Thus, by starting my talk with the assertion that values depend upon actual or potential changes in consciousness, and that some changes are better than others, I merely assumed what I set out to prove.
This is what philosophers call “begging the question.”I believe that we can know, through reason alone, that consciousness is the only intelligible domain of value. Imagine some genius comes forward and says, “I have found a source of value/morality that has absolutely nothing to do with the (actual or potential) experience of conscious beings.” Take a moment to think about what this claim actually means.
As always, your methodology offers value often more promising than the content of the debate.
But tell us, Luke, which way are you leaning presently.
What we call “morality” is an outgrowth of the interplay of those preferences with the world around us, and in particular with other human beings.Even Harris seems to concede this is the domain of “reason alone.” But this might be a trivial concession for Harris to make.After all, science cannot say anything about protons until we have settled on the definition of “proton.” It does not diminish the scientific nature of proton-study to point out that science itself cannot determine the correct definition of the word “proton.” Likewise, perhaps the scientific nature of morality is not diminished by the fact that science itself cannot determine the correct definition for “morally good.” Excellent.You can do all the experiments you like and never find an answer to that question…When [people] don’t share values, there’s no way to show that one of the parties is “objectively wrong.”There are women and girls getting their faces burned off with acid at this moment for daring to learn to read, or for not consenting to marry men they have never met, or even for the crime of getting raped.Science cannot tell us that we can point to in order to adjudicate this disagreement?