I read a book called What Should I Do?: Philosophers on the Good, the Bad, and the Puzzling. The book proves that the Catholic Church is a hindrance to real ethics and gets very little right. And it won't change for it is about dogma not truth. It's no wonder scandal results.

Double effect means that the doer cannot be blamed or declared responsible for the bad effects for they were tied to the good he had no choice but to perform.  The Church applies the law of double effect in difficult moral situations. For example, in an ectopic pregnancy it lets the doctor remove the fallopian tube with the embryo inside which will die.  The intention is to save the mother's life.  In double effect the good effect must not come from the bad one.  But it clearly does - the baby is the problem!  It is odd that the baby cannot be directly removed but the tube holding it can even though both will kill it.  And direct killing would be kinder for the embryo!

It is interesting that the book argues that engaging in fantasies say about perverted sex does not mean you will carry them out. It asks the question if repressing the fantasies will make you more likely to carry them out In my opinion, the answer is yes for fantasies give some relief and repressing the fantasies does not. The sickness in the Church is rooted in Jesus who said that to fantasise about a married woman was as bad and sinful as adultery with her. So if you don't repress you are bad and in the context Jesus said you are better off without the eye with which you see things to fantasise about you will for Hell is the result of such sin. Oh the dangers of taking a mere man - never mind a fanatic - as infallible son of God!

Jesus never did any real good works - no fundraising for the poor, no working in soup kitchens and no washing of lepers. No wonder they had to invent tales about him lazily doing magic to cure people. It is shocking in this day and age that people are still being damaged by his arrogance and lies. He was worse than any Catholic Cardinal.

The Church dwells little on justifying its ethical teaching. It tends to just give commands. The time spent on prayers is wasted when it could be used to help people really make a difference in the world. Priests spend hours every week reading the breviary, a book of prayers and readings. The breviary like the Bible gives people no help in forming moral decisions. They just preach. We need the tools to work out what is moral for nothing is simple or straightforward. It is evil to tell somebody they should not commit adultery . What they need to be told is why it's wrong or inadvisable. Christians worship with the rubbish in the breviary and the Bible and they think they feel more virtuous after doing so. That virtue is really too inner. It's selfish. What about applying that virtue to difficult moral situations? Virtue when preferred to developing and promoting the tools of discernment of real morality is really a vice and the more one adores it the more hypocritical one becomes.

If the Devil makes a religion, he will make it give good commandments but the religion will preach them in such a way that there will be little success. The poor obedience among Catholics is shocking. Ponder on that! Satan has to make his religion look good but its poison is insidious.

The Church opposes today's moral permissiveness. Permissiveness might be seen as bad if society does not believe in God or sin. But if it does believe, then it is permissiveness as far as intention goes is worsened. To do wrong while not believing in God is not as bad as doing it while believing in God. That is because the intention to do evil is worsened by intending evil against God as well as against yourself or another.

The Church openly and with great vehemence condemns today's belief that choice matters first and foremost. But the belief is not totally bad.

The Catholic Church does not have a coherent ethic. There are only two kinds of ethics, that which considers only consequences (teleological ethics does not worry much about the quality of an act if it worries at all.  It just concerns itself about the ends, what the act results in) and that which considers the action without regard to the consequences.  Yet the Church has picked what it likes out of both.

Nobody knows if there are any people who really do just care about the rules.  They could be pretending.  If you pretend you are not just about consequences but rules that is a form of consequentialism itself!

It is safe to assume that no matter what ethical systems people create they are forced to be consequentialists.  Instead of freely accepting a beautiful moral code we are forced.  Whatever we have free will for (if!) it is not for any genuine moral purpose.

Should we consider both the act itself and the consequences? Can we do that? But that could mean that apostasy or blasphemy or homosexuality could be right in some circumstances or at least in principle if not practice. But the Church is clear that they are never right and they are forbidden in principle and in practice.

To say an act is wrong in itself means that you can’t do it even if it is for the best. So the two theories cannot be mingled. Nor can you keep hopping from one to the other.

So one ethic considers the consequences and the other doesn’t.

If the first ethic is right then the second is wrong. And vice versa.

The Church says that even a single discreet act of artificial birth control is wrong no matter how much good it results in. Then it allows harmful actions like war so that they may result in good things. Jesus said that divorce was always the sin of causing the wife to commit adultery (meaning that if you give somebody the opportunity to sin you make yourself a sinner – so you must report workers who pretend to be unemployed to gain support from the state) when the Jews asked him about the right grounds for divorce. Yet he told his disciples to flee from the missionary territory if the persecutors turned up. If consequences are irrelevant then it is never right to leave those who need the gospel.

The Law of Moses orders that we are to kill people who leave God for other gods. It doesn’t even hint that this is allowable under certain circumstances. Unmistakeably, it is saying that no matter what the results will be if we obey, we should obey. The doctrine that we are to love God alone which is in the same Law and in the law of the false Christ tells us that we must love God even if it destroys us. The Law says that killing and murdering is a part of what you have to do to love God for you cannot love God unless you keep his commandments. The pious say that this will never happen knowing fine well that it could kill a person who has the wrong belief about what loving God entails. This would be a person who believes the Bible and feels duty bound to slay gays and adulterers. And a person who has some religious neurosis that makes him or her quake with irrational fear at the thought of opening up to God will be destroyed by his faith in the Law. Yet God never mentioned exceptions so there are none. He said that he made all people to love him. Yet, the Law does command certain things for the sake of their consequences such as the people being told to destroy pagan idols and pillars in case they get tempted to adore them. The Church may say that love is the basis of morality but it says that only God can tell us what it is and that is dangerous for most of the people who have got communications from God have been communicating with their imagination.

The reason for denying that consequences should be considered is that we never know what the results will be and if we will be able to control them. This reason proves that any religion that mixes the two ethics is misleading us.

The purpose for the mixing is that consequentialism is required in a sufficient amount to capture the hearts of the people and its opposite for controlling them by convincing them that “sins” like abandoning the faith or neglecting Sunday Mass are never tolerable. It is all about power.

It is funny. Those who detest consequentialism still talk and get concerned about what is likely to happen!

There are three different basic approaches to morality made in the Roman Catholic Church today.

Deontology. This supposes that eight things, life, play, speculative knowledge, the experience of beauty, honesty, religion, friendship and reasonableness that is put into practice are good and that it is evident to us that they are and that if we strive for as many of these as possible we are doing right and that to turn away from one of them for an insufficient reason is immoral. It says that any indirect attack on one of them that is not intended is fine but any direct attack that is intentional attack on one of them is always and everywhere wrong. For example, murder and contraception attack the life one. This philosophy has been adopted by Pope John Paul II in Veritatis Splendor.

At least it implies that if you follow religion and go against your reason to do it you are doing wrong.

The theory has been condemned for not worrying enough about motives but it does for it says you must work for as many of the eight goods as possible and be open to the ones you can’t work for which requires having the right motive. The fact that honesty is one of the goods implies that it is your duty to be what you seem to be and so to have the right motive.

The theory is used to condemn lying and wilful contraception under all circumstances. But it cannot do this at all for one could argue that by lying one is justifying reasonableness and friendship and cannot have the honesty. If you want to be a deontologist you simply have to say that x, y and z are wrong because somebody says so and reason is no help.

Revisionism. Revisionism teaches that an action is right if it heads for the right goal and says one has to do what has the least evil or harm in it which is why it rejects the doctrine that there are actions that are always and everywhere evil. Its supporters believe in abortion when it is the only way to save the mother’s life. Revisionism is incompatible with Roman Catholicism for Roman Catholicism says the ultimate goal is God. What if we are all destined to have eternal happiness without God? There is no need to have God to have a brilliant goal. When God is introduced into revisionism you end up saying that God should be the goal and it is immoral under all circumstances not to make him the goal which is nothing more than the idea that certain things are wrong all the time because somebody says so and not because reason says it. Yet this is the type of philosophy that it seeks to avoid. So when it accepts it how can it be confident that lying and abortion are sometimes right? How can it be confident that we can lie to save a life? It cannot be. It ends up being guesswork and hypocrisy rather than morality.

Virtue ethics. This says that morality is about what we are and not just what we do and what we want to be and how to be it. The kind of person you are shapes what you do. This philosophy does not focus on whether or not abortion is right or wrong but on what the acceptance and practice of abortion say about us. If what they say is bad then abortion should be banned. Motive is very important in this view. It comes dangerously close to saying that if people believe that abortion is good and is a sacrifice to God their growth in virtue by carrying out abortion is acceptable. We need reason to tell us what right and wrong are and it cannot do this for it is best that reason tell us what is right and wrong and then we live according to reason which is virtue.

Only fools adopt Catholicism imagining that it is going to educate them morally. 


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