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Do Atheists Really Care About Ethics & Morality?

I am seeing a lor of posts where people claim to be of the atheist religion. And yet these atheists seem to be unfamiliar with the basics of moral philosophy and are unprepared to discuss morality and ethics with theists on a mature and valid level. Most debates return to a metaethical question: what is the basis or grounding for ethics in the first place? Debates between the two frequently revolve around what the best basis for morality is as much as what the proper moral behavior should be.

 
Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 7:47 PM on Aug. 3, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

This question is closed.
Answers (24)
  • Atheism isn't a religion, period. "An atheist loves his fellow man instead of god. An atheist believes that heaven is something for which we should work NOW--here on earth for all humans together to enjoy. An atheist believes that he can get no help through prayer but that he must find in himself the inner conviction, and strength to meet life, to grapple with it, to subdue it, and enjoy it. ...he believes that we are our brother's keepers; and are keepers of our own lives; that we are responsible persons and the job is here and the time is now." From the atheist manifesto presented to the Supreme Court of the United States in the case of Murray v. Curlett. Morals are not affected by any belief system. If you are an adulterer, or a murderer, or a thief, religion won't change that. Atheists are shaped by what is best for the common good...NOT for the common god!
    witchqueen

    Answer by witchqueen at 12:22 PM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • Atheists who compare what religious theists say about moral behavior or the basis for morality against how they actually behave need to understand how to properly describe both their ethical beliefs and their actions. Atheist should be able to answer these questions without calling names, calling someone out, or getting into fisty cuffs whereby they sink so low as to delete replies they are uncomfortable with instead of having intelligent and logical discussions. Is name calling and suppositions intelligent and logical activity? What does it mean to be good? How can I differentiate good from evil? Are morals objective or subjective? Do atheists fear death or punishment? Why would the asking be a problem?
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:47 PM on Aug. 3, 2009

  • Would you murder and steal without your religion? Are you completely lacking in morals and ethics without it?
    NotPanicking

    Answer by NotPanicking at 7:49 PM on Aug. 3, 2009

  • Perhaps that is because theists often yell an atheist can have no morals or that morals come solely from THEIR god . Just a thought.
    But, if you SERIOUSLY want to discuss it I am open to it. I'll start with a simple lesson on Morality "Treat others as you would like to be treated"
    KristiS11384

    Answer by KristiS11384 at 7:49 PM on Aug. 3, 2009

  • This is just simply rude. Just because someone doesn't believe the Bible should dictate how we all live doesn't make them "unfamiliar with the basics of moral philosophy and are unprepared to discuss morality and ethics with theists on a mature and valid level."

    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:52 PM on Aug. 3, 2009

  • What does it mean to be good? I t means to put others before yourself, to consider their needs before your own.
    How can I differentiate good from evil? Well Good usually does no harm to anyone. At least not intentionally. Evil is clearly the opposite. Evil is purposely causing another harm
    Are morals objective or subjective? Subjective
    Do atheists fear death or punishment? From a higher power, NO. However we do know that our actions will result in consequences. Whether the consequence is bad or not depends on the decision we make. If I choose to steal I can expect the consequence from such to be as negative as the action itself.
    Why would the asking be a problem?What asking
    KristiS11384

    Answer by KristiS11384 at 7:53 PM on Aug. 3, 2009

  • they only care for it if it benefits themselves
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:55 PM on Aug. 3, 2009

  • they only care for it if it benefits themselves

    Like only being good to protect one's own soul from eternal damnation?
    NotPanicking

    Answer by NotPanicking at 7:57 PM on Aug. 3, 2009

  • Hogwash. One's religious affiliation (or lack thereof) has nothing to do with how moral/immoral they are. Nor does it have anything to do with their ability to comprehend moral philosophy, or anything else for that matter.

    One's belief or nonbelief in God doesn't have anything to do with how good/bad or intelligent/ignorant a person is, and to suggest that it does is to believe sheer fallacy.
    bandgeek521

    Answer by bandgeek521 at 8:16 PM on Aug. 3, 2009

  • so, the op is wondering if those without a godly-religious belief can live decent, benevolent lives, that benefit others as well as themselves? is it only atheists who commit murder, adultery, get speeding tickets, and embezzle money from their employers?? haha..that's pretty deep bs, and haughty, isn't it? everyone is capable of being law abiding citizens, et al, whether they believe in God/gods/goddesses/none. religion, to some, is just the icing on the cake. (boy, all i can think about today is dessert!)
    thehairnazi

    Answer by thehairnazi at 8:24 PM on Aug. 3, 2009