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Subject:  Re: He Lost 95% of His "Friends" Date:  10/22/2012  1:36 PM
Author:  Frydaze1 Number:  183775 of 199106

So my response to the "source of empathy" question:

I don't have an explanation for it. If you choose to believe that we have empathy because God gave it to us to help us to be moral, that's cool. I don't see where it's different from saying that God gave us eyesight so we could appreciate the beauty of his creation. It all boils down to "we have x, and some people believe it was developed over time through evolution and as a survival purpose while others believe it is from God and has a holy purpose".

But the "from God" side does raise an interesting question: How do you explain the people who don't have empathy or eyesight or x?"

The obvious answer, of course, is that God has his reasons and I'm not advanced enough to understand them. But I'm sure you can see what that kind of answer is unsatisfactory.

What happens is either everything is from God, even evil, because God created everything... or some things are from God and some aren't, and we have zero way of telling which is which because even rules and exceptions are no guideline; God could have done the exceptions intentionally. Or they could be the result of free will, even those things you ascribe to God. You're left with no answer and no guidelines within which to deduce answers. It ends up boiling down to: If I think it's good (which is, of course, subjective) then I'll say God did it. If I think it's bad (also subjective) I'll either say God did it for reasons I can't know, or it's the result of free will. All non-answers without anything to stand on except subjective opinions.

Example: Man A saves man B's life. Is this a good act? What if man B was a serial killer? What if man A does it by sacrificing a third party? What if man B was supposed to die as part of God's plan to do some great thing? In other words, how good the act was depends entirely on OUR understanding of the context. Subjective.

Which means at the end of the day it doesn't matter if you think empathy comes from God or not. We still agree that the morality that springs from it is subjective.

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