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The Christmas Conspiracy!




"'. . . that He may teach us about His ways
And that we may walk in His paths.'
For from Zion will go forth the Law
Even the Word of God from Jerusalem
Micah 4:2


The nonnaturalistic objectivist asserts that "good" applies to some nonnatural or undiscernable quality in the thing appraised; this position is also known as intuitionism, for it claims that "good" is indefinable yet denotes an intrinsic, objective quality (or relation) which is apprehended intuitively (e.g. G. E. Moore, W. D. Ross). "Goodness" is a simple, unanalyzable concept (like "yellow"); hence it can be recog [292] nized only by an immediate insight or intuition. The consequence of this is that ethical principles lose all relation to the realm of fact (even facts about God). The intuitionist holds that moral judgments are synthetic a priori assertions, yet indefinable; however, he fails to answer the common autonomous criticism that only experience can yield synthetic statements. Moreover, these moral judgments do not show common characteristics of a priori truths such as universality, necessity, and self-evidency; disagreements between people on their intuited moral judgments is an insurmountable difficulty for intuitionism. Another difficulty with nonnatural objectivism is that it is not clear what a "natural" property is for the intuitionist, and so it is not clear what he is denying. The intuitionist’s thesis that goodness is simple and unanalyzable is not argued, but assumed; apparently, this characterization of goodness must itself also be intuited! The moral intuitions described by men like G. E. Moore have failed to have the cogency which is claimed for them as far as most people and their ethical experiences are concerned (these intuitions seem to suffer the same fate as Descartes’ "clear and distinct ideas"). The whole appeal to intuition must acquiesce in the face of many of the same arguments which are raised against mysticism. In the long run it is simply unclear what authority or obligation can attach to one’s closed-to-investigation intuition, what help in making moral decisions this offers, and how this intuition helps one to enact what is "good" behavior. The "odd facts" of moral intuitions render moral theory undiscussable. The content, grounds, and significance of ethics was lost to inexplicable intuitions which rendered it impossible to even define valuational terms in moral discourse.  

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Christmas Conspiracy


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