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Jonathan Townsend
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Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
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Why the digression into rational thought and its context? Simply to open some doors and give us some breathing room about what is rational IN CONTEXT and when we might benefit from recognizing a presupposition ( potential axiom reference ) in our discussions.

Leland and I seem close to agreement on some terms. I hold that a knife is ONLY a tool. How a tool is used reflects upon the user. Likewise logic is only a way of expressing the consequences when given a set of premises or axioms. Logic merely keeps the train going in the direction it is pointed so to speak.

The odd thing about logic is that in our everyday lives we use rationalization based upon experience or informed opinion, what you called "credible" data. It is pretty well settled that people do not use formal logic in their thinking. The everyday use of logic is to justify a position and not so much to explore or discover ones position. What we have are rational positions justified by the circumstances. What we make are emotional or sometimes rational decisions based upon our goals and expectations. The Liebers did a nice job discussing this in The Education of T. C. MITS and MITS, WITS and Logic. TCMITS is an acronym for The Celebrated Man in the Street. Likewise WITS is Woman in the Street.

Any thoughts about the Red King (or Chtulhu) as dreamer and thing in the enviorment of the dreamer affecting the dreams?
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Lee Darrow
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Chicago, IL USA
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Leland, allow me to modify my statement about cruelty:

Pain is an indication that something is wrong. Cruelty is the intentional infliction of pain for the sole reason OF inflicting pain (except, perhaps for one's one pleasure as well). Hence, cruelty is wrong in that definition as it serves no positive purpose.

One could argue that gouging someone's eye out with a pointy stick might be the only way to remove an infected eye in an emergency sitution and thus possibly save a person's life. But to intentionally inflict pain on another for no other reason than to do it for it's own sake is wrong because it is the infliction of a state of wrongness in another's body for no positive reason.

Hence, cruelty is wrong.

Try this quote on for size as well:

A man's ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.
Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)

Lee Darrow, C.H.
http://www.leedarrow.com
<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
Euangelion
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Lee, you need to consider another modifier in your definition of pain. Physical pain is an indicication that something is wrong. Psychic or emotional pain can be an indication of something being right. The pang of conscience.
Bill Esborn

"Lutefisk: the piece of cod that passes all understanding."
Jonathan Townsend
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Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
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Quote:
On 2005-09-05 05:53, Lee Darrow wrote:
Leland, allow me to modify my statement about cruelty:

Pain is an indication that something is wrong. Cruelty is the intentional infliction of pain for the sole reason OF inflicting pain (except, perhaps for one's one pleasure as well). Hence, cruelty is wrong in that definition as it serves no positive purpose. ...


NO. "Why not?" you may well ask.

Most simply... there is no true mindreading. The PRESUMTION of knowing what someone is thinking makes the argument invalid.

Try this: an action can be useful to not useful to the one doing the action in that when asked, they report it did, would and can further their progress toward their goals. See the problem, the required reporting. The shift from subjective ( I do what I need to ) to objective ( I do what I say I mean to do ) is very tricky.

What goals then? Some people do not process their inner feelings well INSIDE theirselves. They externalize conflicts and the impulses or drives which in their world identify the drives. Some seek to see the conflicts resolved outside themselves and so set about building models or sometimes real life people "psychodramas".

Do you know your conflicts? How do you live with them? How do you externalize some of them? Do you do this to maintain balance or perhaps to test your decision to hold one impulse as primary over another?
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Leland Stone
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Hiya, Lee:

Professor Einstein was a brilliant scientist but a poor moralist. There is no
'a priori' basis for the imperative "should" in the Einstein quote you've shared, and the flaw in his proposition is the same as the one in yours. You're in good company!

Again, if the cosmos is nothing but matter and energy, then "morality" (and the terms that serve it, like "should" and "ought," "right" and "wrong") is non-existent. You may say, "We should not gouge out others' eyes for no reason beside our own amusement," and another will ask, "Why not?" The materialist has no response but his or her mere opinion, masquerading in the costume of this fictitious "morality." (Dress it up in pragmatism, drape it in utilitarianism, or wrap it in an appeal to consensus, and it remains what it is: An opinion illegitimately elevated to subjegate non-conforming alternatives.)

The natural world provides gravitational pull, inertia, entropy, temperature, electromagnetic fields, and other quantitatively and qualitatively determinable functions and attributes, but it cannot offer "morality." Dispute a particular deity as the source of morality if you will, but arguing for the materialist's position is a lost cause. Unless Einstein discovered an atom or an energy source responsible for "morality," then this alien term is a product of supernaturalism, not nature.

Leland
Jonathan Townsend
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Eternal Order
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Quote:
On 2005-09-05 16:37, Leland Stone wrote:...Dispute a particular deity as the source of morality if you will, ... this alien term is a product of supernaturalism, not nature.


Well perhaps human nature. We seem rather alien to our enviroment though. Smile
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Lee Darrow
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Jonathan, your argument regarding mindreading, with regards to my statement about the deliberate infliction pain for its own sake only falls flat for the following reason, your presumption of cooperation on the part of the receipient, or so it seems.

Take the victims of the Texas Tower Shooter as an example, who decided to shoot the people simply because he wanted to, or any of the other "thrill killers" out there as examples. They are killing simply because they WANT to. No other reason given to their own consciousness - and, according to ANY religion, for sin to exist, the full conscious knowledge OF the sin must be present.

The subconscious motivations, if any, do NOT matter to the moralistic standpoint of the victim(s) nor to the religious morality, according to any church doctrine.

These people kill because they simply WANT to.

Hence, under the Heinleinian definition of morality, which is a non-religious definition, they are immoral. My stance is grounded in that basic definition.

Mind reading does not enter into the equation - it is the action and the result and the stated and provable motivation that does. In fact, that is the basis of U.S. criminal law, as well, which seeks to codify and regulate morality in our society, without resorting to religious stirctures.

Also, your argument fails on another point, which it is solely perpetrator-centric and does not take into account the impact on the victim, which my statement does. You are ignoring half of the equation. If the infliction of pain does no good but to satisfy the desires of the perpetrator, as I postulated, then it serves no real good purpose and is wrong. The damage to the victim is done, whether temporary (on a cellular or psychological level) or permanent, and cannot be undone as an act.

If the only positive result is that the perpetrator gets his or her jollies from inflicting this pain on the victim, then it serves no real, measureable good and the perpetrator needs to seek psychological help.

And, frankly, seems to be veering off topic a bit... maybe...

Lee Darrow, C.H.
http://www.leedarrow.com
<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
Jonathan Townsend
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Eternal Order
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Please Lee, you forget that there are some who actually seek to get harmed.

Anyway, while the internal logic and rationalization behind value systems may be of interest to some, this is hardly the place.

Back to the stories.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
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