Friday 12 May 2023

What comes first: the individual chicken, or the generic egg? Unsatisfactory assumptions behind fundamental moral ideals

It has become really difficult, in practice impossible, to discuss moral questions in the public domain with any degree of precision and honesty. 

On the one hand, the mainstream modern materialist (MMM) position (which is politically-core-leftist among all global institutions; and Western nations and groups of nations, parties, major corporations and powerful/ wealthy/ influential groupings, including thus who are supposedly 'opposition)...

This MMM position has now become so nihilistic that any positive and coherent proposition that contradicts it is instantly and effortlessly (by formula, and under centralized control as well as through infiltration) distorted, selected-from, pulled-to-pieces, and used to project malign motivations and nature to any individual or group displaying any degree of opposition from the core agenda

A single remark or image (even from an obscure individual) that strays from the approved narrative; may, at any time (even many years later), be subjected to this open-ended defamatory interpretation until it becomes depicted as an urgent global menace; and its author someone who must be ruined, if not killed. 

All this from a single, decontextualized, sentence or picture...

On the other hand; those who rightly and necessarily resist such demonic destructiveness, are - by our sound-bite culture with its tiny attention span, and ultra-simplified thought procedures - drawn-into making grossly simplified and generalized statements of truth, that (of course, like any such statement) can immediately be seen to have many exceptions, grey areas and imprecisions. 

The false claim of mainstream modern materialists (but not adhered-to in practice) is that reality consists of an infinite number of special cases - each to be considered 'on its own merits' (implicitly, in terms of a utilitarian emotivist 'morality' that seeks above all to ensure 'rights' or avoid 'hurt' to those 'minorities' who are deemed members of approved victim-groups). 

For the MMM; By Far the greatest danger to its supreme values such as social justice, human rights, and to alleviate suffering; comes-from traditionalist religious people who treat everyone as exactly the same, and apply to them crude general rules inherited from a benighted past that was characterized by class and caste distinctions, slavery, sexism, racism, imperialism... and so forth. 

Thus - although the traditional Christian side is mostly-correct and the MMM almost-entirely wrong (indeed value-inverted); in the actual public context such debates appear (to the mass of people) the evil fanatics of the dominating demonic left seem to be more nuances and accurate than their 'traditionalist' Christian opponents - who are (so far as can be seen) fanatically advocating obsolete and simplistic solutions to complicated questions. 

In reality, traditionalist Christians nearly-always recognize the need for nuance and exceptions, and draw a distinction between sinner and sin, what is Christianly right and what is legally mandatory - and many other modifiers to the standardized application of rules to categories.

But nonetheless, they do regard it as necessary that a good and valid society operates on the basis of clear and simple principles that can be taught widely and easily understood... 

Necessary exceptions, valid occasions for turning a blind-eye, and mercies - then ought to be exercised at the point of specific enforcement (not principle); by the Christian judgment of those responsible for the implementations of such principle. 

Yet at a deep and ultimate level, there is indeed a problem with the way that traditional Christianity has conceptualized morality in terms of laws, doctrines, statements; and many Christians do indeed regard these simple generalizations as the bottom-line.  

In other words, they regard divine morality as consisting of simple principles that dictate what everybody should do, and not. 

In effect, traditional Christianity envisages the true and good universe of reality as structured and ruled by such general categories and principles; with individual people and circumstances fitting naturally within such categories - except for a few individual exceptions (maybe more apparent than real, maybe more a matter of the limits to our knowledge than truly anomalous) that should be dealt-with by the minimum of pragmatic or expedient adjustments. 

In sum: categories and rules come first; and actual individual instances are fitted-within these. 

Such an idea of reality is (in the West) mostly deep-rooted and derived-from in the assumptions of early Greek philosophy, and concepts of law derived from convergence of the Law of the ancient Hebrews of the Old Testament, and from the Laws of the Roman Empire (through its various developments).  

Yet, in the end, these are assumptions; ought to be known as such, and tested by each of us for validity. 

We need to ask ourselves whether it is necessarily correct that the universe is ultimately structured and functions in terms of categories and laws with exceptions?

Or whether, instead (as I personally believe), ultimate reality consists of individual Beings (living, conscious, purpose beings) that can, for particular purposes, be collected into categories and their functioning be understood in terms of types-of-relationships...

Whether, in other words, it seems intuitively and bottom-line true that specifics should come first because they are primary; and it is generalities that are secondary, pragmatic, derived... 

Such a world-view is unfamiliar, and most of us have little experience of thinking in such a way - except within our families (insofar as they are loving and close families). In such families we know that each member is primarily an unique individual rather than a category, and we recognize that our simple rules-of-thumb by which we manage family life must be rooted in this reality; and therefore must differ as individuals are different, and change as the individuals change. 

However, even if this is recognized as ultimately true; it does seems unlikely to the point of impossibility that such ways of doing can be scaled-up from the family to society at large - to nations and the world - at least, this seems vastly implausible with the world as it now is. 

But if that genuinely is the reality (i.e. individual Beings in relationships), then it is not surprising that public discourse between the leftist-atheist-demonic mainstream and the demonized Christian traditionalists, should have an air of unreality; and be experienced as fundamentally unsatisfactory. 

While the orthodox Christians are clearly the better side, and the mainstream is extremely evil to the point of value-inversion - nonetheless, the moral system of advocates of traditional Christian (and other religions) is indeed unsatisfactory at root...

Unsatisfactory not merely at the superficial level of simplistic fanaticism into-which the media and officialdom artificially distort them; but also unsatisfactory at the deepest level of being-based-on assumptions that (if we make the effort to identify and evaluate them) we may intuitively feel driven to reject - and reject in exactly those situations we know best and most deeply and are most motivated by love. 

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