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A Rational Proof Of Secular Ethics by Stefan Molyneux

A Rational Proof Of Secular Ethics by Stefan Molyneux

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Published by QuaereVerum
"In many fairy tales, there lives a terrible beast of stupendous power, a dragon or a basilisk, which tyrannizes the surrounding lands. The local villagers tremble before this monster; they sacrifice their animals, pay money and blood in the hopes of appeasing its murderous impulses. Most people cower under the shadow of this beast, calling their fear "prudence," but a few - drunk perhaps on courage or foolhardiness - decide to fight. Year after year, decade after decade, wave after wave of hopeful champions try to match their strength, virtue and cunning against this terrible tyrant."

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"In many fairy tales, there lives a terrible beast of stupendous power, a dragon or a basilisk, which tyrannizes the surrounding lands. The local villagers tremble before this monster; they sacrifice their animals, pay money and blood in the hopes of appeasing its murderous impulses. Most people cower under the shadow of this beast, calling their fear "prudence," but a few - drunk perhaps on courage or foolhardiness - decide to fight. Year after year, decade after decade, wave after wave of hopeful champions try to match their strength, virtue and cunning against this terrible tyrant."

Host site: http://www.freedomainradio.com/

Free Books on Site: http://www.freedomainradio.com/FreeBooks.aspx

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Published by: QuaereVerum on Jan 25, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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08/02/2013

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n general, we will use the term aesthetics to refer to non-enforceable preferences – universal or
personal – while ethics or morality will refer to enforceable preferences. It is universally preferable
(i.e. required) to use the scientific method to validate physical theories, but we cannot use force to
inflict the scientific method on those who do not use it, since not using the scientific method is not a
violent action.

Non-violent actions by their very nature are avoidable. If a physicist stops using the scientific method,
but instead starts consulting tarot cards, he is not violently inflicting his choice on me, and I can avoid
him. A rapist, on the other hand, is violently inflicting his preferences upon his victim.

Although we first focused on UPB in the realm of ethics, UPB can now be seen as an “umbrella term,”
which includes such disciplines as:

• The scientific method

• Logic

• Empiricism

• Debating

• Language

• Ethics

Ethics is the subset of UPB which deals with inflicted behaviour, or the use of violence. Any theory that
justifies or denies the use of violence is a moral theory, and is subject to the requirements of logical
consistency and empirical evidence.

Let us look at three actions, to help us further distinguish between ethics and aesthetics. The first action
is irrationality; the second is lying; the third is murder. (Please note that the examples below are not
proofs, but rather situations that a valid ethical theory should be able to encompass and explain. We will
get to the actual proofs shortly.)

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