Love Your Atheist Neighbor Part 3: Ethics Based on Feeling

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism Leave a Comment


Recently I asked an atheist philosophy professor at a respected university this question:

In a strictly material world, what is your basis for ethics (moral obligation)?

He replied, “A high percentage of human beings share a common feeling of empathy for their neighbor. This commonality forms a basis for treating others with kindness and respect.”

“Ethics based on feeling,” I said.

“Correct. I’m not even saying this feeling represents an objective ‘good.’ It’s just normal. It’s what we do. It’s who we are.”

“This empathy — it’s a trait formed by evolution?”

“Right. A statistical norm of the population. Anyone who deviates from it is acting unethically.”

* * *

What do you think of the professor’s idea that ethics is based on common feelings of empathy for others?

I’ll share my thoughts next week.




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