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Go to: The Internet: Where religions come to die

lvpl78's Avatar Jump to comment 51 by lvpl78


There's a reason why religious people want their children home schooled. As Thunderfoot says it is to avoid scrutiny. You don't see many scientists home schooling their children. Science is built on scrutiny.

The key point is this. The existence of the internet increases exposure to all ideas indiscriminately. However, in the religious vs non-religious ideological struggle, only one side is coming from a default starting point of limiting exposure to specific information - i.e. any that contradicts it's doctrine. Therefore all other things being equal the existence of the internet means that one side has a lot more to lose than the other. the side that has practiced the limiting of information. The side that brainwashes. The religious side.

Wed, 28 Apr 2010 20:46:00 UTC | #463746

Go to: Moral confusion in the name of 'science'

lvpl78's Avatar Jump to comment 101 by lvpl78

"Morality" is just another tortuously indirect survival strategy, or at the very least, a side effect from one.

If Sam wants to assign a degree of objectivity to morality not in terms of the how, but in terms of the SHOULD (as in what should moral values be), the the only way to do that is within the context of the differential survival of genes.

Otherwise, the "SHOULD" part seems meaningless to me. I suspect there may be something in Sam's piece that I haven't grasped.

Maybe, if he finds this universal unit of "wellbeing", or "happiness", then it sounds like an extension of economics. How will people behave and how systems operate in different circumstances.

Wed, 31 Mar 2010 02:33:00 UTC | #454247

Go to: Moral confusion in the name of 'science'

lvpl78's Avatar Jump to comment 45 by lvpl78


A valiant effort sir.

The first two are both products of religion. As Sam says in this piece, it may be impossible in PRACTICE to state the exact evolutionary reasons for religious behaviour, but in PRINCIPLE we can be confident that they are there. It might be obedience to authority, or it might be fear of dying, or both or something else. But it will in principle be explainable in those terms.

As for number 3, you may disagree over the method used in foreign aid, or you may question whether it ultimately does what is intended to make lives better for people overseas, but ultimately the goal is the same, no matter what your opinion of the method.

The goal is to stop people in other countries from suffering and/or dying. Why do you want other people to not die? Because genes that make bodies which happen to behave altruistically toward other bodies sharing a high proportion of the same genetic information (say kin or same species), will by default obtain an advantage with respect to natural selection versus those (genes) which do not. Not individuals, genes. To put it another way. genes that make parents not care for their children, or which make humans indiscriminately harm others, will tend to not still be around. Their chances of being replicated are much slimmer.

That's why you and I don't want to other people die for no good reason.

Tue, 30 Mar 2010 02:13:00 UTC | #453895

Go to: Moral confusion in the name of 'science'

lvpl78's Avatar Jump to comment 36 by lvpl78


Can you think of a moral statement that is not defined by your evolution?

Tue, 30 Mar 2010 00:04:00 UTC | #453840

Go to: Moral confusion in the name of 'science'

lvpl78's Avatar Jump to comment 30 by lvpl78

The difference between an animal and a machine is that the animal is a product of replication, heredity and variation in the population.

Otherwise - yeah, I agree we are just machines. When someone says "would it still be you" in the case of the brain transplant scenario, my answer is yes. I am my brain. more specifically, I am the information in my brain and I am the mechanisms by which that information changes.

Mon, 29 Mar 2010 23:54:00 UTC | #453831

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