Is "God" a Good Thing? Part 3: the source of religious moral authority
Episode 29 of the Morality of Everyday Things is now live (and part 3 of our God miniseries)
Is “God” a Good Thing? Part 3: the source of religious moral authority
Today, we finish our series (of 3 episodes) exploring the intersection of 'God' and morality. You'll note the use of quotation marks, this is because we explore the moral implications of theism and organized religion in a way that is not limited to faith-based belief. This means both looking purely at the incentives around belief rather than basing belief on faith, but also weighing up the pros and cons of organized religion and their impact on society. Did it help to instill moral norms and unity, or more act as a basis for persecution, subjugation and undue docility.
In this episode, we consider the source of moral authority when it comes to religion. Ultimately, if people say things like 'this is the correct way to interpret scripture', there must be some method they're leaning on to pick between alternative interpretations. If this is the case, is God's word not, in itself, the source of moral authority? Is God good at selecting what's good, or does he define it be choosing it? We talk through these problems and consider whether, in the context of morality, an appeal to authority is ever a compelling form of argument.
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