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Cultural relativism is immoral, and a treaty from mutual agreement is one solution

Cultural relativism is immoral, and a treaty from mutual agreement is one solution

Someone asked: "any country that practices sharia law is in breach of the human rights declaration?" Cultural relativism can be used to justify paedophilia, rape, incest, and just about any behaviour, but that doesn't mean we can't formulate a charter that forms a lowest common denominator for a particular society to go by and shun people who do not follow it to various degrees. People say "Sharia Law", or similar laws from divine revelation, as if it is one immutable and indivisible monolith. I do not buy that argument. I believe that there is the letter of the law as it was written at the time, and the spirit of the law as it is interpreted by the people. The fundamental spirit of all civilised laws is to protect the rights of certain people without favouring one or the other for some arbitrary reason. Punishments exist to discourage people from messing up other people for no good reason. No sane person can deny that different theoretical methods were necessary to persuade people to behave in a certain way best for survival in a certain environment at a certain time. What is the spirit that remains unchanged over all this time that all humans would respect at a glance and submit to? I would say it is a mutual agreement between humans of mutual non-aggression and a fair system of rules to resolve disputes and enforce rights. That is what we aim to maintain our laws as, like the pruning of a tree, in the face of great technological and societal change.

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    • Chelsea Finnie
      tagged this with interesting 2016-12-03 23:08:59 +1300
    • Tim O'Donnell
      commented 2016-11-26 19:08:41 +1300
      Keep it short & concise or people won’t bother reading it…..
    • Lemon47 💊
      tagged this with essential 2016-11-26 17:46:10 +1300
    • Andi Shen Liu
      commented 2016-11-26 09:22:38 +1300
      Missed a paragraph. Yes, it looks like a big-ass essay.
      TL;DR: persuade literal people to have more insight into the spirit behind the words, admit that some of the details of their old covenants are deprecated, and choose to make a covenant between fellow humans in the spirit of the old one, with terms agreed upon by mutual agreement.

      “So what you’re saying is that any country that practices sharia law is in breach of the human rights declaration? That includes Saudi Arabia iran turkey every other country in the middle east Malaysia Indonesia because I think you’ll find that they all practice that rule”

      Cultural relativism can be used to justify paedophilia, rape, incest, and just about any behaviour, but that doesn’t mean we can’t formulate a charter that forms a lowest common denominator for a particular society to go by and shun people who do not follow it to various degrees.

      You say “Sharia Law” as if it is one immutable and indivisible monolith. I do not buy that argument. I believe that there is the letter of the law as it was written at the time, and the spirit of the law as it is interpreted by the people. The fundamental spirit of all civilised laws is to protect the rights of certain people without favouring one or the other for some arbitrary reason. Punishments exist to discourage people from messing up other people for no good reason. No sane person can deny that different theoretical methods were necessary to persuade people to behave in a certain way best for survival in a certain environment at a certain time. What is the spirit that remains unchanged over all this time that all humans would respect at a glance and submit to? I would say it is a mutual agreement between humans of mutual non-aggression and a fair system of rules to resolve disputes and enforce rights. That is what we aim to maintain our laws as, like the pruning of a tree, in the face of great technological and societal change.

      The spirit of the law, the intention, is contained within the body of the text. Without the body of the text the spirit of the law cannot be conveyed, but the body of the text, and those of any words, cannot perfectly represent the thought, the idea, that a reader experiences when reading the letter. How is it possible to transmit the experience of a thought from one person to another perfectly, in all its nuance and context, over long distances of space and time, from one mind to another? The story and the characters help convey the nuance, for someone familiar with the experience of that particular story and those particular characters of their time, as a sort of “average” or principal component. But what use is it to someone with limited experience of the world and who only knows the poor and the desperate and strives for nothing but the basics of survival and recognises nothing but the most base pleasures and pains, who worships the supernatural and personifies the laws of nature into concrete personalities with backstories in order to relate to them, rather than the abstract ideas in potentia that float untethered to begin with but which can found a nation built on more than masonry and magic? A nation built on the agreement of people with other people.

      You tailor the vessel of the idea to the audience to convey the guts of the idea but you cannot truly hope that someone lacking whole dimensions of experience can hold the same nuanced concept as you have. You require at least some fraction of all the necessary basis vectors in order to fully map into all the spaces of a particular space. Someone without an understanding of linear algebra cannot understand the truth of this analogy. Similarly, someone missing a basis vector from the set of basis vectors that is the experiences and connections in someone’s mind, will find it difficult to map out the whole state of a thought in all its nuance. The next best thing is to build a surrogate of that mental state to get it to roughly produce the same results, the same output, given the same input, but because it is fundamentally different in the rules that make it tick, and you are limited in the amount of training you can give to the model, it will differ from expected, sometimes violently and perversely.

      In order to entrain good behaviour between people, the model used to govern the way people evaluate their surroundings and result in the behaviour of people towards other people was trained in early people using the training rules that the experience of those time allowed. Those included training people to treat everything as the will of a supernatural personification who happened to write certain rules with certain context used to explain the spirit of the rules that they could relate to.
    • Andi Shen Liu
      tagged this with essential 2016-11-26 09:22:38 +1300
    • Andi Shen Liu
      commented 2016-11-26 09:17:48 +1300
      This is what I wrote in full. TL;DR: persuade literal people to have more insight into the spirit behind the words, admit that some of the details of their old covenants are deprecated, and choose to make a covenant between fellow humans in the spirit of the old one, with terms agreed upon by mutual agreement.

      > So what you’re saying is that any country that practices sharia law is in breach of the human rights declaration? That includes Saudi Arabia iran turkey every other country in the middle east Malaysia Indonesia because I think you’ll find that they all practice that rule

      Cultural relativism can be used to justify paedophilia, rape, incest, and just about any behaviour, but that doesn’t mean we can’t formulate a charter that forms a lowest common denominator for a particular society to go by and shun people who do not follow it to various degrees.

      You say “Sharia Law” as if it is one immutable and indivisible monolith. I do not buy that argument. I believe that there is the letter of the law as it was written at the time, and the spirit of the law as it is interpreted by the people. The fundamental spirit of all civilised laws is to protect the rights of certain people without favouring one or the other for some arbitrary reason. Punishments exist to discourage people from messing up other people for no good reason. No sane person can deny that different theoretical methods were necessary to persuade people to behave in a certain way best for survival in a certain environment at a certain time. What is the spirit that remains unchanged over all this time that all humans would respect at a glance and submit to? I would say it is a mutual agreement between humans of mutual non-aggression and a fair system of rules to resolve disputes and enforce rights. That is what we aim to maintain our laws as, like the pruning of a tree, in the face of great technological and societal change.

      The spirit of the law, the intention, is contained within the body of the text. Without the body of the text the spirit of the law cannot be conveyed, but the body of the text, and those of any words, cannot perfectly represent the thought, the idea, that a reader experiences when reading the letter. How is it possible to transmit the experience of a thought from one person to another perfectly, in all its nuance and context, over long distances of space and time, from one mind to another? The story and the characters help convey the nuance, for someone familiar with the experience of that particular story and those particular characters of their time, as a sort of “average” or principal component. But what use is it to someone with limited experience of the world and who only knows the poor and the desperate and strives for nothing but the basics of survival and recognises nothing but the most base pleasures and pains, who worships the supernatural and personifies the laws of nature into concrete personalities with backstories in order to relate to them, rather than the abstract ideas in potentia that float untethered to begin with but which can found a nation built on more than masonry and magic? A nation built on the agreement of people with other people.

      In order to entrain good behaviour between people, the model used to govern the way people evaluate their surroundings and result in the behaviour of people towards other people was trained in early people using the training rules that the experience of those time allowed. Those included training people to treat everything as the will of a supernatural personification who happened to write certain rules with certain context used to explain the spirit of the rules that they could relate to.
    • Andi Shen Liu
      published this page in Suggestions 2016-11-26 09:08:56 +1300