It can only be viewed as relative by those on the outside of the situation (if they choose to view it as such). But viewing this crime as relative in nature ignores the fact that individuals were absolutely injured in this case. Societal opinions or norms have no bearing on the actual injury sustained by the victim(s).

                          I don’t mean to imply that absolute moral “wrongs” are dependent only on the injury to an individual. After all, there may be some people who don’t mind being stolen from, beat up, raped or kidnapped (although it is difficult to imagine). But there is a bigger injury possible and that is the injury to a society as a whole. When a society fails to recognize the injuries inflicted on its members and itself by not providing protection and justice, there will be negative consequences. These consequences are not dependent on a deity. They are not dependent on public opinion. They are real consequences that are the result of real actions. In reality, a society is capable of absolutely wronging itself and its members when it fails to recognize the absolute injurous consequences that result from an inability to govern itself with just and moral laws.

                          Thanks for allowing me to rant,
                          Becky
                          Last edited by Prisca; August 12th, 2002, 10:04 AM.
                          For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another!
                          Galatians 5:13-15

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                          • #58
                            But this is a statement based entirely on opinion and belief; you lack the criteria for being able to demonstrate with full knowledge that this is an absolute. Again, the most you can say is, "I believe it is absolute." You can't go beyond the "I believe."


                            The point is moot since God is the standard. As a side note, I would like to see a debate on Creation and Evolution.

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                            • #59
                              Becky,

                              Amen!

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                              • #60
                                Originally posted by cirisme



                                The point is moot since God is the standard.
                                I believe in God, and I believe that if there is such a standard, it is established by God, but not that it [b]is]/b] God. For one, that would require a belief that God is good and only good, which I don't believe. And it still comes back to my initial point -- to prove the standard, you have to prove God.
                                Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs! Chiefs!

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