Re: Rational base for morals

Samael (
Mon, 11 Jan 1999 17:43:52 -0000

-----Original Message-----
From: KPJ <>
To: <> Date: 11 January 1999 17:33
Subject: Rational base for morals

>It appears as if Samael <> wrote:
>|Can you tell me how I can, in good faith, follow a moral code when I
>|there is no logical reason to do so?
>|Especially when nobody has yet even managed to come up with a logical
>|objection to rape (which pretty much everyone on the planet admits is an
>|abbhorence (sic)).
>I suggest that the meme rules of conduct be commutative.
>Commutativity: If the rule is "X shall not perform act P on Y"
> then also the rule "Y shall not perform act P on X" shall hold.
>Simply put: "A rule apply to all in the same manner."
>If you postulate this basic rule of commutativity
>then you would conclude:
> "If X does not want Y to perfom act P on X
> then X should avoid to perform act P on Y."
> [e.g. to avoid retaliation]
>Simply put: "Do not to others what you do not wish them do to you."
>Avoid microwaving children. Others may dislike it and microwave you in

It depends on the rules.

"X does not want to be killed therefore X should avoid killing anyone else" seems reasonable.
"X does not want to be tickled therefore X should avoid tickling someone else" also seems reasonable, unless you consider that Y may _wish_ to be tickled and in return is prepared to give X ice cream. Two people may have very different likes and dislikes.

I dislike absolutes in morals, as they frequently contradict situations that are incredibly complex and do not fit simple rules.

Thou shalt not steal seems reasonable enough, but I'd prefer someone to steal a loaf of bread to feed a starving child than allow them to starve to death.