Where do Christians (and other religious folk) get their morals from? | INFJ Forum

Where do Christians (and other religious folk) get their morals from?

Discussion in 'Philosophy and Religion' started by Quinlan, May 18, 2009.

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  1. Quinlan

    Quinlan Right the First Time!

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    Surely not a contradictory old book?
     
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  2. Lambie

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    First, if you are saying that the bible is contradictory, I will have to disagree with you there. Much is open to interpretation and can therefore be twisted, cropped and teased into being contradictory or supporting any number of points in ways that were never intended. Whether you believe that or not, it still has some pretty good ideas to live by.

    As a Christian myself, I use the bible as the root of my moral convictions. I would have to say the key is to look at how Jesus treated people. Everyone else in the bible was capable of mistakes. The one who was always right was all about sharing love, and I think that is a good standard to live by.
     
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    Quinlan

    Quinlan Right the First Time!

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    What I mean is that it's morally contradictory, you can pick and choose which parts you want to live by. I'm saying that the morality of the individual is shown in their interpretation of the book, not within the book itself.

    Where does your choice to emphasise Jesus' actions come from? Why not some other focus?

    Why do you think it was a good standard to live by?
     
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  4. Reon

    Reon Midnight's Garden

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    I'm a deist, but most of my beliefs are slightly twinged in the christian domain. I do try to follow the 10 commandments, but other than that, they're largely self-imposed.
     
  5. Wyote

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    From fortune cookies and bumper stickers, of course.
     
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    Quinlan

    Quinlan Right the First Time!

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    Just like everyone else then? :thumb:
     
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  7. just me

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  8. Lambie

    Lambie Newbie

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    My emphasis on Jesus
     
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    Quinlan

    Quinlan Right the First Time!

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    Good reasoning, would you agree then that the root of your morality is not in the bible, it's just a moral guide not a source of moral absolutes?

    I'm basically examining the link between morality and religion. I think that morality does not come from religion and therefore an atheist can be just as moral as a religious person.
     
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  10. WickedPod

    WickedPod Community Member

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    Quinlan

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    What matters regarding my point is that the various interpretations of the bible are contradictory. Therefore the morality already lies within the interpreter, not the book itself. If the bible had one clear and uncontradictory objective point then everyone would interpret it the same way.

    The choice to follow the new testament over the old testament comes from the same place that every moral decision is made from. It's not inherent within the bible. Like you said, even non believers can see that Jesus was good, because the morality of believers and nonbelievers comes from the same place, somewhere outside of the bible.


    So an atheist has the same potential to be a moral person as a christian right?

    Not sure if that was directed at me.
     
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  12. gloomy-optimist

    gloomy-optimist Used to live here

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    Well, if you view it from a logical standpoint, morals began with necessity as humans are "social animals." If you have people killing and stealing and offending everyone, you don't have much of a society, do you? Morals, and concepts of "good" and "evil," are fabricated by necessity in order to allow for functional societies. Even if you are not religious, you have to appreciate that religion created rules for societies that could be follow and were beneficial in that people would willingly follow them. They created a "reason" for the rules.

    I, for one, am a somewhat "religious" and spiritual person, although I don't choose to fully affiliate myself with any specific or rigorous religious followings. However, I've noticed that it's paralleled over many religions, not just Christianity; the morals we've come to know, at their very base, are natural and necessary, and are usually reinforced through religion.
     
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    [FONT=&quot]I think it is a little bit of both, as impossible as that may sound. The bible was written thousands of years ago in a completely different cultural context, so of course, I
     
  14. Azure_Knight

    Azure_Knight Community Member

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    Please respond to posts as a whole; meaning is lost when sentences are chopped away from their places in the paragraph :(

    I don't think that one needs religion to come up with a complex system of values and moral beliefs. Respect for values could serve as an excellent basis to build up a moral creed from. I think respect for other's system of values (whether it comes from the Bible, the Koran, a document, or a system created by each person) is important, unless they advocate harm and hate. That is where I personally draw the line.

    As always, remember this is the internet. People will read what is posted and knee jerk reactions will happen if they cannot tell the tone you are using.

    Example: I don't walk into a Christian church and begin redecorating because I think I could do a better job with the decor than them (I use a Christian chruch here because I thought it appropriate to the theme of thread). When I enter, I am silent and observe the conduct (no matter if the church is Chrisitian or any other religion for that matter). I respect their symbols and documents because they are sharing their experiences with me. It is somewhat rude to walk into someone's house, throw your feet up on the table, and ask for a cold one while insulting the host or hostess (this is not directed at anyone; I am using this as an example to show the need for respect for others beliefs).

    Sorry if I come across as harsh, but I don't want misunderstandings to blossom into something more.
     
    #14 Azure_Knight, May 19, 2009
    Last edited: May 19, 2009
  15. WickedPod

    WickedPod Community Member

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    ..
     
  16. Heliwyr

    Heliwyr Newbie

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    I could have written this, in fact, I was thinking about writing the same thing, but you've done it for me Gloomy. :D

    I have definitely noticed the same trends across religions as far as basic rules go. I suspect that even before religion, there were these same rules. Religion, and myth, definitely put the specific reasoning behind why you shouldn't do..whatever it is that is disapproved of. Perhaps it comes from a human tendency to tell stories in order to explain things. I could think of several stories that I've heard in my family that explain why you should not do something that goes against society's sense of morality. We all have heard these stories. And just about everyone has a tendency to ask "why?" as children when told not to do something. These stories, regardless of where they came from, offer examples of the reason why.
     
  17. Shai Gar

    Shai Gar Guest

    They get their morals from what is socially acceptable, and then, because they attend a church, they call those morals christian.
     
  18. WickedPod

    WickedPod Community Member

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    I most definitely agree with you. I don't believe that everyone needs religion to be moral. I do believe that some of us might. I don't need it to be moral. I was a moral being before I had religion. But, as I became more religious, I realized that there was an example of the person I've always wanted to be. I have refined my morals - not changed, but refined - since becoming a religious person. But, I do believe we are born moral beings...or at least a great capacity for it. It seems inevitable. There are many things that we are born with that are never realized. Morality can be one of those.
     
  19. OP
    Quinlan

    Quinlan Right the First Time!

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    The bible is a book, and it's old and people interpret it in contradictory ways. I didn't expect those plain facts to be taken as offensive.

    I don't see this place as a church, or as someone else's house, I see it as an open forum for discussion and sharing of ideas. If it really is such a sacred place then perhaps I should move on.
     
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  20. bamf

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    Morals come from the environment, they are taught to us by our parents, peers, and surroundings starting at a young age. If a child's parents are religious than the child's morals will most likely be considered religious morals. If a child's parents are atheist, then the morals are not religious morals and because I don't know what else to call them besides morals, I'm going to call them virtues.

    Religion isn't the root for morals, the environment is. Religion can be a path to keep an individual moral but it most definitely can be done without religion.
     
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