Name changes in Massonia

Tue, 22 Jan 2013 10:12:25 PST

You say "... *even though there is no objective aesthetics.*..". This is my
main point. I'm saying that materialism is *incomplete* for the reasons I
have given.

I have not said that any "super-material" alternative is necessary as a
motivator for conservation. As you say, religion *can* obviate the
importance of nature conservation and the same is true of belief systems in
materialist, atheistic societies as in China and the USSR. In either camp
there have also been heroic conservation efforts. This tells me that the
motivation for conservation lies outside the strict argument of atheism v.
theism. To invoke religion in this conversation is a red herring.

"The materialist view is not dry but rich and meaningful, and give plenty
of reasons to conserve." How can one derive any subjective or "meaningful"
viewpoint from a worldview that is inherently impersonal, that demands
obeisance to the idea that the only truth is what we can know by
observable, falsifiable means? It seems to me that one must step outside of
materialism to assign meaningfulness to anything. I have stated this idea
more than once but you are saying this is wrong, correct?

For me, conservation is worthwhile because it is an essential human
endeavor. The beauty and meaning of nature does not require atheistic
(materialist) thinking or theistic belief necessarily. In other words, we
do not have to choose a belief system to validate conservation efforts. It
is something we do for quality of life, both practical and aesthetic, and
for future generations. That is all the justification that is needed.


On 22 January 2013 04:43, lou jost <> wrote:

> Dylan, you said: <I am claiming that you cannot proclaim the virtues of
> conservation based on materialist beliefs alone.> As I  have said earlier,
> your claim is wrong: there are many practical reasons to conserve, and even
> though there is no objective aesthetics, people can be taught to
> appreciate  the beauty of nature. There is intellectual beauty as well: on
> the materialist view, the wonders of nature are challenges to the mind, the
> shapes and colors and structures generally have functions and histories,
> and evolutionary lessons that reflect back on the processes that made us as
> well. The materialist view is not dry but rich and meaningful, and give
> plenty of reasons to conserve, without invoking "woo".
> But that was not my main point. Let us suppose, for the sake of argument,
> that you are right. Suppose materialism is vastly inferior to some
> super-material alternative as a motivator for conservation. My point was
> that this is not a valid argument in favor adapting that alternative
> belief. We shouldn't choose belief systems or arguments because we like
> their consequences.  We should choose them based on evidence and validity.
> Intellectual honesty demands this.
> Lou
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