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Featured What morals and ethics do Christians and other religions follow over time?

Discussion in 'Comparative Religion' started by shunyadragon, Feb 22, 2020.

  1. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    This thread was inspired by a thread started in Christianity DIR.

    The evidence in history shows that Christianity followed the evolving morals and ethics, or code of conduct, of the cultures over time. This is true of other religions also. The standards of morals and ethics such as the Ten Commandments are found in most other cultures and religions of the world. The evolution of morals and ethics can be seen to evolve from the Neolithic cultures. Even in the Neanderthal cultures evidence of care for the elderly and disabled is known based on the evidence.

    For example: Slavery evolved in the different cultures over time. In Neolithic cultures slavery is virtually absent. Captured prisoners and women and children were most commonly adopted into tribe or community. This is true of Neolithic Native American cultures. Slavery appeared in Bronze Age civilizations, up through resent history when it gradually is becoming immoral in the cultures today, and the principle transition to none slave cultures began in the 19th century. Christians widely bought, sold and owned slaves in recent history just as slavery existed in other cultures over time, and it was not considered immoral by many if not most Christian in the past.
     
    #1 shunyadragon, Feb 22, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2020
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  2. Sirona

    Sirona Hindu Wannabe

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    I wanted to stay away from this unbiased and fair OP but the Bible as well as the Quran which is so dearly loved by the Baha'i allow slavery. When these books were written, slavery was a given, so of course slavery is found in those books.
     
  3. mikkel_the_dane

    mikkel_the_dane Shadow Wolf's Aspie sibling

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    What is a religion and is different it from culture?
     
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  4. whirlingmerc

    whirlingmerc Well-Known Member

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    The morals of Christianity are based on the character of God. Holiness, truthfulness, loyal loving kindness, generosity, respect for God, parents, others

    Slavery is another subject and everyone is a slave of somethings whether good or bad. Better to delight in the good.
     
  5. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    So, the question to ask is:What caused the abolition of slavery to sweep across the world over three centuries, with the final culture giving it up in the year 2000? The answer I believe is conscience.

    I see conscience as moral intuition; the idea of owning human beings as property just FELT wrong. Religious leaders couldn't stop the change. In 1866 the pope told his large Catholic flock that he could find nothing in Divine Law to prohibit the buying, selling or trading of slaves. He was right according to his Bible. But Catholics and other Christians ignored their leaders and followed their conscience.

    The movements to give women and homosexuals equality are not supported by religions. They are conscience (moral intuition) driven.
     
    #5 joe1776, Feb 22, 2020
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  6. mikkel_the_dane

    mikkel_the_dane Shadow Wolf's Aspie sibling

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    It is not that simple apparently.
    Moral Foundations Theory | moralfoundations.org
    https://www.simplypsychology.org/kohlberg.html

    That is even not all.
     
  7. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    Well, yes it is more complicated than I was able to explain in a couple of paragraphs in an RF post. But the two links you provided aren't going to enlighten our readers because one is based on the intuitionist theory of moral judgments (Haidt, et al) and the other (Kohlberg) is based on the rartionalist theory. They are opposites and can't both be right.
     
  8. mikkel_the_dane

    mikkel_the_dane Shadow Wolf's Aspie sibling

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    No, they are both half-truths. When you combine enough of these and "synthesize" them, you get a more "feel" for it. Not it is better, just different from how some other humans do morality.
     
  9. columbus

    columbus yawn <ignore> yawn

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    This is a crucial question.

    For most of recorded history, there wasn't much difference. Any given society had their culture and deities and rituals.

    Secular culture is quite a modern development. People having a personal theology that wasn't forced upon them by the society they were born into is extremely new, in the historical scheme of things. So is the idea that might makes rights, and two people with different religious beliefs should be able to be friends, or at least not violent enemies.

    One of the biggest moral improvements to the modern world is religionists dumping scriptural values for secular ethics. I don't care what kind of logical contortions they employ as long as they do. And they do. Lot's of modern Christian folks have managed to retrofit representative government and human rights and capitalism into the New Testament.:shrug:
    Tom
     
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  10. mikkel_the_dane

    mikkel_the_dane Shadow Wolf's Aspie sibling

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    Well, in western terms we are again catching up to old classic philosophy as Protagoras: "Man is the measure..." and Agrippa the Skeptic. But is a long road to rid ourselves of being Right either/or with God and Truth.
    Look up scientism. The idea of Truth is everywhere.
     
  11. Augustus

    Augustus the Unreasonable

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    You are begging the question here assuming that morals simply 'evolve' naturally.

    Historical evidence also shows very clearly that you cannot isolate 'culture' from religion, and simply say that 'Christianity followed'.

    Wrong area of focus.

    Looking at what happened to 'most Christians' is far less meaningful than looking at what actually drove the successful abolitionist movements.

    Anthony Benezet’s propaganda campaign had its most pronounced impact in Great Britain. Nowhere else among the major slave-trading powers did a popular, public campaign against the traders emerge. That this campaign crystallized in Britain at the close of the eighteenth century might seem odd at first glance. In the second half of the eighteenth century, British merchants were the leading slave traders in the Atlantic world. There were good commercial and political reasons to favour a continuation of the trade.

    Antislavery sentiments, moreover, did not always lead to antislavery commitments. That seems to be one lesson that arises from the history of antislavery thought in France, where there was a critique of the trade’s inhumanity but only the most minimal attempt to address it (Seeber, 1937; Miller, 2008).

    It would be a mistake also to attribute the new antislavery campaigns to the cultural consequences of merchant capitalism, as the historian Thomas Haskell once proposed, given the complete absence of abolitionist organizing in the Netherlands, where merchant capitalism was strong (Bender, 1992).

    A number of historians have detailed how the first British abolition campaign came to fruition in the 1780s – the Quaker petition to the House of Commons calling for abolition, the alliance between Quakers and Evangelicals that culminated in the formation of the London Committee for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade in 1787, and the series of investigations and debates in parliament that raised and then thwarted hopes before the somewhat sudden achievement of abolition in 1807 (Anstey, 1975; Oldfield, 1995; Jennings, 1997).

    Only recently, however, has the prior transition from antislavery thought to antislavery action received close scrutiny. The formation of antislavery commitments in the British Isles during the 1780s depended in part upon the changing politics of empire that attended the expansion of British dominions after the Seven Years’ War and the loss of 13 North American colonies in the American Revolution.

    A new concern developed in this period that imperial practices needed to be assessed against the standards of virtue and liberty. Among Quakers in England, and among aspiring young reformers within the Church of England, Thomas Clarkson and William Wilberforce most notably, turning the nation against the Atlantic slave trade looked to be one way to improve the moral character of overseas enterprise and to foster a greater commitment to religion at home (Brown, 2006: pt III, IV).”

    Heuman, G, Burnard, T. - The Routledge History of Slavery
     
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  12. columbus

    columbus yawn <ignore> yawn

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    The Greeks weren't perfect.
    Do you remember what Socrates was convicted of?
    Impiety.

    I have, and I don't buy it.
    No it's not.
    Not "everywhere". Lot's of people believe lots of things that aren't true.
    Tom
     
  13. mikkel_the_dane

    mikkel_the_dane Shadow Wolf's Aspie sibling

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    This is turning into a debate and I will leave it here. :)
     
  14. columbus

    columbus yawn <ignore> yawn

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    I understand.
    Tom
     
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  15. Augustus

    Augustus the Unreasonable

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    It is always worth pointing out that the view you present is certainly not the one argued by Haidt, et al.

    They note that intuition is significantly impacted by culture, and that both culture and morality can be influenced by 'rational' argumentation.

    They see it as a kind of dynamic system in which intuition plays a major role, but they don't support your blind faith in conscience alone.
     
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  16. sooda

    sooda Veteran Member

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    Slavery was not strictly a Christian thing. Jews were heavily involved in the slave trade in the Americas and Muslims were involved in Africa and the East.
     
  17. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    You mean I'm wrong in saying that Jon Haidt does not support the rationalist position on moral judgments? That's the only claim I make.

    Who is they? The only thing that social scientists agree on is that moral judgments are intuitive. After that, there is no consensus. If I'm wrong, please post evidence of any moral intuitionist who fundamentally agrees with Haidt (who, thanks to Wikipedia, seems to be the only social scientist with whom you are familiar)..
     
  18. Heyo

    Heyo Well-Known Member

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    (Keywords emphasized by me.)

    I think that the principle of evolution (not to confuse with the Theory of Evolution!) is a key element here. Religions compete for resources (members, money, might). They have to adapt to the environment (culture) or perish. Different religions have adopted to different cultures and found their niches. Based on that principle it should be possible to make predictions about the future of religions. But those predictions will be similar in accuracy to weather forecasts since we have a dynamic system where culture influences religion and religion influences culture and random changes n the environment (taste of the people) are also to be expected.
     
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  19. sun rise

    sun rise "This is the Hour of God"
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    Going back to the OP, I would word it as dealing with how cultures and people don't follow the implications of their moral and ethical beliefs.

    Slavery for one violates the basic root principle of Christianity which is love.

    And of course people are genius at rationalizing that what they want to do is approved of by scripture.
     
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  20. columbus

    columbus yawn <ignore> yawn

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    If I thought that were a basic root principle of Christianity I'd like Christianity better than I do.

    But I don't think that.

    I find it more like the Republocratic party talking about freedom and democracy. Ya know, basic root principles that just don't work in the modern world.

    But they make great sound bites and slogans.
    Tom
     
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