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Old 01-23-2011, 09:40 AM  
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What's your take on morality in general? Is it a goofy human construct that has no bearing on individual liberty or, by extension, the constitution? Or is it necessary that at least a certain percentage of people in a society be morally grounded in order to flourish and be free?

(The irony in this thread doesn't escape me. While not an atheist, I belong to no denomination and my take on Christianity is very different from the conventional norm. It's odd I find myself defending religion even if it is in the context of preserving some semblance of morality in society. )
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Old 01-23-2011, 02:59 PM  
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Originally Posted by Brian View Post
What's your take on morality in general? Is it a goofy human construct that has no bearing on individual liberty or, by extension, the constitution? Or is it necessary that at least a certain percentage of people in a society be morally grounded in order to flourish and be free?

(The irony in this thread doesn't escape me. While not an atheist, I belong to no denomination and my take on Christianity is very different from the conventional norm. It's odd I find myself defending religion even if it is in the context of preserving some semblance of morality in society. )
It's absolutely a human concept, though after thousands of years of human advancement and civilization it is, for the lack of a better term, a necessary evil. Morals don't need to come from religion.

That being said, there's nothing wrong with being religious, spiritual, ect or getting your morals from your religion, but, your religious views shouldn't come into play when it comes to rights and politics. You should be able to set those views aside and follow common sense and the Constitution.

Take Gay Marriage for example (and let's leave it as an example, I'm not trying to derail the thread with a different discussion). I personally don't agree with it and find it disgusting, but that's just my own personal opinion. When it comes to voting and everything I support their right to marry another person because it doesn't infringe on the rights of others. It's sort of like, "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it" (Voltaire)
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Old 01-23-2011, 03:27 PM  
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It's absolutely a human concept, though after thousands of years of human advancement and civilization it is, for the lack of a better term, a necessary evil.
Yes, much like government.

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Morals don't need to come from religion.
I agree. But imbuing others with morals can be a helluva task if you're relying on their intellectual curiosity and prowess to do the job. Hence the "need" to bring an omnipotent, omniscient being into the mix. Some folks don't need religion or are even repelled by it. Other folks won't get in line, morally speaking, until they listen to a few sermons.

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That being said, there's nothing wrong with being religious, spiritual, ect or getting your morals from your religion, but, your religious views shouldn't come into play when it comes to rights and politics. You should be able to set those views aside and follow common sense and the Constitution.
I'm not sure morality as taught by some religions at least some of the time is incompatible with either common sense or the constitution. If we regard as the singular fundamental right everyone has is the right to life, from that springs other rights (eg: the right to own property, the right to travel, etc). And from those rights spring moral observations laid down ultimately as law in one form or another...don't murder, don't steal, etc. These aren't incompatible with either common sense or the constitution.

What you may be objecting to is the compulsory nature of some religious laws that mandate a person believe certain things or tithe a certain amount or be punished if they do no harm to others but engage in forbidden activities. Am I right?

I see a very disturbing parallel between government today, occasionally mixed with junk science, that compels people to say they believe certain things, give a certain amount in taxes (tithing), and which fines them if they do no harm to others but engage in forbidden activities and some aspects of some religions.

Today, I see an abuse of power by government -- legislators, judges and executives overstepping the bounds as defined by the constitution -- to impose their will on others. A combination of a half-way decent education of our founding and some intro to morality might actually have more people getting mortally p*ssed off over this abuse of power. But neither line of study is en vogue today.
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