Do you live by absolute or relative morals and truths?
empahsis_Note: this isn’t an attempt to gang up on or bash hossman or anyone else. I’m genuinely interested in facilitating a discussion of this topic. Also, my apologies if this topic has been covered. It didn’t turn up in my search. Thanks._emphasis
I think the argument posed by hossman and what would be my response deserves a separate question, and I’m interested in hearing what others think.
Do you believe lying is wrong in all circumstances? Or is lying okay in certain situations. Or is it not okay, but you do it anyway, because, in context, you need to or you want to. Do you believe that the development and preservation of your character should be the utmost consideration, when faced with the choice of lying or telling the truth, or do you hold yourself to a different standard?
I am not an absolutist, and if I were, I would still be a practicing Catholic. (Ironically, my reason for leaving is that I believe Catholicism is an all or nothing proposition and I was no longer willing to accept the all- something of an absolutist position.) I don’t claim to be 100% satisfied with my character as hossman defines it, but I also know through experience, that the high road doesn’t always work for me, and that it’s not a standard I’m willing to adhere to at the expense of other considerations. At the risk of implicating myself in this argument, I will say that I wouldn’t lie under oath, but I will lie if I believe lying preserves my sense of expediency, fairness, or privacy.
Some questions to consider
If you live in a country that is being ethnically cleansed and you are in the faction that is being cleansed, is it okay to lie about your identity to avoid being executed?
If you live in a situation where the institutions that govern or influence your life are corrupt, biased, or otherwise an undue burden, is it okay to lie to avoid these injustices (assuming you are not going to pull a Ghandi anytime soon)?
Are you a practicing Catholic? If so and you choose not follow all Catholic doctrine, how do you rationalize this position?
In your mind, is lying to individuals different from lying to corporations?
Do you believe that morals and ethics are self evident truths or to some degree more localized manifestations of cultures and societies?
This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.