Brandon.B

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Only a morally perfect being exists?
« on: October 22, 2018, 06:44:54 am »
I am a Christian and I am quite fond of the moral argument. Upon thinking about the argument I have come across a problem that I cant find a answer too.

"If God does not exist, then objective moral values and duties do not exist."

A first this seems to be true. If God is morally perfect, then he is the objective standard for moral values and because he is a being he can give us moral duties. The problem for me is that if God does not exist, maybe Bob exists (who is morally perfect but not omniscient, nor timeless, etc.). If Bob exist and he is morally perfect then he can be the objective moral standard. It would seem that you can replace God in the argument for Bob.

What I am getting at is, it would seem that at most this argument can proof that a morally perfect being exist, why add on omniscient, timeless, space-less, etc. ? Maybe you need to omniscient to be morally perfect? I am not sure. I appreciate any feed back on my thoughts.

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jayceeii

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Re: Only a morally perfect being exists?
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2018, 03:45:47 pm »
In what class of entities do you propose that Bob belongs? Is he an angel, or some other agent of God? Otherwise you’re saying, “If an imaginary entity does not exist, who putatively would have had morality, then objective moral values and duties do not exist.” The entity already doesn’t exist, before you make the proposition. So any entity to fill this role would have to be one presumed to exist, as God has been through the religions.

There’s an even more obvious answer, which is that if God does not exist then there is no immortality, therefore there is no real reward for goodness besides other men cheering and saying thanks that you let them raise their families instead of raising havoc. To understand if there is no immortality then there is no binding morality, though, has been beyond the abilities of anyone I’ve met. Perhaps you see it. Don’t go wild just yet though.

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Brandon.B

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Re: Only a morally perfect being exists?
« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2018, 05:33:24 am »
What I am a actually saying is "If a morally perfect being does not exist then object moral values and duties to not exist". Seems to fit the argument well. The question it's why does this morally perfect being need to be God (omniscient, immaterial etc.). I am not sure what you are getting at when you say that "would have to be one presumed to exist" that's seems to be begging the question.

Also not sure what you are saying about immortality. That seems irrelevant to morally. "There is no real reward for goodness". Morality it not based on rewards either. If I deed has no reward that does not mean that it good or bad. As a Christian I base morality on Gods nature.

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jayceeii

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Re: Only a morally perfect being exists?
« Reply #3 on: October 30, 2018, 08:17:50 am »
What I am a actually saying is "If a morally perfect being does not exist then object moral values and duties to not exist". Seems to fit the argument well. The question it's why does this morally perfect being need to be God (omniscient, immaterial etc.). I am not sure what you are getting at when you say that "would have to be one presumed to exist" that's seems to be begging the question.

Also not sure what you are saying about immortality. That seems irrelevant to morally. "There is no real reward for goodness". Morality it not based on rewards either. If I deed has no reward that does not mean that it good or bad. As a Christian I base morality on Gods nature.
My point is that you’re putting an entity you already admit to be imaginary, as the subject of your sentence, “If Bob exists and he is morally perfect then he can be the objective moral standard.” We already know Bob doesn’t exist, unless you’re arguing he’s an angel or some other possibly existing entity. You can’t speak meaningfully about imaginary beings. If God is put as the subject instead, we’ve heard about Him in the religions and so there is a possibility He is not imaginary. So, this is why it could be God, but not Bob.

It is not surprising at all, that you do not quite comprehend the argument that without immortality there is no basis for a binding morality. This is one of the tests to see if a soul has self-awareness, one proof of which is an ability to properly conceptualize self-annihilation. Unfortunately this is something impossible to explain to almost all humans. If you think no reward is required, then you haven’t seen the soul. The angels strive after real rewards, such as more power and wisdom. I have been looking for a moral Christian.

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JTega6

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Re: Only a morally perfect being exists?
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2018, 09:08:05 pm »
It seems as if your argument here is:

If being a morally perfect being does not rely on having other God-like qualities (omniscience, timeless, space-less, etc.), then the moral argument does not prove God’s existence as there can be another being who is not God, Bob, who can function as the objective moral standard.
Being a morally perfect being does not rely on having other God-like qualities (omniscience, timeless, space-less, etc.).
Therefore, the moral argument does not prove God’s existence as there can be another being who is not God, Bob, who can function as the objective moral standard.

My main objection to this argument would be to premise 2. It would be impossible to be morally perfect without having all of the other God-like qualities, omniscience, timeless, space-less, etc. I will use an anecdote to illuminate why that assertion is correct. Say that a servant was tasked with going out into a humongous garden to see if there is any snakes. He goes out to search the garden but is blindfolded so has no knowledge of how large the garden actually is. He is not able to justifiably claim therefore that there are no snakes in the garden as he simply could be missing an area where a snake is. This example is useful for coming to a conclusion in this argument because it is analogous to how God and humans function differently in regards to the full moral space of our actions. To be an objective moral standard one has to be a literal perfect example in regards to moral action. There cannot be any slip up in regards to moral action but one cannot know for sure that they have not done any immoral action unless they are able to search the entirety of moral space to see the implications of their actions. We as humans, not being omniscient, are not able to search all of moral space to see the implications of certain actions just as the blindfolded servant is not able to search the whole of a humongous field. On the other hand, God, being omniscient, would be able to justifiably conclude whether or not there is snakes in the garden, or immoral implications to actions, because he isn't blindfolded and is able to see the entirety of the garden. Therefore, in order to be an objective moral standard one has to possess the rest of the qualities that make up God, omniscience, timeless, space-less, etc., in order to be certain their actions are truly morally perfect.

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jayceeii

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Re: Only a morally perfect being exists?
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2018, 12:01:35 pm »
It would be impossible to be morally perfect without having all of the other God-like qualities, omniscience, timeless, space-less, etc.
Don’t forget the race of angels, cited as a separate creation in the Bible. It is at least possible that God would have endowed the angels with traits pleasing to Himself, i.e. with sufficient inner morality. For instance, although Christians express a desire to “be with Jesus,” looking seriously at their lives one might argue Jesus would not enjoy to be with them. The purpose of the angels may be to be good companions for the Lord, but also better companions to one another, than mankind has proven itself. Becoming a better companion was not included as a goal in the religions, evidently from despair in humans.

If we presume angels to be real beings, the original proposition becomes more interesting. “If an angel does not exist, then objective moral values and duties do not exist.” Then we can note to the degree the angels are able to set up and maintain their society in such a way that the deepest and noblest growth of pure spirit occurs optimally, they have achieved objective moral values and duties. That is to say, if Jesus visits He may have little to add, seeing that the angels were competent to see most of His rules. We see the statement holds true for the angels as well as for God. If the angels are not there, I suppose we’re left with human society, where no one has ever agreed on moral standards.

The angels require God for reassurances about long-term immortality, but can generate a perfect Heaven from their own powers and awareness. Or at least, one might conceive that it could be so. If it is not, then Jesus might need to run around correcting every angel every moment, which would be a lot of work, though perhaps not too much for God! In short here, I’m calling it morality when every soul created by God, works cooperatively with the other created souls until all grow at the maximum rate, and experience maximum joy. We say it is objective rather than subjective, when all agree that it is so, with cause. The angels can find objective morality as God watches on, perhaps adding a thing or two.

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Brandon.B

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Re: Only a morally perfect being exists?
« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2018, 01:58:28 am »
It seems as if your argument here is:

If being a morally perfect being does not rely on having other God-like qualities (omniscience, timeless, space-less, etc.), then the moral argument does not prove God’s existence as there can be another being who is not God, Bob, who can function as the objective moral standard.
Being a morally perfect being does not rely on having other God-like qualities (omniscience, timeless, space-less, etc.).
Therefore, the moral argument does not prove God’s existence as there can be another being who is not God, Bob, who can function as the objective moral standard.

My main objection to this argument would be to premise 2. It would be impossible to be morally perfect without having all of the other God-like qualities, omniscience, timeless, space-less, etc. I will use an anecdote to illuminate why that assertion is correct. Say that a servant was tasked with going out into a humongous garden to see if there is any snakes. He goes out to search the garden but is blindfolded so has no knowledge of how large the garden actually is. He is not able to justifiably claim therefore that there are no snakes in the garden as he simply could be missing an area where a snake is. This example is useful for coming to a conclusion in this argument because it is analogous to how God and humans function differently in regards to the full moral space of our actions. To be an objective moral standard one has to be a literal perfect example in regards to moral action. There cannot be any slip up in regards to moral action but one cannot know for sure that they have not done any immoral action unless they are able to search the entirety of moral space to see the implications of their actions. We as humans, not being omniscient, are not able to search all of moral space to see the implications of certain actions just as the blindfolded servant is not able to search the whole of a humongous field. On the other hand, God, being omniscient, would be able to justifiably conclude whether or not there is snakes in the garden, or immoral implications to actions, because he isn't blindfolded and is able to see the entirety of the garden. Therefore, in order to be an objective moral standard one has to possess the rest of the qualities that make up God, omniscience, timeless, space-less, etc., in order to be certain their actions are truly morally perfect.

Thanks for your response. I think I agree with you. As I said towards the end of my post "maybe you need to be omniscient to be morally perfect". For example you need to be omniscient to be all-loving. But it is less obvious with attributes like space-less. I do like your analogy with the servant and how it shows that any limitation can hinder moral perfection. I think it does answer my question, thanks again.