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What is Right and Wrong?

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Boethiah, Feb 8, 2009.

  1. navarre

    navarre Proud Protestant

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    It may not have created morality, but it certainly does a good enough job of promoting morality. Please don't confuse the two terms.
     
  2. Gikoku Harakami

    Gikoku Harakami ミュージック

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    I am not confusing the two terms, as that sentence was not directed at only you. I am only saying that Religion is not the root of all morality, and it is not necessary to have in order to understand what is right and wrong. I am aware that religion has helped promote morals onto others.
     
  3. AndThen?

    AndThen? pull the trigger.

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    Take the treatment of the Indigenous Australians when the British arrived in Australia. The Aboriginal people are known to have been curious of the white settlers (they were "ghosts", such pale skin was completely bizarre), but they were hospitable (in contrast to say, the Maori of New Zealand). And what did they recieve? European diseases, such as smallpox, kill more than half of the indigenous population. Their traditional lands were taken from them (they didn't understand the concept of land ownership, of course, so they could just move somewhere else, surely), genocide in Tasmania, various massacres on mainland Australia, and children stolen from their mothers to be raised into white culture.

    Would you argue that the British - thanks to the influence of religion, of course - acted in a more moral way to these people influenced only by a now dead religion, and more spiritual than anything?

    And morality was developed long before any modern religion, so it's not derived from it. Being nice isn't a religious convention, lawl.
     
  4. Diomedes

    Diomedes WiiChat Member

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    To extend that, does true innocence lie in those who do not yet understand the concepts of 'good' and 'bad'? Nor 'life' and 'death'?
     
  5. Sixty

    Sixty Kryptonightingale

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    British convicts, right?
     
  6. AndThen?

    AndThen? pull the trigger.

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    No, not at all.
     
  7. rukus

    rukus WiiChat Member

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    before it became a prison.
     
  8. navarre

    navarre Proud Protestant

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    That's a pretty bold statement you've made. Judaism and Hinduism go back thousands of years. Have we any evidence that people acted morally before the introduction of religion?
     
  9. Boethiah

    Boethiah Sam I Am

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    What do we define as religion? Animism believed in spirits in nature, and was the first religion that we know of. They did not believe in higher beings. They obviously did not have a set list of moral codes to follow. Were they immoral?


    Religion did contribute to morality, but for the wrong reasons. Atheists are decent people, we just don't act morally to ensure salvation.
     
  10. RPGMasterTurk91

    RPGMasterTurk91 Turkish RPG Master

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    Ah we have a sociologist here! I'll respond to this later when I have time. I hate to keep putting off these things but when I find time I'll have my own input here as well. :D
     
  11. DRMARIO

    DRMARIO Controversial.

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    There simply is no definition of right and wrong, other than 'What one would believe to be a good thing to do, and what one would believe to be a bad thing to do'.

    Like most people have stated here, it's down to the individual. There is no way we can say something is definitely right. It's not written as a law of the universe, it's not physics, it's not a definite thing. It's something that we make up as a society, and as individuals.

    I may well say the right thing to do is, say, nuke France. If I did believe that to be right, then under the laws of language and ideas within society, it would indeed be the right thing to do.
     
  12. AndThen?

    AndThen? pull the trigger.

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    Bold statement? It was genocide...

    And the reason I mentioned the Aborigines is because they weren't previously touched by today's religions...
     
  13. Xenithion

    Xenithion Where am I?

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    I believe that the sense of what is right in built into us all, since we are born, but yes our upbringing defines whether we realize what is wrong and right. And thats all subjective anyway, and is becoming more blurred every day.
    On a side note, a test was performed a long time ago, where some orphaned babies were set apart by a scientist, and their carers were told to not exhibit any emotions or say anything while in their presence. So they were fed and bathed and kept healthy, yet, after a short time, they all just died. We NEED care and love to exist. Which is where people are most susceptible to correct moral thinking, at a very young age.
    Not sure if I kept to topic, but thats my input.
    ~Xenithion
     
  14. LevesqueIsKing

    LevesqueIsKing An Instant Classic

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    Does anyone else get annoyed when people say that morality is something ~*special*~ that is instilled in us, as human beings, because we're ~*special*~? To me, it seems pretty obvious that morality is just something we've realized due to our increased intelligence. All that you have to do to be moral is look at situations objectively. A human thinks, "If I kill this person, that isn't fair," and an animal thinks, "If I kill this person, I get to eat." Animals aren't capable of taking on another perspective. We haven't been blessed with a completely different concept, it's just something that came along with the package of intelligence. Right?
     
  15. Deanis

    Deanis Tip#67: Sell Your Wii

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    Wrong.

    If Im brought up in a caniballistic tribe.....I am taught from birth that this is how to live, THIS is right.


    for the other 99% of the world its wrong....

    Who is right? Depends on your morals..... (here we go again).
     
  16. LevesqueIsKing

    LevesqueIsKing An Instant Classic

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    ...But don't you think there's a reason why that lifestyle was never popular and is virtually nonexistant today?

    I understand that culture affects people's perceptions, but I don't think culture defines someone's moral potential. Are you saying that if the entire world (literally every single person) was racist against a certain group of people, that it would be impossible for someone to come to the realization that discriminating against them isn't fair?
     
  17. Deanis

    Deanis Tip#67: Sell Your Wii

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    Potentially yes.

    Think of Germany in WW2.

    One man tried to wipe out a race. In his eyes, THIS was right. Did he realise what he was doing was so incredibly wrong?

    If it was encouraged from birth that you were to kill a certain race for whatever reason, I see no reason why this opinion would change. Similar to being told to hate a race. Is this wrong? Definately. Are you told its right though? Yes. And so you go on believing this. Of course someone could convince you to think its wrong though, I'm not saying its a permanent mindset.
     
  18. LevesqueIsKing

    LevesqueIsKing An Instant Classic

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    We obviously have strong disagreements in the potential of human thought.
     
  19. AndThen?

    AndThen? pull the trigger.

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    Tyler, for what it's worth, I think you're totally right.

    Deanis, everyone has a different "moral code"... while we both may think that the Holocaust was wrong, we may have different thoughts on other matters. There is no universal moral code, our personal morals are, as Tyler said, a result of our increased intelligence, and they are formed and shaped from our personal experiences.

    Cannibalism is interesting, but understandable. You look at the people who fight wars nowadays, and the death penalty, where it can be perfectly "right" to kill people... it's not like cannibals are savages, they have moral codes - I think you'll struggle to find cannibals who ate their own family members, for example.
     
  20. 172pilot

    172pilot WiiChat Member

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    Im surprised this hasnt turned into an argument, but i believe morals are different everywhere and they are determined by the people as a whole in that culture. Humans have desires and goals (these desires and goals depend on the culture, for example a small tribes goals might be to steal from another tribe so that they may prosper) that no other creatures have and to thrive as the dominant species on earth humans must cooperate, creating society, which determines what actions are debts to socitey and what actions are credits to society, so that the people as a whole can punish or praise. People acting in selfish ways, stealing from or harming others even though they are animal instincts and we are animals, hinder the progression of the human race atleast slightly (in modern cultures) and are seen as debts to society and are punished by the people. Morals are what that culture or society define them as, what helps that culture meet its goals are its morals, and morals change depending on how developed that culture is. It is easy to understand if you look at a less developed culture such as a tribe, killing within the tribe hinders that tribes progression (bad) killing an enemy to that tribe helps meet that tribes goals (good). Which is why law generally doesnt extend much farther than the culture that developed it.

    This is what I believe to be morals and I wont argue my point. I just try to look at it logically, so you can disagree but I wont argue with you.
     

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