WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby Egaladeist » Wed Oct 08, 2008 12:09 am

I definitely agree that religion is a very volatile topic and has to be handled "with kid gloves"


well we do have an unused forum created for the purpose of religious/philosophical debate :D

http://www.wanderingturtle.theitzone.org/

I once had a philosophy professor who defined evil as the absence of good - just as darkness is not itself a substance, but is the absence of light.


I used to subscribe to that myself.
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby Aspman » Wed Oct 08, 2008 10:16 am

I don't doubt that your upbringing affects you opinion and take on religion but do you think your training/education affects it too?

I was just thinking about Keezel and Egs posts on good/evil. To em these are just words and to describe them I'd put them into biological terms.

Good = beneficial to a population/individual
Evil = harmful to a population/individual

I'd even tend to describe them in terms of evolutionary potential.

But I don't subscribe to good/evil being a tangible thing more a simplification of complex behaviour. I studied biological sciences and I strongly agree with Dawkins take on religion (The Selfish Gene etc), but he is a biologist.

Do engineers have similar views on religion and is it different, subtle or strongly, from biologists.
Same for artists or those of a social science background.
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby dinowuff » Wed Oct 08, 2008 5:27 pm

God was born, and died, of capitalism.

Let me splain...

In the beginning man looked for the answer "Why am I here"?

He began looking to the stars, wind, fire - things he couldn't explain and created - mostly for definition sake (So he could tell others) magic creatures. When trying to explain creation, God was mostly a woman because only woman can give birth.

Now man notices that everyone is getting into the defining life bit so creates witches and heretics that are controllers of the magic creatures and clearly not knowledgeable in the ways of the world. Another most noticeable thing is that those that are not heretics are GIVING (offering) to the deities.

So here comes GOD Male omnipotent unseen hidden magical creature that created everything.

This GOD is most kind to those who worship and GIVE HIM stuff.

Enter Religious structure where the higher up in the organization you are the more money you make. More power.

Remember when Queen Elizabeth broke from the Catholic church and created the Church of England that the POPE put a hit out on the Bitch for her sins. (da pope he didn't need no english cunt cutting in on his turf / profits)

So we take all the old customs and rituals and turn them into good christian religious events. Christmas (Jesus of Nazareth was actually born in April) Easter (Pick the spring planting ritual) and what not saying - ALL PAY MO MONEY to da church on these special days. "Thou shalt pay cash on these days 'cause look, this dude died for you then rose from the dead".

Enter corporate America.

"Yo hommie, check out the church. We need to form a committee to investigate how we can get in, at a 90 degree angle, on some - if not most - of that cash flow"

Easter is now cause to buy bunny suits, chocolate and eggs. Christmas is time to go deeper in debt on the already stressed credit card and GOD - She just faded into the greed markets. Man now knows where he comes from, how he was created and what his purpose is. No more need for magical beings.

WTF you think all those folks are scared of someone actually proving the big bang theory? No mo money for them..

That is until they say that GOD caused the big bang any you need to be afraid of the big quiet. (It'll probably be a sin to whisper)
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby keezel » Thu Oct 09, 2008 4:07 am

Aspman wrote:I don't doubt that your upbringing affects you opinion and take on religion but do you think your training/education affects it too?

I was just thinking about Keezel and Egs posts on good/evil. To em these are just words and to describe them I'd put them into biological terms.

Good = beneficial to a population/individual
Evil = harmful to a population/individual

I'd even tend to describe them in terms of evolutionary potential.

But I don't subscribe to good/evil being a tangible thing more a simplification of complex behaviour. I studied biological sciences and I strongly agree with Dawkins take on religion (The Selfish Gene etc), but he is a biologist.

Do engineers have similar views on religion and is it different, subtle or strongly, from biologists.
Same for artists or those of a social science background.


If I read a bit into this, can I assume that you believe morality is based on what is best for the masses? IE anything that benefits the greater good is moral?

If that's the case can I ask to what extreme this extends?

For example, one could (easily) argue that forcing slaves into gladiatorial combat was moral because it provided great amounts of entertainment to the masses at the expense of a few.

A further extreme would be that of genocide: a larger civilization benefiting from the extermination of a smaller (less liked) population.

At what point is it immoral?

My personal philosophy (which can also be argued against pretty easily) is that morals are immutable and divinely enforced.

I know you probably disagree with that stance, but it wouldn't be fair for me to poke at your philosophy if I didn't have one myself so we could both explore the arguments.

*edit*
And as a sidenote.....dino....that was brilliant. I'd comment but I feel like I'd tarnish it somehow...
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby Aspman » Thu Oct 09, 2008 9:12 am

No I was being simplistic. But in essence morality has developed out of evolved behaviours that benefit the species.

It was of benefit for early humans (or progenitors) to group together and work together. Tribal group activities evolved from that.
It's of benefit to the tribe (and therefore the species) to work together. A thief may steal food and therefore support his own survival and breeding but in evolutionary terms the thief may not have the best genes to pass on in benefit to the species. Therefore the species acts against thieves. Morality emerges from behaviour.

It gets much more complex because humans are at a point where we can analyse our own behaviours and manipulate them.

A gladiatorial fight is a very specific example but watching fighting is probably a very basic instinct. A way for strong males to fight for dominance and show fitness (to breed) in front of females. And gladiators did get a lot of poontang.
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby keezel » Thu Oct 09, 2008 5:32 pm

Hmm...good point about gladiators, lol. I hadn't thought of it in that light.

So what about genocide? Even if we were to remove current technology from the equation and take it back to early civilized man still fighting with swords and pikes.

You could say that the exterminated population was weaker and therefore it was right for them to be removed from the gene pool, but somehow that still seems immoral on a basic level.
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby Vorlin » Thu Oct 09, 2008 5:51 pm

The only reason I'd believe it's moral for the gladiators is because (as I think) it's because they all know they've only have X amount of time before they're all dead. Sure, the great gladiators got celebrated on, women threw their literal woven panties at them (hence all the 'tang), feasts and such occurred, etc...but they were put there to fight, they knew they were to fight, and those that accepted that it's "balls to the wall", they survived. That aspect says it's a far cry from genocide.

I don't think I'd say that a conquered village against an army or a conquered country destroyed from the outside in would say that they're weaker than whoever took them out; there's just too many things in the way that have to be answered before that can be stated. Look at Hitler's army, lining up countless jews that were persecuted without any kind of fair trial, then just having them all shot and put into some unnamed mass grave. Men (old and young), women (pregnant or not), children (all ages), all of them shot to pieces. I've gotten to see some of the routes where people stood helpless as they opened fire on them and it's f*ckin' scary. If I knew that I was gonna be shot, I'd be all "F THIS" and try at least SOMETHING.

And as far as God being all-good on something like this, who knows what is right to put in for that? I believe, on a side note, that God is neutral, neither male nor female. God being female is really something I wouldn't understand considering man was created first and then the woman was created from his rib (why males are born one rib short than females) as well as the fact that women got screwed from Eve's eating the apple first. (Disclaimer, that statement is from my belief and does not entail it to be seen that way in other religions)
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby keezel » Thu Oct 09, 2008 8:23 pm

The only reason I'd believe it's moral for the gladiators is because (as I think) it's because they all know they've only have X amount of time before they're all dead. Sure, the great gladiators got celebrated on, women threw their literal woven panties at them (hence all the 'tang), feasts and such occurred, etc...but they were put there to fight, they knew they were to fight, and those that accepted that it's "balls to the wall", they survived. That aspect says it's a far cry from genocide.


Yeah, you kinda hit the nail on the head. I was trying to distinguish that example as being a decidely different case than genocide. I put two different examples out there, one pretty easily arguable as moral, the other almost impossible to argue as moral. The point I was trying to make was that just because something benefits the greater population or just because the "weak" are removed from the gene pool does not necessarily make it moral.

I think the morality of something should be determined by something else. Not natural selection, and not even necessarily what benefits the majority.

I don't think I'd say that a conquered village against an army or a conquered country destroyed from the outside in would say that they're weaker than whoever took them out; there's just too many things in the way that have to be answered before that can be stated. Look at Hitler's army, lining up countless jews that were persecuted without any kind of fair trial, then just having them all shot and put into some unnamed mass grave. Men (old and young), women (pregnant or not), children (all ages), all of them shot to pieces. I've gotten to see some of the routes where people stood helpless as they opened fire on them and it's f*ckin' scary. If I knew that I was gonna be shot, I'd be all "F THIS" and try at least SOMETHING.


Lol I think it's great that you saw where I was going with this. When I was thinking genocide of course I was thinking about the holocaust in particular. There is no way anyone can argue that the holocaust was moral, which discounts natural selection alone (only the strong survive) as determining what is moral.


On another note entirely, I read somewhere in this thread that creationists are threatened by the big bang, which I don't understand. The "good book" starts off with the earth being formless...but it was there. It doesn't specify how the universe came into being, therefore I'm not sure how the big bang theory directly contradicts anything in the "good book".
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby |3lack|ce » Sat Oct 11, 2008 1:45 am

Ok, time to enter s'more scary thoughts into this arena since we're getting more into philosophy and less into religion... I submit, for your consideration, the following:

Postulate: The need of the many outweighs the need of the few.
Under what circumstances would the need of the few outweigh the need of the many, and are they in and unto themselves evil? Given the definition 'what is good for one's self/society' it's quite evil to do several of them I can think of off the top of my head.

So when, then, does self-centeredness become evil? Who draws that line and why is it in that particular spot? Under what circumstances would community mindedness be evil? Who drew that line and why is it in the spot that it's in?

Specific topics to ponder on while keeping these questions in mind - humorousness or seriousness really matters not:

Taxes, Military Service, Theft (petty and otherwise), Banks, Capitalism, Socialism, Family, Automobiles, Food, Housing, Weaponry (sticks, clubs, and knives up through global thermonuclear devices), Sex.

Since we're trying to reinvent the wheel here by determining what is good and evil in our own personal deity's (or non-deity's, or our own) eyes, let's bloody well set a definition of terms.

Herein lie all the specific beliefs I'll divulge at this time:

My rights end where your nose begins.

Is this evil? If so, why? If not, why not?

And while we're making good use of Occam's razor, please tell me also:

Precisely whom shaved the barber?
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby Harbinger » Mon Oct 20, 2008 7:14 am

Well, for the same reason Santa/Tooth Faerie/Easter Bunny/Etc. are good. Psh.
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby SirDice » Mon Oct 20, 2008 8:09 pm

Natural selection doesn't mean the "strong" will survive. As in strong vs. weak. That's not what Darwin figured out..

Having strong neck muscles doesn't mean you can crack that nut with your beak, having a certain growth or curve may help in getting it open and having something to eat..
The ones with the strong muscles but without the growth or curve die out..

The best adapted, best suited for the environment will survive, that doesn't necessarily means being physically the strongest.


Nice quote from a movie (cliffhanger of all :roll:)

Kill a few people and you're a murderer.. Kill a million and you're a conqueror.. Go figure..
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby Aspman » Tue Oct 21, 2008 11:19 am

Evolutionary strength is described (I think, 10yr since I did evolutionary biology) as Fitness.

Which you can take as fitness for purpose. If your niche is a small island with small amounts of food, the most fit (strongest) animal for that niche will likely be small with low numbers of offspring.
A large heavy predator would likely starve and is there for unfit or weak.

Evolution is not perfect.

Humans get sinus problems because parts of the human skull are still evolved for an animal that walks on all fours.
Pandas have evolved to eat bamboo but have the gut of a meat eater, bamboo is a poor food for pandas.
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby Panama Red » Tue Oct 21, 2008 12:21 pm

Well those that follow the teachings of this god, sure do like to do the "do as I say and not as I do" type thing... :mrgreen:

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Nasty case of the clap

By Lester Haines • Get more from this author

Posted in Bootnotes, 20th October 2008 12:06 GMT

A church minister from Strängnäs, Sweden, has walked the plank after his local church's computer network contracted a nasty case of the clap as a result of his porn surfing, The Local reports.

The Church of Sweden clergyman admitted to "spending a lot of time at work viewing pornographic websites", but his lust for smut would probably have remained known only to him and his God had it not "given rise to a lethal computer virus" which smote the parish's IT systems.

Archbishop Anders Wejryd said: "Priests are people too, but I have no understanding at all for someone sitting and surfing for porn on the parish computers." Church legal spokeswoman Charlotta Novosel confirmed: "He recently decided to resign."

The powers that be have not yet decided whether a righteous defrocking is in order in this case - a fate avoided by a pastor in Gothenburg who recently "came under scrutiny for moistening post-it notes with his penis and sticking them up in an office" and was allowed to keep his job. ®



My bold...well so much for the innocent looking post it notes on everyones monitors...
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby Aspman » Tue Oct 21, 2008 2:11 pm

He'd probably like a bit of defrocking!
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Re: WHY do we assume the GOD IS GOOD ??

Postby Harbinger » Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:56 pm

Pure survival is amoral. A Cukoo bird killing all the eggs of another species then laying its own egg in that same very nest to be raised by the progenitor of the offspring it destroyed is not evil. Some could say it is inherently evil, but as the Cukoo has no concept of evil then it is simply the amoral style of nature.

Hence The Tree of Knowledge.

However, it is not so simple. The Cukoo is still aware that it must destroy the rival eggs, and does so intentionally. Therefore, the intentional act of destroying another may not necessarily be deemed evil. If you say then that the Cukoo is capable of carrying out an Evil act, you inherently give the Cukoo morality. This greatly complicates things.

If the Cukoo isn't capable of committing evil and is simply acting in its selfinterests of survival, then genocide could very well be considered amoral.
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