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Religion and Universal Values.docx

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PHIL 1100

Religion and Universal Values  Ayn Rand – absolutist about morality  Religion and Morality o Moral code incorporated into religions o Mostly in Western; have to follow b/c rules prescribed by God à reward/punishment o In Eastern; several gods o Essentially the same, don’t anger the Gods o Religious authorities also act as moral authorities, priest etc…  Suggests that morality relative to religion o Sacred scriptures teach right/wrong o Doesn’t hold up very long  Divine Command Theory o Morality doesn’t exist independently of God, that is why truly religious people are frightened by atheist because it means they have no morals o What is morally right or wrong defined by God’s will o People can not question, critically evaluate or negotiate with God o Cannot question it o If questioned then you are a non-believer which is intolerable o Accepting on faith has implications:  Plato’s Euthypro o Question to answer: Do the gods love piety because it is pious, or is it pious because they love it? o Does god command an action because it is good or is it good because god commands it? o Divine Command Theorist Answer: Action is good because god commands it o Plato: If god commands action and action, since commanded, must be good…then what does it mean in terms of understanding what is good/bad action?  Story Abraham and Isaac: God demands Abraham to bring his son and asks him to sacrifice him. Abraham agrees because of faith and before he kills him, voice says no and instead kills goat. Everyone is impressed with his faith. o Problem: Why would a God ask you to kill your son? But you cannot question it o Problem: how do you know it was voice of God and not the voice of Satan? Or if he’s just nuts? – Cannot question, cannot criticize, don’t know who is speaking to you o Problem: if you accept that God is omniscient, then God must’ve known Abraham was going to do that. Then what was the point? It goes back to Determinism; if someone knows how you are going to act, are you free to act otherwise?  Andrea Yates o Normal, great life o Drowned kids because Satan told her to o In her perspective: acting according to Divine Command Theory o Court: deemed clinically insane o To this day, no regrets because acting according to Divine Command Theory o What is d
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