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October 30, 2008

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It's sometimes said that if there's no God, then anything goes. But sometimes I think it's the other way around: anything goes only if there is a God. Someone pointed this out to me with regard to the story of God's command to kill his son Isaac. Without God, it'd be wrong for Abraham to kill his son. But with God it might be right or wrong.

What do people think? Does God create a type of moral relativism?

"Without God, it'd be wrong for Abraham to kill his son."

Who sez?

We might say that "we don't like that" so we could declare that murder is banned. However, if some other society arose later that decided for whatever reason murder was okay, then it would "become" moral at that point.

"But with God it might be right or wrong."

True, in a sense, but at least here there's is a right or wrong ... there's an answer to "Who sez?"

"Who sez?"

Why does the wrongness of killing your son depend on someone saying it is wrong?

And, in general, how does someone saying that something is wrong make it wrong?

If you're a father, do you think that killing your son is wrong only because God "sez" not to murder?

Why is murder wrong?

"Why is murder wrong?"

One possible answer to this question mirrors the answer one might give to the question "Why does God exist?" The correct answer might be: He just does. It's just a brute fact. Likewise, it may just be a fact that murder is wrong.

Sandpaper, that is a non-answer. And you know it.

Bother - doesn't work outside of the USA!

from Oz at least...

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