Comments on “Confusion, completion, misery and joy”

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Ethical nihilism only fails for people who aren't sociopaths

nzc's picture

Therefore much of what you discuss here hinges on the human in question having some inherent moral sense about the actions she takes. So, even if there is not a totalizing moral calculus, there must be some abstract and fundamental moral axioms which can be used, by an individual, as a basis for right action. Do you agree?

I don't follow

Ethical nihilism only fails for people who aren’t sociopaths

I’d say it fails for everyone. If we disagree, that might be because we have different definitions for “ethical nihilism”?

So, even if there is not a totalizing moral calculus, there must be some abstract and fundamental moral axioms which can be used, by an individual, as a basis for right action.

Sorry, I don’t understand the logic of this… How does it follow?

Good stuff

Marko's picture

Thanks for writing this. It helps me to see things in a new light :)

I don't understand much of

lorenzo bercelli's picture

I don’t understand much of this;
“any finite, fixed set of rules will sometimes require actions that are obviously harmful”. harmful according to what ? If you have fixed rules/principles you believe in and behave according to, how could this lead you to do something harmful, since inevitably in that frame harmful would be defined (what else could it mean otherwise?) as going against your principles (I’m thinking of utilitarianism, but you could also speculate that e.g. a christian wouldn’t consider suffering to be harmful)?

I also don’t understand by what standard could you make an ethical decision, if you aren’t working withing an ethical frame ? How could you consider something wrong without relating it to an ethical code?

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