Moral utan en gud

Är allt tillåtet om det inte finns någon gud? Ivan Karamazov framförde en snarlik hypotes i Dostojevskijs Bröderna Karamzov. Men som Peter Singer och Marc Hauser påpekar i ”Godless Morality” tycks det finnas universella moraliska intuitioner som inte har med religion att göra. Däremot är de förenliga med en naturalistisk förståelse av moralens ursprung:

These studies provide empirical support for the idea that, like other psychological faculties of the mind, including language and mathematics, we are endowed with a moral faculty that guides our intuitive judgments of right and wrong. These intuitions reflect the outcome of millions of years in which our ancestors have lived as social mammals, and are part of our common inheritance.

Det finns också en bok som på ett bra sätt tar itu med missuppfattningen att moral förutsätter religion: Value and Virtue in a Godless Universe av filosofen Erik Wielenberg (Cambridge University Press, 2005). Bokbeskrivning:

Suppose there is no God. This might imply that human life is meaningless, that there are no moral obligations and hence people can do whatever they want, and that the notions of virtue and vice and good and evil have no place. Erik J. Wielenberg believes this view to be mistaken and in this book he explains why. He argues that even if God does not exist, human life can have meaning, we do have moral obligations, and virtue is possible. Naturally, the author sees virtue in a Godless universe as different from virtue in a Christian universe, and he develops naturalistic accounts of humility, charity, and hope. The moral landscape in a Godless universe is different from the moral landscape in a Christian universe, but it does indeed exist. Value and Virtue in a Godless Universe is a tour of some of the central landmarks of this under-explored territory.