By Peter Kreeft
No factor is extra fateful for civilization than ethical relativism. background understands now not one instance of a profitable society which repudiated ethical absolutes. but such a lot assaults on relativism were both pragmatic (looking at its social outcomes) or exhorting (preaching instead of proving), and philosophers' arguments opposed to it were really expert, technical, and scholarly. In his usual detailed writing kind, Peter Kreeft we could an enticing, sincere, and humorous relativist interview a "Muslim fundamentalist" absolutist in order to not stack the cube in my view for absolutism. In an enticing sequence of non-public interviews, each available argument the "sassy Black feminist" reporter Libby supplies opposed to absolutism is just and obviously refuted, and not one of the many arguments for ethical absolutism is refuted.
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Extra resources for A refutation of moral relativism: interviews with an absolutist
And that's data. You see, ordinary language contains a wealth of meaning. Philosophers "unpack" it and examine it. That was the data Socrates always explored. And it was mainly moral questions—in fict, it was always moral questions—that he explored. Here's the father of philosophy, 58 / A Refutation of Moral Relativism the first philosopher, and he has plenty of data, and he has the right philosophical method in place already: the logical analysis of ordinary language. Libby: How can words be data?
It is. But we experience more than "what is" as our data; we also experience "what ought to be" as part of our data. We experience conscience telling us that it's wrong to covet that land or to steal it, or to go to war for it, because we have no right to it; 62 I A Refutation of Moral Relativism it is not right. And that dimension of right and wrong, that's just as much a part of our experienced data as the land and our desire for it. Libby: But the land is out there, and you can verify it with your senses.
Do you see the difference? "I believe you because I feel like it" versus "I believe you because of the evidence, because your premises prove your conclusion". Libby: So you want to know which because it is? It's both. 'Isa: Then I will admit that you are right in one sense, but not the other. I agree with you that people abandon moral absolutism because it makes them feel guilty. I think the fear of guilt may be a very powerful motive for not believing in moral absolutism. But I don't think it's a good reason, a good argument.