Building Objective Morality

How to create a system of morality on objective truth

People can be reasoned out of a position they weren’t reasoned in to—Sam Harris

It has been said that those who don’t learn history are doomed to repeat it. Research actually shows that those who do focus on history, are as just likely to repeat it too. Clinging to the past is certainly not helping mold a better future, but only stirs reenactment of an ingrained way of life. Improvement will demand boldness and belief that there is a better way…an easier way. “There’s no easy way out” is the slogan of fools. Occam would surely agree.

What if I told you it was entirely possible to form a universal morality based on reason? One that would trump any religious book or dogma, one that would take into consideration each individuals personal happiness and the right to fulfill the measure of their existence and have their own particular brand of joy? Would it be possible to draft one basic moral guideline that would benefit all life equally, leaving the freedom to act on their own concepts of happiness?

Individual well being of our own design has to be the benchmark of human contentment—Jim

There are hurdles, traditions to overcome—cultural norms. These are deeply ingrained traditions based on the purported “rights” to choose at the expense of another being.

Traditional behaviors are ones of great un-reasons. Religious and cultural traditions both, are behaviors and positions few were reasoned into, therefore can be reasoned out of. Billions born into faith and traditions, not of their choosing, can accept reason as opportunity to just consider there might be a better way.

Medical students are sworn to Primum non nocere, or first, do no harm. How much more encompassing and thorough can we be? The first step to understanding a better way is to realize that old ways can be done away—by reason. We can do better than an evolved, archaic morality based on a violent time. We can live better, more fulfilled, and less contentious if we are kind to all creatures. That is the starting line of reason, not by way of religion or governments, but through science, reason, and tolerance—through us.

No god belief has ever come close to stopping the classes of the world. Continuous epic failures after another, splitting hairs of moral superiority through faith and a scripture riddled with morally divisive contradiction is a conundrum, an excuse to justify cruelty, even to the most helpless of all creatures and exclusion based on individuality. Many talk of ushering in the kingdom of god where the lion will lay with the lamb, then proceed as though it is never going to happen. It can through science, and so can contentment—through truth and simplicity. Do no harm.

“Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven” is a charge to Christians to act now, not as some end-game trophy. Start behaving like that matters.

Those who will not reason, are bigots, those who cannot, are fools, and those who dare not, are slaves”

–Lord Byron

If you Think

If you believe your customs and traditions hold a moral value, consider the regional differences in Throat Singing.

One of the oldest forms of music, as reported by the Smithsonian Folk Ways, these three distinct styles also have interesting traditions forces associated with them.

Throats singing in Tuva, a remote region in Russia, NW of Mongolia is sung predominantly by men, based on the belief that such singing may cause infertility in women.

The Inuit of Northern Canada is performed almost exclusively by women, although throat-singing was banned in the area over 100 years ago by local Christian priests, it has recently made a comeback. I guess even throat-singing customs can be used as a control mechanism for religion. No infertility reported.

Xhosa throat singing of SE South Africa comes from the same area as Desmond Tutu and Nelson Mandela. It appears that they can sing just fine with or without the threat of the church or infertility.

Taboos and customs are typically amoral activities. What works well one place is often forbidden in others, as if there is a dividing line between right and wrong. Superstition and religion go hand in hand, Reason and Superstition Religion will never meet, as one is as different as Zion and Babylon. One foot in and one foot out will never do. Escaping religious indoctrination must be a complete severance if you ever want peace.