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Can you help but do evil? I do not see how. Do you?
Posted: 17 August 2012 04:29 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Can you help but do evil? I do not see how. Do you?
And if you cannot, why would God punish you?

Christians are always trying to absolve God of moral culpability in the fall by putting forward their free will argument and placing all the blame on mankind.
That usually sounds like——God gave us free will and it was our free willed choices that caused our fall. Hence God is not blameworthy. Such statements simply avoid God’s culpability as the author and creator of human nature.

Free will is only the ability to choose. It is not an explanation why anyone would want to choose “A” or “B” (bad or good action). An explanation for why Eve would even have the nature of “being vulnerable to being easily swayed by a serpent” and “desiring to eat a forbidden fruit” must lie in the nature God gave Eve in the first place. Hence God is culpable for deliberately making humans with a nature-inclined-to-fall, and “free will” means nothing as a response to this problem.

If all do evil/sin by nature then, the evil/sin nature is dominant. If not, we would have at least some who would not do evil/sin. Can we then help but do evil? I do not see how. Do you?

Having said the above for the God that I do not believe in, I am a Gnostic Christian naturalist, let me tell you that evil and sin is all human generated and in this sense, I agree with Christians, but for completely different reasons. Evil is mankind’s responsibility and not some imaginary God’s. Free will is something that can only be taken. Free will cannot be given not even by a God unless it has been forcibly withheld.

Much has been written to explain evil and sin but I see as a natural part of evolution.

Consider.
First, let us eliminate what some see as evil. Natural disasters. These are unthinking occurrences and are neither good nor evil. There is no intent to do evil even as victims are created. Without intent to do evil, no act should be called evil.
In secular courts, this is called mens rea. Latin for an evil mind or intent and without it, the court will not find someone guilty even if they know that they are the perpetrator of the act.

Evil then is only human to human when they know they are doing evil and intend harm.
As evolving creatures, all we ever do, and ever can do, is compete or cooperate.
Cooperation we would see as good as there are no victims created. Competition would be seen as evil as it creates a victim. We all are either cooperating, doing good, or competing, doing evil, at all times.

Without us doing some of both, we would likely go extinct.

This, to me, explains why there is evil in the world quite well.

Be you a believer in nature, evolution or God, you should see that what Christians see as something to blame, evil, we should see that what we have, competition, deserves a huge thanks for being available to us. Wherever it came from, God or nature, without evolution we would go extinct. We must do good and evil.

There is no conflict between nature and God on this issue. This is how things are and should be. We all must do what some will think is evil as we compete and create losers to this competition.

These links speak to theistic evolution.

http://www.americamagazine.org...

http://www.youtube.com…/c/6F8036F680C1DBEB

If theistic evolution is true, then the myth of Eden should be read as a myth and there is not really any original sin.

If the above is not convincing enough for you then show me where in this baby evil lives or is a part of it’s nature and instincts.

http://www.youtube.com...

Can you help but do evil? I do not see how. Do you?
And if you cannot, why would God punish you?

Regards
DL

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Posted: 17 August 2012 09:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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I don’t care for the term, “evil”. but we all DO sometimes screw up.  I’ve done so quite few times during my life.  My response is to try to make restitution plus, say 20%, either to the person I may have hurt, or if that’s not possible, to society in general. 

Occam

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Posted: 18 August 2012 06:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Occam. - 17 August 2012 09:56 PM

I don’t care for the term, “evil”. but we all DO sometimes screw up.  I’ve done so quite few times during my life.  My response is to try to make restitution plus, say 20%, either to the person I may have hurt, or if that’s not possible, to society in general. 

Occam

Understood but I do not speak of screw ups but of when you do the right thing for yourself and hurt those you compete against.

Take the last time you competed for a job. You won and created a loser of the others and they would say that evil was done to them beacuase if that lose is part of a chain of loses, they will eventually starve to death because they were not good enough to gain any resources. You did not screw up but furthered man’s survival by being the fittest. If the fittest rise then the less fit must fall.

I see no way out for us if we are to survive and not go extinct. We must compete and do evil from the POV of the loser.

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DL

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Posted: 18 August 2012 09:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I was discussing this in the philosophy section on morality. But you also bring up the idea of Original Sin which I think is a Middle-age creation of the original myth. The actual purpose of the myth was a means to rationalize how man became intelligent (like the gods or God) and had to struggle to survive and eventually die. The ancients rationalized human ingenuity and intelligence as the tradeoff for simplicity in eternity with ignorance and naivete.  “Eve”, as the source name even suggests today, represented the end of a day (evening), the death of a day to be recycled back to Earth for a new day. Even the name Adam, which meant, “of the Earth” was wordplay for their telling. Modern Jews, Christians, and Muslims have all seemed to have changed what may have been just a secular myth meant to teach words and speculative origins.

I agree with you that morals are human creations alone.

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Posted: 18 August 2012 12:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Scott Mayers - 18 August 2012 09:27 AM

I was discussing this in the philosophy section on morality. But you also bring up the idea of Original Sin which I think is a Middle-age creation of the original myth. The actual purpose of the myth was a means to rationalize how man became intelligent (like the gods or God) and had to struggle to survive and eventually die. The ancients rationalized human ingenuity and intelligence as the tradeoff for simplicity in eternity with ignorance and naivete.  “Eve”, as the source name even suggests today, represented the end of a day (evening), the death of a day to be recycled back to Earth for a new day. Even the name Adam, which meant, “of the Earth” was wordplay for their telling. Modern Jews, Christians, and Muslims have all seemed to have changed what may have been just a secular myth meant to teach words and speculative origins.

I agree with you that morals are human creations alone.

Thanks for this.

I have no argument with your take of Eden and agree on your view as it matches the original Jewish take of man’s elevation and not his fall. Christianity reversed it for the guilt and $$$$$$$$$$$$ to appease that guilt. From what I understand of the word adam, not Adam, it represents society. As an archetype all men, that fits better FMPOV.

From a straight philosophy or evolution view, I still maintain that like it or not, we must all do evil as seen from the losers POV as we force his line down our demographic pyramid and whoever lands at the bottom is the weakest and will die out.  I do not see how we can both survive and stop the least fit being part of this natural eugenics program.

We can try to reduce the harm but if we eliminate it altogether then we will no longer evolve and go extinct.

Regards
DL

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Posted: 18 August 2012 12:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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I wasn’t just talking about screw-ups, but also about doing something that hurts others. 

Your example of hurting someone by competing successfully for a job often isn’t the case.  I had only two jobs during my work life.  The first, I applied for a summer job as a lab tech as an undergraduate.  They didn’t need one, but they had been unsuccessful in finding a tech writer so hired me (so no one was hurt) for the summer.  Eleven years later, at the same company (in a much better job), a supplier lost a needed employee so they asked if I’d be willing to fill that slot (at significantly higher wages).  Again, there was no other competing so no one was hurt. 

I enjoyed helping those around me function better.  In other words, your assumption of a zero sum game is incorrect.  If set up properly, everyone can win.

We can try to reduce the harm but if we eliminate it altogether then we will no longer evolve and go extinct.

  Sorry, GIA, but I think that’s just wrong, very, very incorrect.

Occam

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Posted: 18 August 2012 12:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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I agree. I just would not label our actions as good or bad relative to our self-image unless it has a personal effective advantage. If I judge something that I did was wrong, then it is because I should believe that my action is derogatory to me in effectively surviving my environment. It should be motive for me to try something different. The very same behavior in a different environment could actually be good, or even indifferent.

For example, if I play with myself in public, the act could generate unease and discomfort towards other people. They may react against me for it and cause me to be locked up. The same act in my own home in privacy elicits no offense or harm on others and provides me with self pleasure and reward.

Edit: Response was to Greatest I Am.

[ Edited: 18 August 2012 01:01 PM by Scott Mayers ]
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Posted: 18 August 2012 01:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Occam, how does your statement on zero-sum work with the Capitalist reality? No real profit over and above expenses and liabilities can be netted without someone losing.

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Posted: 18 August 2012 01:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Wrong, wrong, wrong.  When people produce a product or a service, they are generating value (which you may want to call profit) without anyone losing.  If I have an orange tree in my yard and I give some of my excess to a neighbor who gives me some of his excess tomatoes, we have both won or profited without either of us losing anything.  A good example of a NONzero sum game.

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Posted: 18 August 2012 02:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Occam. - 18 August 2012 01:17 PM

Wrong, wrong, wrong.  When people produce a product or a service, they are generating value (which you may want to call profit) without anyone losing.  If I have an orange tree in my yard and I give some of my excess to a neighbor who gives me some of his excess tomatoes, we have both won or profited without either of us losing anything.  A good example of a NONzero sum game.

Occam

In an ideal world, each person has the same equal initial resources to trade. But capitalism is formally defined as right of private ownership of properties, production, and inheritance. But we live in a fixed finite environment. That means that as the population grows, a smaller a smaller dividend of a possible equal share is continuously dissolving and scarcity increases. Our countries are not communist and so no one here would believe in equal ownership to all by separating their inheritances to be the same. That would be closer to zero-sum over capitalism.

The only alternative for non-inherited individuals is to labor. Here in my city, it is impossible for one individual laboring an average income of $30,000 to even be privileged to get a loan for a house at an average of $350,000.00. Where does this zero-sum deal come in?

The original owners of properties had to claim it by virtue of force, by the force of protection guaranteed of their own private army or the backing of their protective governments (backed up by a democratic army). [Unearned] Then they could inherit it to their offspring. [unearned] Then they could use their property as collateral to rent for energy they don’t personally have to provide[unearned].

I could go on and on. I haven’t a clue where anyone could get the notion that anything above personal energy output can equate to larger input? The same rule of conservation of physics applies in finances too. And if someone gains anything more than they put into something, a profit, it has to be taken away from somewhere else. Otherwise no one would ever get richer.

And morals, likewise and based on things like our economic philosophies, are not guaranteed to be zero-sum.

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Posted: 19 August 2012 09:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Occam. - 18 August 2012 12:37 PM

I wasn’t just talking about screw-ups, but also about doing something that hurts others. 

Your example of hurting someone by competing successfully for a job often isn’t the case.  I had only two jobs during my work life.  The first, I applied for a summer job as a lab tech as an undergraduate.  They didn’t need one, but they had been unsuccessful in finding a tech writer so hired me (so no one was hurt) for the summer.  Eleven years later, at the same company (in a much better job), a supplier lost a needed employee so they asked if I’d be willing to fill that slot (at significantly higher wages).  Again, there was no other competing so no one was hurt. 

I enjoyed helping those around me function better.  In other words, your assumption of a zero sum game is incorrect.  If set up properly, everyone can win.

We can try to reduce the harm but if we eliminate it altogether then we will no longer evolve and go extinct.

  Sorry, GIA, but I think that’s just wrong, very, very incorrect.

Occam

All creature cooperate of compete and you think man can somehow evolve without doing so. Ok.

Anecdotal information like what you provided is always good to hear but now get out of yourself and apply what the O P is saying to all o0f us and you will see a different picture.

Regards
DL

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Posted: 19 August 2012 09:28 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Scott Mayers - 18 August 2012 12:57 PM

I agree. I just would not label our actions as good or bad relative to our self-image unless it has a personal effective advantage. If I judge something that I did was wrong, then it is because I should believe that my action is derogatory to me in effectively surviving my environment. It should be motive for me to try something different. The very same behavior in a different environment could actually be good, or even indifferent.

For example, if I play with myself in public, the act could generate unease and discomfort towards other people. They may react against me for it and cause me to be locked up. The same act in my own home in privacy elicits no offense or harm on others and provides me with self pleasure and reward.

Edit: Response was to Greatest I Am.

Who were you competing with while playing with yourself?

Regards
DL

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Posted: 19 August 2012 09:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Occam. - 18 August 2012 01:17 PM

Wrong, wrong, wrong.  When people produce a product or a service, they are generating value (which you may want to call profit) without anyone losing.  If I have an orange tree in my yard and I give some of my excess to a neighbor who gives me some of his excess tomatoes, we have both won or profited without either of us losing anything.  A good example of a NONzero sum game.

Occam


A good example of cooperation that but it does not speak to when you must compete.
If your other neighbor also has an orange tree and gives an extra orange as a bonus, then you are stuck with oranges that rot if you do not find another to trade with.

Regards
DL

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Posted: 19 August 2012 12:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Quoting GIA:

then you are stuck with oranges that rot if you do not find another to trade with.

Not if I give them to other neighbors who don’t have an orange tree, and do so without any need for recompense.  Or do you consider that evil because I’ve made them feel guilty since they don’t give me anything in return?  LOL

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Posted: 19 August 2012 12:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Occam. - 19 August 2012 12:17 PM

Quoting GIA:

then you are stuck with oranges that rot if you do not find another to trade with.

Not if I give them to other neighbors who don’t have an orange tree, and do so without any need for recompense.  Or do you consider that evil because I’ve made them feel guilty since they don’t give me anything in return?  LOL

Occam

Not at all. Cooperation is good.
Remember though that all altruistic acts have a self-serving aspect.

Regards
DL

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Posted: 19 August 2012 12:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Sorry, but I think that’s horse crap.  I’ve heard that argument often before (hidden motivation that can’t be demonstrated), and it’s the last resort of someone who can’t stand to admit being wrong. snake

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