I am working through morality particularly pertaining to a naturalistic framework. I am trying to place myself in the atheist’s shoes and trying to understand how they would reason for an action to be called moral and immoral.
A theist can say that God has endowed human beings with intrinsic worth and therefore any action which violates that intrinsic worth is deemed immoral - I get this and the strong explanatory power which it offers.
Suppose the atheist reasons as follows: “I don’t like it when I experience pain, and therefore I am not going to inflict pain on other people,” or “Any sane person doesn’t want to be murdered, therefore I am not going to murder.”
Now I am trying to clearly understand why this doesn’t form a viable way to develop a moral framework.
- Pain is universal so can’t we then reason that we should act in a manner which avoids inflicting pain on others?
- I guess essentially it is taking the Golden Rule and applying it to moral reasoning.
Why is this approach still not sufficient when it comes to moral reasoning?
I look forward to someone helping me further understand this problem and bring more clarity. Thank you.