It's always such a hot topic, like politics. If you are IMO attached to your ideas it is very hard to be open-minded. I have always loved a good debate, because I don't have to be right. When you have to be RIGHT, and stoke your ego, the field of vision narrows.
I read a quote recently that said, "Merely having an open mind is nothing; the object of opening a mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid."
If you don't have to be right, why debate? If you do not believe in what you are sharing why then should I even listen to you? You are not arguing truth you are arguing opinion. I am not interested in your opinion but in the truth. If you dont hold that your view is the truth and you dont have to be right then there is no foundation for you to hold to, let alone me listen to.
An opinion is subjective, I am looking for the truth, by definition is absolute. It's not that I have to be right, it is by definition that I am right. A truth and a lie, which is right? Well of course the truth is. You may argue neither is right, inwhich case I can say that your world view has no solid foundation. If you believe one thing to be true and another believes something else to be true, then you cant argue with him because in your world view truth is subjective.
If truth is subjective you have no reason to debate because according to such a view everyone is right. At that starting point, you have lost the right to debate.
I had a similar pseudo conversation with my nephew on Facebook the other day. He posted something about matadors and bullfighting and how some people see it as murder, but he just sees it as an okay cultural variation because he has an open mind and can see it from their perspective. I told him to use his open mind to imagine himself in the bull's place and get back to me. Absolutes and moral relativism, where would we be without them? An effective debater has to be able to debate every side of any argument or issue and win, the ultimate "truth" of the argument or issue be damned. There's an absolute for ya.
Absolutes are true for all people, everywhere, at all times. That's the nature of absolutes. Telling someone s/he's lost the right to debate doesn't make it true. You and I don't have that power...unless rights are bestowed by man.
A couple of my favorite quotes:
“It pays to keep an open mind, but not so open your brains fall out.” Carl Sagan?
"A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It makes the hand bleed that uses it." Rabindranath Tagore
Here's a fun one:http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/ ... rrier.html
Right is just another word for nothing left to do.
Of course we don't have that power but if one enters a debate it is because he disagrees with the premise of the other. If he disagrees with it, he is saying that his position is true. If he disagrees with it but has no reason to disagree with it then again, no one should lend an ear to him.
You see, from my perspective of Christianity, I can account for absolutes. In a naturalistic world view absolutes don't exist and if they do, their world view can't account for them. Especially moral absolutes.
IDK if you agree with me or disagree with me with what you posted.
About your nephew, and the bull, that just shows moral relativism. If he put himself in the shoes of everyone present each would hold a different view, matador, the bull, or even the crowd. Obviously on a moral standard the crowd is for it as they wouldnt be sitting there enjoying it. The matador is for it as he wouldnt be in such a position. The bull doesnt get to share his opinion, hence why there are animal activist speaking for the bull.
The activist holds a different moral standard than that of the crowd and that of the matador. But, which is right? The activist fighting for this poor animal being in the twisted hands of cruelty or the matador doing this for the entertainment of the crowd? Is niether right? Then again, its subjective inwhich case according to such a world view niether is wrong.
But if you do agree that there are absolutes, say even in logic, the law of non-contradiction which states, for example, it can't be raining and not raining in the same place, at the same time and in the same sense. Right? You can't be in the parking lot and not in the parking at the same place and in the same sense at the same time. You are either in the parking lot or you arent, you cant be both. It is either raining right now or it isnt, it cant be both. Agree?
So then, if you agree absolutes exist, how is it that the activist can be against bullfighting all the while someone else can be for bullfighting? Is that not a contradiction? You might say, "Well, exactly, its subjective." Inwhich case I will say, then according to the activist's world view it is wrong but in the general sense its okay. He may be against it, but his opinion is of no more authority than that of the matador or the crowd. In a subjective world, morality is relative. The activist has no measuring stick for what is right.
Hence, why I believe in God, the Christian God. I can account for these things, laws of logic, absolute moral standards, and can be against animal cruelty. However, in a world view without God or without the Word of God, a person can't make sense of anything. His morality is subjective. He can tell someone that what they are doing is wrong but he has no basis for it just as the person doing it has no basis for doing it. In a world of no absolute morals, especially ones that cant be accounted for, one without God, morals are up to man inwhich case it can only come down to illusory.
You may argue that morals are absolute because it is for the betterment of society. But from where do you get these absolutes? Better yet, the society might find it fit to get rid of a certain race. It is subjective.
Without God, a human being can't make sense of anything.
EDIT: Let me continue, I said they have no measuring stick for what is right. However, do they? If one feels their morals are better than someone elses, are they not saying there is an absolute standard? (*cough* Word of God *cough*)
An example, If I asked two people what is 2+2? Ofcourse the answer is 4. (that is the absolute) However these two indivuals have something else to say. One says, "Its 5." While the other says, "It's "5000." Which is more right or which is closer to the answer? You'd say the guy who said five because its so much closer to four.
Well, if someone considers their morals to be better than someone else by what standard are they measuring? I say, that any person outside of the Christian world view must borrow from the Christian world view in order to make sense of things and even to argue against it.
Quote- "The only proof for the existence of God is that without God you couldn't prove anything."