Question: How do you judge which parts of the bible to add to your religion? How do you define what god thinks is “morally right”? Seeing how morals vary between nations, do you believe that god chooses those that follow the local moral best, or those that follow some all-applicable morals? –Alcari
Answer: Constructive Deism teaches that to analyze the arbitrary morals of every society, one can find universal truths. Being a Critical Deist, I have a hard time with that, since there are some societies that view eating a person as a good thing, and others that feel it morally right to hold slaves. I find that by analyzing what I would and would not like to have done to me, it comes down to a matter of the will of the individual. Doing something to a person against their will is, to me, the only true crime in the world. I have found that everything that any society considers a crime to be a matter of will. Societies that have a system of ownership view theft as wrong since you have removed someone’s possessions against their will. Murder is the taking of someone’s life against their will; rape the taking of the body against someone’s will. It is hard to know someone’s will by simply looking at them, but this is why we have to communicate as a people.
I do not take this to mean that if someone wants something it is excused. The will of one person is fine, until it takes the choice of another person away. Just because you think its fine and dandy to shove nails in people’s heads, does not give you the right to do it too me as I don’t like the concept of nails in my skull. In addition, there are some things that all parties involved may want that still count as crimes. People are not always in their right minds, and to make a decision to self-injury in such a state does not reflect the true want of the person.
Its can be tricky to be moral by these standards, but the ideal that morality is doing right by yourself and others when both are in good mental-health is easier to follow than the arbitrary laws of an invisible man in the sky.
Brian Humanistic Jones