9.6.09

IS my bitch=logic

Morality is an inherently illogical concept. But let us back peddle just a few steps first.

It started with the chess analogy, are the rules the is's or the ought's? Is it a closed system, or within a larger system? Is the implied goal of checkmating an ought or an ought, or is it just an is?

Let me introduce my own chess analogy, after that we might perhaps find some assonance amidst the ethereal cognitive dissonance we seem to have quagmired ourselves in. Suppose the chess game is a closed system. The whole universe is the board, the rules, and two computers that play by the rules. Now, the rules of the game are the "institutional oughts", our universe functions based on. If I drop this apple it ought to hit the ground, if the apple doesn't hit the ground, we aren't playing chess. It is not within these computers' capacity to break the rules because it is outside their realm of commprehension. Like if I say I don't want to paint using those old colors, I'll invent a new one. I call it blellow! Uhh, Arthur, green's been done before. Crap I thought it looked familiar. You get the idea? Now, let us imagine that I am the transcendent being who can break the rules, imaginate new colors, bend spoons with my mind, castle across check, etc. I give the computers different choices based on whatever seems the most existentially satisfying to them. They can tip the king whenever, they can go for a draw so as not to hurt anyone's feelings, they can run a cheap gambit so as to humiliate the opponent. But of course I say, "Since this is chess and I have created you as chess players, you ought to try to win". You see the problem.

God created us
God is transcendent
God says we have purpose
Therefore we ought

This is a clearly fallacious syllogism. Throwing in a transcendent creator does not in any way avoid the is-ought problem. I could program these computers to fear retribution and add the rule, "you go to hell if you don't win". But throughout the struggle Hume's guillotine keeps its death grip on us.

And more than God failing to account for the ought, there is not ought. The computers play, win lose or draw occurs. Judgment is dealt. Ought never made contact, there is just is.

If oughts are anything more than eddies within the swirling currents of is, logic and a creator hypothesis aren't of much help.

No comments: