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Reasonable Faith Conference Day 2 / Session 42 min read

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Frank Beckwith – no god, no good

A. Natural rights

1. Our rights wrt other citizens
2. Natural law tells us what things have value outside of relationships to others

>> atheist got no songs by steve Martin
>> a case for the crusades by stark
>> Kurt wise
>> legalism: there ought to be a law against it

B. Is natural moral law grounded in god?

1. The moral law is not physical
. Discovered from non inferential means of understanding … Not empiricism but introspection. They are immaterial

2. Moral rules are a form of communication

3. Moral rules have an incumbency
. Oughtness, the action of conscience

4. Guilt

C. Three possible grounds of morality

1. Morality is an illusion

2. Moral rules are the result of chance
. They are givens, brute facts
. Oughtness implies communication between minds, not accidental recommendations
. Moral rules evolve to support fitness (begs the question)
>> the moral animal by wright
. But why care for the weak? what if that has local negative impact on your fitness?
. How do we know that cruelty, social darwinism is bad for fitness?
. If the action benefits fitness, but the motive is bad, is it ok?
. If the action does not benefit, but the motive is good, is it bad?
. Should we be good tomorrow? How do I know what actions are good?
. What if I have conflicting sentiments? Is it moral to prioritize them?
. What if my sentiments towards evil are positive? Are my actions wrong?

Atheist misconceptions about god and morality
. You can recognize objective morals wo faith
. You can act and be moral without faith
. But you can not logically ground assertions that objective good exists without god
. Moral good must include external attestation, obligation/duty, and punishment
. External means a necessary being, not a contingent one

Richard Taylor… A duty is something owed. Moral obligation requires accountability to another.r