I think it was Penn Jillette who did a bit on how he responded to someone who asked what kept him from raping as many people as he wanted, as being both a rapist and an atheist go together in some people’s minds…his response was along the lines of “I do rape as much as I want, and that amount is zero.” Pretty disturbing that there are folks out there who are apparently only kept from going on a raping spree by the threat of eternal damnation and not, you know, having respect for others


It is extremely frightening how many people apparently never moved on from the “act appropriately or get punished by an authority figure” level of emotional development.


Those same people also haven't figured object permanence.


I’m convinced that a lack of empathy is linked to a flawed grasp of object permanence, so that tracks.


Hm. I hadn't thought about it in that direction. I'll have to ponder that.


I guess if you aren't thinking the thoughts then the thoughts don't exists. Inversely, if you are thinking them then everyone must be. Probably why the loudest anti-pedophiles get caught with child porn, or worse.


If you see other people as objects…. and objects cease to exist when you’re not looking… I can see how you might fail to develop much empathy for intransigent things.


Would, say, world-is-a-simulation conspiracy theorists lack empathy then? I’m genuinely curious, I’ve never really heard of object permanence so I’m confused how literally to take it


Object permanence is the concept that an object continues to exist when it is no longer within your perception. So, for instance, for a baby up to a certain point of development, when an object or person is no longer within their field of vision, it may as well no longer exist. Eventually, usually before we’re able to speak, we develop an understanding that just because something is no longer directly in our field of perception does not mean it no longer exists. So, to answer your question, people who believe reality is a simulation are different, because within their concept of the simulation, objects continue to exist outside of their limited perception, so it’s a separate issue. However, there does seem to be an overlap between people with devoutly “Christian” beliefs and those who don’t care about anything that doesn’t happen to them or immediate acquaintances or family, hence my joke about object permanence and empathy being connected.


It's a spiritual struggle.


I usually try to tell people about the moral development stages and how we should all be beyond 'acting appropriately just to avoid punishment ', we should all be aware as to why it's bad to do 'bad' things.


There’s also the threat of prosecution in our judicial system. If you murder someone and get caught you’re facing life in prison if not the death penalty. I think this keeps more people in line than the possibility of going to ‘hell’. I think a lot of religious people don’t even believe in the bullshit they follow. They just don’t want to go to prison, which is basically hell.


I think Ricky Gervais had that bit in his show After Life. Could be that Penn did it also, but that's where I've seen it.


Penn said it a while back but its def a viewpoint that would come naturally to Gervais as well.


I think it's most people's view really, but the phrasing is quite elegant in its simplicity. Most people would probably be inclined to answer the same way I would "wtf you talking about that is horrible", not as elegant.


Sure it wasn’t Teller who said it?


How dare you. Here's an upvote.


So the person asking Penn Jillete that question is basically admitting that he would actually go out and rape people if the bible didn't exist?


There is zero rational behind religion. In the same sentence I've had people say they don't believe in evolution then tell me about their dog breed.... Religious people have given 2 seconds of thought to their chosen philosophy. Most atheists I know are deeply conflicted as to what the fuck is life and our universe. I'm one of them. I wish I could subscribe to such a simple answer like "God did it".


Exactly, what gets me is that everyone(in my family) looks at you like you have three heads and if you are black(in my experience)it is assumed you believe. I try to explain to my family that religion was used to keep our ancestors in line, nothing more and if you are honest with yourself it makes ZERO sense.


Bro being the Black Atheist or Secularist in the family(especially when dealing with family elders), takes a ton of patience lol.


I love it when they act like you not believing in their religion somehow affects them(you blocking their blessings🤔)


I took a history class in college and it was explained as a great tool to unite various tribes to each other rather than a central government. It may have served as a sociological tool but nowadays it's archaic.


There's lots of roles that religion and belief have played throughout history, and there are many that they play to this day. It's not archaic so much as poorly utilized in most cases.


It also serves as a type of health system. There is a reason why salt dispels evil. It keeps you alive! Pig is bad probably meant to keep people from eating bad meat back in the day. IMO.


The rationale behind religion has always been about fear, control and a sense of commonality so that large groups of diverse people can, despite geographical differences, not kill each other from their fear of each other’s differences and work together. Same reason pantheons of gods became popular so that even if you’re favorite god in your village is not the favored god of another village they belong to the same pantheon of gods or story, so the two tribes get along in some fashion and work together for common cause. So just because someone speaks another language and is from another part of the world there is an inherent lack of trust and humans get murdery when they don’t trust other humans, but if you have the same base level beliefs such as “there is only one god”, even if there is a language barrier you are less likely to murder that person out of fear because you have the same base level belief. But any divergence from common cause and we are right back to murdering each other. Gods’ purpose is to finish the equation in peoples minds to explain things in the world they don’t understand but their brain absolutely MUST have some level of explanation for, so that it’s pattern recognition software can build a relatively reliable pattern to the world to keep you alive. “where does the water in the stream come from?” God did it! “Why is the stream a raging river and washed away 40 people and all our homes?” Gods angry with us because we built too close to the river. This x=god allows the brain to move on and cope with the lack of information even if it is literally false information, psychologically the brain doesn’t care because all it wants is AN answer not THE RIGHT answer so it can adapt and incorporate the new information required to keep you alive which is “rivers are a good source of water and food but don’t build too close to them as it can flood in heavy rain and break their banks and kill you”


Right? Like isn’t it amazing that everyone everywhere just happens to have been born into the correct religion?


Makes you wonder about the people who profess to be Christian AND are rapists.


You say sorry Jesus afterwards and you're good until the next time Satan forces you to do it again.


Is his argument just “if you have no consequences after you die why don’t you just act like a piece of shit?”


Basically. This is the problem with “hellfire and brimstone” Christians; they don’t believe because it elevates them or enriches them, they believe because they’re afraid they’ll be punished if they don’t. Their entire core ethos revolves around fear of punishment, not a desire for personal improvement.


I can't remember the specific artist but I remember the quote. "I rape, kill and hurt people as much as I want. Which is none. There's no threat of eternal damnatian.


That would be Penn Gillette, of Penn and Teller fame. I don’t always love his takes on things, but he makes a pretty concise case for how you live a moral life as an atheist.


I mean you can make a very easy valid argument for why rape, as in this case, is wrong. P1 Rape causes harm P2 Causing harm is wrong Conclusion: rape is wrong Flesh it out a bit by elaborating the premises but you can do this for most anything without invoking god


The problem with that is that most Christians believe morality is something only Christians have, and it was granted to them by their god.


Yes but as I have shown with the above comment making a valid argument as to why things are wrong without the need for god is completely possible. The above is incredibly rudimental yes, but it shows my point


"I'm a thief, I'm a liar there's my church I sing in the choir" from wise man Eddie Vedder


Yes! I am agnostic (there may well be a deity/divinity but I am not sure about any of the standard religions really reflect it properly). I play online games like WOW / SWTOR etc and I also roleplay (D&D etc): I am usually playing good characters as I feel BAD when I am nasty to even computer generated characters or story characters that don't even exist.


Which helps to explain why they want to lock up law-breakers for long periods of time instead of helping society treat the root causes that lead to crime -- poverty, poor educational opportunities, etc.


Exactly. They lack empathy and can’t understand things outside of their own moral framework, therefore they cannot understand why crimes are actually committed.


They're real salt of the earth kind of people. Y'know, morons.




I understood that reference!


Plus by banning books, birth control, abortions, they continue to create stupid people like them.


This is by design.


But the people who want the long terms are the same people who are actively working to keep people in poverty and to keep them uneducated. So, yeah.


and also why they are so vehemently anti abortion, homophobic, and often racist. because they think those people are sinners so they deserve it anyway.


They don't fear punishment they just got to ask for forgiveness and then go back to the same shit so they can ask for forgiveness again next Sunday. In fact the hypocrisy of religion, seeing the same men on Saturday at carnivals getting drunk and making out with half naked women the next morning with his family in the pews at Church where he played organ is why Anton LaVey created the Church of Satan and Satanism in the first place. He realized, man shouldn't have to live by a double standard, that there needed to be a religion that embraced that man was a fleshly animal with animalistic needs that shouldn't be shamed or repressed because all it does is drives them to be hypocrites.


It probably worked in the past as everyday life was suffering, so a promise of heaven for which one has to improve oneself seemed desirable. But nowadays life is still not heavenly but it's good enough to be comfortable, so no one has any desire to improve and only motivator is the fear of hell.


"she told me, son, fear is the heart of love, so I never went back"


Once a was walking to my job and I met a Serbian colleague who I really got along with. We were both foreigners living in the UK btw. We started to talk and I can't recall the whole conversation but I ended up saying that I was an atheist. She said that she couldn't believe it because I was a good person and she liked me... Thanks I guess!


Yeah, I always hate this false idea that if you don’t believe in god / religion how can you be moral. It’s simple, treat others how you want to be treated. Would you like it if someone raped or murdered you? Would you like it if someone stole stuff you’ve worked for? Would you like it if someone denied you something because of some immutable part of your appearance or because of who you’re parents are? Would you like it if you were treated poorly because of who you’re in love with? It’s so basic to determine what is and is t moral. It is astounding that these people need the threat of eternal punishment to do what they’re told is moral (and isn’t always moral)


What blows my mind is that these people act as if society didn't exist before the bible. Like, did no one have a family or raise a child or be kind to anyone until christians came along and introduced the newfangled idea of benevolence? Do they think they invented basic human kindness? Lawfulness? Ethics? Civilization goes back way further than christianity and I doubt it was all rape and murder all day long, all that time.


And Biblical morality is pretty fucked up. You can't make a statue of God, but slavery is totally fine. Tell me again how I can't be moral without their God? 🤔


"So without your belief, you are not able to understand between good and bad?"


I'm an atheist. My argument was "if you don't have a book you can just follow for all the answers, making up the rules is really hard." Edit: I'm the OP Twitter account owner.


That's basically his point. Where do the rules come from? Who decides them? Why is there even a need for them? Why do we divide things into these weird concepts of "right" and "wrong" or "good" and "bad"?




Exactly. I'm him though. That's my tweet. Hi.


I think rationalism is a critical part of atheism, and I find the Kantian moral philosophy very compelling. https://corporatefinanceinstitute.com/resources/knowledge/other/kantian-ethics/ What are your thoughts on this?


Eh, tbh, I don't think it's that. The idea of this only being about punishment in the afterlife comes from the atheist, not the believer. And tbh, it can't necessarily be inferred that that's what the believer's talking about from his question. The question isn't 'why not do bad things if you're an atheist?' The question is 'how does an atheist know what is bad?' The believer is likely saying that without revelation from a higher power, there's no real way to know at base what is truly right and what is truly wrong.


I agree with your analysis. I'd even say that religious people are looking for absolutes. As an atheist I value that good/bad is relative, context sensitive and as subjective as possible. And I value that interaction and discussion is the basis for shared values.


“If the only thing keeping a person decent is the expectation of divine reward, then, brother, that person is a piece of shit.” — Rust Cohle


Seems like he asked the question because without his religion he would be committing all the sins. I hate it when the religious equate morality with religion.


Even with their Bible, they are gleefully committing all the sins. Republican Jesus said it was ok.


Republican jesus. God bless my guns so I can shoot someone. 😂


Republican Jesus said that starving people need to pull themselves up by their bootstraps.


Republican Jesus would hold $1000 a plate fundraisers for the poor


And then pocket the money


*Love thy neighbor, but only if they're white, heterosexual, and Christian.* - Republican Jesus


*and not poor


They can’t help it. Once you truly adopt a religious worldview, it becomes nearly impossible to see things from other perspectives. That’s why so many religious arguments against secularism are fallacious; they’re rooted in a near total misunderstanding of the other side.


So true.


It happens when you adopt an *exclusively* religious worldview. It doesn't even have to be religious, it happens anytime you adopt an extreme worldview. Religion is just one of the most ubiquitous.


An old girlfriend of mine quickly got off the phone with me after I told her I was an atheist. When I talked to her later, she said she was very upset because obviously I must not have any morals! I patiently explained to her that I have a solid moral compass instilled in me by my parents that has nothing to do with religious beliefs. Things like helping those that are less fortunate than me, being kind, doing the right thing just because it's the right thing, and treating others as I would want to be treated are all important to me. I hate organized religions. They are the root of so much evil on our planet.


Religion is the root of much evil because it is a tool for social control, not the thing they tell you it's all about.


"If it wasn't for God watching me, I'd eat this baby!"


People that ask this question don’t realize just how much it reveals about themselves.


A girl I knew once said this exact thing to me. I didn't know if she was trolling me or not


Would I want this done to me? No? Ok I won’t then. Pretty simple


But sometimes something that does not offend me might offend someone else


For sure. Basically if you can picture it being bad for you or anyone else it may affect, probably not the best idea


Did you ever wonder if the thing keeping people from doing bad this is the just world fallacy, then would most people do bad things if the illusion was shattered?


Also: laws




Very true.


How does a theist decide which rules of their religion to follow? Because the vast majority ignore most rules.


According to the Bible wearing a mixed material shirt is a bad choice. Also a bad choice: letting your wife…learn.


"But that doesn't fit our society now🤓"


Even today wearing a mixed material shirt is a bad choice … in style


Wait a minute. My MAGA hat is cotton, wool mix with synthetic thread. You're telling me I'm going to hell for that? 😈






Also, slavery good, shellfish bad




My response to that is, all my love goes into my wife and children. There is no greater love for me and if someone loves, purely, an imaginary figure that literally returns no love, expects you to love unconditionally while they burn the world down, and they think that's the greatest love there is, they have mental problems and I feel sorry for them.


And that's how the bible guilt trips and scares you into believing in God.


funny part is, hellfire isn't even actually in the bible. Sheol (Hebrew name for Hell) is stated to just be nothing, no knowledge, no feeling, nothing (Ecclesiastes 9:5). Any church that says hellfire is real is speaking out of their ass.


Sheol sounds a lot like being asleep. Welp, guess hell isn't bad after all! Time to murder my neighbors!


I think what most of them may be referring to is the "Lake of Fire". Also in a verse in Mark I believe it says something about "hell" being the unquenchable fire. Also in matthew it refers to a hell of fire. And again in Jude it describes eternal fire as punishment. Sheol is something else, mentioned in proverbs and psalms. I think. As someone who spent their entire childhood afraid of burning for eternity I wish you were right.


In Genesis it mentions that "from dust you are and to dust you will return" In Romans it states "the wages that sin pays is death" and "the one that died is aquitted of sin" Sheol as I previously stated literally translates to Hell, while the lake of fire is mentionned, it is mentioned as the place where Satan and his demons would be cast down to for 1000 years (Then released for the rest of time) In newer versions of the bible, the word Hell has been changed to "The Grave" In the book of Job it is mentionned that he went to "The Grave" proving that even good people go there. Furthermore, only 144,000 people will even make it to heaven (Revelation 7:4) It wouldn't make sense for god to also throw the good people into hellfire as well


144k are Hebrews, not all the saints who will go to Heaven


Wait a minute, Sister said that all the Saints we're already in heaven. You mean she might have been full of rosary beads?


Saints, the same as ‘people who to heaven’ in this context


Well she was full of Rosary Beads for other reasons!


Please don't take my response as argument, I really don't have that much knowledge on the subject I'm just trying to understand and am actually curious. So from my understanding was that the bible mentions two deaths, one in which no one can avoid (the physical) and that sheol is the grave or the in between while they wait for final judgement. In Daniel I believe it mentions the resurrections of the dead, those "who sleep in the dust" and that some will awake to eternal life and others will be casted into eternal shame, presumably to the hell of fire with Death and Hades as mentioned in revelations. The physical death we all experience is the dust to dust. Then comes sheol where we wait for judgement and then either eternal paradise or to the eternal burning. "Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire." Rev. 20: 11-15 The second death is only for the unrepentant and unsaved from which they will be casted into the lake of fire where there is "weeping and gnashing of teeth" while the saved will go to paradise and have eternal life. "And if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than with two hands to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire’" Mark 9:43 "...and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire" Matt. 5:22 Sorry if I am taking any of this completely wrong it was just my understanding having grown up in the evangelical/Pentecostal/nondenominational church. Currently I haven't gone to any church except a Lutheran one a couple of times for my spouses family, in years. I'm not sure if I even believe any of this stuff anymore.


Isn’t ‘hell’ just the absence of God? Like okay, for whatever reason, you didn’t make the cut for heaven. You just…. don’t exist anymore, i guess? I’ve read the book! I don’t remember reading about eternal corporal punishment


The New Testament does work to define or supply imagery for Hell. That is one of the major dividers between Judaism and Christianity.


Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones. Marcus Aurelius


I know A LOT of God worshippers that are definitely NOT good people.






How do theists decide between good and bad choices in regards to issues that hadn't arisen yet when their religion was being written?


No one is a good person. That’s the problem. Everyone must decide to be good. Don’t really care how they get there.


It has always baffled me that people think only people of their religion can be moral and make good decisions


The most brain dead question you can ask


I would say, "how does anyone decide between good choices and bad choices?" Is one of the most important philosophical questions. Its the beginning of morals and ethics, and its very easy to see that many decisions are not black and white


I think its a brain dead question becasue it starts with the assumption that atheists can't have a moral compass. The question only exists becasue the person asking it assumes atheists are without morality. It's a common argument against atheism, and its exceedingly annoying hearing people ask it all the time. It's also an obvious answer that doesn't need any philosophy: "morality is not unique to any one group or people." Its pretty obvious.


And probably part of the reason that atheists may give the impression of immorality to religious folks is that the basis of their morality is empathy, so that certain things that religious folks view as immoral are not necessarily immoral to atheists because they don't actually harm other people. Things like pre-marital sex and homosexuality.


Christians even realized a lot of their books rules were stupid. Like wearing a garment of mixed fabrics, eating pork or shellfish, and working on the sabbath. They'll also usually cry "we don't follow levitcan laws becasue we have a new covenant" but will still use leviticus to shame the LGBTQ+. They seem to mostly only take whatever their pastor/priest has said lately into consideration. Highly directed, reading only a handful of passages at a time without much context of the larger stories being told. If we read the Harry Potter books that way we would be able to twist it into weord directions too. "Properly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived." -Isaac Asimov


Thank you!! *They'll also usually cry "we don't follow levitcan laws becasue we have a new covenant" but will still use leviticus to shame the LGBTQ+.*


Thank you for elaborating


Yeah, I feel like that question could be more philosophical than judgmental in nature, but the names are blurred, so you can’t see the context of the original poster’s question. As atheists, are most of our choices dictated by how society frames morality? Or by how our choices affect others or ourselves? I actually think it’s a really interesting question.


By asking that question, we’d need to ask the operational definitions of “good choices” and “bad choices.” Are there universally good choices? Or does the usual cloudy context make each choice idiosyncratically good or bad?


nah. I'm not saying there's no such thing as ethical dilemmas, but informed consent solves pretty much everything that vexes conservatives. It's honestly a shame how one of the few things they value less than consent is information.


It's a key philosophical point, stated very badly. If you believe your god is the arbiter of what good and bad *are*, then if someone doesn't believe in that god then it logically follows that they must have some other method of deciding what is good and evil, or else they have no moral compass at all. That's where it gets interesting. If people who don't follow your religion have a valid way to tell right from wrong, then you have to admit that those concepts are separate to your god - ie. that your god is following a set of rules that are external to themself. This is why so many religious fundamentalists assert that atheists *cannot* have morals - because to do so would be to admit that their god follows rules, rather than makes them. The assertion therefore is that those who have no faith, but have morals, are actually listening to something that comes from religion. In Christianity, for example, they might say that when an atheist listens to "their conscience", that's the voice of God's Holy Spirit within them, telling them what is right. From there, you can start to explain to someone that they have experienced God after all, and thus hopefully convert them. The classic thought experiment is this: ask a religious person "if your god said to do something horrible - say, to torture a person to death, just because they said so - would you do it?" The theory is that if the person says "of course not, that's evil" then they're admitting that they're using a metric that is *separate* to their religion to determine what is good and bad - which means that atheists can do the same. If they say "my god simply wouldn't say that, because it's an evil thing and my god would never condone evil", then they're admitting that good and evil are concepts that exist separately, and their god follows them - which means atheists can follow those principles too. ...and if they say "yes, of course I would", maybe don't be alone with them after dark.


The threat of eternal punishment for not being a good person isn't how Christianity works. You don't go to heaven by being a good person. That's kind of the whole point.


The notion that religion somehow owns morality is ridiculous. Religion is used to justify horrible things on a regular basis, like harboring child rapist priests, or murder, or telling people in aids ridden regions not to use condoms.


The whole book of Leviticus is just creepy and insane. But they just skip that part of the “Holy” text huh…


It’s especially ironic when you consider how religions have been used to justify war and slaughter. Religion is a powerful tool and it has often been used to do great evil.


Just think, 'What Would Brian Boytano Do?'


The fact that a theist asks this question says a lot more about the person asking it than it does about the person being asked. My go-to answer is "you need a God for that?"


Religious people don't have morals. They do whatever they want and hide behind their religion as evidence that they're moral. Atheist are usually moral because they have actual logic and compassion instead of indoctrination.


Start with treating people the way you want to be treated.


Considering how many horrific things God is supposed to have done to innocent people, suddenly I see why the religious right wants to kill people with preventable diseases...


I don't like the deception of religion, but I have heard quite a few people say they changed their ways after "finding god". It is harder to bash something that has actually made some people better.


I doubt organized religion has helped more people than it has hurt. Oppression in the Middle Ages, Crusades and other Religious Wars/conflicts, constant persecution even today. Sure they do charities, and can give direction to some who are lost, but there has been, and continues to be, a lot of damage done around the world.


It's more about having the community and the support, something a lot of people that get wrapped up in bad choices are missing. It's less about the god and more about being a part of a group.


Why use the threat of eternal punishment at all?


Otherwise dumb people don't behave. And if they aren't dumb, they behave, but not the way you want.


Wait. If christian has morals only because they believe in a god, and an atheist has none because they have no god, wouldn't it stand to reason that a polytheist has way more morals because they are trying to please way more gods?


Or way less because they pick and choose what gods they want to listen to.


My brother asked me how I will be able to raise my daughter as a good person without taking her to church


Usually the golden rule. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.


Odd many religious people still act like POS even with the threat of a higher being


Steve Harvey said "If you're not religious, then where's your moral barometer?" He's genuinely funny as all hell, but God, don't take advice from the guy.


Same place everyone's is, in our conscience. We just don't need a club and collection plates to use it daily.


Alternatively, if you need the threat of eternal damnation to be a good person, you should probably get threatened with eternal damnation.


Let's be real, you could be ultra-religious but to those people, if you're not praying to the right god you might as well be an atheist. It might even be worse.


The number of people I’ve met who make that exact argument that religion is the only way to make good choices is astounding. Like, everyone has a conscience unless they’re psychopaths or sociopaths.


immanuel kant


If people need laws to behave then nobody is good🤔


But that’s not how people judge doing good or bad in Christianity. It’s not “you will be punished if you do wrong so don’t do wrong” it’s “you will be punished if you don’t accept God”. Has nothing to do with doing the right or wrong thing


Kant, Rawls, Mill, Aristotle to name a few, uneducated squid bait.


Childhood cancer is so mysterious


As a group, Christians do not now and never did clearly get the difference between right and wrong. They may not realize it's EASIER if your guide to life isn't in favor of genocide, murder and galloping illogic.


We’ll, since the “golden rule” is not unique to any one particular religion (they all say it) or even religion in general, it’s not too taxing.


Humans are group animals. One of our advantages is that co-operation allows us to specialize and advance as a species. So it is pretty primal that if I have to make a moral choice I go, "Who will I hurt with this decision? How can I improve the group the most? What choice will result in the least suffering and the most advantage to our collective survival?". It's so simple that even groups of animals grasp it. While I respect that some may use religion to reinforce their feelings and beliefs, and I can respect that, you have to recognize that some basic rules and social consciousness predate any one specific religion.


That second paragraph describes utilitarism.


Also, if you need a person in an imaginary sky to tell you right from wrong, you are a moron.


It's so simple. Your morality is not from an external source: if it is, it's not your morality.


0.1% of prisoners are atheists. 9% of the US population is atheist. Why does religion make people commit crime?


Turns out that Christianity isn't for good people and never was.


I think his point is who gets to dictate what is “good” and what is “bad”? Morality in essence. Everyone gets it from somewhere and with no higher power involved, “good” and “bad” is simply a matter of opinion, or indoctrination.


>Everyone gets it from somewhere and with no higher power involved, “good” and “bad” is simply a matter of opinion, or indoctrination. We get it from the same place that let's them look in the bible and say "Ok we shouldn't do slavery eventhough this book is fully supportive of it because that's immoral."


The reality is...99% of religious people make all their decisions the same way as non-religious people. It takes a rare sociopath to make their moral decisions, not on how it affects the people around them, but strictly on what they think an invisible sky-dictator demands.


Sociopaths are not so rare anymore


them : "god gave us free will so we can exercise his will"


They need the ability to be forgiven for being a bad pertain... weekly.


Being a decent human being brings you far. You feel like a god.


You're missing the point. And the question is a morality question that has been debated for thousands of years. AFAIK there is no culture on earth that has the same morality basis.


Both are stupid questions/answers. How do you define what 'good' and 'bad' choices are ? Person A has religion, Person B may be a utilitarian, Person C may be a hedonist and Person D may just not care. All of these people may have choices that differ from each other's view of what's 'good' or 'evil'


I agree, it’s all subjective.


Imagine needing the “promise of divine reward” to not act like a piece of shit to people.


"How do you know what is bad and what is good" Mmm I don't know, common sense maybe or even EMPATHY?


Religion occasionally works as a moral compass for those that can’t manage their morality on their own. The problem is there is always a way out of bad behavior so there’s no real needle on the compass when people aren’t worried about the potentially far future when they die.


WWBD, what would Batman do?


What does he mean "how do we decide?" It's pretty much a non decision. It takes less than 1/10th of a second to ask yourself "Is this what an asshole would do?" and even less time to answer "no"


So basically it's like , If i do this I'll impress god , but if I'm doing it to impress god then he won't be impressed , so if i don't do it then he will definitely be mad , so I'll do it anyway whether he is impressed or not , which in turn impresses him. And for us it's just do i want the other person doing the same stuff to me , if yes then do it , if no then don't fucking do it.


I think about this a lot. A huge universe. One powerful creator. Had a son who looked human. Let him get tortured and then bright him back. Wrote a book from how many personal perspectives? You need to follow that?


The dude's question still stands, though: what's "good"?


Can't tell what is right or wrong ... ? Better ask daddy.


Failed to answer the question lol


Well aside from having zero desire to do bad things, here's how I woukd decide between good and bad, if tempted to do something bad anyway: "How does this affect other people? It hurts them? Okay, then I won't do that." It blows my mind that so many religious people are unable to grasp this.




This has been my exact stance since I was old enough to articulate it. If you're just being good because you don't want to be punished and the atheist is good because of their own sense of right and wrong and compassion for others then guess who's got a better sense of morality? You can be a very good person either with or without religion. Believing morals come from Christianity alone is wilfull stupidity that completely discounts other belief systems and non-believers who are, clearly, not all running around stealing and murdering and, I dunno, peeing on the sides of buildings and whatnot.


Just don't be a dick.


damn! nailed it on his first shot!!!


Classical ethics, mostly.




Christians and catholics don't get punished for doing it. Why would an atheist worry about punishment from a higher power. I'm not condoning rape obviously, just saying the punishment doesn't exist for either group


There can be no “universal morality” without God. 😂😂😂😂😂


Without what?


I never understood the whole they do it because they are a man of faith. I feel like that negates the person's good being because they "have to" be a good person.


Normal people don’t need the promise of a reward to make them do the right thing or the promise of eternal punishment to keep them from doing the wrong thing.


Wait that logic doesn't track, I mean if there was no punishment for stealing and you would steal, that doesn't have a bearing on being good or evil. Good and evil are culture based. That's like saying if you need laws to tell you what to do your a bad person. Every human being has to have guidance on right and wrong. Doesn't matter where it comes from, everyone will need some kind of guidance.


The opposite is also true - if you are only do good things because you want to go to heaven, you're not a good person!