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Inherently Good or Bad?

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    LondonBridgeLondonBridge __BANNED USERS regular
    edited April 2007
    There was a study done where babies are altruistic. However, as they get older they lose it. So yes, we are born as pure as an angel.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11641621/

    LondonBridge on
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    ElJeffeElJeffe Not actually a mod. Roaming the streets, waving his gun around.Moderator, ClubPA Mod Emeritus
    edited April 2007
    Yar wrote: »
    Peanut butter = good
    Mustard = bad.

    It is axiomatic self-evident truth.

    And here we have evidence of the "broken sociopath" type I was talking about. Clearly, anyone who disses a good brown or dijon mustard is fucked in the head and represents pure evil.

    ElJeffe on
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    Grid SystemGrid System Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Oboro wrote: »
    Oboro wrote: »
    < snip >
    Now you're not even arguing with me. I talked about destiny, not inherence. The two aren't the same thing. My answer to the OP's question regarding inherence was, after all, "no".
    The distinction between inherence and destiny seems altogether arbitrary and I'd really like it if you could clarify what in the world the difference is between a predisposition and destiny?
    A predisposition (or an inherent property) is something about you, about what you fundamentally are, some switch or series of switches that will be flipped given the right stimulus. A destiny is something that isn't necessarily about you at all outside of the fact that it will involve something happening to you. It might be my destiny to have a jet engine fall on me, but it would be silly to say that I am predisposed to having jet engines fall on me.

    Grid System on
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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited April 2007
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    Yar wrote: »
    Peanut butter = good
    Mustard = bad.

    It is axiomatic self-evident truth.

    And here we have evidence of the "broken sociopath" type I was talking about. Clearly, anyone who disses a good brown or dijon mustard is fucked in the head and represents pure evil.

    Jeff speaks the truth about mustard.

    Kill the one called Yar before he infects the tribe with his heresy.

    Shinto on
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    darthmixdarthmix Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Zek wrote: »
    Logically speaking, the inherent state of man is "bad," because that's how our society categorizes many of our base instincts. Naturally that's completely relative, but we just had a thread on that.
    Society categorizes some of our instincts that way, because those particular instincts seem to cause so many problems. We also have the insinct to socialize, to care for, to nurture, and to empathize with one another. Society encourages the behaviors it perceives as beneficial and discourages those it sees as harmful; whether they're based on insinct is beside the point as far as society is concerned.

    darthmix on
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    ElJeffeElJeffe Not actually a mod. Roaming the streets, waving his gun around.Moderator, ClubPA Mod Emeritus
    edited April 2007
    Shinto wrote: »
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    Yar wrote: »
    Peanut butter = good
    Mustard = bad.

    It is axiomatic self-evident truth.

    And here we have evidence of the "broken sociopath" type I was talking about. Clearly, anyone who disses a good brown or dijon mustard is fucked in the head and represents pure evil.

    Jeff speaks the truth about mustard.

    Kill the one called Yar before he infects the tribe with his heresy.

    My wife hates dijon mustard. One of my favorite culinary tactics is to make a dish using it, get her to admit that it's delicious, and then tell her she just ate dijon mustard. I tried it the other day when making some burgers for Easter - put in some dijon mustard with a little chopped garlic, salt and pepper. It was pretty awesome, and she loved it, and I was all, "ZING!"


    Also, something about people being born good or evil.

    ElJeffe on
    I submitted an entry to Lego Ideas, and if 10,000 people support me, it'll be turned into an actual Lego set!If you'd like to see and support my submission, follow this link.
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    darthmixdarthmix Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    One time I got a catalogue in the mail that was full of exotic mustards and mustard-related accesories. Mustard dispensers, mustard boats, special mustard-spreading knives. No clue how it came to me, except that I actually do like mustard. But the best part was the last page, which was dedicated to what I have come to call the mustard manifesto. The cliff's version:

    1) We really, really like Mustard

    2) We really, really hate ketchup

    3) We really, really hate people who like ketchup

    I think I lost it in a move. I wish I still had it.

    darthmix on
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    VariableVariable Mouth Congress Stroke Me Lady FameRegistered User regular
    edited April 2007
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    Shinto wrote: »
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    Yar wrote: »
    Peanut butter = good
    Mustard = bad.

    It is axiomatic self-evident truth.

    And here we have evidence of the "broken sociopath" type I was talking about. Clearly, anyone who disses a good brown or dijon mustard is fucked in the head and represents pure evil.

    Jeff speaks the truth about mustard.

    Kill the one called Yar before he infects the tribe with his heresy.

    My wife hates dijon mustard. One of my favorite culinary tactics is to make a dish using it, get her to admit that it's delicious, and then tell her she just ate dijon mustard. I tried it the other day when making some burgers for Easter - put in some dijon mustard with a little chopped garlic, salt and pepper. It was pretty awesome, and she loved it, and I was all, "ZING!"


    Also, something about people being born good or evil.

    the only real revenge here is to make sure it's among your daughter's favorite foods. (condiments?... no I think it deserves food status, for awesomeness)

    Variable on
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    IncenjucarIncenjucar VChatter Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Oro: Just pretend Grid used "Value X vs. Value Y" instead of "Good vs. Evil."

    Incenjucar on
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    SmasherSmasher Starting to get dizzy Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    Shinto wrote: »
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    Yar wrote: »
    Peanut butter = good
    Mustard = bad.

    It is axiomatic self-evident truth.

    And here we have evidence of the "broken sociopath" type I was talking about. Clearly, anyone who disses a good brown or dijon mustard is fucked in the head and represents pure evil.

    Jeff speaks the truth about mustard.

    Kill the one called Yar before he infects the tribe with his heresy.

    My wife hates dijon mustard. One of my favorite culinary tactics is to make a dish using it, get her to admit that it's delicious, and then tell her she just ate dijon mustard. I tried it the other day when making some burgers for Easter - put in some dijon mustard with a little chopped garlic, salt and pepper. It was pretty awesome, and she loved it, and I was all, "ZING!"


    Also, something about people being born good or evil.

    Ah, but the fact that you have to disguise the taste of the mustard with other condiments proves it does indeed taste bad! You have been undone by your own science.

    Smasher on
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    [Tycho?][Tycho?] As elusive as doubt Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    My policy is that people are jerks.

    [Tycho?] on
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    IncenjucarIncenjucar VChatter Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Individual genetic lines are going to have bred in specific personality traits, based on their histories. Closely-related groups of people will likely exhibit similar traits.

    But you can only determine them if they are particularly strong and overwhelming. It's not really possible to have a proper experiment, even ignoring ethical guidelines.

    Incenjucar on
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    YarYar Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Damnit people I was making jokey.

    Mustard's ok I guess. What I meant to say was:

    joy = good
    sorrow = bad

    But whether I say that or I talk about condiments, either way I pwn the thread yea me.

    Yar on
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    _J__J_ Pedant Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    edited April 2007
    Are we born inherently good or bad (sinful or blameless)?

    Mu.


    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mu_%28negative%29)

    _J_ on
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    YarYar Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    _J_ wrote: »
    Are we born inherently good or bad (sinful or blameless)?

    Mu.
    Cute but others here have already provided much more convincing arguments that the answer is "good."

    Yar on
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    JohannenJohannen Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Yar wrote: »
    _J_ wrote: »
    Are we born inherently good or bad (sinful or blameless)?

    Mu.
    Cute but others here have already provided much more convincing arguments that the answer is "good."

    Really? I don't see how. Genetically we're a blank slate, the only thing that makes us good is fear really. We fear death and so we don't kill others because we gain the understanding that we wouldn't like to die ourselves. Most of the time that doesn't even happen and people kill just to protect themselves.

    There isn't much evidence to support any good or evil theorem.

    Johannen on
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    EchoEcho ski-bap ba-dapModerator mod
    edited April 2007
    I am of the opinion that people who call other people evil, for whatever the reasons, are persons to stay very far away from.

    Echo on
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    LiveWireLiveWire Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    We are born with a biological imperative to survive. The concept of morality is a social tool that some animals, particularly humans, have learned to utilize because it can benefit the group in obvious ways. Basic morality (ie don't kill a fellow human who is no threat to you) is hardwired biologically into us, though its a tune we aren't necessarily forced to dance to. More complex "morality" (ie it is immoral to use electricity on a Saturday) is pure unnecessary meme.

    Philosophers continually strive to define the parameters of a "universal" human moral code without the subjective religious pork-morality. Here is a rather beautiful example: http://www.ebonmusings.org/atheism/new10c.html

    LiveWire on
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    _J__J_ Pedant Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    edited April 2007
    Yar wrote: »
    _J_ wrote: »
    Are we born inherently good or bad (sinful or blameless)?

    Mu.
    Cute but others here have already provided much more convincing arguments that the answer is "good."

    So we prefer that which is convincing to that which is true?

    _J_ on
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    IncenjucarIncenjucar VChatter Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited April 2007
    _J_ wrote: »
    So we prefer that which is convincing to that which is true?

    Rhetoric has long been master over logic in this world.

    Incenjucar on
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    MrMisterMrMister Jesus dying on the cross in pain? Morally better than us. One has to go "all in".Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    _J_ wrote: »
    Yar wrote: »
    _J_ wrote: »
    Are we born inherently good or bad (sinful or blameless)?

    Mu.
    Cute but others here have already provided much more convincing arguments that the answer is "good."

    So we prefer that which is convincing to that which is true?

    So, you presume you conclusion is true when you frame your question?

    MrMister on
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    DockenDocken Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Why don't we try to answer this question through the use of a thought experiment?

    If society suddenly vanished tomorrow (police, Government, order), what type of action do you think would predominate? 'Good' actions or 'Evil' actions? If people were given ultimate freedom of action, would the majority use it justly or unjustly?

    I posit that more people than not would abuse their power... the old maxim "power corrupts" is instuctive in this instance.

    Ultimately, we have government and police for a reason... because we realised long ago that we needed rules to protect us from ourselves.

    Docken on
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    AcidSerraAcidSerra Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Docken wrote: »
    Why don't we try to answer this question through the use of a thought experiment?

    If society suddenly vanished tomorrow (police, Government, order), what type of action do you think would predominate? 'Good' actions or 'Evil' actions? If people were given ultimate freedom of action, would the majority use it justly or unjustly?

    I posit that more people than not would abuse their power... the old maxim "power corrupts" is instuctive in this instance.

    Ultimately, we have government and police for a reason... because we realised long ago that we needed rules to protect us from ourselves.

    Actually, the majority would act as best that they could survive, breaking old mores, but for the most part no more 'evil' than stealing bread to feed a starving family kind of thing. A small portion will act in an 'evil' manner without law enforcement to stop them, until it gets to the point at which the more orderly of the 'evil' set up laws and law enforcement to maintian their power.

    The self leveling nature of society makes it rather a bad example.

    The question itself is impossible to answer, since it is possible for 2 babies to be of comepletely different personalities and temperments I cannot find an answer that works globally for all babies. I also do not believe in the binary of good and bad, especially when people are involved, so I cannot comment on that either.

    AcidSerra on
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    JohannenJohannen Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    As a care-bear I am inherently good.

    It's near impossible to define good and evil. There are way too many grey areas.

    Johannen on
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    YarYar Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    _J_ wrote: »
    So we prefer that which is convincing to that which is true?
    No, we prefer those who support their answers with reasoning and/or links to studies over those who post pedantic snarky bullshit like "Mu" without any sort of explanation.

    Yar on
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    IncenjucarIncenjucar VChatter Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited April 2007
    From a standpoint of non-cognition or whatever the term is in regards to morality, mu -is- the correct answer.

    Keep in mind, guys, not everyone believes in Platonic ideal forms.

    Just like the religious people, you have to keep in mind that some people are atheists to their belief in such ideals.

    --

    That said, I would presume most of our current population would act based on how much power they felt they could accumulate. History and experience suggest that power doesn't so much corrupt as allow people to show their true natures.

    There will, however, be some serious death tolls early on. City people tend to have absolutely shitty abilities to handle civilization-free living (Weakness to disease, no exposure to serious physical labor, etc).

    It would probably come down to a war between the jocks and the nerds, though. Jocks will be able to gather power due to confidence and physical strength, nerds will be improving the tech level. It'll be Barbarians vs. Romans all over again, except the Romans will be poindexters.

    Incenjucar on
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    JohannenJohannen Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    From a standpoint of non-cognition or whatever the term is in regards to morality, mu -is- the correct answer.

    Keep in mind, guys, not everyone believes in Platonic ideal forms.

    Just like the religious people, you have to keep in mind that some people are atheists to their belief in such ideals.

    --

    That said, I would presume most of our current population would act based on how much power they felt they could accumulate. History and experience suggest that power doesn't so much corrupt as allow people to show their true natures.

    There will, however, be some serious death tolls early on. City people tend to have absolutely shitty abilities to handle civilization-free living (Weakness to disease, no exposure to serious physical labor, etc).

    It would probably come down to a war between the jocks and the nerds, though. Jocks will be able to gather power due to confidence and physical strength, nerds will be improving the tech level. It'll be Barbarians vs. Romans all over again, except the Romans will be poindexters.
    Only the pointdexters would accumulate the better weaponry and strategical advancements and destroy the jocks. Then to continue on by inbreeding and screwing animals whilst saying "mmmm furries".

    Johannen on
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    MrMisterMrMister Jesus dying on the cross in pain? Morally better than us. One has to go "all in".Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    From a standpoint of non-cognition or whatever the term is in regards to morality, mu -is- the correct answer.

    Generally, a discussion of our moral natures presupposes that we have moral natures.

    This is like if we were having a discussion about the coolest founding father, and then someone posted to say that the founding fathers are actually just a myth (there were never actually any such people and our history books are a sham). While that might be an interesting theory, and in some ways related, it's not really the subject. The subject is a discussion which presupposes that the founding fathers existed, that history textbooks are reasonably accurate, that we aren't living in the matrix, that there is a property 'cool' which accurately describes at least some people, and so on.

    In other words, coming in with Non-Cognitivism is just a hijack.

    MrMister on
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    nescientistnescientist Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    MrMister wrote: »
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    From a standpoint of non-cognition or whatever the term is in regards to morality, mu -is- the correct answer.

    Generally, a discussion of our moral natures presupposes that we have moral natures.

    This is like if we were having a discussion about the coolest founding father, and then someone posted to say that the founding fathers are actually just a myth (there were never actually any such people and our history books are a sham). While that might be an interesting theory, and in some ways related, it's not really the subject. The subject is a discussion which presupposes that the founding fathers existed, that history textbooks are reasonably accurate, that we aren't living in the matrix, that there is a property 'cool' which accurately describes at least some people, and so on.

    In other words, coming in with Non-Cognitivism is just a hijack.

    It is... sort of. But if there's such thing as a good hijack it is one. At the risk of stretching a metaphor beyond its useful limits, let me put it in the perspective of yours:

    You're having a discussion of the coolest founding father, and then someone posts to say that actually the founding fathers were mostly dicks by modern standards (re: racism and sexism), and that while they may have been great men from the perspective of their age there is not a single one of them who, if you met, would be "cool." So maybe the discussion should be about which founding father was the least dickish, or perhaps which founding father was the coolest if you shut your eyes, plug your ears and say LALALALALA whenever the subject of the opposite sex or non-anglo ethnicities comes up.

    Yes, it's a hijack; but it's taking a discussion that is essentially meaningless and trying to steer it in a direction that actually has meaning.

    Note that I don't even know what non-cognitivism is, except by inference. I'm just defending the idea of expressing an opinion that comes from a slightly broader direction than the OP's intent if that opinion presupposes that the OP's thread-starting question is itself meaningless.

    nescientist on
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    MrMisterMrMister Jesus dying on the cross in pain? Morally better than us. One has to go "all in".Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Note that I don't even know what non-cognitivism is, except by inference. I'm just defending the idea of expressing an opinion that comes from a slightly broader direction than the OP's intent if that opinion presupposes that the OP's thread-starting question is itself meaningless.

    Non-Cognitivism is the metaethical school of thought which holds that moral judgements ('murder is wrong') do not express beliefs, and hence are not truth-apt (they cannot be said to be true or false).

    The reason that this particular detour is one to be avoided is that, if followed, it'll take over the thread. It's just one of those topics, like god or abortion.

    MrMister on
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    nescientistnescientist Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    MrMister wrote: »
    Note that I don't even know what non-cognitivism is, except by inference. I'm just defending the idea of expressing an opinion that comes from a slightly broader direction than the OP's intent if that opinion presupposes that the OP's thread-starting question is itself meaningless.

    Non-Cognitivism is the metaethical school of thought which holds that moral judgements ('murder is wrong') do not express beliefs, and hence are not truth-apt (they cannot be said to be true or false).

    The reason that this particular detour is one to be avoided is that, if followed, it'll take over the thread. It's just one of those topics, like god or abortion.

    That's what I thought it meant. I guess you're right; it would likely drown out the argument of good vs. evil. Does it merit its own thread, though? I know I for one find cognitivism vs. non-cognitivism much more interesting than good vs. evil.

    nescientist on
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    Grid SystemGrid System Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    If it interests you, start a thread. It'll either take off or it won't, but I don't see it getting locked for redundancy or anything like that.

    More on the original topic, the very fact that we have functioning societies is good evidence for the notion that people are at least generally able to act out of somewhat enlightened self-interest. That may not constitute goodness in and of itself, but it certainly makes us in such a way that is conducive to goodness.

    Grid System on
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    DockenDocken Registered User regular
    edited April 2007
    Something else just came to me with regard to man's propensity to either be good or evil.

    Does everyone know about Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs? Basically Maslow suggests that there is a pyramid that every person has which defines how happy they are- the need for security is the base of the pyramid, whilst things like job fulfillment is nearer to the top.

    I would like to make an addition to this pyramid by suggesting that there is a correlation between morality and the Hierarchy. IE If a person has relatively few or no needs currently met under the Pyramid (eg they are a Hutu/Tutsi in Somalia), the less likely 'morality' will enter into their decision making, meaning that 'evil' acts are more likely to occur, because the paradigm of 'evil' has little meaning in context of survival. Likewise, the more needs that are satisfied under the pyramid, the more likely morality will factor into the pyramid. Thats why Westerns (with a comparably high standard of living, much better security and social conditions) usually appear to be more concerned with ethics than say, a poor Afghani tending to his poppy fields- morality as a concept just means less to him than us, because he has more pressing matters to attend to.

    Docken on
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