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 PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:37 pm Reply with quote  
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  Autobon
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Salaris Vorn wrote:
are you willing to accept that your religion and culture is superior to all others


Would you argue that no ideas or views are better then others? Because if some are better, then it follows that some religions or ideologies actually are inferior to others!

Correct me if I am wrong, but it seems as though you consider yourself a relativist, which means you cannot hold any ideas above another, at least not logically. Of course, I don't believe there is such a thing as a true relativist, or at least, I have never met one nor heard of one.

Take you for example, the fact you are even on this thread debating Reepicheep clearly shows you do believe some ideas are better then others. Not only that, but you think that others should follow your line of thought on the issue. In that manner, relativism is actually one of the most hypocritical ideologies. If no moral standard exists, then you cannot say anything in defense of your ideas. Because your ideas are equal to Reepicheep's. If he believes his culture is better then another, then you as a relativist must not only accept that, but view it as an equally right view to your own.

Quote:
your still encouraging a situation that leads to exactly what happened at the time of colonization (it was ok to slaughter Indians and take their land because they were not Christian).


Your example doesn't address the real problem. The problem is not that people thought their ideas were better then someone else's. The problem was in the way they went about "sharing," for lack of a better word, those ideas.


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 PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:46 pm Reply with quote  
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  Salaris Vorn
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Autobon wrote:

Would you argue that no ideas or views are better then others? Because if some are better, then it follows that some religions or ideologies actually are inferior to others!


I would not argue that some ideas and views are not better than others. I refer back to my example of the Hindu practice of burning widows alive on their husbands funeral pyre. That doesn't seem particularly humane to me and in violation of international human rights.

This being said I do not accept that any one religion is the one and only truth nor do I accept that any religion can prove this.

Quote:
Correct me if I am wrong, but it seems as though you consider yourself a relativist


You are correct. To specify further I specifically would say I follow "Methodological (Descriptive) Relativism." This is defined as a type of Relativism where you suspend judgment to understand the context of a practice. After you understand the context you can still judge a behavior based on ethics/morals.

Quote:
If no moral standard exists, then you cannot say anything in defense of your ideas. Because your ideas are equal to Reepicheep's. If he believes his culture is better then another, then you as a relativist must not only accept that, but view it as an equally right view to your own.


See my response above on Methodological Relativism.

Quote:

Your example doesn't address the real problem. The problem is not that people thought their ideas were better then someone else's. The problem was in the way they went about "sharing," for lack of a better word, those ideas.


Ok now I can see where you are going and no doubt that there was a problem in how they went about "sharing" their view. Nevertheless I maintain that the lack of equal value of different cultures was the real problem because it leads to the problem of what do you do when the other culture doesn't want to change? Do you forcibly attempt to change and repress their culture? Do you give them less rights because they are different? Or do you extend the exact same freedoms, rights etc. that you enjoy and treat them equally even though they are different and leave them alone if they don't want to change to your view?

I can understand your thing that the method of sharing was bad. However, I can't see how you can go about "sharing" with them when they don't want what you have to offer or how you can not treat them as second class citizens as a result of seeing them as inferior. If you don't force your belief on them (i.e. respect their wish to remain as they are) and extend equal rights to them despite the differences aren't you in effect treating them (and their view) as equal albeit different?
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 PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 1:37 am Reply with quote  
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  Autobon
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Salaris Vorn wrote:
I can't see how you can go about "sharing" with them when they don't want what you have to offer or how you can not treat them as second class citizens as a result of seeing them as inferior.


I think it would be easier to understand if you looked at the value of a person as separate from the value of their views. For example if I don't agree with someone about something, its not that I hate them or view them as inferior to me, just that their view is wrong. By making this distinction, it is very possible to maintain equal rights and privileges.

This is because you are now basing those rights on the intrinsic value of a human, not on what they might or might not believe. This is a much more stable foundation.

Quote:
If you don't force your belief on them (i.e. respect their wish to remain as they are) and extend equal rights to them despite the differences aren't you in effect treating them (and their view) as equal albeit different?


As I have stated above, I look at the value of a person and their ideas as two separate things. So I do believe all people are equal and I will treat them as such. However, if I do not agree with a certain view, then I will most adamant about trying to dispel it.

You brought up a good point though, that is, what happens when somebody doesn't want to change their potentially erroneous view? In that case, I would simply allow them to make that choice. I strongly believe in free will. That does not mean I will keep my mouth shut though. I will most definitely continue to argue my position, however I will not take unjust actions towards a person.


Last edited by Autobon on Tue Mar 22, 2011 3:34 pm; edited 1 time in total


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 PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 1:28 pm Reply with quote  
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  Darth Skuldren
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Quote:
...which means you cannot hold any ideas above another...


That only holds if you take an extreme stance. Saying someone is a relativist is like saying someone believes in God. It doesn't indicated what branch of relativism they support or what religion they follow. Neither does it state to what degree they support such beliefs. Immediately taking it to absolute terms is uncalled for unless of course we indicate that we do support said belief to such a degree.

If you really want an interesting in depth read on the subject, try this.
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 PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 1:30 pm Reply with quote  
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  Reepicheep
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Shocked Dang, that's long...

I'll have to read it another time.
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 PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 3:29 pm Reply with quote  
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  Autobon
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Darth Skuldren wrote:
That only holds if you take an extreme stance. Immediately taking it to absolute terms is uncalled for unless of course we indicate that we do support said belief to such a degree.


If you say you are a moral relativist, no matter what branch you may come from, you hold a certain view in common. That is, there is no Truth, only little truths. Noting that, it actually is possible to talk in extremes because your view has certain implications. If you don't think there is objective truth, then why is anything true at all? By what basis could you ever justify telling me that what I believe is not equal to what you do? You could not under a relativist position.

So in the end, it matters little to what degree you support moral relativism if the fundamental idea behind it logically leads to the "extremes" I am pointing out.


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 PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 8:39 am Reply with quote  
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  Darth Skuldren
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Then maybe I'm not a moral relativist. Regardless, I think there is merit in being able to detach yourself from a situation and see the bigger picture independent of your own personal beliefs. I'm not saying that you should make any decision completely independent of your beliefs, but I think you should neither be solely dependent on your personal beliefs less they cloud your judgment.
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 PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 8:51 am Reply with quote  
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  Old Master Ben
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Sorry for this totally random comment, but I have to ask a very important question.

Did you draw your Jawa avatar, Autobon?


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 PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:25 am Reply with quote  
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  Autobon
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Darth Skuldren wrote:
Then maybe I'm not a moral relativist. Regardless, I think there is merit in being able to detach yourself from a situation and see the bigger picture independent of your own personal beliefs.


Why should i have to suspend my beliefs to see the "bigger picture?" What bigger picture? Can you explain this further? I don't really understand the purpose behind this concept.

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Did you draw your Jawa avatar, Autobon?


It exists as line art somewhere, so I traced it, colored it, and shaded it.


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 PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 2:01 pm Reply with quote  
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  Darth Skuldren
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Well for instance if you were going to try and understand your enemy your certainly wouldn't go about thinking of them in your own terms. You would try and see the world as they see it so you could understand their motivations. This gives you insight and may reveal something you missed.

In other terms, you might use such a strategy if you were serving on a jury and wanted to better understand how someone could commit a crime. I'm not sure how well this applies to relativism, but this was the idea I had at the time.
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 PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2011 3:06 pm Reply with quote  
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  Autobon
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Darth Skuldren wrote:
your certainly wouldn't go about thinking of them in your own terms. You would try and see the world as they see it so you could understand their motivations.


This isn't moral relativism. Analyzing someone's view is different then accepting their view. You could still believe in objective truth and do this.


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 PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2011 4:37 pm Reply with quote  
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  Rouge77
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Darth Skuldren wrote:
Then maybe I'm not a moral relativist. Regardless, I think there is merit in being able to detach yourself from a situation and see the bigger picture independent of your own personal beliefs. I'm not saying that you should make any decision completely independent of your beliefs, but I think you should neither be solely dependent on your personal beliefs less they cloud your judgment.


I agree that that is how I think that people should try to act.

The problem with this is that I don't think that it's possible to view the world and events completely independent of one's own personal beliefs.

One can try to take their effect into account and diminish their influence, but they will have an influence - even if doing this leads you to question and eventually abandon them.

After all - if you can get a significant distance between you and some of your beliefs, then you might question are they so important to you after all? Perhaps they are just baggage that you can leave beside the life's road and still stay the same person?

Which, of course, tends to happen often enough.Probably a reason why so many people avoid attempting to get a more objective view of issues. Wink
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