Atheist / Agnostics -Where do morals come from?

I am curious. Do atheist / agnostics believe in morals? Is there any right or wrong? If so, where do these standards for living come from?

An extreme example might be rape. Do atheist / agnostics believe that rape is wrong? Would rape ever be right? Why or why not?

Christians believe in morals and therefore believe in a moral creator. How about you?

18 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Let me lay it on the line for you. Morals are a societal construct. Morals vary from place to place and over time. For example, in 6th century Japan, not only was it moral for a man to have an affair with another man's wife, it was expected. In some countries it is moral to mutilate the genetals of young female children. I am a taoist, which I suppose lumps me in with the agnostics, and, not to speak for all atheists and agnostics, but ethics are what I base my actions on. Rape is not ethical. If I were to rape someone, I would be violating their right to control their body for the sake of my own gratification. If I came across a wallet in the middle of the street I would return it to the rightfull owner, or barring that the police. Living ethicaly boils down to this. What does it matter what someone, reads, views, puts into or takes out of their body as long as they don't harm another living person on this planet in the process? Who am I to tell them what they can and can't do if what they're doing doesn't effect anyone else whatsoever?

  • 1 decade ago

    Atheism is merely the lack of belief in any gods. That's it. Different atheists have different beliefs about morals. Some think that there is an objective standard for morality, others think that morality is subjective. I've never met anyone who didn't believe in morals.

    I believe that morals are subjective. For instance, I believe that an employer giving her employee/slave to her husband to have sex with so that the husband can have a child is morally repulsive and wrong, but I recognize that although I draw the inspiration for my morality from a number of sources, it is still subjective and possible for someone else to reach a different conclusion. Certainly the Bible didn't condemn it when Abraham's wife did it.

    Nor, for that matter, did the Bible ban slavery. I consider slavery to always be wrong. The Bible does not. Christians, therefore, must believe that under certain circumstances slavery is right, otherwise god wouldn't have approved it.

    Rape? in any real situation would always be wrong. Could I imagine a situation where it was right? Yes. Let's say that only two humans are left and one of them is not mentally capable of agreeing to sex. The good of humanity would justify having sex without consent in that case. In any realistic scenario then rape is wrong in my moral view. Even of captives in war (again, contrary to Biblical morality.)

  • 1 decade ago

    I have a few fixed morals about things that are definitely wrong, such as rape (I can't think of a single situation where it would be acceptable, not being able to control yourself not being a reason), but most I just make up as I go along to suit the moment. For example, murder - just for the fun of it, its wrong, but I know that if it came to saving my life and not killing the person attacking me, I'd be fine with defying the latter.

    I think whenever you think "Hmm, maybe I shouldn't do this..?", then that's your morals talking. I don't think they've be fixed into us by a creator, but rather by society and its view on what is allowed or not. Of course, some of us also pick them up other places - in a society where 96% of the people eat meat, I choose not to. Don't know quite where I got that notion from.

  • pelzer
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    you're generalizing, yet I understand why you generalize as I do it besides. i'm getting an analogous factor as quickly as I submit solutions in keeping with my understanding. it fairly is unlucky, yet faith and rather Christianity, have maximum of distinctive ideals it fairly is almost impossible to assert some thing without the two a Christian and the atheists thumbing you down. permit's not even get into the trolls that ask questions approximately right here. My spouse usually wonders why i flow to this area and in some situations I do too. finally, there are some who're open sufficient to establish the place I come from and regardless of if i don't get a "maximum suitable answer" that makes it worth it. Edit: Scratch the generalizing comments I made, I see the excellence.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Reasons not to rape:

    1) Golden rule - wouldn't want it to happen to me so I wouldn't do it to anyone else. Altruism plays a large part in building our consciences.

    Assuming you are unlike most people and you do not care about other people at all:

    2) If you were caught in anyway (very likely) then people around you would react and you would be incarcerated at the very least.

    3) You would lose whatever social standing you had, probably your job etc

    4) There is a chance someone, even your victim, may stop you and you may become injured.

    As well as all these reasons, who would WANT to sink so low as to force sex upon someone? You would have to have some sort of mental disorder to commit such an atrocity AND enjoy it still.

    Source(s): Posted with [quickanswers]
  • 1 decade ago

    Whoa there Mr Christian, you need to learn a little about history and your holy book before you start spouting off about a moral creator. Read the book of Joshua in your bible and tell me how killing EVERY BREATHING THING in a city (including women, children and animals) is moral.

    Morals come from compassion and empathy. They are very important to survival for our species. All social animals have them in some form or another.

  • 1 decade ago

    So if I go Christian will I get to stone people or even cut off something that caused me to sin (something you people do not follow? due to pick and choose from the book of). Or do I get to make my own decision based on what I see in this world and experience of my own? Situations do come up but they can't always be the same and have to handled accordingly.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Christianity did not invent morals. It is entirely possible to have morals without religion. It's called a "conscience", everyone has one, not just Christians

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I live on my mind's moral than one else.

    Especially, not from the God who claimed to be Benevolent God and ask his followers to kill whomever not believe to their.

    Would it be right moral, if your moral creator said

    "Killing is RIGHT"

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    All moral codes derive from evolution, which applies to societies as well as to species: a society which adheres to a sound moral code will survive preferably to one that does not. Crimes of violence are inimical to any society, and are correspondingly condemned.

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