RE: Encouraging a Positive Transcension

From: Mikko Särelä (
Date: Sun Feb 15 2004 - 10:54:18 MST

On Sun, 15 Feb 2004, Ben Goertzel wrote:
> > The reason why I'm saying those two things comes from the fact that I
> > believe that there is at least one great moral system that does fulfill
> > those requirements. Thus if we have a moral system which doesn't fulfill
> > those, then we know, we can do better.
> OK Mikko, I'll bite -- what is the "great moral system" to which you refer?
> ;-)

I did not claim to know this great moral system, I claimed that such
exists and that we can strive to find it. The way to do that is to make
conjenctures and then allow as strong criticism to break them as possible.
If they break, they weren't really good enough and we need to keep
searching. If they don't, we can tentatively adopt them as our theories
(about morality in this case).

I don't find morality to be any different in this regard as any other
sphere of knowledge.

And what comes to my own view of morality, it's not something I can
explain in a short post fully. I also happen to think there's a lot that
needs refining, and alterations, since it is not my dayjob to think of
these things and try to break the conjenctures on the area of morality. If
you want name tags, I might call myself evolutionary anarchocapitalist,
popperian fallibilist, and a rationalist with some altruistic tendencies
among other things. I also have this cautious streak in my brains which I
can't fully explain to myself, but which I still tentatively accept.

In short one might say that I'm currently using a sort of constraint
programming approach (having those primitives what a good solution to a
problem cannot be like helps in most cases). I also believe that solving
problems is the more important part and that the happiness we experience
when we do that is just a nice side effect.

I hope this explains it a bit - I hope you didn't disappoint too much, but
I don't think we can find any one liner which accurately describes a great
moral system.

Mikko Särelä
	Emperor Bonaparte: "Where does God fit into your system?"
	Pièrre Simon Laplace: "Sire, I have no need for that hypothesis."

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