The train morality problem

An open and inclusive investigation into Buddhism and spiritual cultivation

Re: The train morality problem

Postby waterchan » Sun Feb 03, 2013 4:07 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:What would Buddha do?


I don't think this should be a problem for the Buddha of the pali tipitaka. He can see the kamma of others, so he would act accordingly based on the ripening of kamma involved.

It's only a dilemma for the rest of us.

A virtue ethicist would not flip the switch.

A utilitarian or a lay Buddhist would just flip the switch. Having right intention, there is no killing intent present and therefore no unwholesome kamma accumulated. Unless the guy on the other track is an arahant, in which case the lay Buddhist is kammically screwed for a minimum of 1.62×10^12 years.
quidquid Latine dictum sit altum videtur
(Anything in Latin sounds profound.)
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Re: The train morality problem

Postby Sokehi » Sun Feb 03, 2013 11:19 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings,

It starts to get more interesting when you move onto the gun-man who is about to kill 5 people.

You have the means to kill him, and by doing so, save the five.

Or do you not kill him, and let him kill the five.

Arguably, that's a much more difficult choice.

Metta,
Retro. :)


But do you really know that he is going to shoot them? Maybe he stops or not even start doing so at all... :tongue:
Get the wanting out of waiting

What does womanhood matter at all, when the mind is concentrated well, when knowledge flows on steadily as one sees correctly into Dhamma. One to whom it might occur, ‘I am a woman’ or ‘I am a man’ or ‘I’m anything at all’ is fit for Mara to address. – SN 5.2

If they take what's yours, tell yourself that you're making it a gift.
Otherwise there will be no end to the animosity. - Ajahn Fuang Jotiko

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Re: The train morality problem

Postby vesak2014 » Sun Jul 27, 2014 6:03 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:What would you do?

I'd flip the switch and reach the tied person as soon as possible to set him free. Whichever nearest comes first. If the mad philosopher is around, I'd ask him to help me by doing either one. At least you do something other than just watching someone gets killed.

What would Buddha do?

This question doesn't apply to a Buddha. Because he can stop the train, or set the five people free, or flip the switch and set the one person free, anything you can think possible.

:anjali:
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Re: The train morality problem

Postby chownah » Sat Aug 02, 2014 2:45 pm

Perhaps this type of morality problem has gained relevance.

Should your driverless car kill you to save a child's life?

http://phys.org/news/2014-08-driverless ... -life.html
from the link:
"Consider this thought experiment: you are travelling along a single-lane mountain road in an autonomous car that is fast approaching a narrow tunnel. Just before entering the tunnel a child attempts to run across the road but trips in the centre of the lane, effectively blocking the entrance to the tunnel. The car has but two options: hit and kill the child, or swerve into the wall on either side of the tunnel, thus killing you."

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Re: The train morality problem

Postby clw_uk » Sat Aug 02, 2014 4:25 pm

chownah wrote:Perhaps this type of morality problem has gained relevance.

Should your driverless car kill you to save a child's life?

http://phys.org/news/2014-08-driverless ... -life.html
from the link:
"Consider this thought experiment: you are travelling along a single-lane mountain road in an autonomous car that is fast approaching a narrow tunnel. Just before entering the tunnel a child attempts to run across the road but trips in the centre of the lane, effectively blocking the entrance to the tunnel. The car has but two options: hit and kill the child, or swerve into the wall on either side of the tunnel, thus killing you."

chownah




I think my natural reaction would be to hit swerve, seeing the child it would be an automatic response. I dont think hitting the wall would automatically register.
“ Your mind is likewise blocked. But the right road awaits you still. Cast out your doubts, your fears and your desires, let go of grief and of hope as well, for where these rule , then the mind is their subject." Boetius
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Re: The train morality problem

Postby culaavuso » Tue Aug 19, 2014 11:40 pm

chownah wrote:Perhaps this type of morality problem has gained relevance.


Here’s a Terrible Idea: Robot Cars With Adjustable Ethics Settings by Patrick Lin wrote:Whatever the right value is to put on human life isn’t the issue here, and it’d be controversial any which way. In the same survey above, 36 percent of respondents would want a robot car to sacrifice their life to avoid crashing into a child, while 64 percent would want the child to die in order to save their own life. This is to say that we’re nowhere near a consensus on this issue.
...
With robot cars, we’re trying to design for random events that previously had no design, and that takes us into surreal territory. Like Alice’s wonderland, we don’t know which way is up or down, right or wrong. But our technologies are powerful: they give us increasing omniscience and control to bring order to the chaos. When we introduce control to what used to be only instinctive or random—when we put God in the machine—we create new responsibility for ourselves to get it right.
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Re: The train morality problem

Postby alan » Tue Aug 19, 2014 11:56 pm

Here's a good idea: Never read anything by Patrick Lin.
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Re: The train morality problem

Postby Unrul3r » Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:31 am

Here's an article pertaining to the topic: The Trolley Car Dilemma: The Early Buddhist Answer and Resulting Insights by Pandita

:anjali:
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