Moral Relativism

Is anyone else feel hopeless about the culture we live in? Im getting to the point where I feel like I can’t even convince anyone about true morals because we live in such a brutally secular and morally relative world. For example the HHR mandate about birth control was removed by the Supreme Court today for Hobby Lobby and a couple other places and Im watching my Facebook feed blow up from all the ticked off people who think its wrong. I try and state my opinion and reasoning and they make me out to be the bad guy. Its impossible to argue with someone like that. They all think I’m being self righteous and judgmental when they don’t realize 1). I am just as bad of a sinner as them I just happen to recognize my sin and feel terrible when I do, attempting to avoid it and they just say screw it and do what they want. And 2). Im sick of people saying “Don’t judge man” its another typical out of context Christian principle. The judging we refer to means to no judge the state of ones soul but it is acceptable to judge an immoral action and see the wrong in it (Objective Judgement I think). Am I correct in thinking this?

Does anyone feel the same or have any advice on how we can spread the truth without seeming to just be annoying religious people?

Also I don’t know if this is the right section to post this please move it if it is in the wrong place.

God Bless

I’m not sure what you can do regarding others, but certainly we must pray for them and show them good example by our own lives.

The Catholic Church’s teaching regarding moral conscience

vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p3s1c1a6.htm

God bless you also

LoganBice #1
Im sick of people saying “Don’t judge man” its another typical out of context Christian principle. The judging we refer to means to no judge the state of ones soul but it is acceptable to judge an immoral action and see the wrong in it (Objective Judgement I think). Am I correct in thinking this?

Very much so.

It would appear that many face book contributors are idly and aimlessly pushing feelings, desires, whims, fancies etc. – that is not the essence of life – which is to know, love and serve God, including to and with all of those with whom we come in contact.

This is the reality of judging as the rule from Christ is:
“Judge not that you be not judged.” (Mt 7:1), but He clarifies:

“Stop judging by appearances, but judge justly.” (Jn 7:24).

“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but underneath are ravenous wolves. By their fruits you will know them” (Mt 7:15, 16).

“Every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. So by their fruits you will know them.” (Mt 7:19-20).

So, we may not judge motives, intentions, and guilt before God but we are commanded by Christ Himself to judge actions, speech, writing against truth and in this way we can help others by offering truth.

When someone goes around saying there open minded, but tell you to shut up about your beliefs is very hypocritical.

When a mind is closed shut to opposing views, it is hopeless to have a thorough argument.

When did feelings become the new reason?

Yeah. Can’t imagine why they’d think you were self-righteous and judgmental.

Is that sarcasm? If it is it’s uncalled for.

Its not at all uncalled for.

You act (from the content of your post) in a self-righteous and judgmental way towards your friends. They call you on it.

You come here seeking comfort because you feel wrongly accused of being self-righteous and judgmental, when in fact, if we are go by what you’re written, you are being correctly accused.

BTW, you’re misusing the term morale relativism.

Please explain to me how I’m being self rightgeous? Obviously my post was misunderstood. I am saying that as a Christian I feel bad when I sin that secular society dosnt see as sins. I’m not judging anyone’s soul and I’m not hating anyone. I was arguing with someone the morality of birth control. I’m a sinner and struggle with things just like everyone but I come on this site for guidance not comfort. I am asking how to talk with someone without sounding self righteous. Also being sarcastic is rude and not helping. If I am I’m the wrong correct me about something. Don’t just make a condescending comment. Self righteousness would be the view that I’m above everyone and I know I’m not. I’m saddened by the state of the world.

You also completely ignored my question about advice on how to spread the truth without sounding self righteous. I’m trying to be a better Catholic and it’s difficult when instead of help and answers I just get unhelpful remarks from people.

I’ve not found it possible to correct others (especially when not specifically asked by them to do so) without coming across as self-righteous.

If you want to tell other people what to think/act/believe, etc, you’ve got to be willing to accept the push-back.

Me too. But my way of doing that to trying is to focus upon improving myself focusing on the failings of other people.

YMMV.

No I defienty expect pushback. And don’t get me wrong I don’t randomly go around telling people how to behave. I’m referring to times when Catholics, Christians or my view are directly attacked so I push back. I probably should have clarified that.
I’m not out hunting for people to preach to but when I see someone say something g negative about my faith and my views
I respond but it somehow ends up with me being the bad guy (which I usually expect).

I focus on my self too and I don’t focus on others failings but arnt we as Christians called to defend our faith when it is slandered? That’s was all I was doing.

I probably didn’t clarify that very well that’s my fault sorry.

Hey LoganBice,

First off, I just want to apologize for the length of my response, but hopefully you find it helpful.

I definitely know what you’re talking about. It is sad that our culture is falling so far away from Our Lord. But I don’t think that it is hopeless, although I can understand why you may feel that way.

I think some of the people who are saying that you sound self-righteous because of this comment: “…they just say screw it and do what they want.”

but I think that they are misinterpreting what you meant. This is an area we have to be careful in when we get frustrated, its easy to say things like this, but it makes people mad instead of changing their minds. BTW, many/most relativists do have morals, they just don’t take them into consideration when they say they don’t believe in morals (i.e. they believe that Hitler SHOULDN’T have killed the Jews).

Your understanding of the command to not judge is correct.

Here is some advice:

To those who quote Matthew 7:1 to defend relativism, use Luke 17:3
“Take heed to yourselves; if your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him;”

Against relativism itself, use Chris Stefanick’s one-sentence definition of relativism:
“It is true for everybody that nothing is true for everybody.”

Or my definition:
“We will not tolerate intolerance.”

Also, point out that if nothing is wrong, then there isn’t anything wrong with what you are saying. If nothing is wrong, then there is nothing wrong with you saying that there are things that are wrong.

As to how to evangelize without sounding like a jerk, well, to be honest, that will be extremely hard to do online. The only advice I can give you would be to avoid comments like the one I pointed out above. Also, try to lead people to notice the flaws in their philosophies by asking them questions.

I would check out these videos:

Mark Hart - youtube.com/watch?v=r3j4v76SKaY
Chris Stefanick - youtube.com/watch?v=oqmTM-mNBL0
Chris Stefanick - youtube.com/watch?v=abGELJJZ2fo

The last one is long, but it is worth it. It is all about what relativism is, and why it doesn’t hold together as a philosophy.

I hope that was helpful.

God bless

Yeah looking back at that comment it does seem mean but as you seem to understand thats not how I meant it.

Thank you very much for you response it was very helpful. I will make sure to check out the links and take your advice when talking to others about morality.

Iv also heard the The 7 Deadly Sins of Apologetics by Mark Brumley is a great book.

God Bless

Glad to hear I was helpful!:slight_smile: I think I’ve heard of that book, I’ll have to check it out sometime.

God bless

Hey, it looks like Catholic Answers has a podcast with the author:

catholic.com/radio/shows/the-seven-deadly-sins-of-apologetics-13152

Just click the “listen” button, then click the play button (I’m over-explaining here :D). I think it is also on iTunes, I’m not sure.

God bless

Listened to it at work yesterday :smiley:

Awesome! I listened to a little bit of the beginning. I’ll have to finish it sometime.

We live in a time that is becoming in various ways more like the times of the early Church. Like the early Christians we must calmly and lovingly and joyfully say:

“I am a Christian!”

earlychristians.org/index.php/acts/item/315-the-acts-of-martyrdom-of-the-scillitan-saints

earlychristians.org/index.php/acts

Standing fast in Faith, Hope and Love.

With the gentleness called for by St. Peter in":
1 Peter 3:15 (be sure to read that).

Let us seek more and more in ourselves - the"renewal of our mind"

Pope Benedict XVI:

vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/homilies/2009/documents/hf_ben-xvi_hom_20090628_chius-anno-paolino_en.html (starts second paragraph).

and when we seek to give fraternal correction to - to do so with love and truth:

vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/messages/lent/documents/hf_ben-xvi_mes_20111103_lent-2012_en.html

Thank you for the advice and guidance. I will make sure to check out the links when get off work.

God Bless

Gentleness is good in its right place, and its right place is to be found more often than not. Not sure if something stronger is not sometimes called for, as when Jesus drove the money-lenders out of the temple. Sometimes, as the old saw goes, you need to hit the obstinate mule over the head with a 2x4 just to get his attention. :wink:

The Church has always used several strategies with great effect.

  1. Confession and reconciliation

  2. Excommunication

  3. Various strategies between the two extremes

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