History, Evolution, and The Darwin Debate

Darwiniana header image 2

Darwinism disallows moral agents?

December 21st, 2006 · 1 Comment

review of God Delusion.
Using God to support morality doesn’t work (although the Kantian approach should be considered here), so it is hardly surprising scientist reject it. The point is merely that the mechanized processes of selectionist theories are unable to account for the evolution of moral agents.

Dawkins answers two similar questions: Does belief in God cause people to be good? Can you decide what is good without God? He also criticizes people who do good out of fear of God without, however, recommending the virtue of loving God:

When a religious person puts it to me in this way [title of the section] (and many of them do), my immediate temptation is to issue the following challenge: ‘Do you really mean to tell me the only reason you try to be good is to gain God’s approval and reward, or to avoid his disapproval and punishment? That’s not morality, that’s sucking up, apple-polishing, looking over your shoulder at the great surveillance camera in the sky, or the still small wiretap inside your head, monitoring your every move, even your every base thought.&rsquo (p. 226)
If you ask a religious person whey they are kind and honorable, you get an answer. If you ask the likes of Sigmund Freud and Richard Dawkins, there is no answer. To Freud’s credit and Dawkins’s shame, Freud admits he has no answer. Ernest Jones quotes Freud as follows:

When I ask myself why I have always behaved honorably, ready to spare others and to be kind whenever possible, and when I did not give up being so when I observed that in that way one harms oneself and becomes an anvil because other people are brutal and untrustworthy, then it is true, I have no answer. (Sigmund Freud, 2:465)

Tags: Evolution

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Stephen P. Smith // Dec 21, 2006 at 11:52 pm

    “…. the only reason you try to be good is to gain God’s approval and reward, or to avoid his disapproval and punishment?”

    The above is an example of dualistic thinking, looking for the reason of ethics when ethics has no reason. Ethics emerges from what is starkly felt, and is not looking for a reason. What is starkly felt involves love at three levels: Love your self; Love others; and Love the spirit that returns to source. This again this is the Christian and Hindu Trinity, Tao, and the Greek Logos.

    The left hand does not do harm to the right hand. An affliction giving harm is a worldview disconnected from the vital life force, a view without a feeling of Trinity. Hate and greed show blocked subtle energy and are not in balance.

Leave a Comment