a tippling philosopher

Showing Tag: "morality" (Show all posts)

Are humans getting better?

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Monday, July 23, 2012, In : Philosophy 
Are humans getting better?

Due to our up and coming Tippling Philosopher’s meeting entitled “Are humans getting better?” I thought I would put a piece together to get a few thoughts down. This is an interesting question because it promotes going down all sorts of rabbit-holes. I will try and keep my thoughts tight, however.

First of all, we are not talking about the world, but about humans which keeps things nice and specific. “Are humans getting better?” straight away implies ...
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Nonstampcollector, sticks and stones - and yes, they will break bones.

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Thursday, June 21, 2012, In : Youtube 
Nonstampcollector is always good - this fulfils expectations:

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10 Commandments...

Posted by B__e on Thursday, May 24, 2012, In : Religion 
Here is a post from an ex-Christian called B__e who has been ruminating on this for a whiile. See what you think:

Ten Commandments or Ten Suggestions?

By B__e

I have sometimes heard that the Bible has the Ten Commandments and not the “Ten Suggestions.”  I’m not so sure that Yahweh thinks so based on the Scriptures themselves, since He appears to break or flout them all.  You be the judge…

1.       You shall have no other gods before me.

Deuteronomy 6:4 reads:  “Hear, O Israel: Th...

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Homosexuality and Christianity.

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Friday, April 27, 2012, In : Religion 

I am writing a post in reaction to something about which I was talking with my Christian friend (let’s call him Colin). We were talking about homosexuality and his approach to it given his Christian background. Some points were interesting and some I fundamentally disagreed with. Here are his views:


  • As according to the Bible, homosexuality is wrong.
  • This morality is grounded in God.
  • He is not homophobic and detests that label as it automatically halts any further informed discu...

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Avalos vs Darrel - "Is the bible a source of absolute moral rules for today?"

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Monday, April 16, 2012, In : Religion 

I have seen the opening statements of both. I almost burst out laughing at the poor poor tack taken by Darrel. Firstly, he sets out deconstructing Avalos' epistemology and morality. This is both a red herring and a shifting of the burden of proof. It matters not one jot, because that is not the focus of the debate. The debate is "Is the bible a source of absolute moral rules for today?" I can only see that Darrel should make a defensive stance. Avalos could have come out and said "I derive my...

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Natural oughts? Is there such a thing as natural?

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Sunday, January 15, 2012, In : Philosophy 

I was wondering today, as I lay there with one of my twins in my arms, as to whether oughts can be derived from a natural pre-programmed’ behaviour. For example, if an evolved characteristic, such as aggressiveness in males (I am generalising here, of course) or to want to eat meat, or, if it could be proven, that it were ‘natural’ to be heterosexual was inherent in a human, are we then obliged in some way to act in accordance with that ‘natural’ inclination?


Or, indeed, is it ...

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Morality of the Old Testament

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Saturday, December 31, 2011, In : Humour 
kill every man in town. sell the daughters into slavery. plunder the livestock. a plague on your city. ravish the women. mikey, stop playing 'god of the old testament', it's time for dinner.

Courtesy Unreasonable Faith

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Plummeting Probabilities

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Sunday, December 18, 2011, In : Philosophy 
Quite often, theists posit arguments, but when they are met with difficulties, they necessitate extra premises. This is the case in Glenn Peoples' Moral argument, as pointed out by Stephen Law on his blog.

Here is what he had to say about what this does for the likelihood of the argument then being true:

Glenn Peoples' blog has been interesting me lately. He has just out up his version of a moral argument for the existence of God.

Glenn argues, as does Craig:

If there's no God, there are no obje...
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New video

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Thursday, December 15, 2011, In : Youtube 
I have created a new video on broadly similar lines to some recent posts. Enjoy.
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Oughts and moral philosophy

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Monday, December 12, 2011, In : Philosophy 

If a theist or God declares that I ought to do something, say A (such that it is good and I would get to heaven, but which is supposedly intrin, out of intrinsic duty, then this scenario seems to render that divinely inspired ought as meaningless:


If I want to go to hell, then in what sense of the word can it be said that I ought to do A? The duty to do good is circular so that I cannot say I ought to do good in order to do good, since this is tautologous. I ought to put oil in the car so...

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Good without God.

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Friday, November 18, 2011, In : Humour 

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Objective morality and oughts

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Tuesday, November 8, 2011, In : Youtube 

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A great article on the circularity of God = Good moral argument

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Monday, October 24, 2011, In : Religion 

Does Morality Depend on God? - P. Wesley Edwards
(updated 20-Aug-2004)


I have rarely engaged in a debate with a theist where the issue of morality justification has not come up.  The theist’s complaint typically takes the following form.

If there is no God, then why is it wrong to murder and  steal? Even if you don't want to murder and steal, on what grounds can you criticize someone who does, since morals must be completely relative and arbitrary to an atheist?  Without God there ...

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How useful is claiming God grounds morality?

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Thursday, October 13, 2011, In : Religion 
This comes courtesy of Theoretical Bullshit. It is a precis of the end of his excellent video found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWNW-NXEudk


Let’s imagine a thought experiment:


God comes to you and tells you there are transcendent, unconditional moral oughts. Just imagine that in this world all the things you ‘ought’ to do, from a moral point of view (a moral ought), happen to cause unfathomable pain, suffering and injustice and will land you up in hell where you will experi...

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God is a consequentialist video

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Tuesday, August 23, 2011, In : Youtube 
A new video detailing my post below about how God is a consequentialist. Enjoy.

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Nonstampcollector confirms suspicions that God is a consequentialist

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Saturday, August 13, 2011, In : Youtube 

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God is a consequentialist

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Friday, July 8, 2011, In : Religion 

When debating morality and ethics with Christian theists, scorn is often poured on secular ethicists who adhere to moral disciplines that are not grounded in God. Usually, these moral approaches are consequentialist in nature. In other words, moral actions are defined by the consequences they deliver as opposed to the intrinsic morality of the action itself. The ends justify the means. As an example, such an approach might well be utilitarianism. Though this appears in many guises (for exampl...

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Objective ideas don't exist.

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Tuesday, April 12, 2011, In : Philosophy 

I am a conceptualist who does not believe in objective existence. The burden of proof would be on Craig to prove objective existence. Without this, his whole argument of objective morality falls apart. This is why he needs to debate a good philosopher who would take him to task on his foundational assumptions.


There is no such thing as objective morality, because any idea is subjective. Abstract ideas do not and cannot exist objectively.


It is anthropocentric. Imagine a more intellige...

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