Mr. Deity on the Euthyphro Dilemma

Mr. Deity is always hilarious and this episode on the Euthyphro Dilemma is no different:

I find this is an argument Christians tend to avoid engaging too much. It’s obvious why: there is no answer which properly jives with the idea of their god. If he can say what is good at a whim, then murder, rape, and everything else under the Sun could become good tomorrow. No Christian really wants to make that argument – it makes their god more of a relativist than they already purport him to be (such as when they claim the OT evil was only meant for the Jews, not every culture). If he just perfectly fits into whatever is good, then goodness is independent of him and we don’t really need any god to know what is good. After all, billions of people have concluded that things like murder, rape, and adultery are not good without knowing anything about any of today’s religions. It’s a rock and hard place for Christian apologists.

I love it.

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2 Responses

  1. It’s a rock and hard place for Christian apologists

    Unfortunately, that doesn’t stop them from making shit up.

  2. (Well said, Bob.)

    The “it’s good/bad because God says so” argument (if one could even call it that) is kind of impressive. I mean, it’s wrong on so many different levels, all at once. Note that the Christian god explicitly endorses, and even commands, all sorts of evils (war, mass murder, rape, punishing an race for the deeds of a few or one (although there is nothing in the Bible to suggest the rabid anti-Semitism that was so heartily embraced by Medieval Christians, it isn’t hard to see where they got the idea that an entire people could be guilty of the (alleged) sins of just a handful of their kindred), slavery, genocide, abuse of women and children, torture, cruelty to animals…not to mention turning his own son into a sort of cosmic whipping boy; and lesser evils too numerous to name them all) in the scripture he putatively inspired.

    Of course, many of the things that faith-based hate groups (finally SPLC has started recognising them as such!) insist are “bad because God says so” are completely harmless: does anybody seriously think that straight people’s marriages will start breaking up (I mean, even more than they do already) because gay people are getting married? What kind of person is so vicious as to believe that a lump of cells that has nothing resembling a brain has “rights” that override the rights of an actual real live woman (such as the right of personal autonomy and the right to protect her own health)? How is it right to condemn yet another generation to risk cervical cancer — from which some of them will die completely unnecessarily — simply because of your belief that HPV is God’s punishment for having sex? (HPV, of course, does not distinguish between whores and rape victims. Indeed, it is apparently possible to get it without engaging in any sexual activity at all: when I was diagnosed with it as a teen, I was still a virgin (and not just “technically”). Fortunately, I only had “mild cervical dysplasia;” because it was caught early — a lucky chance, since doctors usually don’t recommend pap smears for girls who aren’t yet sexually active — I was able to get it treated, so that it didn’t have a chance to develop into cancer.)

    Yet another outrageous claim made by faithheads — and this includes not only the violent extremists but also (indeed, perhaps more often) those “moderates” who refuse to speak out against them — is the pitiful excuse they make for religion when it’s pointed out how much harm it does to society. They claim it encourages people to behave “ethically.” (The scare quotes are because I was taught that the difference between ethics and morality is that the former is based on reason while the latter is based on authority — religion, of course, almost always deriving its claims from the latter.) In fact, people regularly use religion as an excuse to do all kinds of awful things. Most terrorism is religiously-inspired. Remember that ob/gyn who was murdered in church…or the South Dakota legislature’s attempt to make such murders legal? And now, in a truly stunning act of hypocrisy, our country’s most sanctimonious “Christians” are insisting that Ayn Rand, of all people, was some kind of prophet, even though her economic ideology was diametrically opposed to everything Jesus and his apostles said on the subject of wealth. (I wonder if Ms. Rand’s cultish followers are even aware of her views on sex and religion, which were practically the only decent ideas she had.)

    Thank you for putting up with my rant. :)

    -Teg

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