The Problem of What Is Good

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Navigating Without God

stock-vector-a-vector-illustratioof-cartoon-manToday’s western world is familiar enough with extreme Epicureanism. If the world is a random cosmic accident, why should anything be thought ‘evil’ or ‘wrong’ in the first place? Would not all such categories collapse into the projection of our emotions (‘theft is wrong’ would simply mean ‘I don’t like theft’)? And is not that reduction to emotivism, in fact, what has happened in the post-Epicurean world of modern western morality? Get rid of ‘god’, and you no longer have a ‘problem of evil’. All you have is unwelcome ‘attitudes’ or ‘prejudices’. Not that people can easily live like that. They quickly invent new ‘moralities’ around the one or two fixed points that appear to transcend that subjective, emotive analysis: the badness of Adolf Hitler, the goodness of ecological activism, the importance of ‘embracing the Other’, and so on. Better than nothing, perhaps; but people who try to sail the moral seas with that equipment look suspiciously like a handful of survivors clinging to a broken spar as the ship goes down and the sharks close in.

–N.T. Wright,
The Faithfulness of God

No culture has survived moral relativism

Peter-KreeftMoral relativism is the “politically correct” orthodoxy of our moldy culture. In the minds of the mind-molders, nothing is worse than “intolerance,” and moral absolutism is intolerant. Thus the popularity of sayings like “Don’t impose your values on me,” “Different strokes for different folks,” and “Live and let live.”

No culture in history has ever embraced moral relativism and survived. Our own culture, therefore, will either (1) be the first, and disprove history’s clearest lesson, or (2) persist in its relativism and die, or (3) repent of its relativism and live. There is no other option.

–Peter Kreeft