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Old 05-08-2013, 11:55 AM
 
Location: New Mexico
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k.smith904 View Post
Has there ever been a question, that had a scientific answer (however inadequate), but for which now the best answer is a religious one?

Actually, science and religion are different realms that are almost mutually exclusive. When one tries to make statements regarding the other, it generally goes badly.
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Old 05-08-2013, 11:57 AM
 
Location: Central Maine
2,867 posts, read 2,987,089 times
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Has there ever been a question, that had a scientific answer (however inadequate), but for which now the best answer is a religious one?

I don't know. I don't know of all the questions that have been asked. Do you?
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Old 05-08-2013, 12:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k.smith904 View Post
A person's morals are a person's morals. Science might change them, it may not. Religion may change them, it may not.

I never said science would cure the reckless nature of humans, only possibly lead us to a society where stealing becomes less often because there are no food shortages, or some other indirect way. Were always going to be a ****ty race, theres going to be murderers and rapists and wars and liars, but violent crimes have gone down in industrialized (more secular with the exception of the US) nations as time goes on.

I agree wholeheartedly with your last statement. We are animals, nothing more. We simply have the mental capacity to reason, morality exists for the betterment of society, otherwise we'd all be greedy murdering thieves. Somewhere along the lines we figured out if we stick together lifes goes a lot smoother. Even certain animals have found this to be true.
Yes, animals have found it to be true that sticking together is beneficial. Some animals have also been observed to have exhibited preference at the genetic level. The green beard effect explains this phenomenon with red ant colonies. If a colony of red fire ants determine that a specific queen doesn't have the characteristics desired they kill her.

And you see semblance of this same phenomenon in humans in todays society.

So let's propose science was to determine humans actions of selfishness and greed were genetic expression....and this transcends logic... do we then exercise eugenics experiments?

Or do we just decide humanity is screwed?

EDIT: and I only say this because humans seem to be bent on forming the perfect society. As if that is our purpose. Where as our purpose might just be to screw things up.
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Old 05-08-2013, 12:21 PM
 
1,964 posts, read 1,580,661 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot_Handz View Post
Yes, animals have found it to be true that sticking together is beneficial. Some animals have also been observed to have exhibited preference at the genetic level. The green beard effect explains this phenomenon with red ant colonies. If a colony of red fire ants determine that a specific queen doesn't have the characteristics desired they kill her.

And you see semblance of this same phenomenon in humans in todays society.

So let's propose science was to determine humans actions of selfishness and greed were genetic expression....and this transcends logic... do we then exercise eugenics experiments?

Or do we just decide humanity is screwed?
I doubt we ever reach the extremes of eugenics, but I could see a Gattaca-like future of perfected test tube babies. Even that wouldnt solely determine that person's moral compass, as it is driven by both genetics and experience, the world around them.

I think a good question is will we ever be able to create an environment where being immoral doesnt pay off? In my opinion, the answer is no. Evolution has us hardwired for greed, dominance, and ultimately survival. When your life os threatened, morals take a back seat, so until we conquer death my bet is that were screwed lol.
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Old 05-08-2013, 12:39 PM
 
8,100 posts, read 5,000,100 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k.smith904 View Post
I doubt we ever reach the extremes of eugenics, but I could see a Gattaca-like future of perfected test tube babies. Even that wouldnt solely determine that person's moral compass, as it is driven by both genetics and experience, the world around them.

I think a good question is will we ever be able to create an environment where being immoral doesnt pay off? In my opinion, the answer is no. Evolution has us hardwired for greed, dominance, and ultimately survival. When your life os threatened, morals take a back seat, so until we conquer death my bet is that were screwed lol.
And that is the problem... Natural selection is in direct conflict with altruism.

And if you believe resistance is futile...we are definitely screwed lol.

I think this is the basis for faith-based values...people simply feel that has to be a better place waiting. I can't really blame them. I'm a desensitized cynic, so I don't care either way. But I digress.
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Old 05-08-2013, 01:29 PM
 
1,964 posts, read 1,580,661 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot_Handz View Post
And that is the problem... Natural selection is in direct conflict with altruism.

And if you believe resistance is futile...we are definitely screwed lol.

I think this is the basis for faith-based values...people simply feel that has to be a better place waiting. I can't really blame them. I'm a desensitized cynic, so I don't care either way. But I digress.
Right there with you, only I think more effort should be put into making this world a better place than waiting around hoping for a better one. On the flip side though, a world full of cynics may not be the best formula for an ideal society (yet inside every cynic is a disappointed idealist).
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Old 05-08-2013, 03:01 PM
 
Location: Michigan
12,715 posts, read 11,607,283 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot_Handz View Post
And that is the problem... Natural selection is in direct conflict with altruism.
This sort of loose talk about "natural selection" is mere mental wanking. Natural selection has no moral content or implications of any kind, it simply is, and there is no obligation or even justification for the human race to imitate it.
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Old 05-08-2013, 04:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by djacques View Post
This sort of loose talk about "natural selection" is mere mental wanking. Natural selection has no moral content or implications of any kind, it simply is, and there is no obligation or even justification for the human race to imitate it.
It's not mental wanking, it's a legitimate thought.

If natural selection is concerned with genetic expression that is conducive to one species survival and altruism is concerned with the best interests of another above ones own self...How are they not conflicting?

Sure, there is no obligation for humans to imitate natural selection, but what do you mean? Aren't traits conducive for survival "selected" for them? If we strive to adopt altruistic values, would there be an "altruism gene"?

How would an "altruism gene" even be conducive to survival? For altruism to even manifest itself as a principle , there has to be a severe state of inequality in the first place. So why would there be an affinity for an altruistic trait? So for me to even be in a state to help somebody much worse off than I am...I'd have to have some traits that allowed me to run way ahead of the pack, no?

Is it possible that altruism is just BS?

Last edited by Hot_Handz; 05-08-2013 at 05:13 PM..
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Old 05-08-2013, 05:00 PM
 
196 posts, read 96,440 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djacques View Post
This sort of loose talk about "natural selection" is mere mental wanking. Natural selection has no moral content or implications of any kind, it simply is, and there is no obligation or even justification for the human race to imitate it.
And the virgin birth, walkin' on water, resurrection bull**** does?
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Old 05-08-2013, 05:11 PM
 
Location: Michigan
12,715 posts, read 11,607,283 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot_Handz View Post
It's not mental wanking, it's a legitimate thought.

If natural selection is concerned with genetic expression that is conducive to one species survival and altruism is concerned with the best interests of another above ones own self...How are they not conflicting?

Sure, there is no obligation for humans to imitate natural selection, but what do you mean? Aren't traits conducive for survival "selected" for them? If we strive to adopt altruistic values, would there be an "altruism gene"?

How would an "altruism gene" even be conducive to survival? For altruism to even manifest itself as a principle , there has to be a severe state of inequality in the first place. So why would there be an affinity for an altruistic trait?

Is it possible that altruism is just BS?
It is possible that altruism is just BS logically, and there are moralists who believe it is, but that ought to be determined by philosophical considerations rather than trying to shoehorn Darwinian scientific theory into a moral imperative.

Of course, there are forms of altruism such as kin selection which are, at least, entirely compatible with natural reality as well.
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