If "Our Creator" endowed us with rights...

Discussion in 'Religion & Philosophy' started by dadoalex, May 10, 2020.

  1. dadoalex

    dadoalex Well-Known Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Messages:
    8,739
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Trophy Points:
    113
    A posting on another thread bought this topic to mind.

    The Declaration speaks to being "endowed" by our "creator" with rights.
    And although the words "God" or "Creator" are never mentioned in the Bill of Rights a great many people speak of rights as being "God-given."

    All of which poses the question.

    If there is no "Creator" or "God" then do any "rights" actually exist or is this construct merely an illusion used to claim a special status when no such status actually exists?
     
    Warm Potato and modernpaladin like this.
  2. dadoalex

    dadoalex Well-Known Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Messages:
    8,739
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I am, at most, agnostic about any "god."

    I have no proof of the existence of any "god" but I also have no proof that "god" does not exist.

    If "god" does not exist and an action is premised on the existence of a "god given right" does the inability to prove the existence of the deity negate the justification for the action and therefore the legality of the action?

    An example:

    Say a person believes there is a "god given right" to take the property of another person without permission and also has the right to take whatever actions are necessary to enforce that right. Assume it is a sincerely held belief.

    This person takes the property of another and in his defense claims that he has this "divine right" and that any interference in his exercising of that right amounts to denying him his First Amendment rights because, after all, this is a sincerely held belief.

    In my mind the person making the claim must prove the validity of that claim. That is, must prove the existence of "God." If you cannot prove the source of the right you cannot claim the right.
     
  3. modernpaladin

    modernpaladin Well-Known Member Donor

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2017
    Messages:
    13,569
    Likes Received:
    9,107
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    At the end of the day, so long as we assume theres no literal 'fist of God' coming down from the sky to smite our oppressors, then our rights are only those activities and protections we're willing to fight to the death to protect. All other activities and protections will eventually be banned by those who seek control over others so long as we let them.

    IMHO, an armed, wary and willing populace is that afforementioned 'fist of God', certainly in the metaphorical sense, but also in the sense that that is how God interacts with the physical realm ever since He implimented a new covenant with man through the 'sacrifice' of Christ- through the actions/effects of His children.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2020
    roorooroo, Greatest I am and ToddWB like this.
  4. Daniel Light

    Daniel Light Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2015
    Messages:
    21,515
    Likes Received:
    17,690
    Trophy Points:
    113
    The only, "God given right," is the right to be eaten or absorbed by some other creature at some point of your life cycle.
     
  5. yardmeat

    yardmeat Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2010
    Messages:
    23,221
    Likes Received:
    7,638
    Trophy Points:
    113
    How can rights be inherent and inalienable if they come from a God who can revoke them at any time, for any reason . . . or for no reason at all? It is also pretty much impossible to find any historical theistic religion compatible with these rights, so I see no reason to credit any of these religions. Anyone vaguely literate in the subject can see, for example, that we didn't get our concept of freedom of religion from the Bible and that the Bible is antithetical to our belief in freedom of religion.

    To answer your OP, it is simple: if rights are inherent and inalienable, then they require no external justification, by definition. If they require external religious justification, then they were never really inherent or inalienable.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2020
  6. Market Junkie

    Market Junkie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2016
    Messages:
    1,883
    Likes Received:
    1,350
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Well, since there's still no credible evidence that a god exists, I'd argue that those flappin' their gums about 'god-given rights' should be placed in a local mental asylum...
     
    JET3534, Moonglow and Greatest I am like this.
  7. rahl

    rahl Banned

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Messages:
    60,108
    Likes Received:
    6,387
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Rights are a philosophical human construct. We decided we want to have certain “rights” and fought wars to make that happen.
     
    ECA, roorooroo and Greatest I am like this.
  8. Distraff

    Distraff Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2011
    Messages:
    9,202
    Likes Received:
    3,257
    Trophy Points:
    113
    There is no evidence that there are objective rights or morals. Nobody has been able to establish this beyond emotional appeal, claiming its true because everybody believes it, circular reasoning, or faith appeals to religion. Additionally if there was a creator, that doesn't make morals or rights objective. His commandments would be subjective just like commands of any other being.

    And lets assume for the moment that there are objective rights or morals. In this case it makes most sense that these rights are universal laws like mathematics and wouldn't require a creator to create them or endow them on anybody. I just don't see how a right can magically appear because a creator commands it and can wave a magic want and endow people with these rights.

    And lastly, even if there is a creator and objective rights that he endowed, then how do we know which religion is true and which rights are endowed? The bible doesn't talk about rights at all. People in the 1700s just made up a list of enlightened ideas and then credited the God of the bible even though the bible doesn't talk about these rights at all. In fact, in Romans 13, the bible expressly forbids people from revolting against their monarchs. The bible has a whole lot of nastly stuff like genocide and slavery too. In Acts, Christians even set up a religious commune where they shared equally which is the opposite of capitalism.

    So here is the rational alternative. There is no evidence of objective right or wrong or rights. However, we all want to have fulfilling happy lives, so we agree to cooperate with each other to get that. So we set up a system of rules to best produce a society we would most like to live in. If you aren't happy with the rules, you can always move somewhere else. Think of the constitution like a business deal or social contract.

    If you have faith in a religion, I can see why you would have faith in creator endowed rights. But it is blind faith and not rational. I'm willing to accept your faith in endowed rights if you accept my rational belief in a social contract.
     
    roorooroo and Greatest I am like this.
  9. dadoalex

    dadoalex Well-Known Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Messages:
    8,739
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Well, first, you're wrong.

    If there is a Creator and that Creator created everything then creating "rights" would most certainly be within that entities capability. If a being can "magically" make existence appear then that same creator would have the power to "magically" change any aspect of that existence.

    But, all of that is off topic. Not discussing the Bible or any "God" or religion. We're examining the validity of claiming a "God given" exists if, in fact, the entity supposedly creating this right doesn't exist.

    For example, if Jehovah created some arbitrary collection of "rights" could Shiva create a set and Odin yet another? Moreover could one use the rights granted by one deity to overrule the rights granted by another?

    My position is that there are no "God" given rights until/unless the one claiming those rights can prove both the existence of God AND that God has acknowledged granting those rights.
     
  10. Distraff

    Distraff Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2011
    Messages:
    9,202
    Likes Received:
    3,257
    Trophy Points:
    113
    How does making our planet somehow mean you can make rape morally right or morally wrong any more than he can make 1 + 1 = 3? Explain in detail the process of how God can magically construct a "right" and then wave his want and "endow" it on a person.

    It is relevant because the people who believe in God created rights in America are all Christian. And the bible doesn't support these constitutional rights at all so it undermines your case. The bible isn't about rights at all and doesn't claim that God made people with these rights.

    If rights are objective and God-given then multiple Gods would be a huge problem and would result in contradicting objective rights. It would be a mess. If rights are subjective, then the rights from each of the Gods are just their opinions becaused on their personal goals viewpoints. I'd follow the God whose rights were most beneficial for us, hoping some other jealous God doesn't then burn down our planet.

    My position is that there is no evidence of God given rights even if we confirm God exists and even if he claims he can make rights.
     
  11. FreshAir

    FreshAir Well-Known Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2012
    Messages:
    92,888
    Likes Received:
    28,484
    Trophy Points:
    113
    they did not know about "evolution" back then, and many of our leaders came from a theocracy, so still had a belief in a God, just did not want Government pushing religion on them

    many back then believe owning a slave was a God given right too, times change
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2020
  12. FatBack

    FatBack Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2018
    Messages:
    11,685
    Likes Received:
    11,028
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    You just described Government.
     
    Greatest I am and ToddWB like this.
  13. dairyair

    dairyair Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2010
    Messages:
    50,416
    Likes Received:
    7,069
    Trophy Points:
    113
    They exist, if the enforcing mechanism allows them. In the case of the USA, there's a document that attempt to list some rights.
    But they have to be enforced or granted otherwise they don't really exist.

    And in the USA, that document does have meaning so it does tend to be followed. But it is a very old document and the world has change immensely since written. So many things are not the same as then.

    But is there some invisible being that means all people have these rights, whatever they may be, not in my opinion.
    For every human on earth doesn't have access to those rights. Even in the USA which has that document, upon founding of the country, blacks didn't have any rights. They were owned human. Women had no rights either. Kinda considered property of their husbands. So any unseen being giving rights didn't even apply to all humans at the founding of the country.

    So, it's hard to say some invisible being has granted rights to all humans on earth.
     
  14. dairyair

    dairyair Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2010
    Messages:
    50,416
    Likes Received:
    7,069
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I always, always say, the true rights anyone has is might.
    Might makes right. When push comes to shove. When crap hits the fan. It's likely every person for themselves on rights.

    But in civil world, rights are stated by society and they use an enforcement mechanism, gov't typically, to grant and enforce those rights.
     
    Greatest I am likes this.
  15. modernpaladin

    modernpaladin Well-Known Member Donor

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2017
    Messages:
    13,569
    Likes Received:
    9,107
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    True.

    But when a majority decides to oppress a minority, the minority needs to be able to exersize might in resistance. In a free society, anyway.

    Thus the 2A.

    Theres nothing 'civil' imo about oppression, even when it has a majority mandate.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2020
    dairyair and ToddWB like this.
  16. squidward

    squidward Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2009
    Messages:
    35,889
    Likes Received:
    8,760
    Trophy Points:
    113
    our constitution describes powers granted to government not rights granted to citizens.
     
  17. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    May 15, 2017
    Messages:
    14,617
    Likes Received:
    4,294
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Religious people have been pointing out this philosophical issue for a long time.

    It's also why state ideologies of "moral relativism" so often give way to higher rates of corruption or human rights abuses. Or in the case of stable progressive democracies in Europe, a very different understanding of what human rights and individual liberties are and should be, in several ways.

    After the second world war, and all the chaos and violence it brought, the going sentiment in Europe was kind of horrified at what happened and was looking for some system of morality or values in place to prevent that from ever happening again. But they had abandoned Christianity (which they probably felt had not saved them) and were mostly looking for some new system to put in place. So you had the modern glorification of "human rights" (within the context of Humanism).
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2020
    ToddWB likes this.
  18. Swensson

    Swensson Devil's advocate

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2009
    Messages:
    7,393
    Likes Received:
    668
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Humanism (as in secular humanism, not to be confused with Renaissance humanism or a number of other ideas with similar names) suggests that our humanity endows us with moral worth (which in turn can give rise to rights). It is not the easiest concept to wrap your head around, but it has one leg up on religiously justified rights, they are not limited to certain religions.

    There is a risk that someone like Stalin loses their belief in god, but still maintains the religiously based belief that rights need to come from God, leaving them with the impression that no rights could have been endowed. The underpinnings of secular humanism would however remain even if you picked up a religion or change religions (and would arguably serve you well even under a different world view).

    Religious rights as often portrayed as stronger than humanist rights (universal etc., for instance some refer to the religious kind as "Real"), and some religious people reject humanist rights because they're not strong enough. However, if we consider a world in which the existence of god is false or not justified, the humanist rights are as strong as rights come, and only become weak when compared to something that doesn't exist. It seems strange to say that something is not "Real" enough when compared to something which arguably doesn't exist.
     
  19. dadoalex

    dadoalex Well-Known Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Messages:
    8,739
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Of course "god given" rights don't exist.

    Whether or not you believe in any deity I know of no religion where any set of "rights" are set out and detailed. "Rights" are a creation of people and people create those rights to serve their purposes not to serve any "god."

    Even the "right to life" is a fallacy. We live in a world where death is a part of life. We kill in order to live. Unless you're a plant you must kill to survive. If there was a "god" given "right to life" then would it not logically follow that no one would ever die? EVER? Not from any cause. Because for life to end, in any circumstance, would violate "god's" law.

    Claiming a right is "god given" nothing more than an attempt to claim a non-existent moral high ground.
     
    Greatest I am likes this.
  20. squidward

    squidward Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2009
    Messages:
    35,889
    Likes Received:
    8,760
    Trophy Points:
    113
    So you don't believe you have the right to healthcare?
     
  21. dadoalex

    dadoalex Well-Known Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Messages:
    8,739
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Yes I do.

    But not because some deity deigned it so. Not because I claimed some deity has so ordered. WE all, yes even you, have a right to quality healthcare because we are humans.

    Do you believe in a "god given right" to own a firearm?
    Do you believe the right to vote is "god given?"
    How about the right to own property?
    The right to do with your property as you choose?

    What book of the Bible clarifies these rights?

    Try not to be cute.
    You're not up to it.
     
  22. squidward

    squidward Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2009
    Messages:
    35,889
    Likes Received:
    8,760
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Endowed by your creator means you are born with them. Nobody has to give them to you. It has nothing to do with belief in God.
    Could your argument get any more silly?
     
  23. dadoalex

    dadoalex Well-Known Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Messages:
    8,739
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Absent a "creator"...

    Try following the premise. Failing to do so makes you look, well, like you.
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2020
    Greatest I am likes this.
  24. HonestJoe

    HonestJoe Well-Known Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2010
    Messages:
    12,268
    Likes Received:
    2,482
    Trophy Points:
    113
    If there is a God, would those rights really exist since that God could choose to remove them just as easily as they were granted? Do rights really exist at all since, regardless of what rights you talk about or what authority defines them, all it takes to remove them is someone willing and able to physically prevent you from embodying them.
     
    Greatest I am likes this.
  25. squidward

    squidward Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2009
    Messages:
    35,889
    Likes Received:
    8,760
    Trophy Points:
    113
    If you wish.
    Changes nothing.

    Your premise is is a false premise, as endowed by your creator means none of the folly you put forth in your premise
     

Share This Page