Saturday, May 3, 2014

9 Quotes From Stephen McAndrew on Relativism

This is a collection of some of my favorite quotes from the book Why It Doesn't Matter What YOU Believe If Its Not True by author Stephen McAndrew. My review of the book may be found here.

"We are fed ideas in small sound bites that are really just the conclusions of particular beliefs. We do not examine what underpins these sound bites. If the sound bites are presented by a source we are accustomed to accepting as true, there is a danger we will assimilate the conclusion without knowing, or caring, whether it is based on solid arguments and assumptions."

"In order to discover truth it is necessary to coldly dissect and examine all of our prejudices and inherent biases to ensure we receive unbiased answers. This takes effort. It is always easier to simply accept the ideas presented to us than to question the status quo."

"Given our obsession with self, it is hardly surprising we think it is fine for us to live in a world with malleable moral markers, as long as we get our own way without being bullied by others into accepting their way of doing things. We want others to respect moral boundaries that we want to be free to ignore when it suits."

"If the freedom to do as we please is extended to everyone, we lose our freedom. Inevitably, our desire will clash with the desires of others. In the event of such conflict, the strongest individual could impose his or her wishes on those weaker than him or her. So, if we are the weaker party whose wishes have come into conflict with the desires of a stronger party, we will lose out. Everything is permissible, but not everything is possible without power."

"Each of us would like the ability to do what we want to do, when we want to do it, without incurring the moral approbation of others. We, however, tend to conveniently forget this also gives others the right to do whatever they want."

"If truth and moral values are relative, one cannot claim that certain human rights are universally applicable to all cultures and all people."

"If truth is contingent upon the society in which we live...there is nothing intuitive or universally or absolutely true about freedom from torture or freedom from slavery; our society just happens to have come up with these values over time."

"The reason many are loathe to acknowledge the possibility of absolute truth is not simply because they do not wish to accept the possibility of the existence of an all-powerful, all-knowing deity. It is because they do not want to accept the consequences that follow from the existence of an all-powerful, all-knowing deity as the source of absolute moral truth."

"Christianity tells us we have free will. God has provided man with a choice whether to believe in Him or not. If God's existence were logically inescapable, there would be no free will to choose whether or not to believe in Him."

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