Is morality just a matter of cultural convention or are some acts right or wrong regardless of anyone’s opinion? And why should we act morally when we don’t want to? Moral philosophers have recorded their attempts at answering these two … Continue reading
Cultural moralities are diverse, contradictory, and even bizarre. Sometimes cultural moral norms forbid eating pigs, cutting one’s hair, or having homosexual sex; sometimes they do not. Women may be morally required to be submissive to men and, at least in … Continue reading
Charles Darwin proposed group selection to explain how “altruistic” behaviors toward others and self-sacrifice for the group, which could easily be taken to be counterexamples to his theory of evolution, might instead be examples of its explanatory power. He observed … Continue reading
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There is a contest, see ReThink Prize, to compose a secular replacement for the Ten Commandments. I like this notion. Secular people seek reliable moral guidance just like religious people do, but perhaps from different sources. Could there actually come … Continue reading
Elsewhere, some have commented that game theory is inappropriate for modeling morality, it was not clear how evolution could have encoded social morality in our biology and cultural moral codes, and it was not clear that the science of morality … Continue reading
For some time I have been describing here how science shows that the function of social morality, the morality of interactions between people, can be reduced to a non-moral object by the normal means of science. Specifically, that function is … Continue reading
Scientific hypotheses must be tested against data. What data set is appropriate for testing scientific hypotheses about what morality ‘is’? Specifically, what data set describes what people believe about morality? (Note the subject here is what morality ‘is’, a subject … Continue reading