Morality: Biology or Religion?

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username2300427
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Where does our sense of morality come from? Is killing another human being wrong because it says so in the religious texts? Or because it is in the best interests of our genes?
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studentmoments
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I think both. From an evolutionary standpoint, to kill other humans would be to decrease the human population, increasing the chance of extinction.

Religious teachings tell people to not kill. People follow this rule to avoid punishment in the after life. Of course, this does not always work.
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Chichaldo
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(Original post by singhaman)
Where does our sense of morality come from? Is killing another human being wrong because it says so in the religious texts? Or because it is in the best interests of our genes?
I think a lot of our inner morals and laws have stemmed from religious grounds even if it is hard to make the connection but in an ever changing, pluralistic society with the decline in religion, morals are changing frequently and are ultimately down to one's own thoughts.
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Farm_Ecology
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(Original post by Chichaldo)
I think a lot of our inner morals and laws have stemmed from religious grounds
Completely disagree there.

Consider that some of the oldest social contracts come from secular sources (Hammurabis code for example), and that morals werent handed down from divinity in most early religions.

Historically, the reverse is true. Morality and social Laws were later attributed to the divine.
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Onde
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What we call morality comes from our ability to see pain as undesirable. This is not especially profound.
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Feastful
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People become agnostic or Athiest all the time but I've never known one person to lose their sense of morality because they stopped believing in religion. Religions are constructs of mankind and most religions contain some teachings in them which many people today would argue are very immoral & illogical.

(Original post by studentmoments)
I think both. From an evolutionary standpoint, to kill other humans would be to decrease the human population, increasing the chance of extinction.

Religious teachings tell people to not kill. People follow this rule to avoid punishment in the after life. Of course, this does not always work.
Religious teachings justify killing a lot. There are endless genocides etc committed by God as punishments towards people (and there are many incidents in texts where killing by people is basically justified). The amount of wars & atrocities committed/justified in the name religion are endless.

Some of the worst behaviour being committed towards people in the world (like female genital mutilation, executing or imprisoning people for being gay, making victims marry their rapists, punishing people for unmarried sex, killing animals using inhumane methods etc) are all being perpetuated for no other reason than religious beliefs.

Pretty much every liberal and scientific breakthrough (from women's rights to stem cell research and more) has been opposed by religious groups.
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Axiomasher
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(Original post by singhaman)
Where does our sense of morality come from? Is killing another human being wrong because it says so in the religious texts? Or because it is in the best interests of our genes?
Religion, and law, just latches onto our evolved emotional responses to social life and corresponding behaviour and then codifies it. In the case of religion it is contextualised (e.g. transgressing a taboo will result in divine punishment).
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