Is Morality possible without God


#1

I have an atheist classmate arguing me about the existence of God, then he asks me IF morality is possible without the existence of God?


#2

We only need to look back at world history to see what happens when we rely solely on human morality


#3

Reality isn’t possible without God, so on that basis, morality isn’t possible without God.

That said, can moral arguments be made in a secular fashion without direct appeal to God? Yes. And we can do that with the more hot-button, politicized issues that nowadays seems to divide across religious lines. We can look at human beings as such and determine what is fulfilling, dignified, and harmful to it, and come to all sorts of disagreements over that, but also areas of much commonality. Because we don’t need to appeal directly to God in an argument, it is possible for an atheist to find morality in a similar way as a Christian, but I do think the atheist is on shaky ground.


#4

Life, or anything else, would not exist without God. So I’d say no.

I do think it’s possible not to know about God, and still a civilization can have rules governing morality. But it works much better with God than without.


#5

I think it’s possible to be a moral person without being visibly connected to God or his church, at least to an extent.

However morality like anything else, wouldn’t exist if God didn’t.


#6

I know one or two humanists who have moral codes and pretty much stick to them but therien is the difference perhaps. Our religion gives us an actual code by which to live and in fact suggests we aim even higher I think. A humanist could be more…flexible shall we say.


#7

What do you mean by ‘morality’ and ‘without God’?

If you mean what I think you mean, then no. It would not be possible to have morality without God, becuase the standard of morality comes from God.

I like the crooked line analogy. We consider good (morality) as a straight line, and deviation from good (immorality) as a crooked line. The only reason we know a line is crooked is by having a straight line to compare it to. The straight line represents God. The only reason we can say something is immoral is becuase there is a standard of morality which corns from God.

I hope I explained that well.


#8

QUESTION:

Is a God based morality even possible?

Everyone here seems to assume that it is, but is it? After all, morality is a bit ambiguous. What’s moral to you, may not be moral to me. What was moral in the past may not be moral now. So there doesn’t seem to be an absolute morality, unchanging and universal. It would seem to possess the relativity common to man, not the immutability common to God.


#9

Completely false. My knowledge of morality might be different from yours. Our ancestors knowledge of morality might be different from ours. Morality does not change.


#10

But this means that you only ever have a limited understanding of what’s moral. We’re human. We never totally agree on anything. Even on this forum people will argue about whether 1+1=2. So it seems that none of us will ever be in complete agreement as to what’s moral. That being said, the existence of such an absolute is irrelevant, because none of us may ever be aware of what it is. So it may be impossible to have a God based morality, since we can never know what it is.

Is there a most beautiful person in the world?

How do we determine this? What scale do we use?


#11

According to my Moral Theology professor, yes, it is possible to be a moral person without being a religious person.

In fact, he has stated that when he was taught moral theology 50+ years ago, there was no talk of God/Jesus or any scripture.


#12

That’s precisely why I’m Catholic. We need an authority that can teach us God’s morality and then we have absolute certainty. No we can’t know everything in it’s entirety that doesn’t mean we don’t know anything. Not sure I follow you.


#13

But to be completely truthful, you never even know how far off you are. At least not without assuming that the Catholic Church knows what’s moral and what isn’t. And the Church’s history suggests that its not always certain as to what’s moral either. So even with the Church you’re still viewing morality in shades of gray. But even humans can do that. So where’s the need of God?


#14

Ask him to define morality. Make sure you’re on the same page with that definition. You can’t answer the question if the word you’re using means one thing in one of your minds in another in the other’s. You’ll argue past each other.

This really does get into WHAT God is. God is perfect goodness and everything that is God is of God. Evil is not a thing in itself, but the negation of the good. Every imperfection in the world is a natural evil. When we use our free will to choose to destroy what is good, we engage in a moral evil and turn ourselves away from what is good, thus turning ourselves away from God.

If you view God as just this abstract rule maker who’s dictates are not based on any natural law, then morality doesn’t exist even with God existing. It is good only because God says it is, but lacks objectify. That is no different from the moral relativist position that says that there are no objective truths within the concept of good and evil. Things are or they aren’t, and as such, our sense of morality is really about related to our human capacity for empathy as well as being a social construct.

And the atheistic view is that religious rules make people follow more socially constructed rules while ignoring their empathy. As such, religious people are judged to be less moral. And this is true if we fall into the prideful sin of legalism.


#15

We also come from a very strong Christian moral background. Many atheists, who claim they don’t need god to be moral, don’t take into account that pretty much all of the societal and moral norms that they ascribe to today come from a society and culture based off of thousands of years of…you guessed it, Christianity.


#16

To not know a thing absolutely doesn’t mean it can’t be known partially, that we cannot increase our knowledge of it, or that there isn’t a thing to be known.

Rather than suggesting relativism, it emphasizes the need for well constructed rational arguments when debating morality.


#17

Would it be ok to leave a starving child out in the snow while we feast a the warm cabin?

There are a lot of fundamental morals we share I’m sure.


#18

Therein lies the heart of the problem. We can’t even agree completely on what the word morality means, much less what it is. Although some would have us believe that there’s an absolute morality, unfortunately, we’ll never be able to agree completely on what it is, even with the Church as our guide. So we’re stuck never knowing what that absolute morality is, and that’s true with or without God.


#19

Yes, if the circumstances warrant it.


#20

Unsubstantiated assumption not based upon any corroborating evidence.


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