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June 10, 2011

Comments

The problem with dilemmas like that is there are too many variables. When presented with that kind of dilemma, isn't it a form of a strawman argument? I think it would be better to send the dilemma back with "please demonstrate to me a single time that scenario has ever happened." Chances are, they can't. It's a strawman designed to make us look bad.

Or turn the question back on the questioner: You have to watch two videos - one of the remains of an aborted fetus and another of the remains of a person's nail clippings. Why does one make you cringe over the other? Why the difference in response?

You can save a new-born baby or an old overweight man from a fire. If you chose the baby, does this mean the man is not a human? duh!

Eric, I don't think it matters whether the dilemma has actually happened or not. It's just a thought experiment.

I actually think that the issue is being skirted here. The point of the dilemma is to posit a situation in which all factors are equal except those which are to be rescued. To do the dilemma justice we must assume both that the baby is in perfect health and will survive, and that the embryos have just as much chance of surviving (perhaps due to a nearby clinic, etc.). So the real question is: in this situation, what would you do?
I am against abortion and the killing of human embryos to be sure, but I would certainly have a hard time leaving an animated, crying baby to rescue the frozen embryos. This does not prove that the baby is more valuable, however, for there are similar situations in which I may choose to rescue one over the other for reasons other than value. For example, if I am rescuing adults from a burning building, and I have to choose between two, I may choose to save the one that is screaming in terror over the one that is fast asleep due to drug induced comma. This is in no way due to a difference in value, but rather due to a perceived acute suffering in the one and not in the other. This is the same for the baby and the embryos example. The baby is undergoing immediate suffering, whereas, like the sleeping adult, the embryos are not immediately suffering, at least I do not perceive them as doing so.
So, I think this dilemma only exposes our tendency to save those that we perceive to be acutely suffering first in any given situation. Of course, there may be others who aren't as squeamish as I am that will simply save the five embryos; either way the dilemma does not necessarily show what its promoters want it to show.

Good points, Shawn. Well thought out.

melinda,

>> "New variables could be introduced to the dilemma"

you're introducing new variables that don't belong.

the thought experiment is 5 healthy one-day olds vs. 1 healthy one-year old.

fruition rates are not a factor here. Nor is the introduction of ancillary diseases.

if i hold the embryo group in my left hand, and the 1-year old in my right, and stick my hands over a cliff, and ask people to choose who they want to save, most choose the 1 year old.

if i send them to medical school for 10 years, and then ask them who they want to save, most still choose the 1 year old.

if they're a devout fundamentalist Christian, and I ask who they want to save, most still choose the 1 year old.

if I tell them that the probability of all parties surviving to be adults is equal all around, most still choose the 1 year old.

all things being equal (which is the point of the thought experiment), most still choose the 1 year old.

To see how this thought experiment is so damaging to the prolife side, use the STR tactic "trot out the toddler"

The school is on fire.
The PreSchool classroom has 5 kids stuck in it.
The Kindergarten classroom has 1 kid stuck in it.
You can only point your fire hose at one classroom window.

The choice is obvious.

This is why this issue is so heated.

At the end of the day, the ethics engine that God gave us, simply does not produce ethical utterances at anywhere close to the level with embryos, as it does with newborns.

kpolo , I think in that case, it would be which one I could carry, and in that case, it would be the baby(grin).
ToNy, I don't know what you are trying to prove, maybe I am misunderstanding your point, but if it was a case of 5 kids versus 1 kid, I would point the hose at the 5 kids because there are more of them, even if they are 4 year olds rather than 6 year olds. In fact, don't we usually try to save the youngest first? Lets say one classroom had a 70 year old teacher and the other classroom had one new born baby in it. Most people would save the baby.

kpolo, I didn't indicate it, but I was referring to the old overweight man and the baby.

It would be funny to step back and try to imagine a scenario in which the fireman elects to save the embryos...

i actually live 20 feet away from a huge Firehouse.

I'm just trying to think of what the mood in there would be like if a fireman saved the embryos instead of the other person.

Cartoon

lol

First off, he'd be fired immediately and possibly brought up on criminal charges.

Then of course, Gloria Aldred would hold a press conference he'd be publicly chastised...

:)

I would save the baby, if for no other reason because s/he is conscious and would feel the pain of being burned alive. But this is a practical and emotional consideration that says nothing regarding the humanity of the embryos. A pro-life advocate could still consider them fully human.

It would be similar to having to choose between saving two adult women: one who was in a coma, and one who was not. The woman in a coma would not be conscious of her fate, whereas the conscious woman would be, so I would choose to save the conscious woman. But this says nothing about the humanity of the comatose woman.

Correct me if I'm wrong but nobody perceives any dilemma here. The choice is easy for everyone. Nobody feels anything for the embryos. Maybe that's because they are just not the sort of thing that inspires any feeling.

RonH

>> "I would save the baby, if for no other reason because s/he is conscious and would feel the pain of being burned"

even if you made the baby unconscious, people still save the baby

There is no dilemma here at all.

Unless both are intrinsically valuable in a way which transcends our whim, our preference, and so forces a choice between two Rights, or two Goods, etc.

But this is nonsense, as, we all know, reality, at bottom, neither knows nor cares; it just is, and we blindly dance to the irrationally condiditioned determinism of our DNA. Ultimately, that is.

If Atheism is the correct notion, then there is no dilemma, ultimately, as the embryo, nor the living baby, have any intrinsic worth beyond our whim, and so we can choose the baby, if that is our whim, or we can choose the embryo if that is our preference/whim, or we can choose to save Self, and forget both, if that is our whim.

At bottom, Reality is Blind, Pitiless, Unknowing, and Indifferent. Ultimatley, that is.

If Theism, or etc, then a dilemma exists, as both are valuable in ways which over-ride our own set of preferences, etc...Life has worth even if we choose not to assign it such. And etc.

Ultimately, that is.

I have yet to read anything on any of these pages by any atheist which raises the Atheist above this blind, unfeeling, amoral, indifferent ceiling under which Atheism is confined. Ultimately, that is.


If Ultimate Reality is Blind, Uncaring, Indifferent, Directionless, Pitiless, Knowing-less, and all of that, (which the Atheists ASSURE us is precisely the case) then, Ultimatley, all things come, eventually, to this amoral ceiling and fail to rise beyond it. Ultimately, that is.

If Ultimate Reality is Love, which is to say, if God is Love, then, clearly, there is a whole Other Ceiling which Man finds himself beneath. Ultimately, that is.

Within God-Is-Love we find what seems to fit. For some of us anyway. Enter Theism. For some of us.

The question for the Atheist is shall we save the baby, the 20 year old warrior, or the 99 year old cripple?

All three?

None?

Self?

The 20 year old?

Is there ANY difference at all?

What drives your choice?

On what grounds do you answer this?

The Atheists who are commenting here will not attempt an answer here on any transcendent level which can rise above his ULTIMATELY blind, irrational, pitiless, indifferent ceiling as he has yet to rise above the only ceiling available to them.

I have yet to read anything on any of these pages by any atheist which raises the Atheist above this blind, unfeeling, indifferent, pitiless, knowing-less, amoral ceiling under which Atheism is confined. Ultimately, that is.

But, if Ultimately Reality is Love, if the Highest Ethic is thereby Love, if God is Love....there is a whole Other Ceiling available to us.....


>>people still save the baby

They do. Or would.

They save the baby for its own sake. A five day embryo (5DE) they might save for someone else's sake - as they might save an inanimate object. But they wouldn't save the 5DE for its own sake.

The idea of extending such considerations to a 5DE ignores and distorts what motivates such actions in the first place.

I think solid reasons were given here for saving the baby, which do not detract from the value of the human embryos.

But let's set aside logical reasons and move on to something more important (at least, some think of it as more important). What could be more important than reason? Emotions.

RonH said that nobody *feels* anything for the embryos. He's right. But is that lack of feeling a reflection of the true value of the human embryos? I don't see how my feelings can accurately gauge a person's worth.

Like LHRM pointed out, there is no grounding for morals in atheism. To be fully consistent with atheism, there is no right, there is no wrong. In one way or another it comes back to doing what we *feel* like.

Jesse,

>> "is that lack of feeling a reflection of the true value of the human embryos?"

yes

we dont assign as much value to them.

LoveHimselfRescuedMe ,


>> If Theism, or etc, then a dilemma exists

thats the point

a dilemma exists

Tony/Ron:

....there is a moral dilemma. That is correct. For Theists and not Atheists etc. Yes. You are right. That is correct.

Two Moral Oughts pull us into Tension. The Theists, that is. The embryo, the baby, the 20 year old, the 99 year old cripple. And all of that.

No moral law within atheism is violated, ultimately, if we save one, or two, or three, or none at all.

Atheism embraces, believes, this.

Within Theism (well...depending on the version etc...) there is a Moral Ought which creates tension.

Many I know would save the embryo. Many the baby. Many the 20 year old. Many the 99 year old cripple.

They are all Good choices. They are all Bad choices. That is the nature of a dilemma. Good must be defended, and alowed to suffer harm. Right must be defended, and allowed to suffer harm.

For the Theists, or for the Chritian, this is the case and very nature of The-Now.

Yes, there is a dilemma for the Theist and not for the Atheist. You are right. That is correct.

Your arguement against the Theist is now that his Theism allows for Moral Dilemmas, and if he makes choice A and not B, then his faith is irrational, or, if he makes choice B and not A, then his faith is irrational.

But of course the very nature of [Christianity] is that Man is Broken, Unwhole, Ill, Diseased, and by nature lacks the necessary internal "stuff" to Feel, See, Know, Act, in the way one "ought" in many circumstances, if not all. Lack of feeling is, for the Christian, a Proof of the validity of the claims of Christ.

But if you spent time studying Christ you would know this, and realize that your appeal to any lack of Action, Feeling, or Morality is an appeal to the very validity of Christ's claims on humanity.

Many would chose the embryo. Many would not. Within the Christian framework all acts done/considered by any of us are acts/considerations of a broken species. We must therefore look to Christ, that Eternally Sacrificed-Self, for a Christian answer.

Christians cannot provide the necessary standard, or ability to Make New what is Old, or Make Whole what is Broken, while, in the Christian framework, God can, and does.

There is no moral dilemma for the Atheist, and, in an odd way, for God either.

The Atheist has no ultimate moral law whatsoever, thus no dilemma, while God, Love Himself, gives what only He can give, which is Life Itself, to all things Dead, and Makes All Things New.

The only choice within Him (for the "dilemma") is between Self and Other, and, inside of that One who is Love's embrace comprised of I-You, wherein the Singular We forever proceeds, it is always Thine and not Mine, You and not I, Other and not Self. We find Christ in Gethsemane b/c that is where Love is ALWAYS found. There is no ulitmate dilemma for Him, as Love does what Love does, and gives away the Self for the Beloved, and, oddly, inside of this nuance, we see that there is only "one" "good" choice for Him as it pertains to Mankind: Love Man, which, for that One who is Love, is to simply go on doing what He ALWAYS does, and cry Other and not Self. That is the only Good, the only Right, option. There is no Tension. He, in Passion, delights in His Beloved. To chose otherwise is to stand by and do nothing while His Beloved is destroyed by his own hand, as it were. But, we're told there is a huge gap here of "stuff we do not know" so I won't touch it.

Love Himself gives away the Self for every life whatsoever, or more simply, for Man, for Other. And, in Death, He restores Life, and it is at this juncture where the Christian cannot Act. He can die if he choses, but this will at most save a few. This is yet Un-Whole. Yet a compromise. But the Christian is told that if he follows Christ, and loses his life, he will find it, and even more, out of death will come life.

The Christian must chose between one Good thing and another Good thing. He cannot save both. But he can chose to follow Love Himself, and, if that means loss of Self, then he is assured that Life will come out of it, if not in The-Now, then Soon. Often in ways, or places, he can't even guess at.

The Christian answer to your question can only be found in the pattern of Christ Himself; not in the Christian. As a Christian, I am a pathetic work in progress. Any choice I make will save but a few, if even that, and I will often be tempted to save only my Self. But Love's triune dance with Gethsemane's I and You and Singular We is another story, the only story, where the Christian response can be found.

As I said before, there is a far sicker, or darker, problem for the atheist, as he claims there is no moral law within atheism that is violated should he choose to abandon all three to the fire and save the Self. Love, within Naturalism, is but one more of Nature's Tools to perpetuate the species, the Self, and, so long as it helps this cause (the perpetuation of Self) it will be selected for by the blind and the indifferent. Etc...

But, if Ultimately Reality is Love, if the Highest Ethic is thereby Love, if God is Love....there is a whole Other Reality available to us.....

LoveHimselfRescuedMe,

>> They are all Good choices. They are all Bad choices

well no.

theres a right and wrong answer to the question of course.

>> "Within the Christian framework all acts done/considered by any of us are acts/considerations of a broken species"

Ya if i was still Christian i'd just say that people choose to save the baby because our moral compass was broken in 'the fall.'

e.g. Adam and Eve would have considered the drawing completely rational, and wouldn't really understand why anyone wouldn't make the firemans choice.

Question:

Can you please use the word "love" more in your next post? You've only used it 25 times and I think it really needs to be emphasized more.

Your genes are almost exactly the same as my genes. So if I look after you I get almost as many of 'my' genes into the next generation as I do by looking after myself.

Now that's grounding.

RonH


If you wish to demonstrate an incoherency within the Christian who feels A, or chooses A, or feels B, or chooses B, you haven't demonstrated it.

The Christian stance is that we will lack the proper feeling, or choice, etc, often, in fact very often.

You take the Christian's own stance and say it is a proof of his incoherency, which is intellectual dishonesty, once again. At least you are consistent.

Your intellectual dishonesty is this:


In the framwork of the Christian, not-saving the baby is "bad", and not saving the embryo is "bad" and saving only the Self is "bad", while, also, giving away the self to save one of them is "good". There is Good (a life saved) as well as Bad (a life lost), in the Christian view. In the Christian framework, lacking the feeling to choose A (or B), is a proof of the validity of Christ's claims on humanity. In the Christian framework, it is Christ, and not the Christian, where standards, or Patterns of Truth, must be sought.


Therefore, you are being Intellectually Dishonest when you tell the Christian his faith is irrational b/c he lacks Feeling for the Baby, or the Embryo, b/c that is what his framework actually teaches/supports (that he will lack such). And you are being Intellectually Dishonest when you tell the Christian his faith is incoherent b/c it states that there is both good and bad here, b/c that is what his framework actually teaches/supports.

You think this way b/c in your view "feeling" nothing for the embryo, or the baby, or the slave, means there simply isn't any real worth there, as that is Naturalism's stance. Ron is arguing this too along with you. [they don't feel A, so that proves the atheist is right in saying A has no worth...that IS what you are saying...thus a lack of feeling for the slave...and on and on down Naturalism's dark road] And so too with "no bad" in a situation in which a life is lost.

This is Intellectual Dishonesty, b/c if I am to find a fault with atheism, I must take its OWN stance and allow IT to exist in THAT framework, and then, from there, find a SELF-contradictory stance. In other words, I cannot call you inconsitant b/c you say there is no real moral law, as that is your stance. It is not a contradiction.

If I were to argue this way, it would be dishonest, intellectually. And even silly. And even, well, unsophisticated intellectually. You are doing the intellectual [equivalent] of telling the atheist his atheism is inconsitent b/c he argues from the vantage point of there being no objective moral law. This is [stupid] b/c that is what his framework TEACHES.

The Christian claim is that we will not feel what we ought to feel. We will not act as we ought to act. And, there is Bad when a life is lost, whether baby or embryo, or 99 year old cripple. And, therefore, to argue that a lack of feeling, or action, or that his claim of "both good and bad" in this situation is a proof of the Christian's incoherency, is silly, even dishonest, even somewhat surprising, even intellectually dull b/c all of those things, within THAT framework, are actually a proof of its validity.

The Christian answer to your question can only be found in the pattern of Christ Himself; not in the Christian. As a Christian, I am a pathetic work in progress. Any choice I make will save but a few, if even that, and I will often be tempted to save only my Self. But Love's triune dance with Gethsemane's I and You and Singular We is another story, the only story, where the Christian response can be found.

As I said before, there is a far sicker, or darker, problem for the atheist, as he claims there is no moral law within atheism that is violated should he choose to abandon all three to the fire and save the Self. Love, within Naturalism, is but one more of Nature's Tools to perpetuate the species, the Self, and, so long as it helps this cause (the perpetuation of Self) it will be selected for by the blind and the indifferent. Etc...

But, if Ultimately Reality is Love, if the Highest Ethic is thereby Love, if God is Love....there is a whole Other Reality available to us.....

ToNy,

To quote you:

>> "is that lack of feeling a reflection of the true value of the human embryos?"

yes

we dont assign as much value to them.

This is proof that you are arguing that a lack of feeling by the rapist for his victim as she is raped, is a "proof" of her lack of worth, or a "proof" of the lack of necessity for him to stop. Etc... This IS the line of reasoning you are using.

But, we can NOT call you "inconsitent" or "self contradictory" as this is simply what Atheism ultimately ends up with. Blind, Indifferent, Pitiless Reality.

I can say you are "wrong" but I can't accuse you of being irrational merely by making this arguement.

Do you see the point?

In Christian frameworks, there is Good and Bad to this dilemma, there is going to be a lack of feeling for A or B, there is going to be a lack of action for A or B, etc. Yet you use these as "evidence" of a self-contradiction by the Christian.

This is Intellectual Dishonesty if it is done knowingly. It is just intellectual unsophistication if done unkowingly.

Your arguement against the Theist is now that his Theism allows for Moral Dilemmas, and if he makes choice A and not B, then his faith is irrational, or, if he makes choice B and not A, then his faith is irrational, or that if he feels A and not B, or B and not A, then his faith is irrational.

But of course the very nature of [Christianity] is that Man is Broken, Unwhole, Ill, Diseased, and by nature lacks the necessary internal "stuff" to Feel, See, Know, Act, in the way one "ought" in many circumstances, if not all. Lack of feeling is, for the Christian, a Proof of the validity of the claims of Christ.

But if you spent time studying Christ you would know this, and realize that your appeal to any lack of Action, Feeling, or Morality is an appeal to the very validity of Christ's claims on humanity.

LoveHimselfRescuedMe,


>> Ultimately Reality is Love, if the Highest Ethic is thereby Love, if God is Love...

Loveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee All we need is love!!!!!!!!! All we need is love!!!!!!!!! All we need is love!!!!!!!!! All we need is love!!!!!!!!!

Would you mind sharing more of your thoughts on love?

LoveHimselfRescuedMe,

>> Therefore, you are being Intellectually Dishonest when you tell the Christian his faith is irrational b/c he lacks Feeling for the Baby...that is what his framework actually teaches

I know

like i said, if i was still Christian "i'd just say that people choose to save the baby because our moral compass was broken in 'the fall.'"


>> "Your arguement against the Theist is now that his Theism allows for Moral Dilemmas, and if he makes choice A and not B, then his faith is irrational"

well the point of the thought experiment is to illustrate that the Christian is inconsistent.

This is your dishonesty, intellectually; At least you are consistent.

I must give you that.

Once again:

There is no "inconsistency" and no "self-contradiction" precisely b/c the Christian looks at this dilemma and states that the Christian will not respond as God would have us to respond.

Therefore, we teach that there will be either a lack of feeling, or too much feeling, or no feeling, and etc.

Therefore, when the Christain states, "My lack of feeling for the baby, and my preference to save the embryo, may be the right set of feelings, it may not be, and the mere state of feelings cannot determine such" he is consistent WITHIN Christianity.

Further, when he states, "I expect many of us to have the wrong set of feelings, or lack of feeling, and that is why there is a lack of feeling, and that is why there is the wrong set of feelings" he is consistent WITHIN Christianity.

It is perfectly consistent, WITHIN Christianity, to make that case, b/c that is exaclty what Christ teaches about the human condition.

"Irrational" and SELF contradiction are approaching you though.........depending on how far you push "the lack of feeling determins worth" b/c if we take that to the Nth degree we end up in a place even you yourself (that is my guess) do not "feel is correct" namely, the lack of feeling of the rapist, for his victim, while he rapes her, MUST, according to YOUR reasoning, be a PROOF of the lack of worth of his victim.

But it gets EVEN WORSE: you are herein making a Moral Statement on the worth or lack of worth of a human life from within an Amoral Reality (you yourself said there are no objective moral oughts; do you need the quote?).

When the Atheist begins to make Moral Statements on "Ought Save" and "Ought not save" from WITHIN his Amoral Universe, he is therein exposed to the intellectally HONEST critisism of being SELF contradictory. Meaning, he does not contradict Christianity etc, but he contradicts HIMSELF from WITHIN his amoral universe, and this IS "irrational" and "self defeating" etc b/c his atheism affords no such Ought beyond the blind, indifferent, pitiless reality that ultimately started his sense of things, and ultimately, at the end of things, consumes his sense of things.

Finally, WITHIN Christianity, it is NOT the Christian wherein Truth is found, for the Christian is a pathetic work in progress. It is within Christ, and the Eternal Patterns of Love Himself wherein the Christian reply can be found. You are looking into the CHRISTIAN, and not CHRIST, and this is intellectually dishonest b/c the Christian TELLS you outright that NOTHING makes sense in Christianity from THAT vantage point, and EVERYTHING makes sense from the vantage point of IN-CHRIST. Yet, you persist in defining the Christian response from OUT-side of Christ and thus are guilty of cheating; or simply, Intellectual Dishonesty......Again.......

>> "WITHIN Christianity, it is NOT the Christian wherein Truth is found, for the Christian is a pathetic work in progress. It is within Christ"

Well Christ never said which constructs of cabon nitrogen oxygen and hydrogen on the planet are human.

Its en vogue to choose the fertilization event as the point at which a human starts.

But this is of course not in the bible nor did Jesus say as such.

So this thought experiment reveals that, though Christians have chosen the fertilization event as their starting line, they actually don't really this event as such. Which begs the question:

"If Christians don't treat their own starting line, as the starting line, why should the pro-choicers do so?"

The question is not about what Pro-choicers should do. It is about the arguement that "because there is a dilemma, and b/c the Christian makes choice A and not B, or B and not A, or feels A and not B, or feels B and not A, his Faith is therefore Self-contradictory. Which we've addressed is an intellectual cheat, as we must look to Christ.


That was the arguement being made. Clearly it was intellectually dishonest, as it works from OUTSIDE of CHRIST, and etc....

However, if you want to ADD questions to this question, then, from my very first post, the question which I asked, and which you have so far avoided:

The question for the Atheist is shall we save the baby, the 20 year old warrior, or the 99 year old cripple?

All three?

None?

Self?

The 20 year old?

Is there ANY difference at all in the Intrinsic Worth of these?

Is there Intrinsic worth?

***What drives your choice?

***On what grounds do you answer this?

If there is no moral ought, as you have already stated (do you need the quote?) then, your movement towards the question/answer of a moral question is a move outside of your amoral universe.

In your universe, the Pro Life'r and the Pro Choice'r can do as they are "driven" to do. Any other answer I give you will contradict the basis of your world view, and so will be nonsense.

If you are looking for the Christian to explain his action or thought process, then that is fine, but, really, there is no container, in your universe, in which you can place his answer.

The real question you should be asking is this: Fine, all you Christians descide this among yourselves, as it is WITHIN your "world" as it were, just leave the rest of us out of it; why should we be molded to your take on things?

To which my reply is this:

Christ did not speak out against child torture, nor rape, nor slavery, nor etc...but He does bring with Him the business of "neither male nor female, slave nor free, Jew nor Gentile..." and thus Intrinsic Worth, Intrinsic Equality, and all of that. This, combined with, "I knew you in the whom" etc makes it coherent to make the case that the "whom" is a "you" equivalent. It is like rape: you add up the various elements and see if it "fits". "Whom" is not as clear, to me, as is rape, but that is the process and it is a valid process. Just look at rape. You could argue that the embryo takes a few days to float down to the whom, so therefore the first few days are not "whom" thus not "you". Or not. But that's for those silly Christians to debate among themselves.

But it gets worse:

Why shouldn't they force you to comply to their world view?

There is no moral law within atheism that is violated should one group of people, with enough might, wrench out of your hands the very Right of Autonomy you lift up as an Ought in your Ought-less universe; in fact, there is no moral law within atheism that is violated should they wrench from your hands not only your Autonomy, but even life itself.

You believe this.

Therefore, there is no problem. No tension. Thus, no question.

>> the Christian makes choice A and not B, or B and not A, or feels A and not B, or feels B and not A, his Faith is therefore Self-contradictory

i dunno about Faith...

This thought experiment is about the abortion issue / ethics, etc. But i dont see how this relates to your faith in jesus.

>> Is there ANY difference at all in the Intrinsic Worth of these?

Indeed the question is asking the subject to choose who to save. e.g. to choose the action set which yields more units of human value? If indeed the FIVE (5) embryos were actually EACH worth the SAME (per unit) as the ONE (1) toddler, then people wouldn't have any trouble answering this question.

But they do have trouble.

The only honest response a Christian can give to the Burning IVF lab thought experiment is:

"My mind tells me the answer is "save the baby." But my worldview tells me the answer is "save the embryos." There is an inconsistency in my response because, after the fall of man, my mind and spirit were corrupted by supernatural forces. So, I cannot answer this question correctly at this juncture, because I am currently suffering from demonic affliction."

If they answered like that, I'd at least give them points for being honest.

>> If you are looking for the Christian to explain his action or thought process, then that is fine, but, really, there is no container, in your universe, in which you can place his answer.

well like i said, i dont believe in oughts, so this is just for fun


"....well like i said, i dont believe in oughts, so this is for fun......"

That about tells us everything we need to know about your ability to comment in any meaningful way on any moral issue whatsoever....That is a concrete, descriptive comment, not a criticism, as your comment, and its logical result of aborting your ability to make meaningful moral statements, is perfectly logical "within" your universe.

Jesus never commented on Rape. By your method of arguing here, you are saying the Christian must say, "I cannot answer correctly b/c I am fallen..." and you give as the reason for this "Jesus never SPECIFICALLY commented on it,on rape".

The Christian disagrees, as, the process of connecting the dots, and taking several elements to try to make a picture fit, and, to pray and seek, is, "within" Christianity, a valid process.

You are actually telling Christians the BEST answer they can give on rape is "It's not SPECIFCIALLY mentioned, so, due to my fallens state, I cannot comment".

This is simply nonsense.

Christians can comment PERFECTLY on Rape: DON'T DO IT.

It is YOU, and you ALONE, who has no basis to make any moral comment on rape, WITHIN your world view. You just conceded that. There are no oughts, including "ought not rape".

That is the logical result of your world view.

The Christian, WITHIN his world view, CAN comment on rape. And Perfectly, even in the abscense of a "specific" comment by Jesus. WITHIN Christianity, the Christian is TOLD to make such extrapolations, so doing so is valid. And, of course, we can not "not know" that rape IS "ought not".

The Christian, WITHIN his world view CAN comment on rape, and even OUGHT to.

You, WITHIN your worldview, CANNOT comment on rape, in any meaningful way.

Think about that....

Yet, the one who's worldview precludes him from any ability to comment tells the one who HAS an ability (within his worldview) to comment the Intellectually Dishonest statement of "You can't comment". This is clearly dishonest, as it reverses the obvious fields of play.

WITHIN Christ, the Christian CAN comment on rape.

WITHIN Naturalism, the atheist CANNOT.

Yet, you (the generic you...the atheist etc...) reverse this and say to the Christian, "You can't comment b/c Jesus didn't specifically mention rape."

This is intellectually dishonest b/c it clearly lies about the status of things WITHIN each world view etc.


ya i dont believe in oughts.

but we can pretend i'm a Christian in this scenario.

i'd argue the exact same way.

Again ToNy's no win scenario for Christians. There is a discoverable solution to this dilemma. See:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kobayashi_Maru

and:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6Gp2Ir7n9M

At the end of the clip Admiral Kirk, in response to Saavik request for recommendations, suggests prayer. A nice touch!

Kirk of course solved the Kobayashi Maru scenario in a creative way.

LHRM's point that this scenario poses no problem for the atheist stands unchallenged. For the atheist no action is required.

>> see Kobayashi

dont see a relation

>> For the atheist no action is required.

obviously

ToNy,

It is a no win scenario meant to judge character. Your scenario is a no win scenario for Christians. Given your characteristic "just for fun" attitude about these things I like to suggest that Kirk's example of reprogramming of the scenario to defeat the no win set up is the solution for the Christian in the burning IVF clinic.

I thought it was a nice touch in the video clip for Kirk to suggest prayer to Saavik in a time of trial. I don't want to make too much of it though.

You mischaracterize what is going on by saying the mind says save the baby and the worldview says save the embryos. In fact, the Christian mind is saying save them all. The Christian's heart is saying save the baby. The Bible warns about the condition of the heart even amoung Christians. It appears you don't know this. When you mention that you were once a Christian it makes me wonder how you can make this mistake.

I must admit I think that it is highly inappropriate to have embryos in jars anyway.

William Wilcox,

>> The Bible warns about the condition

as mentioned: "if i was still Christian i'd just say that people choose to save the baby because our moral compass was broken in 'the fall.'"

so i dont think this is the sort of fait accompli you describe.

>> as mentioned: "if i was still
>> Christian i'd just say that people
>> choose to save the baby because our
>> moral compass was broken in 'the
>> fall.'"

Supposing you once were a Christian who thought this way, what would be your opinion of the Christians on this blog who suggest, for various reasons, that saving the baby would be the best thing to do?

>> "what would be your opinion of the Christians on this blog who suggest, for various reasons, that saving the baby would be the best thing to do?"

I think they need only answer in the below fashion to achieve resolve on this issue:

"My mind tells me the answer is "save the baby." But my worldview tells me the answer is "save the embryos." There is an inconsistency in my response because, after the fall of man, my mind and spirit were corrupted by supernatural forces. So, I cannot answer this question correctly at this juncture, because I am currently suffering from demonic affliction."

I think that is quite a fair response and the most honest response a Christian can give to the Burning IVF Lab thought experiment.

You sure have a strange understanding of Christianity-- a grossly incorrect one, I might add.

no this is correct

the fall of man corrupted us

no one disputes that

Since this dilemma is based largely on emotion, I think a fairer scenario would be one that places the five embryos on the same emotional level as that of the single child. Make a biologically equivalent but much more personal substitution of embryos in their mother's womb for frozen embryos in a lab and the picture changes dramatically.

Say the choice is between saving a mother with a sleeping baby and a mother with 14-day-old triplets in her womb. Given that the baby would not wake to eliminate the additional suffering variable, and given that the triplets are guaranteed to survive to term to eliminate the probability of survival variable, who can say that the choice does not become vastly more difficult?

I honestly think if faced with such a ghastly lose-lose decision, most peoples' consciences would force them to go by the numbers and choose the woman with unborn triplets, and if so the dilemma still fails to prove its point.

Forrest,

its a good point.

* a mother is sleeping with her toddler in apartment A

* a pregnant women with triplets in her tummy is in apartment B

which one do you save?

I think most Christians will still say A.

But it does make the thought experiment more nail biting.

Tony,

"I'd argue in the same way".

Meaning, b/c Jesus does not SPECIFICALLY mention rape, you would be, as a Christian, UNABLE to say anything more concrete than, "Well, my moral compass is broken, so I can't specifically say....rape may be right, or not, or maybe we can come up with a middle ground."

This IS what you are saying.

It is wholly UN-Christian.

You are not arguing from WITHIN Christianity with this line of logic.

Thus, you are intellecutally dishonest.

The Christian CAN make moral statements about issues not specifically mentioned. Including Rape, Abortion, War, and other "controversial" moral dilemmas. I think prayer and seeking Him are a factor as well, but so to is the process of seeking a picture which connects as many dots as possible. This is why Rape is easily addressed by connecting the many dots in the New Testament which speak "toward the moral components" within that act/event/etc.

You are being, yet again, intellectually dishonest b/c you are OBVIOUSLY arguing from a line of logic that is not WITHIN Christianity.

At least you are consistent.

But then, dishonesty is not "intrinsically" wrong in your universe. Is it?

I think it is. I think you think it is too.......but, as you say, you enjoy the "fun" of this....which most of us who type away endlessly on these sites do too.....but, part of the fun is to try to improve my ability to weave through these lines while not cheating: as in, not lying.

ToNy I meant to ask, why did you stop being a Christian?

I stopped b/c of the following:

1) It seemed like you always had to "pump it up" to get "into" the Spirit. This, to me, seemed like Autohypnosis. In this same avenue: He was too silent.

2) My own inner sins did not seem to be fading "as fast as I thought they should have" "if" God was really there creating a New Man in me....it always seemed like the same Old Me, with a little "pumped up" action layered over the top of that to serve as the "new man" as it were. The process was taking WAY too long. And, in the church I was in, "to struggle for years" equated to an utter lack of God in one's life. "If you were REALLY spiritual you'd get victory, total victory, YES brother TOTAL victory."


So I left.


Obvioulsy things changed years later etc.....but I thought I'd ask....

>> It is wholly UN-Christian.

why?

Christians already admit their moral compass is broken.

Its just a matter of degree.

This is not to say it doesn't point "near" North.

It's just not perfect.

The IVF lab is merely an example where this imperfection is revealed.

>> why did you stop being a Christian?

I didn't think there was enough evidence to believe that Jesus of Nazareth was the creator of the cosmos.

It is un Christian b/c you are equating the fall to an inability to make a concrete statement on the wrongness of rape. Clearly this is not Christian, as the Christian can call rape wrong etc....and be sound in doing so.

You are saying the Christian cannot make concrete moral statements on anything not specifically mentioned, like rape.

"The Christian is irrational to call rape wrong b/c Jesus didn't say raping a woman is wrong."

"The Christian is irrational to call child abuse wrong b/c Jesus didn't say child abuse is wrong."

This is your logic.

I'll let it stand for all to read as it is its own worst enemy. Just reading those two statement proves the point.

((creator of cosmos? so you believe in a creator, its just not the Christian version?)

Forgot:

WITHIN Christianity the Christian is told to "juge all things" and etc. "All".

Like Rape. Like things not specifically mentioned by name.

Therefore, you logic is UN-Christian, yet you offer it as a Christian logic; "The fall broke our compass, so we can't juge anything not specifically mentioned by name in scripture."

This statement is NOT in Christianity.

Judge all things....that statement IS in Christianity.


But you know this.

Therefore, you are saying something you know is false.

The term for this is lying.

Or intellectual dishonesty etc....that is not a moral criticism, but a descriptive term of what you are doing. You are lying.

"The Christian is irrational to call rape wrong b/c Jesus didn't say raping a woman is wrong."

"The Christian is irrational to call child abuse wrong b/c Jesus didn't say child abuse is wrong."

Just reading those two statments makes the point.

This is your logic. It is intentional lying, ToNy, b/c "Juge all things" IS in scripture while "The fall means we can't judge anything not specifically named" is NOT in scripture.

Your line of logic is obvioulsy, clearly, not only un-scriptural (not found in scripture) but it even CONTRADICTS the "Judge all things" nuance.

But you know this.

To know the Truth is A, and yet insist it is B is to lie.

You are lying, ToNy.


>> "The fall broke our compass, so we can't juge anything"

of course, i never said that.

I just said the compass is damaged, and some questions (e.g. the ivf lab example) reveal as such.

i dont think thats really controversial at all.

LoveHimselfRescuedMe, there is only one that is him, and he is love. If you are in him, then you are in love. But if you are not in him, then you cannot be in love, and love cannot be in him. If love is the only thing which love is, then love is the one love that we may love. It is not love that is love in himself. But love that is always and forever, for him -- in love. For by love we are with him and through his love, we love. I love pasta. But my love of pasta alone does not equate to his love. His love is love and is the love that is all we desire.

All we need is love. Love is all we need.

"The Spirit will lead you into ALL Truth".

All.

Including IVF labs and etc.

Like Rape.

And Child abuse.

CAN we make ACCURATE moral statements on those?

We can, and we "can get it right, 100% right".

But you know this too.

"He will lead you into "all" truth". All.

You are not saying that "All truth" is not WITH us, but you are saying that it is not AVAILABLE to us, as in He won't be the "living" God and actually answer prayer and "lead into all truth" on matters we bring to Him.


It is available to us, b/c He said it is; it is a scriptural statement to say ALL truth IS available. The Fall was UN-done. The Fall is no longer the KEY issue.

But you know this too. You know all of those things.

To know a truth, and call it a lie, is to tell a lie.

You are lying, ToNy.

>> we "can get it right, 100% right".

you just can't get all ethical questions right, 100% of the time.

this should be obvious.

in fact, only god can do this.

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