Thursday, August 27, 2015

Finding your tribe: moral relativity.

Hi! Happy Thursday!

Today we are going to mash two things together: finding your tribe and moral relativity.

First let us start with moral relativity.

State sanctioned moral relativity resulted from secularism in 1789 where everyone was entitled to their own absolute moral code in the form of their own religion. Freedom of religion was everyone's right. Secularism in 1789 meant that there were competing religions and competing absolute moral codes that people  subscribed too and thus resulted in a moral pluralism or moral relativity across various religious factions. A religion itself was not morally relative.  Each religion taught that only a single absolute moral code was correct. Religion's main claim to authority was in fact the notion that only religion imbues people with morals and that people would not otherwise have morals if not for the religion.

Moral relativity today means something quite different. Moral relativity today means as individuals we recognize competing moral codes as valid and have empathy for all.

Part of the stagnation the US is facing today in politics is our inability individually to recognize moral relativity and to publicly acknowledge multiple codes of morality and ethics as good.

Instead, today we still cling to moral absolutes. Take for example the morality of abortion. Those who believe abortion is murder do not accept that the morality of abortion being legal is valid. The problem with  abortion is murder is that some 60% of Americans believe Roe V. Wade should stand. Further, conservative women and liberal women have abortions in the same percentage such the differences are within the margin of error. In other words, the people espousing abortion is murder in fact get abortions.

So what is the correct moral code with respect to moral absolutes? Is slavery okay? A large percentage of Americans felt slavery was moral prior to the civil war? Is morality really just a matter of public sentiment?

The US Constitution tries to grapple with the concept of absolute moral codes in the Bill of Rights. In come sense one could argue that the Bill of Rights and subsequent constitutional amendments represent an attempt to define the moral absolutes upon which then any religious code can be acceptably built. Slavery is not permitted and therefore you religion is not allowed to practice slavery.

The Bill of Rights was not intended, however, to define an absolute moral code. The Bill of Rights was intended to protect the citizens from the government. But when  you think about it protecting citizens from the government and defining an absolute moral code are similar in purpose: to protect the individual from the many. The difference is that the Bill of Rights loosely defined the many as the government whereas the an absolute moral code defines everyone as the many.

Irreni World Scale defines a solution as follows. There exists an absolute moral code where upon all moral relative codes must adhere too. Further the best absolute moral code is the minimal absolute moral code with an objective to defend every single person from tyranny and oppression of any sort.

For example, Irreni World Scale includes the Opportunity Importance Principle, or OI! Principle, as one of the 20 big fancy pants ideas. The OI! Principle states that we are no longer in the human race. The race is over, we won. We know how to survive. We know how to feed, shelter and cloth every single person on the planet. Therefore we are now into the Quality of Life era of human existence. Therefore everyone has an equal opportunity for importance.

Irreni World Scale then makes slavery immoral because slavery would violate the OI principle, those who would be enslaved are obviously not as important as the masters.

And abortion? Doesn't the OI! Principle make abortion absolutely immoral? Well, yes and no. You see there is the sticky problem of defining what it means to be a "person". We can probably all agree that a dying person who is brain dead and who has no chance for opportunity ever again is not a "person" in the moral sense. Therefore it is morally okay to take someone who is dying and brain dead off of life support.

So when does person-hood begin and end? That is decision that Irreni World Scale doesn't tackle because that is really a matter of a policy of an era. When we define a person to be "a person" is really a matter of the state of current technology. Given different parts of the world will have different technological levels then the line between person and not-person will be relative and a forever source of debate and change.

Are moral absolutes morals for all time or relative to a time? The answer is moral absolutes are relative to a time.

For this next part I'm going to use a graphic that popped up on my Facebook feed.

Facebook Discussion

If you click on the "Facebook Discussion" link then you will find the typical back-and-forth on guns discussion.

The reason I am using guns is that guns are not really addressed by religions. Therefore it is kinda up to us to decide the morality. The moral issue of guns is more-or-less out of the religious realm.

And what moral realm do guns occupy? The US was founded before the automobile and train were available to make fresh meat daily an option at the market. Therefore, people then owned a gun and hunted for fresh meat. Times change. We do not need guns for fresh food any more and that moral realm no longer exists. Besides folks having guns for hunting in 1789 there is another moral realm bias that existed when the 2nd amendment was created: we were just coming off a 10 year battle for independence.

There are actually two different types of morality with respect to guns as morals exist today in the US: should the moral realm be absolute and then what are the relative moral realms?

Guns today no longer have a food survival purpose. Guns only have a purpose to kill people, animals and for competition sport. It is nigh impossible to make any case that allowing guns for everyone should be a moral absolute. But what about the inverse? Should guns be banned as a moral absolute?  Guns as a sport should be superseded by the OI! Principle.

Guns are a self-fulfilling prophecy. If they are allowed then they need to be allowed for everyone because guns have a long history as the weapon of choice for enforcing tyranny and oppression. If we disallow guns then we should disallow guns for everyone, including the military. Not a single person should be allowed to have a gun morally if any are disallowed to have guns.

The answer lies in the environment and state of the world today. Humans do not enact laws today at the world level. As a result absolute morality as adopted by any subset of humans is not, in fact, absolute morality at all.  The Earth is evolving to greater acknowledgement of a set of minimum universal moral codes. We are not there yet. Therefore until such a time as guns can be technically banished from the face of the earth for all humans then guns should be a relative moral each generation modifies as we move closer to common minimal moral absolutes as a species.

To whit, we should repeal the 2nd amendment and not create the inverse of banning guns.

Absolute morality then is not absolute for all time, but absolute to a time, a generation and a technological and political capability of an era.

What about morals that are not absolute? That's where you need to find your tribe.

Irreni World Scale defines a two-fold moral solution whereby absolute morality is a bare minimum to thwart systemic tyranny and oppression.

One of the things we've learned about human nature ere these last 200 years since the US was founded is that human nature is not uniform. We are not emotionally alike. To whit, one size does not fit all. Marriage is no longer defined to be between a man and a women because not all men are attracted to women, etc.

Our minds are not blank slates at birth. Our genetics and are environment predispose us to be willing to die before living a life of conflicting morals in society at large.

Gay people have long died for their nature to be homosexual and the heterosexuals have been more than willing to persecute, ostracise and kill gays for all of history.

Violent behavior and resulting morality occupies much the same emotional space as sexuality due to its primal nature. Violent behavior is very much about our genetics. For example, I am a pacifist by nature. I pain to think of ever killing anyone and would probably let the most evil vile vicious thing kill me before defending myself. Therefore I believe so called castle laws are immoral. No one deserves to die for stealing your television.

I cannot emotionally relate to people who want to kill intruders. And they cannot emotionally relate to me. The list of emotional expanses that people will die for and therefore separate us morally and emotionally as humans are countless. Sexuality, violent behavior, faith in God, adultery, stealing, lying are just some of the classic emotional divide-to-the-death issues we humans harbor.

What do we do?

First find your tribe. Second, realize that given no two people are alike then no tribe will agree with you 100%. Eventually we all make moral compromises to belong to a group. Irreni World Scale puts a new twist on finding your tribe. That twist is to find your most morally diverse tribe and not your most morally homogeneous tribe.

People today are in moral emotional pain due to not recognizing moral relativity and being unable to "find a tribe".

There are a couple of reasons for this pain. First is a false moral expectation of some universal moral absolutism existing across all of mankind for things that are in fact morally relative. Second is our tendency for confirmation bias where people find a tribe that is as homogeneous as possible morally. Confirmation bias is defined to be always seeking out people and views that already agree with you. Confirmation creates an illusion of moral absolutes that in fact doesn't exist and therefore creates the most pain.

Irreni World Scale resolves both reasons for moral relativity emotional pain due to tribal bias. First tribes are limited to about 30 people. Then tribes of tribes are formed. Second people are encouraged to find a morally diverse tribes as possible. You should try to form a tribe that includes as a diverse of innate set of moral perspectives as possible such that the diversity of the moral world is not such a painful shock.

To whit, for someone like myself who was born a pacifist then I should seek to include someone who feels morally obligated to own guns for self defense. If someone like myself believes abortion should be legal then I should tribe up with at least one person who is against abortion being illegal.

Make no mistake about it. Finding your tribe is about finding people who accept you as you are. That is the first priority in finding a tribe. But, if you only try to find a tribe where everyone is as close in nature to you as possible then the moral relativity pain of living in a world of seven billion people of competing morality will be a most severe pain.

Irreni World Scale is a moral system that scales. The system does this by finding a minimal universal set of absolute morals for planet Earth that are relative to a time. Once the minimal set of absolute morals are defined for a time then all morals are relative to the minimum set. People of similar natures find their tribe with a eye towards fostering as much moral relativity as possible within a tribe so as to avoid confirmation bias and hence avoid a deep moral relativity pain  due to not understanding and not fitting into the relative moral world at large.


Think disruption!

Empathy for all!

Moral relativity: think it, breath it!

Prove it or lose it!

Conversations equal consensus! 

Welcome to the 21st century!

Scale your empathy, scale the world! 

Find your tribe!

Be sexy people!

The future is coming! 

Innovate at a rapid pace!

Slow speed ahead!

Well come! and well met!

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