Time To Dispel The Myth, Religion Does Not Give Us Morals

"What Ladsin? If morality doesn't come from religion, where could it possibly come from?"

Good question class, in this myTake I'll talk a little bit about the evolutionary/ biological sources for moral thinking, then I will talk about where we ought to get morals from and some frequent questions about the ought/is fallacy in regards to this topic, and lastly I will wrap it up with attempting to show how religious morality is in fact not moral.

Evo-Bio: Why do we care what is moral? To answer this I think it is important for us to understand that we are a social species, and we are not the only ones. When we look at other various social species we see that most social species have this innate sense of right and wrong, and that innate sense is modulated by the particular society that an animal finds itself in. One humorous example was a study conducted on Capuchin monkeys in which they were "paid unfairly." In this experiment one monkey was rewarded with a grape, and the other cucumber.

It's really funny to see the reaction, and I recommend watching it. The video is really short. I do not know if any of y'all have kids, but if you are parents or spend a lot of time around children I'm sure that one of the first things that you notice is how quickly children pick up on, "THAT'S NOT FAIR!" We notice this in childhood and all the way up through adulthood we are constantly plagued by this idea that life is not fair. This is not a miraculous, or spiritual thing, but rather the result of several brain structures working in tandem. "Most notably, anterior prefrontal cortex, the medial and lateral orbitofrontal cortex, dorsolateral PFC and additional ventromedial sectors of the PFC, the anterior temporal lobes, the superior temporal sulcus region, subcortical.Certain structures such as the amygdala, ventromedial hypothalamus, septal area and nuclei, basal forebrain, the walls of the third ventricle, and rostral brain-stem tegmentum." Now, these regions don't just account for fairness, but with all moral thinking including empathy, sympathy, etc. I no longer have access to the paper as I have not started my graduate classes yet, but if you want to read the paper, and check their conclusions you're welcome to do so, The Neural Basis of Moral Cognition an article by Jorge Moll, Ricardo de Oliveira-Souza, and Roland Zahn. If I recall correctly it was a relatively short article that was less than 20 pages. I wrote a brief synopsis of it when I Was in undergrad a few years ago, and maybe will add that later if y'all want me to.

Where Ought We Get Morals?

I wasn't entirely sure how I wanted to label this section, because I wanted to cover a broad range of topics, but also didn't want to spend too much time on this myTake as it's distracting me from my reading! So, in order to clarify this in this section I intend to clarify what I'm talking about, and what it appears other people are talking about, when we discuss morality. I will also discuss how we can get an ought from an is, and we'll see if I go any further from there.

So, one of the frequent objections that I get when talking about morality is that, "if morality is just a part of evolution you have no justification to say that we should be moral, or even really define that as morality!" Well, I don't particularly agree, while yes it is impossible to get an ought from an is, it is not impossible to get an ought from two is's. For example:

"It is the case that I want my car to continue running."

"It is the case that getting my oil changed every 3-5k miles will help keep my car running."

Therefor, "I ought to get my oil changed every 3-5k miles."

In much the same way I believe that we can get a similar "ought" about moral actions. If it IS the case that we define morality as having to do with the well-being of sentient creatures, and it IS the case that X promotes the well-being of those creatures, (uh-oh third one) and it IS the case that we want to be moral, then we ought to do that particular action. The converse would also be true, if something harms the well-being... then we ought not do it. BUT ISN'T THAT RELATIVE? No, I don't think it is relative, because we set up an objective standard "well-being" and we can compare our actions in regards to that standard. Some people may respond that well-being isn't well defined, and I agree that it can be difficult to parse out where to draw this line, but just because it's difficult doesn't mean that we shouldn't do it. Physical health is also a pretty vacuous, or ill-defined term, yet we can still say pretty assuredly that the person walking around is in better physical health than the person laying down dead. Secular Moral systems admit that we will fail, we will not always have the right notion of well-being, or have the right methodology to fix it, but the good think about secular moral systems is that they have built into them the ability to get better. As we learn more about the world, about the human body, about how others feel pain, etc we can adjust what we believe to be moral as a result.

Religious "Moral" Systems Are Not Moral

"Ladsin, what can you possibly mean by this?" By this I mean that I do not find religious moral systems to accurately describe what we mean when we are talking about morality. When I hear someone say, "you're morally atrocious!" I do not think they are saying, "this person disobeyed god's law" I think that person did or said something that hurt an otherwise innocent person (or being), and more to the point that's what everyone appears to mean when they talk about it. Religious moral systems tend to have divine edicts, or laws handed down from god to man as rules that we are to live by. In the field of ethics this is known as "Divine Command Theory." I do not think that this actually counts as morality or a system for ethics, because it does not treat humans as a moral agent; rather it treats humans like a dog simply not getting on the couch because it's afraid to get beat. If god were to come out with a new revelation tomorrow and say, "whoops, I was wrong I didn't mean though shall not murder, I meant though shall murder!" We wouldn't (at least I hope) then think that murdering people is a-okay.

That will be all for this MyTake, that way I can get back to my reading, but if you have any questions or areas for clarification ask and I will be sure to try and better elucidate my thoughts on the matter. Also, if you have time I would also highly recommend you watch these videos, as many of my thoughts on the matter were shaped by these fellas.

-Science Bless XD

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Most Helpful Girl

  • The video is so funny and yeah so unfair, poor monkey can't eat 🙊 ...
    Envy is meh, I understand the relation between morals and religion and maybe yeah some morals are acquired from religion, it's not always something bad though, morals also come from common sense, mutual respect and basic rules for coexistence (and more) which aren't always deriving from religion so yeah..

    My religion differs a bit from others because it is a personal religion, it is mainly for me to give a meaning to some things...

    • Can you name a moral that you think we couldn't have come up with if it weren't for religion?

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    • Wouldn't care for all the creatures, like animals*

    • Sorry, I agree but maybe partially, it is okay to not agree sometimes... I like your take though, thanks for discussing this with me 🙂

Most Helpful Guy

  • Religion does not guarantee morality.
    Religion is not required to form morality.

    However, I do not believe that most of the morality which flows from religion is based on self-serving dictates. Most of the morality in religion serves the interest of the welfare of our society:

    1. Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
    2. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain
    3. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
    4. Honor thy father and thy mother.
    5. Thou shalt not kill.
    6. Thou shalt not commit adultery.
    7. Thou shalt not steal.
    8. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.
    9. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife.
    10. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's servants, animals, or anything else.

    Obviously, the first three commandments serve the interest of Christianity. The remainder, while based on Christian love for our neighbor, also serve to maintain an orderly and peaceful society.

    • Before we go further, did you read myTake?

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    • Sure, that would make morality based on the whims of deity. I think that makes a complete mockery of the subject. Which is why I pointed out that it does not treat us as rational agents, and that deity could easily have said something different. What if it had left a verse that said something like every third child should have it's eyeballs removed. Would that be moral?

    • I could only answer that question if I had two left arms.

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What Girls Said 13

  • 100% agree that religion doesn't give people morals...

    The extremely religious types are usually worse than the normal agnostic or atheist people who have a high moral fiber...

    • And how is the extremely atheist compared to the normal religions?

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    • I don't know what you mean by saying that I'm intentionnally being dense. You said "Secular societies are almost always better than religious ones at least on societal health scales." I've asked you an example of religious society you mentionned Saudi Arabia which is an Islamic state, opposed to Danemark whose population is almost all christian. Therefore I thought that by saying "religious or secular society", you meant " religious or secular state". That's why I told you Uganda is a secular state. Really you don't make sense at all. What exactly do you call "secular society" ?

    • Ever notice the extreme, preachy religious types are more concerned with others standings than their own. They seem to think they are perfect.

  • I agree, we get our base morality from our DNA and the rest from society.
    If dogs, rats, and many other species (and I've never heard of a religious rat) are moral then it is not religion that gives us morals.

    • Yeah, however I seperated the idea of scientific morality (this general sense of fairness that we get) from the type of morality that we talk about, well-being primarily.

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    • Yeah I was shocked when I read that too except for the lol part it wasn''t that funny tp be honest

    • @anastar A Greek philosopher, 2600 years ago

  • It depens what people seek peace or excitement.
    Without god there is peace with god live is more exiteting.
    people run away from christianity since it is not save while atheism is.
    with god is different but god is not allowed anymore.
    why are people with god is weak is because the government is against them and the cops. in other words we can explain what makes people weak who believe in god since they are under heavy attack non stop with no support while we are allowed to believe what we are pleasing in democracy this in reality is not true and then atheism is proven to be a tyran and dictator and what they blame the church is them selves and with church and god is proven more freedom aslo to be yourself what is protected.
    Atheism is mannerisms.
    People have no shame become not shy when things are mannerisms.
    So many choose atheism.
    With god people feel shame or have a red face showing love and true honest care.
    That makes church exciting and challancing for people to be allowed what otherwise is not in mannerisms what is to adjust to what is allowed other wise the robot in robot people is disturbed with the shy feeling that has not learned to deal with it as example between wild animals and tame.
    People get shy when they get near what is real.
    They show only mannerisms.
    What is fake about mannerisms is that it is not real.
    If you do what is not real you give a wrong signal to others and children.
    You are not honestly yourself and show nothing of yourself and hide your self.
    In our society is those who are themselves bullied and made a fool of to teach them to stop being themselves and become like any body as what means to use mannerisms as all do , then the bully does stop.
    But society is not about mannerisms.
    If I create a group of people who act naturel they are the strongest. Now they stand alone and are the weakest since people choose to support as a group mannerisms.
    People who act naturaly have a right of protection from the law if they are attacked and bullied and this does not happen.
    Scientific is it not strong to be with the most because if the other is the most that is stronger. So the government is for the majority to support them and only their money counts.
    So science and thinking logic has nothing to do with it at all and in courtroom therefor they would lose their case so they make sure there is never a fair courtroom case.
    But yeah we know society know , and the next question is what to call what is a minority. We do not know that and

    • find out about it.

    • I like also to say that the word mijority is not even proven to be true if you know that poor never vote or able to say their opinion and this way the numbers and figures and ciffers government comes with with their paragraphes to show as prove on tv and magisines are not true and proven for the rich who can pay this all so the poor are certainly not heard.
      About the poor is prejudice. Nobody is able to support them to belong to the so called majority. That gives people a save feeling. it is not proven to be the minority. And this prove will not be and so science those in that profession are corrupt and useless speaking with their income what is in their own benefit to make people believe what they want people to believe and is ofcourse in their own benefit and has nothing got to do with the truth at all even the government hide behind that argument.
      So not all will be able to speak in the government so we know the truth. so the rich speak and lie and are corrupt and are not in jail.

    • Where they belong so their votes do not even count. so what is the so called minority is in reality the absolute offical majority.

  • Beautiful.

  • "If god were to come out with a new revelation tomorrow and say, "whoops, I was wrong I didn't mean though shall not murder, I meant though shall murder!" "

    But the fact is He has never said that.

    • Different gods throughout history have, and that completely misses the point. The point is that if X is moral because god said so, then Y would also be moral if god said so.

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    • The commandment you speak of reads "thou shalt not kill". This was too confusing for people because obviously you kill animals to eat them, or you may kill in self-defense or to protect the life of an innocent. So the new King James version changed it to thou shalt not murder, but there's a lot more to the original meaning. It's just that humans are too lazy to dig deeper and figure out what it is.

    • @loveslongnails I don't get you well my English level is limited. Can you explain please?

  • But there are certain cases where more than one opinion/solution sounds right. Morals can be very subjective in those cases. Of course you can have basic morals without religion, but religion can make people think twice before doing something wrong.

    • "No, I don't think it is relative, because we set up an objective standard "well-being" and we can compare our actions in regards to that standard. Some people may respond that well-being isn't well defined, and I agree that it can be difficult to parse out where to draw this line, but just because it's difficult doesn't mean that we shouldn't do it. Physical health is also a pretty vacuous, or ill-defined term, yet we can still say pretty assuredly that the person walking around is in better physical health than the person laying down dead. Secular Moral systems admit that we will fail, we will not always have the right notion of well-being, or have the right methodology to fix it, but the good think about secular moral systems is that they have built into them the ability to get better. As we learn more about the world, about the human body, about how others feel pain, etc we can adjust what we believe to be moral as a result."

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    • "Is the fetus an adult that it has to be about consent? The hell no."
      Nature's consent doesn't even make sense. So either you're just not interested in the topic and thus coming up with ridiculous strawmen of what I'm saying, or you just can't understand the topic of consent... Which would be troubling. Either way, this is tiresome. I don't know how else to say this, and maybe one day we'll talk again, but for now there appears to be no ability for common dialogue between us on this issue. Good day.

    • Firstly, I asked if the fetus is an adult. I never talked about its consent. Secondly, a no one has the right to take a fetus out only because the mother doesn't want it at all. The problem is that, you are purposely trying to twist my words in a way that we are getting away from the actual topic. So I decided that I won't waste my time on you either. Actually, never ever again. Byeee 👋

  • Religion can have an input on what people’s morals are but there are lots of other things involved such as culture, sexuality, era and many other things

  • I didn’t read this largely because I never thought of morals as religious teachings.

    • Hmm, weird. Where I'm from people think it isn't possible to have morality unless you have some religion.

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    • You must be slow. I’m sorry. Let me be clearer. If as I said, I don’t believe in this particular myth, I agree it’s a false assertion that morality comes from religion. .

    • We both agree, that it is a myth. Maybe it's too early in the morning or something where you live. This is tiresome, and you trying to insult me is just annoying.
      Have a good one.

  • Religious is a documentation of pre-existing morals that religion is not required for. Maybe, I'm no expert :p

    • It can be considered what people thought to be moral at the time, but obviously we don't agree. We don't agree that women are property, that the gays should be murdered, that we should take slaves, that we should kill babes in times of war etc.
      The benefit of secular moral systems is that we can point out, "these people got it wrong. Objectively wrong." If you stick with the divine command theory you have to come up with all of these incredible and incredulous loopholes by which the texts don't say what it clearly says, or try to defend the atrocious things we did in the past.

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    • @Jayson101 Grassy ass

    • Lol, for some reason that reminded me of a donkey.

  • Thank you, ladsin, for posting on the fascinating subject of morality. I especially enjoyed viewing the YT vid on the two monkeys. A few years back when I was in Catholic prep we spent an interesting semester exploring the theme of Morality & Civilization. I especially enjoyed weighing in on the arguments forwarded by Chris Hedges and his nemesis, Christopher Hitchens who were also aware of Hume's fallacy.
    I encourage you to keep posting... your essays enhance both the interest level and the IQ of this forum.

  • it does

  • Of course it doesn't.

    • You'd be surprised at how many people disagree! XD

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    • Naturally they would defend what they believe in. Who would put their hand up and say that their religion serves them no purpose if not their morals. Of course a non-religious person is not going to own up to being completely free of morality.

    • @Tomblebee There are many non-religious people who think that that religions imbued man with reality. I disagree with them, for the reasons stated.
      A person could believe in the religion, but also say it is not the source of morality, just as many people also say, "ok, well there obviously wasn't a flood, ok the patriarchs are obviously amalgams of various characters over time" etc. I'm fine with people having religion I think it's integral to the lives of many people, but the claim that "religion is the source of morality" I find to be fractally wrong.

  • Generally it does if you follow the teachings bit few Christians do.


What Guys Said 54

  • Well here I am, the big, bad 18 year old boogieman that provoked you to write this poorly-made, self-righteous MyTake. You say that morality is at least partially dictated by what promotes one's well-being.

    Your monkey example is irrelevant. In self-interest, the monkey will seek out the reward percieved to be of greater value; does he deserve it? He thinks so, but what does that matter to the other monkey? Nothing; they both have their own interests..

    If it's in my interest to kill for or steal whatever resources I need to survive, then that is moral to do so by that standard.

    As for your long explanation on the brain's function in self-interest, as I've discussed with you before, you're far too caught up in the "what exists" rather than what we ought to do about it. Who cares what part of the brain motirades self-intrest? We know the what, so we don't need you know the why (unless you're trying to pass a test). A neural basis for Morality is so sketchy that even Howard Gartner the psychologist that just invents intelligences abandoned the idea of a moral intelligence because it lacked definitiveness, an evolutionary basis, a region of the brain that can be isolated, aND I'd go farther to say that it fails to fulfill the prerequisite of being able to solve "real world problems."

    Even IF you can explain the biological factors of morality, it doesn't make it sensible; our brains do plenty of stupid things, and morality isn't logical.

    Your example of the car to refute the idea of "is vs ought" is a

    Not applicable comparison. Your example requires definitive consequences for actions to justify the actions. This is not the case in morality. What if I could get away with murder with no negative consequences? Dostoyevsky shows exactly how logical murder is while showing the poor logic of morality in his book Crime and Punishment.

    Your car example would be applicable in a case that yielded negative consequences for what you consider to be immoral, such as getting the lethal injection for committing murder.

    In nature, this concept does not exist except in the case of vengeance from relatives, as shown by the fact that some lions kill their unwanted young, chimps go to war with each other in gruesome battle, and the list goes on of Intraspecies immorality.

    You seem to have mixed utilitarianism with contract theory. They don't go together, and they both fall flat.

    • Ah, I was looking forward to your response. We've broached a bit of the subject a few times, so I was wondering what you'd think after I defined my ideas a bit better.
      What's upsetting to me now though is that it appears either I did a piss poor job of explaining my thoughts, you weren't interested in hearing them, or these two are not mutually exclusive XD
      I never said that it's about a person's subjective well-being. I admitted that the term well-being is complex and not very well-defined, but pointed out that just because it's difficult does not mean that we should not try to do it. I then alluded to the fact that physical health is also not well-defined. I also intentionally separated the neural basis for moral thinking, and what we're talking about in complex discussions of morality. I pointed out that our biology gives us these simple modules like fairness, sympathy, etc, but when we are discussing Morality, we are talking about something different. An abstract concept. One--

    • of well-being. I made that distinction, but apparently I either didn't do so well, or you're conflating the two separate issues. I also showed how this same reasoning works in regards to Morality. Let's say that a person thinks that removing their children's eyes is conducive to their well-being. We can demonstrably show that to not be the case.
      In the case of a murderer not getting caught. If we lived in a society in which we had some knowledge that we may be murdered at any point in time and our murderer would not face punishment that would lead to a society that would lower our well-being because we'd constantly be living in fear. Matt Slick uses a version of raping a person in a coma.

  • There is one very Grand problem with your theory bro,
    Theory of evolution is shit, it always was and will be.
    I consider the those people greatest idiots which think evolution is even a thing to consider cuz it is heavily based on cell theory, which infact is wrong.
    "If every thing evolve from pre-existing life then, where the hell did 1st cell evolve from"
    The idea of evolution is even funny cuz according to them,
    "If human evolved from monkeys than, the cycle of evolution wouldn't have gone that perfect, it will have created other forms,
    1 monkey=multiple version of monkey evolution or Where the hell did all the intermediates go, we can't find their fossil record.
    they don't have fossil record for any intermediate or offshoots of evolution
    What we are finding are highly evolved species perfect for their environment but no intermediate.
    The idea which they present for evolution is shit and according to it one gene takes millions of years to evolve and according to that model,
    evolution of E. Coli bacterium will take 6 billions+ years,
    which predates our universe for starters and life arthopods only evolve 570 millions years ago and from them to human is about 1000billion+ very easily and these values are with 100 accuracy one gene after another.
    Unless specially targeted, which is just another form of special creation and there are about 2000 proteins in human body that are extra-terrestrial in nature and can never be produced by evolution.

    with-out evolution all that shit don't hold any value cuz "Some one created us and the universe in this perfection even below sub-atomic level with perfect synchronization.
    We are in dark ages when we don't even know 6% of the visible matter correctly and can't even know anything about more than 2-3% of human DNA and you are making generalizations like this with out any prove.
    I am a man of science but I am educated enough to see what's right and wrong, see clearly through shit. Your theory is built upon shit and I am really sorry it is shit.
    But you are a good man, educated man and world need people like you to evolve technologically.

    • What we have achieved so far now,
      You will say we built planes, cars and reactors but what we created its not even 50% efficient and we are destroying the atmosphere around us,
      we project it like its better than nature but our tech can even follow the 1st principle correctly,
      "thing need to be efficient"
      Computers will never be able to out smart us cuz we know their coding,
      in the same way,
      we are the one wasting and using the matter according to our own Law of conversation of mass,
      but here you are questioning the one that created the matter. If you think you can explain it then tell me,
      Who created the universe and the visible life as we know it.

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    • If theory of evolution is wrong,
      then we are created with morals imprinted in us with the general feeling of Good or bad and brain is programmed to process the information according to its complex neurological pathway,
      God created humans with morals imprinted now,
      it have everything to do with the cell theory cuz if it was wrong, your definition of neurons is fucked up and 2nd
      if evolution is wrong then your explanation about biologically imprinted senses of good or bad and other animals having the senses is wrong,
      Please don't try to built up on old shit and try to process what you are saying?
      cuz if they are not evolved then, they are imprinted by Creater idiot !

    • Alright mate

  • You can't (or won't) accept this, but...
    Any "morality" outside of God is flawed because it is made up by a morally flawed being.

    Ever see yourself in this Bible passage?
    Romans 1:18-25
    For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.

    24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

    26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.

    • Ah, convincing. You dealt with the subject matter in such a full way.

    • @ladsin
      Actually, I did. If you personally are not convinced... well that's not my fault any more than it's God's fault.
      The point is: left to themselves, people's "morality" leads them to think that having "sex" with the same sex is moral, while it isn't.

  • Very well put! I plan to watch the youtube videos a bit more later as it's a very interesting viewpoint and it also matches a lot of mine. Very intelligently written MyTake! Likely one of the best I have seen.

    • Haha awesome! They're both good videos to watch, and I'm sure I can't hold a candle to either. They're both very eloquent, and have compelling cases. I often listen to both of them on various subjects. If you end up listening to them, let me know what you think.

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    • Hmm maybe I'll check out

    • Yah, just be aware personally that he seems like an asshole. A lot of atheist youtubers unfortunately are.

  • Morals are usually a direct reflection of a person's psychology. Thus each person's thought process would be different. Having said that, I do not think there is a large variation in the basic values of human beings because one's survival instinct also plays a vital role in morality in addition to the psychology.

    • I feel like taking a poll. Did you read this myTake, or just the title?

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    • No it's all good, at least your response was pertinent to the subject. Some people are way out in left field 😂

    • XD... yeah.

  • it's just the last resort argument of a religious fanatics that morals don't exist outside of religion. it's a sign that religious people clearly see themselves as "better" than others, which is what i mostly dislike about religious people.

    • It's true, but unfortunately almost all the people that like me that we can have objective moral values are religious demagogues that claim we get it from their holy book.

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    • Oh, agreed. As if people wouldn't know that murdering was wrong until they heard it on a mountaintop in the voice of a wind, or burning bush, or whatever else XD

    • i mean it goes to show for what level of stupidity this book was aimed at :D and people still get it wrong xD

  • Read the bible it tells you what we should do. I know you say oh not another nut but it can educate ,, not what some guy in a dog collar ideas of what he thinks. It has been around for a couple of thousand years , old isn't useless. It tells us what earth looks like . Hygene rules quarantine people when they are sick. And a lot more...

    • Should I own slaves?

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    • @Jenima That's referencing hebrew slaves. Not slaves taken in war. I'm done talking to you. Good day.

    • "Thou shall love thy neighboor as thyself"
      In the Bible God recommends precisely to the Israelites that they should not take nobody as slave (man-stealing) because they were slaves themselves in Egypt.

  • https://youtu.be/ynLnrbQXai0
    This is nearly impossible to state as we have not found one advanced culture (or even simple) culture that does not have morality and theology combined. Now you say that we don't need religion to be moral, maybe so but since we have no evidence of that how can that claim be made? Everything in society is based off of what came before and our societies values where based upon what came before, namely religion. Pragmatism, the idea of working hard and being rewarded, all that has its roots in the early pilgrims. How do you divest their influence from our current values? The very ideas we hold as being moral are influenced by religion. Dependent on region it would have been moral to kill a person in open combat, yet that is not how most people would view morality, why? Because that was discouraged by Christianity. You may not hold Christianity true but that does not change the fact that it has influenced your entire world view. Then you have to take into account so many other things, like how people claim that Christians hate sex and look down on it. Yet science has shown that promiscuity does actually increase suffering, it increases depression/anxiety, it increases the probability of cheating and divorce etc. So the thing that people thought was foolish and used to argue that religion was out dates turned out to be very much based upon what we need as a society and as individuals. So that is also an issue with claims that religious morality is not morality or is a flawed morality, your not actually researching the source of the rule or view your simply making an assumption and taking it as truth. So those would be the two issues I would have with this claim, namely that the assumption that its wrong simply because one does not like it, and the idea that we can even claim that morality can exist without religion when we have never seen this to be true because religion, whether or not your atheist or a theist, influences culture and our perceptions and ideas to the point where its inescapable (at least as far as we can tell).

  • Smh.. You killing man. This Mytake= BIG F.

    What social species has a innate knowledge of what is right vs wrong and what's fair?

    And you using the monkey experiment is asinine times 10 by saying a monkey felt cheated because one received a grape and the other a cucumber.. Big deal. Both are food.

    • I also linked a study about the neuro-cognitive components, and the fact that other social species have moral codes is well evidenced. Feel free to look that up yourself

  • Of course we don't need religion to be moral. However, if you don't believe in God or hell and believe that both good and evil people ceases to exist when they die, then that can give you freedom to live a selfish life without fear of any punishment. That's why throughout history atheist regimes have committed mass murder. They had nothing to fear. In my experience I see more morality coming from religious people than atheists. And by the way, Matt Dillahunty is a ignorant, arrogant buffoon.

    • The religious are incarcerated at far higher rates than atheists. You have to be accountable to other people.
      Hitler was a Christian, and I presume you're thinking of people like Mao, Stalin, and Kim Jong which set themselves up as gods.

      I don't think that's an accurate summation of matts charachtee, and I don't think you have any justification for saying so.

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    • Ah, special pleading all over the place. How interesting.

    • Then let's agree to disagree because it's pointless wasting each others time.

  • Some guy on can you said he always has supported people's religious beliefs. Really? Do you support radical Muslims, radical Christians or radical anything? Religion, not the belief in God, has caused more deaths throughout history than any other single force on the planet.

  • All morality and laws stem from the bible. All of it. Sorry toots. :)
    You take that away and there is no morality.

  • Furthermore, it's kind of creepy when people say: "How can you be moral without God?"
    In your head, you'd ask, What if you found out there was no God? Are you going to murder people?

  • I don't treat people well because I'm afraid of fire and brimstone.

    I treat people well because I'm a decent person.

  • Everytime I write something people get triggered 😤😤

    • Haha I think yours was the straw that broke the camels back. I had been thinking about writing about this for a while, but I just never had the interest, but in the face of more and more people stating the opposite I felt I needed to get my two-cents out. Apparently most people didn't even bother to read it, which is frustrating.

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    • Haha yup. That was my first response after reading their article while I was drinking with some friends 😂
      I've been sober for a whole month. I'm not happy about it

  • I have always supported people's religious beliefs. That being said, I've also always believed that if you really need an afterlife burning in hell to convince you to not act like a twat; you probably are one.

  • Religion is a guideline on how to live life. Morals are your own actions and may be influenced by religion or not. At the end of the day men protected women from dinosaurs saber tooths etc without even a thank you. And those men never raped the women even though with no legal system during that time they could have. Morals existed long before religion.

  • I completely agree with this Take, religion did some of the worst crimes in history (The Inquisition, The Crusades, Conquistadors destroying civilizations in Central and South America etc).

  • Awwwwwwww, you're so CUTE. You think a 100-year-old concept is something new. This is old news, kid, and your exposition will convince nobody. This isn't to say that I disagree with the basic statement, but you have brought absolutely nothing new to the table.

    • Aww thanks love bug! You added so much dialogue here it's almost impossible for me to imagine how long it took you to think of this!

    • Okay, little boy, what NEW statements have you brought? Where is the new argument?

    • I didn't say I brought anything new. Sweety, this was simply expanding other's thoughts. It was a description of my thoughts on the issue. I didn't say or presume that I was bringing any new thoughts to the table.

  • There are various religions, you can't seriously take all of them I think they are the same.

    Some religions like monotheism contribute to personal growth (morality is part of it).

    Religions are the basis of morality which differs also from culture to culture, so what's morality? A social construct, a mechanism created by evolution? I would say it's a social construct made to have under control our reptylian brain, and severals atheist fails to understsnd it has a link with religion because religion provides a powerful message of peace, justice and prosperitu even after death. What atheism says? Worms will eat you after you dye and there is no everlasting happy place, nor a hell, so whatever you do won't have a holly reward and horrible punishment.

  • Of course religion by itself doen't give morals to anyone. A good morals hinges upon personal efforts to pursue it.


    People by themselves think not about perennial values that supersedes the subjective beliefs. People without an unified moral code stay trapped in subjectivism and for society it's a bad thing because it's not possible to have cohesion when the social norms are based on individual expectations.

    The social life needs moral guidance and it not stand for the vacuum. Without organized religions, cults and ideologies will grow in strength.

    • So why don't we say that morality has to do with well-being and build a moral system from there?

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    • The problem is exactly what I have pointed: the lack of common values shaped by a PHILOSOPHY ABOUT PERENNIAL VALUES. And religion are philosophy too, it's a philosophy in a symbological way, the core of organized religions is about universal values that not decay over time. One example: the notion of 7 capital sins remains valid now as well as it was in biblical times or in the Bronze Age or even in future. Because it's perennial!

      How can people think about so complex matters without a philosophical guidance? Biology and the human evolution are a very weak expectancy because it is all based on INDIVIDUAL SENSE, which might be wrong and usually are. For example: a society which needs an app for sex consent is a proof of the failure on evolution of costumes, the merely "evolution" of times would fail at this point.

    • Apparently you don't feel like listening, or I can't properly communicate with you. Either way. Have a good day.

  • People give religion morals. And religion then teaches those morals. I don't know what myth you are going on about. They use "Divine Commandment" or fear of God to get the less educated to listen and obey. They didn't want anybody coming along and rewriting those teachings to suit their interests. Politics is the embodiment of such a system where democracy determines what is allowed and what isn't.

  • Jewish intellectuals and bald, cynical narcissists are hardly going to convince me I don't need faith. I am done with atheism and all that talk how atheists can be moral, too. They can be, but atheist societies tend to fall apart and descend into nihilism and moral relativism.

  • A person who has faith will most certainly have different morals from an atheist. Also, a person that has genuine faith will be more inclined to live up to their moral standards. Atheism is extremely corrosive to moral virtue. Atheist societies are notorious for abolishing or reducing standards.

    • Could you name a few of these abolished or reduced standards? Did any of them stop people from doing things that don't harm anyone else?

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    • @goaded Perhaps. I am glad my white ancestors colonized the world.

    • And yet their ancestors all came out of Africa, and neither Serbia nor Germany are countries that spring to mind as World Empires.

  • I think that religion is something that can aid you living your life but shouldn't define how you live your life all the time.
    Unless you choose for a religious lifestyle.

    One thing I dislike about religion is how bad apples in a religion can give some religion an extremely bad reputation.

  • I believe that morals come from your surroundings, but religions help us determine which are the *right* morals as the *right morals* can be subjective. For example if you were born and raised Viking your "morals" would have been that you raided to feed your family. We taught the Vikings Christian morals and that by far aided their society and they stopped raiding others like they used to.

  • Religion gives morals to those who are incapable of reasoning out their own.

  • https://i.imgur.com/gUrk5An.jpg

    The good moral side of religions bcomes from the same Golden Rule


    Empathy thus, and Conservatives consider Liberals have too much empathy, not enough morality. :D
    How hypocrite can people get when they try to combine their greed with morality?

  • It comes from our fear of what other people in our society will do if they find out we were acting "bad". If you had a cloak in which you could do things without being seen, and with no consequences, I doubt you would keep your morals.

  • Hitler was religious and did he have morals? But oh wait. Everybody hates him. But when a god does something infinitely worse he's praised!

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