In this day and age, where merely having an idea is the only necessary “proof” that the idea has rational value, it is easy to confuse the conceptually abstract–that which is solely a product of man’s conceptualizing brain (like, for example, mathematics/laws of nature, or religious “doctrine”)–with what is literal…what is materially actual, what exists, what are the observable, knowable objects of man’s abstractions in the first place (like, for example, HUMAN BEINGS). This presents a huge problem in the form of that age-old bugaboo, moral relativism.
Now, moral relativism isn’t really moral relativism at all…it is more like what should be described as moral equivalency. As my friend, the brilliant metaphysician, John Immel, might say, moral relativism is nothing more than the elimination of objective truth as that which man can either comprehend or pursue. In other words, moral relativism is nothing more than saying there is a full-on moral equivalency between actions which are objectively observed to destroy human life, and actions which are objectively observed to affirm and promote human life. As the great, contemporary neo-Calvinist tyrant Albert Mohler said in his article on Nelson Mandela: “One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter”.
This is true but only if one assumes what I just said: the promotion of human life is not the objective of man’s ideas; the promotion of ideas is the objective of man. In other words, human beings become food for abstract ideas. When this is conceded, it is no big thing to kill another person if it means your particular philosophy gets to rule the world. Indeed, if man’s life is no longer the absolute moral and epistemological standard, then the abstractions MUST be. And if that is the case, man’s life presents an obvious logical affront to the absoluteness of the ideas, and must be sacrificed.
You see, the only way a terrorist can be thought of as a freedom fighter is if we concede that morality has nothing to do with human life. Of course if that is the assumption then there is no such thing as a freedom fighter. All fights become about ideas specifically designed and logically constructed to exclude man from the moral and epistemological and metaphysical/ontological equation. Thus, all fights boil down to FORCE. Whoever kills the most number of the other human beings wins not only the war, but the right to declare his or her abstract ideas/assumptions morally perfect and perfectly true. Thus, morality is directly tied to the DEATH of human beings. Morality is defined solely by violence, by force. The claim that TRUTH and GOODNESS lay outside of man’s individual life is simply claiming that killing human beings is the greatest moral act in the universe. And it is literally nothing more than that.
Believe me, at the end of the day, any proponent of Calvinism–and really, any proponent of any “orthodox” Christianity–must eventually come to this conclusion: terrorists are freedom fighters, always. Terrorists are nothing more than people who will slaughter any and everyone–from children on school buses to marines sleeping in barracks to soldiers on the battlefield–for one reason only: to FORCE other men to their philosophy because man’s greatest obligation is to die in service to the “truth”, which is totally OUTSIDE of man. Since Calvinists concede the same philosophical ideal–that man exists to serve doctrine; that man is perpetually outside of truth–Calvinists, along with any other person who shares the same ideal, must declare a moral equivalency between a terrorist and any other “soldier”. They can no more condemn the terrorist than they can condemn the “god” they serve. For their “god”, like the terrorist, condemns everyone to die, no matter who they are. The only absolution for people comes in the form of conceding that death is not only perfectly acceptable, but is the apogee of moral perfection. Only then can they be “saved”. Buuuuuuuut…since man at his existential root is utterly incapable of making such a moral distinction, by doctrinal/philosophical definition, the decision by “god” or anyone else to murder them for their own good is quite an easy one to make. You see, you cannot ever choose not to die. You are either one who accepts your death as your cosmic moral obligation or you are one who does not. And this ends the relevant distinctions between men. You MUST die…that is the inevitable, MORALLY inexorable outcome of your existence, ironically . Life is not about choice, it is purely about death. The “saved” ones are simply the ones who admit (confess) this “truth”.
In this sense then, there is no such thing as salvation within these philosophies. If anyone who does not concede individual life as the singular source of all moral truth and good, and yet still asserts that it is for your salvation that you must convert, then they are liars of the worst kind. Period. Full stop. Reject them.
The truth with respect to these philosophies is that everyone dies. Everyone.
As an aside, please visit John Immel’s site, http://www.spiritualtyranny.com, and read his latest article. It is positively brilliant, and by that article alone you will gain an understanding of the devious, surreptitious nature of tyrannical ideas, and be significantly prepared to recognize and reject them when they come in sheep’s clothing.
The efficacy and moral integrity of any law of any kind, civil or religious or scientific, must be vetted by an absolute, singularly infinite standard. The standard cannot obviously be the law, itself, for that presents an impossible contradiction of logic and conflict of interest. A law in the rational sense should point to man’s life as the root of all moral GOOD; that is, the standard of morality and TRUTH. With this in mind, the law then becomes wholly unnecessary as a “law”–that is, having in and of itself “authority” (force/punishment)–and it becomes merely a ideal pointing to the standard of TRUTH, which can only objectively be man’s LIFE, or MAN (humanity). Once this is realized, the law is no longer a law at all…for it can possess no power over man. Man realizes that the pursuit of himself, by himself is the singularity of all goodness and truth, and thus, man is neither condemned by nor affirmed and justified by a “law”.
Now, for those who who cry “selfish, oppressive, capitalist pig!!”, let me state the obvious for you, since you seem perpetually incapable grasping it yourself…because you are an intellectual sloth and a categorical affront to reason and humanity. Of course, man cannot deny his “neighbor” and claim to be pursuing himself. It is this rational axiom/truism which prevents man from pursuing his own comfort, peace, and prosperity at the expense of other human beings, which his senses and rational faculties indubitably tell him are equally free agents, possessing the same inherent rights to pursue SELF as he has.
Did I clear that up for you? No? Well, don’t blame me. I trust what I observe. I can make rational distinctions between human beings and ideas. And my ideas include the reality of my human neighbors and thus their implicit right to own their own existence. If you cannot make that distinction, well…I suggest you get the fuck away from whoever you are hanging around with and whatever books they are reading.
The point then is that laws can no longer claim to have any authority over man, period. Laws are solely abstractions…and man’s abstractions have only one rational purpose: to affirm and perpetuate man’s life. Laws can only be guideposts to point man in the direction of himSELF, as the ultimate and singular source of truth and morality. If any law claims to have authority over man as a function of itself, it is an unjust law, unnatural, and irrational. A law either points to man’s individual LIFE as the source of all GOOD and thus should be respected and considered sacred, or the law points to something ELSE as the source of all TRUTH and MORALITY…the “state”, the “collective”, the “poor”, the “government”, the “church”, the “race”, the “culture”, the “natural laws/laws of physics”, the “workers”, the “monarchy”, the “leader”, the “minority”, the “philosophy”, etc., etc.
Notice how in every single example above we are looking at what is not a material reality but are looking at a figment of man’s conceptualizing brain. There is no such actual THING as “workers”, or “race” or “church”, or “poor”, or “government”, or “philosophy”. All of these are merely euphemisms for some group…and a group is what? A collection of individuals. And since individuals are the only thing in the equation which actually, observably, materially exist, then EVERY OTHER IDEA must logically give way to the reality which is before our eyes: man’s individual SELF is the PRIME and singular source of all truth. Any attempt to make man’s illusory abstractions the ruler of man WILL lead to man’s destruction and the wholesale institutionalization of tyranny.
Thus, a law must point to individual man as the source of its authority or it is a false law. And if it points to man as the source if its authority, then the law is no longer “law”, it is merely what? An assumption. The assumption being this: man’s LIFE should be the standard which drives ALL of man’s volitional actions. Justice can thus be objectively defined as: governing and ruling in sole favor of the right of individual human beings to pursue their own existence in service to themselves, not at the expense of others, and not in the interest of others. Any attempt to force men into a morality which excludes the singular SELF (e.g. “morality” proceeding directly from the “masses” or the “state” or the “church”) as the infinite source of moral GOOD and TRUTH is logically indefensible, irrational, and will inevitably lead humankind to its destruction and death. In other words, morality outside of man demands death.
And obviously, any idea which demands death as man’s greatest moral obligation is a rank evil.
3 thoughts on “Authority of Laws, Rationally Explained”
Keep saying it… eventually people will get the point.
I think you are thinking of morality in terms of positive commandments. I only think of morality in terms of negative commandments. When I say morality I mean: Thou shalt not murder. Thou shalt not commit adultery. I never mean anything like giving to the poor, etc. So often people confuse morality with benevolence. Morality is a necessity. Benevolence is just a nice to have. I don’t believe in any obligation to feed the poor, but I do believe in any obligation to not defraud them. Once people try to make morality based on positive commandments (do’s) rather than negative (don’ts) then you have tyranny.
In fact, I would consider anyone who gives indiscriminately to the so-called “the poor” to be immoral. I follow the teaching of Jesus the son of Sirach on this:
1: When thou would do good, first know to whom thou doest it; so shalt thou be thanked for thy benefits.
2: Do good to the godly man, and thou shalt find a recompence; and if not from him, yet from the most High.
3: There can no good come to him that is always occupied in evil, nor to him that giveth no alms.
4: Give to the godly man, and help not the wicked.
5: Do well unto him that is lowly, but give not to the ungodly: hold back thy bread, and give it not unto him, lest he overmaster thee thereby: for [else] thou shalt receive twice as much evil for all the good thou shalt have done unto him.
6: For the most High hateth the wicked, and will repay vengeance unto the ungodly, and keepeth them against the mighty day of their punishment.
7: Give unto the good, and help not the wicked.
Those clamoring against Capitialism want us to give to the wicked, but they want to crush the righteous. The reason our society is a moral swamp is because our government steals our money and uses it to subsidize the income of the wicked giving them the financial means to overmaster us. This must end; it is immoral.