Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Correction: The Carvaka

According to carvaka every object is made of 4 things not 5. They reject the presence of akasha or ether because it can't be precieved as they believe in only one kind of epistmology i.e. preception. on Ancient non-believers

Thanks for the correction and heads up @ Gagan Nagra.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Is morality objective or subjective?



Last week, I saw a post in Facebook courtesy of Mr. Reynaldo Awa in which he address the issue regarding objective morality. He started the post by defining “subjective” in which he said, “A concept only becomes subjective IF and ONLY IF that concept is a matter of personal preference, just like beauty, or fashion, or taste in food, or what-have-yous.” Based on his own definition, this is how he presented the meaning of subjective morality.

Now, let me present to you my definitions…

To simplify, subjective morality is about what we humans want. Objective morality on the other hand, is defined (based on Jerry Coyne’s definition) as being the stance that something can be discerned to be “morally wrong” through reasoning about facts about the world, rather than by reference to human opinion.

So we now have 2 different approaches when looking at the subject of morality… but wait… morality is defined as the principles concerning the distinction between right and wrong or good and bad behavior (based on a dictionary’s definition). So who gives the distinction? Well, it is us humans of course. We define what is ought to be “right or wrong,” right?
Do we base the difference “through about facts about the world?”

Let us use Mr. Awa’s own example.

According to his post, “We all know that the act of killing is wrong.”
Now, why do we know that killing is wrong? Mr. Awa did not gave us the answer for this, but he continued, “But when a person is killed due to self-defense? Did we disqualify altogether the fact that a person was killed here?”

That’s the problem and you can even see it on Mr. Awa’s own words. If you will asked Mr. Awa about killing, since he “believes” that morality is objective – he will say that killing is wrong. However, if you will ask me, I may say that it depends on the time, place and situation.

Here’s an illustration: Suppose a mother saw that her daughter is about to be “rape” by 3 men and she have the capacity to kill them. If she kills them to save her daughter, do you then say that the act of killing is wrong? But what if the 3 men were her daughter’s friends and the fact came out that her daughter really wanted to have sex with those 3 persons (so it has her consent and she’s already 23 years old) – and her mother killed them anyway, what will be your opinion now?

Mr. Awa then said, “What of in wars? Have we forgotten the fact that people died there but still casualties are accepted as facts of war?”
What about wars? Is the war against terrorism good or evil? Is a war to end Hitler’s Third Reich evil? How about the war for a Nation’s independence? Is it good or evil?

Noticed that all the answer to those questions depends on “What you want” and not from “facts about the world.” Using this in today’s situation as an example – We may disagree on President Duterte’s method when it comes to drug lords – there are those who favors it and there are those who don’t.

Thus, if morality were objective, then every human in the world were to have same conclusion regarding killing and war but it’s still human opinion, feelings and desires that define it as “good and bad.” That is subjective morality.

So, is it true (as what Mr. Awa said) that moral question is “in the VALIDITY of the act itself that is found OUTSIDE the moral agents and act itself?” No it’s not since it us humans who will be the one giving the distinction – based on our own wants (opinion).

So why is morality subjective?

First, morality is for our well-being.

Morality is our obligation. As the Christian apologist Norman Geisler wrote, “Further, it is something we ought to pursue, a duty. Morality is prescriptive (an “ought”), not merely descriptive (an “is”)… and why is that? Because it is our responsibility to ourselves to be comfortable, healthy, or happy. However, human well-being is all about human feelings and preferences, and is thus subjective.

Second, morality didn’t came from an Absolute Moral Law Giver.

To believe that a Moral Law Giver is necessary for morality makes morality meaningless. This also makes morality arbitrary. If you are familiar with the Euthyphro Dilemma (I though Mr. Awa already read this?) Plato (through Socrates) have already tackled the issue – so, let us look at it on the Judeo-Christian perspective:

On the pages of the Bible, it is said that God commanded his people “Thou Shall Not Kill.” Thus people like Mr. Awa who believe that morality is objective will say that God’s commandment makes killing wrong, thus making morality objective.

Then we read on the same book that God orders his people to kill their enemies.

Now, when God orders the killing, does this make killing a good act?
How about lying or stealing? The Bible said “Thou Shall Not Steal,” but if God orders the Hebrews to plunder their enemies, does this make stealing a good act? The Bible also said “Thou Shall Not Lie,” but if you lie to protect God’s people, does that make lying good?

Defining morality based on what God wants doesn’t make it objective. It only makes morality arbitrary, relative and meaningless.

Third, morality is not arbitrary.

Since morality is not based on the command of an Absolute Law Giver, then morality is not arbitrary. Subjective morality is not arbitrary since it is based on human feeling and human interaction. Human feeling is not arbitrary. There is always what we call as common good. Our feelings and attitudes are rooted in human nature, being a product of our evolutionary heritage, programmed by human genes.

Forth, morality is human made.

Our definition of right and wrong is purely based on how we humans define it. The universe is amoral, nature is amoral – it doesn’t care. When a lion attacked and kill a human being, it doesn’t have a notion whether its act is right or wrong. When an earthquake or a flood happens, it doesn’t have any moral judgement whether on what is right or wrong. Since humans define it, it is based on human opinion and consensus – thus it is subjective.

Well, that’s it folks. I guess I just put Mr. Awa’s case to rest… in peace.

Have a nice Sunday.

Until next time.
J.Paraiso

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Facebook Time!


Hayz, the limitation of having no Internet connection, but still modern technology has its advantages. So today, I will be discussing some posted comments from some of my recent posts – minus the typical Christian bickering of course. I find these comment posts quite interesting that I just like to share a few words about ‘em hehehe!

1. A certain Clarence Rustia Baluca was saying that if natural selection dictates that evolution happens because traits that are favorable are passed on and those that are disadvantageous are eliminated then why through evolution did the hermit crab lose the ability to grow a shell?

Now, remember that evolution is not a sort of an easy “fix-up.” That means, unlike what Clarence Rustia Bacula thinks, evolution (through natural selection) doesn’t “dictates” what traits to go and what traits to stay. It’s a gradual process, a hit and miss, trial and error progression – now why do hermit crabs don’t have its own shell? Why do cave fishes still have useless eyes? Why some birds doesn’t fly? Why reptile loses its gills? – Because evolution is not perfect and it is exposed in the imperfections that record a history of descent and the development takes step by step. In the hermit crab issue, the hermit crab is more likely related to the coconut crab – I’ve noticed the “almost the same” structure.

Anyways, unlike the coconut crab, the exoskeleton of the hermit crab doesn’t harden – then why are there still hermit crabs? Because these critters found something to compensate on what they lack – getting the shells from univalves mollusks – the same reason why primates discovered the use of tools. VIOLA! The species survived and did not became extinct (sad to say that the trilobites didn’t have the same luck). The imperfection of some animals is a good indication why evolution is true compare to the “design argument.”
Oh by the way… Reptiles loses its gills because gills are not quite effective without water.

2. According to John Lloyd Cordova Declarador, the New Testament is connected to history – it’s an evidence that God exists through Jesus Christ deeds and miracles.
Uh… really?

Now, here’s some contemporary historians that were living in the said time when Jesus was said to be preaching his “gospel.”

Philo-Judaeus, Justin of Tiberius, Arrian, Lucius Seneca, Dion Pruseus, Pliny the Elder, Pater Calus, Suetonius, Juvenal, Theon of Smyran, Martial, Phlegon, Persius, Pompon Mela, Plutarch, Quintus Curtius, Lucian, Apollonius, Pausanias, Valerius Flaccus, Quintilian, Forus Lucius, Lucanus, Phaedrus, Epictetus, Damis, Silius Italicus, Alulus Geuius, Statius, Ptolemy, Columella, Diochry Sostom, Hermogones, Lysias, Valerius Maxiimus, Cornelius, Titus Livius, Cluvius Rufus, Publius Petronius … who else?

Anyway, let me ask Mr. John Lloyd Cordova Declarador

Can you name me just one historian, other than the Bible that recorder this event as written in Matthew 27:51-53?

And lo the curtain of the temple is rent in two from above to the bottom, and the earth quaked, and the rocks are rent and the tombs were opened. And many bodies of the °reposing~ saints were roused and, coming out of the tombs after His rousing, they entered into the holy city and are disclosed to many…

Oh come on! The dead are walking in the streets of Jerusalem and the historians are silent?

I’m not really interested on Jesus coming out of his grave after 3 days, I’m interested on this episode of The Walking Dead. Here, according to Matthew, the dead came out of their grave and walked to Jerusalem (holy city) which on that time were occupied by Romans, yet no Roman historian or any writing in that matter (Yep, Romans were so good in writing their history) have chronicled the said strange event.
And what other miracles did Jesus preformed that entered the journals of Roman historians living in his times huh?

Can you give me at least 2 or 3 examples?

Remember, “Extra-ordinary claim requires extra-ordinary evidence.”

3. Bobby Cruz’s rant is very funny. It just gives me the idea that most Christians cannot even comprehend their own holy book or their god. According to this guy, God entered a medium… WHAT? The ALL POWERFULL, CREATOR OF THE UNIVERESE entered a medium? Hindi kaya sumabog yung Medium na yun? Biruin mo, pinasok ng diyos ang katawan nya. If Bobby here reads the Bible, he will noticed that God didn’t possessed anyone nor did he entered the body of a Medium. It is only those declared as evil spirits has the capacity to do so. In the Bible story of the Ark of the Covenant for example, God doesn’t even allow a mere touch on something that he was supposed to be inside – just a small touch will kill you and now he wants me to believe that a mere medium will be the vessel of the God of Israel? Besides, it is very clear that God hates mediums.

4. So do atheists like me hates the Bible?

No, I treat the Bible like how I treat other so-called “sacred scriptures:” a collection of myths, primitive ideas, legends and tall-tales that god-believers believe.
What is there to hate?

Until next time.
John the Atheist

Facts vs. Religious Conviction

I’ve noticed that most god-believers seems to be allergic with scientific and historical facts, especially if these facts will collide with their religious belief. Wow! And they will claim that their religious belief is factual and scientific? Anyways, here are 2 examples:
1. The belief that the human body is the most advance machine… What? Machine? The New Oxford  American Dictionary define a machine as an apparatus using or applying mechanical power and having several parts, each with a definite function and together performing a particular task. Ok so a body is like a machine – so what’s the task of a male nipple? Or the appendix?
Most advance machine? Advance in what? The human body’s life span is 80 to 90 years. It deteriorates and it doesn’t even have the capacity to regenerate.  Reptiles and crustaceans can regenerate a lost tail or limbs, but alas “the most advance machine” can’t even regenerate a lost thumb. The human skeletal system cannot withstand pressure, unlike ants which can carry things that are 10X bigger and 10X heavier. To top it all, our bones loses its calcium as time moves on. Our visions and hearing is limited – unlike some birds and mammals.

So, again… advance in what?

2. A coin found in Jerusalem proves Samson exist. What? Just because a coin have a print of a guy fighting a lion proves Samson? Ok… so a large Greek urn that have a picture of a guy fighting a lion, or a three-headed dog prove Hercules exists. Good grief!

There are more examples, but the thing is that when we talk about religion, it’s really not about facts and evidences – it’s about the conviction to make the myth as true as possible, even to the point that a believer must do away all logical and rational explanation.



Sunday, February 28, 2016

Unicorn?

When you find a unicorn in the Bible, most Bible apologists will say that it was because of wrong translation. 

So, you think you're better in Hebrew compare to all of King James 72 scholars? Anyway, the issue is if there’s a unicorn mentioned in the Bible and thank goodness for the King James Version, there are.






Albert Einstein on the Judeo/Christian God and the Bible

So, you guys think that Einstein believed your Christian/Bible deity when he said that “science without religion is blind” huh?

Better read this…

A Blind Argument


So here we go again, another claim of a “perfect human design.” Today’s topic will be a little bit easier to grasp because we’ll be dealing only one human body part – the eye.