Tag Archives: morality

Why the ‘Law of Nature’ Argument is the Most Unnatural Concept Ever


The law of nature is a funny illusion.
It was used to justify slavery until the slaves revolted and claimed their rights.
It was used to sustain colonialism until the Europeans were kicked out and the natives did just fine.
It was used to imprison women until the world wars happened and magically they were able enough to work in factories.

Laws which were supposedly permanent and inherent – – existing since eternity – – were simply thrown away like fashion fads which outlived their trendiness.

And yet after a whole century of debunking the ‘natural’ argument most people still use it to justify their own prejudices and defend their medieval thought-castles.

Beneath all the ‘Natural Law’ arguments, there lies a certain kind of arrogance and a fallacious logic of morality.

The idea that human beings can defy the laws of nature (if any) firmly rests on the grandiose delusion that we can be independent of nature. It presumes that humans are this special species who have the ability to rebel and create a civilization which is autonomous.
Nothing can be farther from the truth.

The Nature/Culture binary is a false dichotomy. Living beings are natural beings by default. Nature constitutes them. All the characteristics, abilities and features of every living being has to have some inherent, natural, genetic basis. And it is a known fact that our civilizations’ precarious existence depend upon the whims of nature. (How many civilizations have been razed by natural disasters and climate disruptions? A shit load of them.)

Trees can’t walk, because its not in their nature to walk. Dogs can’t speak mandarin because they don’t have the genetic potential to speak any human language.

Similarly, every human action has to have some natural basis. Even artificial machines like spaceships can only be built by using our inherent potentials. We could invent rocket science because of our natural ability to reason and understand. We could create all the unnatural materials used in a space crafts by using the raw materials found in nature. And ultimately the spaceship flies according to the natural, inherent laws of physics which can’t be rebelled against.

If nature really forbids something, no living being can go against its diktat.

But this statement in no way can be paraphrased as, “Everything is as it should be.”

Violence and cooperation are both natural – – but war and peace are in no way the same from an Experiential or an ethical point of view.
Nature is diverse, dynamic and different. But it doesn’t mean that we have to accept things as they are.

We have the inherent ability to choose and change. And hence, the question of good and bad in no way relies on the natural and the unnatural.(For everything is ultimately natural.)

Global warming is not wrong because it is human made and against the natural order. Humans themselves are natural beings and hence can’t go beyond nature. Global warming is wrong because of its effects – – because of the disasters and immense loss of life it has brought about. But it could only happen because of the inherent, natural potentials of human beings to create and exploit.

Rapes occur in the wilderness; but it can in no way mean that this justifies their ethical validity.

Disease is a natural condition, often brought about by natural organisms. Should we stop making medicines to fight them? I don’t think so.
Equating natural occurrences to an inherent and universal moral order is an old concept. It makes no sense in today’s times because human beings have become a force of nature themselves. Although, the dichotomy between human and nature was always false, but its even more difficult to sustain the illusion in our age. We have the ability to change global climate, make new species with genetic engineering, reproduce with our new technologies and even start an ecosystem on a distant planet.
The dichotomy of nature/culture was essentially based on control. Things like climate, natural disasters and the wilderness were beyond our power. Now, even the most isolated forests and distant oceans are directly effected by human civilization and our collective actions.
In this scenario, to rely on the old ethical doctrine of ‘Natural Order’ can be disastrous. The community of climate change deniers illustrate this point brilliantly. They say that the global climate is simply shifting and transforming as it naturally has. And since this change is natural, therefore human beings should simply let it be and keep on pumping toxins into the world.
It is true that global warming is a natural process. But it doesn’t mean that we aren’t a causing it. Earlier volcanoes and meteors might have decided the destiny of global climate, now human beings do. And it definitely doesn’t mean that global warming is harmless.
This powerful position grants us a unique freedom in the order of nature. A freedom which is certainly not an autonomy, but a practical ability to transform the natural constraints which form us according to our intent.
We can no longer dump the ethical responsibilities on nature. This freedom demands that we think for ourselves, for responsibility is the inherent twin of liberty. It is time that instead of having yelling-competitions about what exactly is the order of nature, we focus on creating an order which actually creates better, more sustainable ecosystems.

On a side note — CONGRATULATIONS TO USA!

 
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Baboon Banter On Morality


mORALITY

 

The Baboon has been going mad-er day-by-day and his babbling is the only thing which has prevented his total mental breakdown.It is the special subject of morality which has baked his brains into a plum cake.

The Baboon realises that morality is relative. It is different for every monkey, slug and elephant.
Morality doesn’t exist in the world. It is created by our morbid minds.
That is precisely the reason why some cultures find human sacrifice as a way to appease Gods and some others define it to be an abominable crime.

What is good and what is bad for the society is based on which moral codes have managed to gain acceptance and influence with the majority.

But does this mean that anything goes?
Or should this subjectivism just lead to empty, meaningless nihilism?

Before the Baboon wrecks his head by banging it on a stone, or it spontaneously explodes, he should make something clear.

The Baboon agrees that moral codes have traditionally been used as a tool for power and control.
The interests of the moral codes preached by the society is often not good for the whole society, but the profit and privilege for the minority elites.

Moral codes frequently create social norms which seek to confine individuals in a fixed identity, creating group divisions while eliminating any difference.

The most efficient example of both of these are gender norms and the morality based on it.

In a patriarchal society, morality often has double standards which favours males — like the importance of female chastity is often paramount, while males are allowed more social freedom.  It is often OK for males to have premarital, or even extramarital, sex; a woman is often labelled as a ‘whore’ or even stone pelted in the same situation.

Gender and gender norms first divide the population into two genders, homogenise their identities and behaviours of individuals inside each gender, and finally exclude individuals who are different like the people belonging to the LGBTQ community.

Morality and moral codes of the society have never been good for the society.
But does this mean we abandon the concept of morality altogether?
Or does the subjectivity of morality makes everything right?

Does this mean Nazism, slavery, colonialism and patriarchy become al right?

In what the intellectual brains like to call as post-modernism, this seems to be exactly the battle call — “Anything goes”.

But this only seems to be true in arguments, debates and discussions.

Experience assertively differs.

Can we really justify the experience of those who were slaughtered under the Nazi regime? Can we justify the experience of  the slaves? Can we justify the experience of the colonised? Can we justify the experience of the victims of patriarchy?

At least, the Baboon can’t.

And this is precisely the base of the Baboon’s morality — experience.

It is only through the experience of a situation that we can ascertain the morality of the situation. There maybe nothing right in any situation, but there are things which cannot be justified, and hence, are wrong.

We have arrived at a point of moral emptiness only because of too much chat-chat and not much experience. Because most of our experiences are virtual we have lost our touch with life itself.

That is why some people can parody the 9/11 in an online image board, while people who had actually experienced it still get nightmares even after 13 years.

The Baboon rejects traditional structures of morality.
This in no way means that the Baboon doesn’t believe in morality.

The Baboon believes that every situation is unique in itself, and ethical theory is defunct because it often generalises situations and forms rules according to it like a wannabe science.
That is why moral codes don’t work.

Morality is an individual activity.

It should be based on empathy, rationality and intuition, rather than traditional bullshit.

This is because tradition ascribes the label of right to things which cannot be justified through empathy like marital rape, honour killings or burning people at stake.

Morality should be a reaction to a situation rather than blind following of rules.

The Baboon believes in the Moral Compass but not in Moral Codes.

Morality is subjective and may change from person to person, according to different situations.

This in no way means an individual should forsake morality altogether.

And here ends the Baboon Banter on Morality.

Eat your cupcakes!

 

— X —

The Baboon apologises for being late.

The world was on the brink of a nuclear war.

Or maybe the Baboon just had a bad dream.

The Baboon loves you.

Oink!

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