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In the proposition IX, part III of Ethics, Spinoza operates the following reversal of concepts: it is not because we judge that something is good that we desire that thing, but it is because we desire it that we judge it to be good. In Spinoza's philosophy, our judgement as well as our actions are entirely determined, based on what information and experience ...


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Welcome, SDZ It is not clear, as Ameet Sharma points out, what your friend means by 'being on top of the food chain'. But between (1) any plausible meaning it might have and (2) the claim that one species (ours) has a right to exploit others (say, sheep or cattle) by killing and eating them there is a logical gap. (2) does not follow from (1) unless (1) is ...


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Maximising wellbeing and avoiding suffering are just subjective heuristics required for evolution of replicating genes. A great deal of research shows things like having a job with autonomy is more important than higher pay, that a meaningful life connected to others is far more important than pleasure or suffering. We can relate moral progress to going ...


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Other responses claim that moral rightness depends on foreseen, foreseeable, intended, or likely consequences, rather than actual ones. -Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy's Entry on Consequentialism, Section 4: Which Consequences? Actual vs. Expected Consequentialisms Your philosophy has traditionally been categorized as Consequentialist. If you want, you ...


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In light of your pre-assumed objective/subjective philosophical view, there're possibly several schools of thought to account for what's "good" for a person or a species. There's evolutionary naturalism or physicalism which suggests what's good for the person or as a species will be preserved and prevailed naturally, what's "bad" will be ...


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Your question answers itself. Well-being implies the presence of goodness before anything else; asking if the pursuit of well-being is good is like asking if I will feel pain if I hurt myself. But linguistics aside. however, all of this relies on a fundamental axiom or premise, and that is, that pursuing well-being and avoiding suffering are fundamentally ...


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First, let me say I question the moral precept you outline. I mean, why would we define 'wrong' as that which cancels out 'right', without circularly defining 'right' as that which cancels out 'wrong'? You seem to have given an odd ontological primacy to 'right', as though it's pre-given, and pre-known. Just so it's said... That aside, it's worth remembering ...


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Hence, how could we truly claim that those old problems were actually being correctly solved up to our current dates? Any elaborate thinking requires representations (like words, or drawings) and all representations are approximations. Live with it.


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Science is specifically an empirical and data driven study. It has so far worked incredibly well when the goal is predicting future results. And in the process of predicting future results, modeling reality with math and scientific theories allows for incredibly precise predictions, like measuring down to 10^-17 cm's in quantum mechanical experiments. At ...


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You are correct that mathematics continues to have mysteries that the passage of the years has not erased. Chief among these is the fact that we come to know and understand mathematical concepts such as shape and number by their physical instantiations, yet there can never be a perfect correspondence between the physical world and the world of theoretical ...


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I know the principle seems consequentialist at first sight, but my point is that by defining what's right not in terms of how good the actual consequences of an action are, but in terms of our reasons to believe those consequences would be good, I am not appealing directly to consequences. the reasons to believe those consequences would be good must be ...


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I don't fully understand the formal backing for your philosophical system, so if it's OK with you, I'm going to interpret it as a mostly utilitarian system. In particular, you say that an action is wrong if it cancels out something right, so I'm going to formalize that by defining some set of happiness, freedom or fulfillment as "utility" and you ...


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Very little. The biological species concept is of great interest to population biologists and evolutionary biologists and geneticists who need to understand how genes flow through a population, because it is a terse summary of who (usually) reproduces with whom. But certain knowledge that men and women are of the same species did not deter sexists from ...


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Thanks for the alert that Machiavelli did not originate or even directly repeat the original Ovid quote "Exitus acta probat." I was searching The Prince for it and couldn't find it. Note, however, that, regardless of Machiavelli's intent in his book and while many have translated the Latin phrase to mean "The end justifies the means," ...


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Your principle could be both consequentialist and dentological. In what it requires of you, in the obligation it imposes, it is plainly consequentalist but that says nothing about the considerations that make it obligatory. It could be a requirement of God (as in an ethics of divine commands) or a requirement of justice, neither of these requirements having ...


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Where AI becomes competent enough that people can become dependent on it and vulnerable to manipulation 'ethics of care' would be pertinent. Good luck to that though. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethics_of_care Carol Gilligan, who is considered the originator of the ethics of care, criticized the application of generalized standards as "morally ...


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As always, It depends a lot on the moral framework you are considering. For example deontologists like Kant would say that acting in accordance to moral rules without a moral reason, say, being generous in order to show of your wealth, is not being moral at all. So in his view, you can't be moral for bad reasons, because if your reasons are bad you are not ...


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There's a good case for morality as emerging from storytelling. Having a shared set of well-known stories, like the old testament, or the vedas, gives a shared context of reference. Your picture of authorial authority isn't right. For instance, how can it deal with Tolkein contradicting himself, or changing his mind? His authority is from the coherence and ...


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So the q is basically this: how can a value judgment be true or false Some simply hold that it can. meta-ethical subjectivism as defined by Sayre-McCord (1986) and Snare (1992), is different from non-cognitivism in the following sense—the non-cognitivist takes moral claims to be mere expressions of attitudes, while the subjectivist takes them to be ...


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In talking about sexuality we are firmly in the natural world, in which case the idea of "opposites" or "cancelling out" makes little sense. Clearly we can talk about day and night or fire and water as "opposites," but this is metaphorical. Things in the natural world do not and cannot cleanly sum to zero. In the realm of free ...


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The idea of opposites necessarily "cancelling out" to nothing is unclear and unhelpful. For example yin and yang are opposites yet together they create wholeness. Also, in some schools of thought male and female are indeed seen as opposites, for example the male being upright and the female horizontal. c.f. also the horrendous Men are from Mars, ...


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