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Scot Wilcox


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Do right and wrong exist?

I'm curious about objective right and wrong. If you believe in God, this is a no-brainer. Some things are wrong, some things are right, simply because God says so and He knows. But if you don't believe in God, can you still believe in objective morality? I personally don't think you can. I mean, what do you base it off of? How do you find out what's objectively right or wrong? (By objective I mean "existing independent of thought or an observer as part of reality." from dictionary.com)
Sure, there's subjective morality. Any idea of right or wrong come up with by a human is by definition subjective. That's all well and good. Problem is that it only applies to people who believe in it and it gives them no authority to proclaim anything as "what we should be doing." Very often everybody disagrees with each other and we don't get anywhere. (Just look at Congress for an example of this.)
Maybe you disagree with me and you think there is objective morality but no God. That's fine. I would like to ask you to answer a question for me though. Let's pick an easy one. Why is rape objectively wrong? Don't misunderstand me, I can't think of a single instance where rape wouldn't be wrong. I believe very strongly that sexual abuse is one of the greatest evils in the world. Why is it evil? If you can answer me without using a God-based or subjective argument, I'll concede the point.
That point is this: Without God, there is no such thing as right and wrong, only the things we call right and wrong. And since nobody can agree on what to call what, we're all in a lot of trouble.


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    Mar 2 2013: You said it beautifully. I'm new here and happy to find a home for my obscure thoughts. I've thought about this a lot. It could be said that anything that hinders life is wrong, but if so, It ultimately raises the question of: "Is life right?" Life is maintained through co-existence, co-existence is maintained, through peace, so anything that disturbs peace, disturbs life, but is that objectively wrong? Before life on Earth, was the universe wrong or incomplete? If humanity does truly complete the universe by introducing an element with the capacity to appreciate it, then it would imply that life is right, that peace is right. Which brings to the real question on my mind: "Is life necessary?"
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        Mar 2 2013: For the first questions, according to Neil DeGrasse Tyson (I hope I spelled that right) no, we are starstuff. We are made up of the same exact components as the distant cosmos. We are the universe.

        And a Buddhist whose name I can't remember spoke of life as comparable to a jar. The same air exists within the barrier of the jar as does around it. If the jar is smashed, the air inside is immediately assimilated to the air outside. The human shell is like a jar. It is smashed when enlightenment is achieved.

        Not to mention the Taoist view of what happens to us after death, how we return to the great consciousness, or something to that effect.
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        Mar 2 2013: I have yet to form a complete personal opinion on these things yet, but I figured these were apt and interesting. For now, it's all conjecture. I would love a day when we have answers to these questions backed by incontestable proof. Science still has a ways to go. Thank you for the great questions by the way.

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