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Snooder
2007-04-01, 01:06 PM
I would point out to everyone that an Oath that demands truthfulness in all things can, as pointed out by someone above, endanger the lives of innocents, and consequently is by definition not a Good code, so must not be part of a Paladin's code which is both Lawful and Good.


However it IS very much part of being lawful and as you state Paladins are lawful as well as good.

God it would be so much better if Paladins were NG.

Kreistor
2007-04-01, 01:07 PM
I can't go to a club, i don't have a car. The choice is moot.
My friends calls me and says "Want to come over at 8 PM"
I say "Sure, but you will have to give me a ride"
Later, it turns out his car's battery ran out. I did not go out. But i didn't make any choice, i simple am not going. My action is not
"Not going out with friend because car is broken"
My action is "Arenging a different time to go"

Tack on a reason to go, and it becomes binary. "Want to go to the Stone's concert tonight? Last show of this tour." And then follow that with the same sequence of events. Now your action was, "Not going to the Stones' concert." Arranging another time can't happen, because the Stones are now off tour.

Stiil ,even without the Stones involvement, you stil had the same outcome for tonight's purposes when your GF calls. "What did you do Friday night?" "Stayed in." Regardless of why you stayed in, to your girlfriend, your activities were non-unique despite the causes.

That's why choices and options are different when it comes to Dilemmas. You can have an infinite number of choices, but the Dilemmas resolve to only a coupleresults, thus making most of those choices irrelevant. The dilemma doesn't care if you do a rain dance in response to the child-demon summoning, since dancing for rain does not affect the outcome of the dilemma.

Kreistor
2007-04-01, 01:12 PM
However it IS very much part of being lawful and as you state Paladins are lawful as well as good.

But just breaking one's code does not cause a paladin to Fall. You need to "grossly violate the code of conduct". But also note that the code of condut is written in the paladin's class description: it is not changable unless teh DM changes it.


Code of Conduct: A paladin must be of lawful good alignment and loses all class abilities if she ever willingly commits an evil act.
Additionally, a paladin’s code requires that she respect legitimate authority, act with honor (not lying, not cheating, not using poison, and so forth), help those in need (provided they do not use the help for evil or chaotic ends), and punish those who harm or threaten innocents.

Lying falls under the subsection "act with honor". If lying causes dishonor, then it is allowed to lie and retain honor. I would certainly maintain that telling an evil person the location of his good-aligned enemies is dishonorable (it's called being a traitor), and so the paladin can clearly lie in this case in as severe a way as he wishes. It's not a gross violation of the section of the code that lying falls under.

Slokkva
2007-04-01, 01:16 PM
Kreistor,

You aren't presenting a third option at all...I already said the choice to drink juice milk or water is NOT a binary situation. You have many choice such as the one you presented " drink all three at once"

I simply stated that the binary choice is there when you decide to either drink it or do not drink it....whether it be milk, juice, all three, or horsesh** and honey mixed together.

Kreistor
2007-04-01, 01:22 PM
You aren't presenting a third option at all...I already said the choice to drink juice milk or water is NOT a binary situation. You have many choice such as the one you presented " drink all three at once"

I simply stated that the binary choice is there when you decide to either drink it or do not drink it....whether it be milk, juice, all three, or horsesh** and honey mixed together.

I know. I wasn't trying to argue against you... I was trying to demonstrate the "third option" concept to some people that don't get the idea that a choice that results in the same outcome as another choice is not a different option.

Slokkva
2007-04-01, 01:42 PM
Ok I see what you are saying..I'll agree to that

Slokkva
2007-04-01, 01:54 PM
I think the point people are missing is the fact what they are considering "options" are actually "actions".

I'll give a couple examples to prove my point.
It looks something like this.... action = option = decision = action

action = a glass with a liquid content is placed in front of you
option = this is where you look at the options given to you, in this case you have 2 options A. drink or B. do not drink
decision 1= yes I choose to drink it
action variable 1 = you drink some of it, throw the rest away
action varabile 2 = you drink all of it
action variable 3 = you drink some of it and give the rest to your friend

decision 2= no I choose not to drink it
action variable 4 = you do not drink it and leave it sit there
action variable 5 = you do not drink it and throw the glass against the wall
action variable 6 = you do not drink it and give it to your friend

Actions aren't the same thing as options. Options are what you have to base a decision on.
Actions are the result of the decision you made based on the options given to you.

Bouldering Jove
2007-04-01, 02:43 PM
No, I've just quoted the exact same passages - I've just done a better job comprehending them.
Elaborate leaps of personal interpretation are not comprehension of the rules as written.


Wrong. A single Evil act is sufficient to disbar a paladin from his status. It can be a fairly insignificant act and still induce a Fall. Insignificant violations of Law, by contrast, do not - by the RAW.
That is true, and does not contradict in the slightest with what I said. Nothing stops a paladin from caring more about honor and their lawfulness than the general good until they violate the code of conduct.


The real problem here is that you want the ethical principles to be spelled out explicitly like the game mechanics. The problem is that ethics is too complex a subject to be summed up explicitly in the PHB or DMG, so instead we're given principles and expected to derive the concepts from them.
Alignment is a game mechanic. The paladin code of conduct is a game mechanic. If they were just flavor text, they wouldn't have been included in the SRD. No, we're not expected to "derive the concepts" from the SRD, if by deriving the concepts you mean inferring elaborate chains of reasoning on flimsy grounds and then using that to directly contradict what's actually explicit in the text. The concepts are spelled out with a general level of detail, and individual playing groups are expected to interpret them and play as they wish; from rule zero alone, every group will manage paladins differently. Personal play style is never wrong in the context of your own satisfaction. In the context of a discussion of RAW, derivative concepts are irrelevant next to the relevant text. Period. Anything else is substituting your opinions for the rules.


And when their personal integrity and honor required an Evil act to maintain? That would happen, sooner or later - it's a statistical inevitability. It also features quite heavily in some cultures' narrative traditions about heroism: some hero swears never to eat dog meat AND never to refuse hospitality, for example, and then he comes across someone cooking dog meat who offers him some as a guest. Said hero is then screwed, and usually dies horribly.
No, it's not a statistical inevitability. First and most importantly, the ethical conflicts a paladin faces are up to the DM of a particular game. Plenty of DMs will never put paladins in positions where they can't act in a way that's both good and lawful. Second, even assuming a DM inclined to test their players' characters' character, one of the delightful features of tabletop gaming is that there are often unforeseen solutions to the problems presented. Most of the "kill the baby or the demon destroys the city" type hypotheticals are so far removed from actual play experience that they're not worth entertaining. A player thinking well and in-character is going to be able to come up with situational responses that are both lawful and good. Finally, it's really just not that hard to avoid evil acts. It'll often involve taking the harder road and making some personal sacrifice, but that's half the point of the paladin in the first place.


If a paladin finds that an oath he's made would require an act of Evil, then he breaks his oath - because he cannot be true both to Law and Good, and he must choose Good. This isn't a very good outcome, and would probably require the paladin to make some kind of act of atonement or sacrifice, even if only to reputation, but it's tough being a paladin. Keeping one's word inviolate, but committing Evil? That's a fallen paladin - and one that would have a hard time entering his god's good graces again, depending partly on the severity of the Evil.
Or the paladin could find a way to satisfy the oath through non-evil means. Or the paladin could conference with the person he made the oath with. Or we could realize that a paladin who values personal honor and reliability highly is not going to be such a complete idiot as to casually enter into an oath without very carefully considering the possible consequences. And this is all assuming that the paladin doesn't rank their paladin code of conduct as a supreme oath, or that any oath that requires evil acts is the equivalent of illegitimate authority.


Precisely. Paladins (if they're doing things correctly) will not be tempted by personal gain or benefit - they will take serious losses of resources and status rather than lie. They will not sacrifice innocents or otherwise cause them to suffer rather than lie. And that is the absolute standard.
A magnificent example of assigning the meanings that you want onto the text, regardless of whether they're supported. Tempted means tempted. Personal gain or benefit doesn't have to be the temptation. A neutral good character makes absolutely no sense by your confined definition of temptation, because their alignment would then mean that they can be regularly "tempted" into lying and deception to serve their personal interests, which is rather more selfish than good. In fact, your confined definition would make a neutral good character less "good" on the alignment axis than lawful good and chaotic good, which violates the entire purpose of the two-axis system.

Of course, the SRD says this about neutral good: "A neutral good character does the best that a good person can do. He is devoted to helping others. He works with kings and magistrates but does not feel beholden to them." Yet this neutral good character, by virtue of being neutral with respect to order, "is honest but can be tempted into lying or deceiving others." So, are neutral goods more selfish than the other good alignments, despite being "devoted to helping others"? Or is your use of "tempted" to mean only selfish gain simply ridiculous?


No, Neutral Good alignments don't concern themselves with Law or Chaos - they have no preferences along that axis. Paladins DO. This is a very basic aspect of the alignment system which you have totally failed to understand.
You've constructed a rationale by which your non-SRD paladin concept feels they can disregard the "act with honor" portion of their code of conduct whenever the situation calls for it. It seems like you've totally failed to understand that that just about meets the exact definition of neutral good as provided by the SRD.


If it's not a gross violation, then it is acceptable, according to the RAW. "Unacceptable" means the paladin's god rejects the action, and that involves the partial or complete loss of powers. What constitutes a "gross" violation is left up to the DM to derive - which is of course problematic if said DM has totally failed to understand the nature of alignment in general and the Paladin code specifically.
...
Objective, or subjective? Make up your mind. The simple fact is that no being is perfectly aligned along any of the axes. Paladins can have weaknesses; they can fail in their attempts; they can make mistakes; they can violate certain principles. What they cannot do is Evil, not if they are to remain paladins.
"Gross" is subjective and in the hands of the DM, as I've said from the first time I mentioned it. The definition will vary from game to game. This is almost certainly intentional. Yet the fact remains that having a mindset which is neutral good rather than lawful will cause the loss of powers, and of course, "gross" can certainly include such things as repeated violations.

Also, stop invoking deities; a paladin isn't required to have one. They can lose their powers with or without divine intervention.


Half-truths and lies by omission are deceptions. What matters is why the paladin is being deceptive. Trivial and banal reasons are going to annoy the god very quickly. Deceptions to save the lives of innocents? Not so much.
No. Nowhere in the code of conduct does it say that the reasons for the violations are a factor.


Congratulations. You've just made it clear that you will not tolerate paladins in your games, because no entity is ever "fully" Lawful or Good.
I was stating positions that a DM could take, not ones that I enforce, and you're wrong besides. A character in a D&D game can certainly act in a manner that always satisfies the descriptions of "lawful" and "good" alignment.


If that were actually the case, they wouldn't have needed to specify 'gross' violations of the code. Knowingly causing or permitting harm to innocents in order to preserve the purity of one's word and reputation is Evil. Paladins cannot do Evil things, remember? It causes instant loss of paladinhood. Deceiving or lying in order to prevent that harm is acceptable - by the RAW.
Actually, no. You can violate the code in a way that is still both lawful and good: for example, violating one part of the code in some way to uphold another part of it. Also, neglecting harm being done to innocents is not evil, it's neutral by the SRD: "People who are neutral with respect to good and evil have compunctions against killing the innocent but lack the commitment to make sacrifices to protect or help others."

Kiok
2007-04-01, 03:10 PM
In the fallen blackguards thread, a debate similar to this appeared and ended as...depending upon the motive and how evil the act was, along with the DM, will all be factors to decide if a paladin becomes fallen.

Caledonian
2007-04-01, 03:41 PM
That is true, and does not contradict in the slightest with what I said. Nothing stops a paladin from caring more about honor and their lawfulness than the general good until they violate the code of conduct.

No, until they violate the code of conduct or perform an Evil act. Your reasoning stops in the middle and doesn't continue to reach the full conclusion.


Alignment is a game mechanic. Determining whether actions fit an alignment is not part of the game mechanics. That determines which alignments characters care categorized within.


Actually, no. You can violate the code in a way that is still both lawful and good: for example, violating one part of the code in some way to uphold another part of it.

Right-o, breaking the code in order to keep it. That's Lawful, all right.

Bouldering Jove
2007-04-01, 05:39 PM
No, until they violate the code of conduct or perform an Evil act. Your reasoning stops in the middle and doesn't continue to reach the full conclusion.

Code of Conduct
A paladin must be of lawful good alignment and loses all class abilities if she ever willingly commits an evil act.

Additionally, a paladin’s code requires that she respect legitimate authority, act with honor (not lying, not cheating, not using poison, and so forth), help those in need (provided they do not use the help for evil or chaotic ends), and punish those who harm or threaten innocents.
The stipulation against performing evil acts is part of the code of conduct. Would you mind reading the text in question before telling me I'm getting it wrong?


Determining whether actions fit an alignment is not part of the game mechanics. That determines which alignments characters care categorized within.
Yet it's the game rules that provide the alignment system and the entire framework for judging how character attitudes and actions fit into it. You can claim that that act of judgment is not technically a part of game mechanics, but it's meaningless sophistry. The D&D alignment system might be a crude simulation of ethics in conception and intent, but its practice has nothing to do with conventional ethical principles or moral arguments. The only thing that matters in adjudicating alignment by RAW is the RAW. In your own games you can houserule it as you wish (I certainly do), but you are talking about houserules.

Which brings us back to my original point: your (effectively neutral good) paladin concept is fine for your own games, but it's not how the SRD paladin works.


Right-o, breaking the code in order to keep it. That's Lawful, all right.
Certainly a paladin who bends and violates one part of their code to satisfy other parts of it can be acting in a lawful manner. If they were doing it for selfish reasons or because of a passion for a cause, that would be unlawful. But if they were doing it because their obligation compels them to satisfy the greatest part of their code, when satisfying all of it is not feasible in a situation, that's quite lawful.

This is totally a sidepoint, but it's an interesting train of thought, so I'll provide an example: Sir Robert of Smithe is a paladin currently serving a lord in a somewhat wartorn region. He's just arrived with his companions at a previously peaceful border town which has been ransacked, and he can see the raiding party galloping off towards their side of the border. The regional lord has issued an order to him that he not pursue any raiders across the border, for fear of provoking a larger conflict. Robert's code compels him to punish those who harm or threaten innocents, so he clearly stands in violation of it if he doesn't make some effort against the interlopers. Yet instead, he chooses to respect the lord's order and offer what healing and help he can in the ravaged town. Robert is violating his code, but he's still acting in a lawful manner. Rather than follow his personal desire to smite the hell out of the raiders, Robert serves a larger part of his code by respecting legitimate authority (obeying the lord's order) and helping those in need (providing aid to the town).

pjackson
2007-04-01, 06:18 PM
What I deny is that anyone except me can cause myself to do evil.


I also believe that.



Because an evil man cannot cause me to do evil, a situation created by an evil man must have a non-evil solution.


I wuld say it would have a solution in which I would not have to choose to do evil.



I do not believe in anything being inherently evil -- not killing children, not War, not anything. Period. That has to do with a certain religious background, and we're not going there, so you can't ever convince me otherwise. Don't bother.


But do you accept that in the non-real world of D&D in which Paladins exist there are things which are inherently evil?
Things which Detect Evil will work on for example.
When discussing the situation described I have not talking about real world morality, but the fantasy world moraility of standard D&D and the Paladins code. The fantasy morality where killing some intelligent beings is not evil because they are members of an inherently evil species.



You see, my soul is not in danger from the Paladin's Dilemma. Evil cannot force me to be evil, no matter what situation i find myself in and what options I can think of to get out of it. I guess I'm a happier person than those of you that believe otherwise.


Evil can not force you to do evil, but you may not be able to find the good soultion.



Because what this comes down to is your own soul. If you believe that a situation with only two options, both of which are evil, causes you to do evil, then you're the ones that are going to do evil, not me. You give evil power over you by thinking that you're in a no-win situation. I deny the no-win can exist in the first place by returning to the fundamentals of what is good and what is evil. But then, that goes to religious background and we're not going there.


I too deny that a no-win situation can exists in the real world, or in a world where the D&D definitions of Good holds and the Paladins code works.



Okay, you must have missed it. I have stated before that i do not place Paladins in these situations intentionally, and if they get there accidentally, then I ensure that their players understand my view on this subject.


The is no way in which the situation described with the Paladin having no doubt about the truth of the situation could arrive accidentally.

Caledonian
2007-04-01, 06:29 PM
Which brings us back to my original point: your (effectively neutral good) paladin concept is fine for your own games, but it's not how the SRD paladin works.

That's not what Neutral Good is. And that IS how the SRD paladin works. But I don't anticipate this discussion being fruitful any time in the forseeable future, so I'm dropping out of it.

EvilElitest
2007-04-01, 09:40 PM
The forum has a ban on politics, but if it didn't, I could respond very sarcastically and amusingly to this. Just, laugh when you read this message as though a funny, snappy comment had been here.

Good for you. Vauge threats. Hope you feel good


Wait. Where did we logically jump to the idea that somebody needs to be afraid to lose a war? Often, it's the opposite; it was specifically because of their total lack of fear for Chinngis Qan's military might that Persia lost to him.
People do dumb things when they are afraid. Mr. Bin Ladin doesn't need us to lose a war, he just needs us to go to war. PM me for details.


Actually, he has called everyone in the western hemisphere a devil worshipper in the past.
But that is not the reason he promotes attacking us. It has to do with the reasons i mentioned above, and because the US has troops near Mecca.


Every reason is logical, depending on what premise you start from. Your understanding of the actual way logic works is very poor, for someone who mentions it so often.
"You understand logic very poor" forgive me if i find this foolish. So I disagree with you and instead of countering you simple make a vauge notion of me not understanding logic? Ok then, i hope you have fun with that.


Individually, or as a group? You're saying that his life is equal in value to that everyone on the plane put together?
I don't belive the value of lives can be measured by numbers or value.


If you choose not to kill the child, what's the difference? You're forcing your views on millions of people based not upon the LG, but your, personal views by not killing the child. You're profit just as much either way. Either way, you are taking your opinion of the LG morality and enforcing it at the cost of lives.
No, me killing the child proves that i value my code more than innocent lives, as i think i can enforce it at the cost of his life, hence ruining the point of good. If i try to find another way, i am not profiting from anything, as i am not the one taking anyone lives. Gaining profit from other's deaths is evil, as i am not killing anyone i am not doing evil. And you can't say i am killing the millions of innocent people, because that is the demon, not me.


The situation is quite specific; this is what you may do. You may do nothing else.

1. It is vauge because i don't have any other options
2. Such a situation is impossible by difinition because their are no such things as binary choices


He will in ten seconds. This is why I brought up the Adam and Brian debate below.
He has done nothing to anyone else as a baby. If the demon takes over his body, then he is no longer the baby but the demon. Killing the demon is not problem.


A mistake constitutes evil? So if a paladin is riding on his horse, a man trips and falls in the way of the horse, and the paladin is unable to stop in time and tramples the man to death, he loses his paladin status? That's a little ridiculous.
No, because those are to different mistake situations. The paladin has not control of the situation you mentioned, the group in the EE temple does. If then found such a situation again, and did the same thing, then yes they would be evil.


No, because no-matter what you do, there are only two choices in some situations.
And that is the most great example of railroading, only two choices. In real life, their are never only to choices, as in any remotly realisitic D&D game. As Stephen E says, it is a con.
I've already countered the lobster argument, so your nitpicks aren't worth replying to. I'll only reply to this one

This is a logical fallacy; you can write while you eat lobster. The two actions must be inherently opposed. Thing of it, rather than "something" as the mathematical variable X. You may "Do X" or "Not do X." Throughout any equation, X will have a constant value. All the Xs will equal the same number. Similarly, the action which you either do or do not do is the same action. You cannot have two different options.
But i am not eating the lobster while writing. I am writing. My action is not "Not eating lobster" becasuse if we look at it that way, then my current actions could be "Not living in Iran" or "Not eating chicken". My action is writing. If i eat the lobster and write, then i am making the choice to eat the lobster and i am also writing. So the action would be "Writing while eating lobster" while by your definition i could be "Not eating pizza" at the same time

Not really. Read the actual alignment descriptions, they're pretty vague. Because neither choice allows one to protect all innocent lives, you must consider, by D&D standards, which choice is more good. Or, rather, consider if the choice in D&D that will definitely make you fall (killing a baby) is the more or less moral choice. Is it the right thing for a paladin to do, even if the rules of his code say it's not? Should he or should he not abandon his paladin's code for the sake of the entire world?
1. The aligment, while not as clear as i could want, are pretty clear. Unless you follow a different set of rules, then what fits what aligment is pretty easy if you judge by actions.
2. The actions of killing the baby is not LG
It is not lawful because you are breaking the code
It is not good because you are killling an innocent

Still, if you do not kill the baby, it will suffer a much, much worse fate than if you had
But if i find a new way, then it will not suffer at all

They are doing no such thing. They happen to have their knife out and at the level of the victim's throat. Until the blade connects with flesh, they haven't attacked yet.
no, just no. THe act of drawing a weapon in a peaceful setting, unwarented is an attack. A guy who shoots a gun at me but misses is still attacking. The guy across from the room who draws his sword and charges is still attacking. The army charging down the hill is attacking.

In the given situation, you can't block or take the hit, and poor Adam is for frail a single hit will kill him.
Why? Because the DM will not allow it? Because if i can move in front of the blade and stab him, i could just tackle one or the other, take the hit or parry it. A moral question is not a moral at all if you play god.

He hasn't attempted to murder anyone. He's taken out a knife.
No, he drew a knife and held it above Brian's throat.
Both of those actions are attacking. Not killing but attacking

It is stated in the situation that there is no reason for the murder and you, as the paladin, both know that the murder is going to happen and it has no basis. Also, Adam is too frail to survive any hit.
But i as the paladin don't know that their is not reason. And what stops me from knocking out the attacker? If he is unbeliveable frail, then i can easly disarm him and hold him down

The title says "Paladins and Morality" not "When do paladins fall." It's about the morality of the paladin class, not the occasions under which they fall. If they fall in a certain occasion, did they still make the moral choice, despite falling?
1. The act of falling shows that hte paladin is morally wrong by LG terms
2. You can't measure the action on terms of absolute morals, because their are none. Good is not better than evil and visa versa. You can only judge it by the aligment the person belongs to. If the paladin was CE then yes he would be morally right by his aligment if he did not want to work for the demon.


I'm going to say it one more time, and one more time only. In the code THIS PALADIN IS USING he must obey all laws.
Good for him. But apperenlty this paladin is using a different code than the one presented in the class, where you don't have to obey every law. If this guy wants to, it is his personal choice, and if this is a homebrew code then it is irrelevant because we are not arguing your homebrew.


Okay, I'll go down to a more concrete level of thought, here, sicne you are evidently wholly unable to comprehend anything above "rules" we will say that this paladin is using a variant code, identical to the RAW doe other than that it dictates he must follow every law he comes across. Okay?
1. Then it is a homebrew and so is not relevant to the paladin we are agruing
2. It would be impossible for a paladin to pull that off as their are to many corrupt laws. LN sounds more like it or LE
3. If a paladin had to follow every law, then i would say he will have a hard life
4. My not comperehending the rules is expected, because we are on a gaming thread. If you want to agrue paladins in your own homebrew world, start a new thread or PM me. But you can't insult me for refering to the rules of the class we are talking about. It is like if i say "Can a paladin kill for no reason" and when you say no I say "Oh, I am talking about a paladin dedicated to CE"


Whether you're a good person or not, it's not always your choice how many options you get.
But their are no such thing as binary choices



We're not arguing real life morality, we're arguing the morality of a paladin. Without taking rules into account, which choice is more moral for a Paladin, relating to his code, literally, and the more nebulous ideals for which he is supposed to stand.
What the paladin is surrpose to stand for is LG in its truest form, aka his code.



Okay. You have a choice of kiling the baby or not killing the baby. Which What is "neither."
Find an better way to stop the demom. My action is "Stopping demon in non evil way" not "Not killing baby.


That isn't there. That qualifies as "not killing the baby" and the world is plunged into demon-rules darkness.
1. What if it was their?
2. I then fight to the death against the demon. I die knowing that i followed my code all my life


Hey edit you post, you made a mistake with your quotes


Because until he gets that sacrifice, he won't have the power to kill gods.
Ok, sense he does not have those powers yet why don't all the gods in teh world just use their godly powers to just make the magic of the rituel not work?

Relying on their paladin to slay the child when they cannot, preventing the demon from gaining the power to defeat everything in existance.
Why can't they? They are gods after all

Because he knows the demon is too powerful to defeat after he has been spawned. You are sent, in secrecy, to kill him before he is allowed to enter our world.
No, why don't they just send all of their guys to stop the ritual. Everyone. Now i will have a priest to cast potection from evil.

The demon cannot be stopped once he has been born into our world. The only way to stop him from coming into our world is to kill the baby. You don't need an army to kill an infant. You need one devoted paladin with the willpower to save the world. Your god decided you were that paladin. Are you?
1. Why don't all of the massive amounts of god's minions show up right not and stop the ritual
2. If i kill the innocent, then i am not that paladin as i would lost my powers.

Okay, let's say the magic of the demon's entry dictates that it must be a mortal who slays the child. Protection from evil will not work, the demil will be summoned into the baby as long as the baby is alive, regardless of what magic is on it. That's how powerful he is. You killing the baby will stop him.
Why doesn't my god cast protection from evil on the baby?

Yeah, he would fall for killing a baby. But, is it the morally correct choice, even if it means he would fall? The moral question is more "should the paladin break his code for the greater good if it becomes necessary." It's a bigger self-sacrifice than killing himself. He is taking everything in his life that has meaning, everything he lives for and has trained for all his life, has prayed for every day, and throwing it away, leaving him an empty, broken shell of what once was great, for the good of a child's soul and the people of the world. Is it the right thing to break is oath, or not?
1. the argument is wheter or not he would fall
2. Their is no way to tell if he was morally correct. No from a LG standpoint, No from a NG stand point, yes from a CG , Yes from a LN stand point, Yest from a N stand point, yes from a CN standpoint, yes from a LE standpoint, yes from a NE stand point, and yes from a CE standpoint



Okay, then say "crossbow" instead of gun. The idea is to make you really think about your answers to the "Which means more to you" questions.
If it is a crossbow, then all the better, he gets one shot. And it would have to be a hand crossbow.


Yeah, but still, I was trying to explain the idea is to say which of the choices is more valuable to you, in a D&D context (as a paladin) or outside of it.
Killing the baby will make the paldadin shoot.


He had two options; shoot or don't shoot. There are smarter and dumber ways to go about each one, but those are the only two he had.
yes he had other choices, he just didn't consider them.



Heheh, yeah.
I try


Yeah, it doesn't work where good and evil are forces like gravity and electro-magnetism that are very real and defined. But it is an interesting one in real life.
Yes it is.


But, in the choice given, what you did do is a part of what you didn't.
For example:
Drink
Fall close to the dragon
Fall far from the dragon
Don't drink
Have a friend save you
cast a spell
use a skill
eat your rations
But i am not doing Hundreds of trillions of things every second.


But in D&D, neither choice is inherently more good or evil than the other. They're both neutral or evil, dependong on who you ask, so it comes down to which neutral choice or which evil choice you think is better.
Are you asking me as a person or asking me as a paladin?



That's what makes die so interesting. If I chose don't die, it would be the obvious choice that most people make. If I chose die, you'd probably want to know more.
But their is not context, just those to options. Nothing else. So i in this example i would not want to know more. If I had something more to build off of, i could become more interested. But their is nothing else, just those choices.


I'm arguing D&D morals. It's debating, within the moral ideology of D&D, the two questions I stated. I'm simply saying it's concerned with the roleplaying aspect of the game more than the rules or how you are able to break the Diplomacy skill.
Ok if this is roleplay morals, then it would vary from characater from character. As i am not playing a paladin at this moment i could not answer that.


Rich's rules for diplomacy.
But until this moment we never said we were using them.



I believe Thog is Chaotic Neutral or even true neutral on the grounds that he honestly does not comprehend that what he is doing is wrong, but that's another debate entirely.
Thog is CE, as he commits evil actions. His inabilty to understand what he is doing is irrelvant. Maybe if his int increased he might stop being evil but until then. It is like how Belkar would be good if he had a higher wisdom.


As for your replys so far...they are way off base and you are right everything isn't black or white, but you can't dismiss true logic by saying on/off, up/down, yes/no etc. don't exist either. So if they exist..so do binary situations....I already explained that black/white isn't binary since you can do both at the same time.
Black and white means only two options/ideas/views ect.


none of the points I made are moot, they are completly valid.....you either go to the club or don't. REGARDLESS OF HOW YOU GET THERE!!!!!!!!
All I see it as is you seeing that I am right and running away from the fact by saying "I don't want to talk about it."
You see me as running away. Good for you, i hope you have fun doing that. Just, if i am running away, why am i still replying to you. I don't belive in Binary choices, so avoiding them is not running aways as i don't consider them possible.

Drink milk or drink juice isn't binary because you have the option to...
1. drink milk
2. not drink milk
3 drink juice
4 do not drink juice
5 drink water
6 don't drink water
I only gave you two choices, hence binary situation. But you did not follow that, proving it was not a binary situation. I am not following your binary choices because i don't think them binary.

If you are going to quote me, at least quote everything I say, not just the bits and pieces that help you make something up out of nothing....the friend with a broke down car...I already explained that if something happens while you are resolving the yes/no they aren't other options, they are different situations all together with different options and outcomes.
So i can't counter muitiple points? Strange.

The steal the car drive to red lobster order lobster isn't "eat the lobster"
You might want a lobster, need a lobster or crave a lobster and then steal the car drive to red lobster order lobster then eat it.
But by your logic, wouldn't eating the lobster when i get it count as "Eating the lobster". I was given two choices out of context, and i eat the lobster.

But you do not have the option to eat the lobster until you actually have it...get a freaking clue and stop making stupid remarks....and yes 1 year from now if you have a lobster in front of you...you have the choice to eat it or not to eat it.
Oh insults now. Because nothing makes your point look good than losing one's cool. Yes but if by you defination not doing something is an action, then aren't their a few million binary choices right now at this very moment? I could dance, i could not dance, at the same time i could reply i could not reply, i could sing, i could not sing, i could sleep, i could not sleep.

I'm assuming you are young with the way you talk about yourself.
What led you to that?

So I'm going to chalk it up to, you not being able to comprehend what I am say or else you are just being childish and trying to get a rise out of me...which it isn't working
1. So you judge me by my apperent age and so you simple say i "can't possible" have an option. OK have fun with that.
2. no i comprehend what you are trying to say. I just disagree. Is that so hard to swallow.
3. If I wanted to get a rise out of you, why have i been agruing on this thread before you showned up?

If you are young and haven't got the ability to comprehend it, then stay in school and eventually you will be taught comprehension skills.
Very militaristic way of looking at it. Because i disagree with you and are apprently younger i must be inately naive and foolish? Right, well you go on and have fun with that. personally i don't think i need the advice from a hot tempered forum member to say i haven't been "taught" comprehension skills. I disagree with you. That is all. You want to bring in a little rant about me being to inferior to talk with you, fine but of the two of us who would be acting more inmature?

Until then either refrain from reply, or stick to subjects you know something about
Yes sensai, i will stick to my coloring books. Look you can wave your ego around all you want, that doesn't change the fact i am obliged to agrue on this forum and i can present points like anyone else. If my points were so inmature, then why haven't you properly countered them as yet?

Unfortunately, inaction can be a crime, since inaction has repercussions.

For instance, if you know where a criminal is hiding and do not tell the police when they ask you, you are aiding and abetting.
That is an action. It is called obstruction of justice. You are knowingly and purposly withholding infomation on the crimeal location. That is an action, lying.


if allowed by the DM, the unwritten third option to the Ritual Sacrifice dilemma might be (and has been in several novels), the paladin displacing the child from the circle and taking the place of the sacrifice, and discovering that he could hold off the evil. That is, ultimately, a decision of the DM whether that option could work: given that the Paladin has done his homework and knows about the ritual, he might already know that nothing living can pass the barrier of the circle, and consequently that option is not available. Since this is a morality discussion, not a question of how to overcome a particular problem, that option is nherently not available. If we were discussing, "Here's a Dilemma, find the third option" problems, then coming up with such a thing would be on point.
But getting into this situation would have to been though the direct work (railroading) of the DM and so by now the situation is out of control.

That is why I dismiss any attempts to find that third option: we're not here to solve Dilemmas but to discuss repercussions when there is no superficially good way out of a problem.
But having no good option is only possible if you don't look for one. Besides, if their is no good option, then the paladin in question is preforming a lesser evil and would fall.

Tack on a reason to go, and it becomes binary. "Want to go to the Stone's concert tonight? Last show of this tour." And then follow that with the same sequence of events. Now your action was, "Not going to the Stones' concert." Arranging another time can't happen, because the Stones are now off tour.
Ok then my action could be "Arenging another time to get together with friend" not "Not going to stone's concert."

Stiil ,even without the Stones involvement, you stil had the same outcome for tonight's purposes when your GF calls. "What did you do Friday night?" "Stayed in." Regardless of why you stayed in, to your girlfriend, your activities were non-unique despite the causes.
But by then it is no longer a binary situation, it is simple me saying that i stayed in. My description of my action would not truly describe what i did. For example, after i talked with my friend, i then ate dinner and watched Snatch, then took the dog for a walk then went to sleep. But because my GF (I have a GF?) only asked what i did that night, i did not consider anying of my actions note worth enough to mention. But i still did them.

That's why choices and options are different when it comes to Dilemmas. You can have an infinite number of choices, but the Dilemmas resolve to only a coupleresults, thus making most of those choices irrelevant. The dilemma doesn't care if you do a rain dance in response to the child-demon summoning, since dancing for rain does not affect the outcome of the dilemma
But if their is a third possiblity, and their would have to be one for the unless the DM is railroading then my third option could effect the sitution. Bear in mind, it is inmpossible to 100% perdict the future, you can only make guess. So if the paladin for example did a rain dance, i could be that was the only way to stop the summons. THe paladin did not do that because he did not think it would work. If my paladin cast cure light wounds on the kid, it does nothing but he does not know that.

Actions aren't the same thing as options. Options are what you have to base a decision on.
Actions are the result of the decision you made based on the options given to you
But that also means that actions are better than intent, and so the Paladin would fall anyways.


from,
EE

Foeofthelance
2007-04-01, 09:53 PM
The only problem if the Paladin falling is that it has been stated,many, many times that he will not fall if he chooses to save thes rest of the world at the expense of the child! This has been removed as a consequence of his choice of action, despite the SRD. That is no longer a defense. Please stop using it as one.

Kreistor
2007-04-01, 09:55 PM
But do you accept that in the non-real world of D&D in which Paladins exist there are things which are inherently evil?
Things which Detect Evil will work on for example.
When discussing the situation described I have not talking about real world morality, but the fantasy world moraility of standard D&D and the Paladins code. The fantasy morality where killing some intelligent beings is not evil because they are members of an inherently evil species.

I accept that Lawful Neutral people think that there is such a thing as inherent evil. Rules are LN's thing, after all. But I do not accept that the Alignment section in the PHB is intended to be read as more than guidelines. So, no, noting written there is inherently anything, except for Lawful Neutral cahracters for which Rules are everything.

You see, when writing the Alignments, if you write them as rules, you are writing them from a LN perspective. LN does not get to define Good, Evil, or Chaos. Good defines good. Evil defines evil. Chaos defines Chaos.

Good and Law are not inherently compatible. They can coexist, but Lthe Lawful alignment part of the LG definition is what causes the Dilemma. You are giving the Lawful part of the LG alignment priority over the Good part in your definition of LG when you suggest that there is inherently evil actions.


Evil can not force you to do evil, but you may not be able to find the good soultion.

Now you are handing your soul to evil again. All evil has to do is place you in that situation enough times and you wind up having to do evil.

Doing evil or good cannot ultimately descend to "you are evil if you aren't smart enough to be good". No one can solve every problem in this world. Suggesting that there was a good solution that the person didn't see and that they are evil for having missed it is coarse and mean.

I do not agree with the "third option is always there" crowd. If you see only two options, then one must be good, because good can not come down to how smart you are.


The is no way in which the situation described with the Paladin having no doubt about the truth of the situation could arrive accidentally.

My campaign is Noir, so the risk is there. There's lots of morally difficult situations, just none are potentially placing the characters in situations that are that bad; however, the danger is that the players will go a direction I didn't predict and create the situation themselves.

EvilElitest
2007-04-01, 10:15 PM
The only problem if the Paladin falling is that it has been stated,many, many times that he will not fall if he chooses to save thes rest of the world at the expense of the child! This has been removed as a consequence of his choice of action, despite the SRD. That is no longer a defense. Please stop using it as one.

It been stated by you and you are not god. So what you say has not meaing as you can't back it up. Just because you think the paladin can get off scot free dispite teh SRD doesn't make it so. So suck it up and back up your point.
from,
EE

Foeofthelance
2007-04-01, 10:20 PM
Well, no I am not a god, but then neither were the folks who wrote the SRD. They did however, provide something called Rule 0, which plainly states in the DMG:

What the DM rules is the final ruling.

Those who posed the situation, both myself and Kreistor, would there by qualify as the DM for this particular situation. We have both said the Paladin will not fall as a consequence of his choice. You did. By rule 0, we are then correct, and the paladin does not fall.

EvilElitest
2007-04-01, 10:25 PM
Well, no I am not a god, but then neither were the folks who wrote the SRD. They did however, provide something called Rule 0, which plainly states in the DMG:

What the DM rules is the final ruling.

Those who posed the situation, both myself and Kreistor, would there by qualify as the DM for this particular situation. We have both said the Paladin will not fall as a consequence of his choice. You did. By rule 0, we are then correct, and the paladin does not fall.

No because you only posted the situation, you were never made the DM. You simple have to agrue like everybody else. In you games fine, you go do that, have fun. But this is an over the top "what if" question and so it must follow the rules from SRD. You are not the DM, that is WOTC and so we must figure out if ether option would allow a paladin to keep his/her powers. I say no because
It is not lawful
It is not good
For teh greater good is a LN ideal, if not LE
If you want to make it not evil in your games, fine but then their is not point of the thread. You can says your correct and in your games that might be so but that does not make you correct for the purpose of this thread.
from,
EE

Kreistor
2007-04-01, 10:26 PM
But their are no such thing as binary choices

Our arguments do not depend on the choices being binary. They rely on all possible solutions resulting in evil being done. That is the Dilemma, simplified to a story that has a binary set of options as a simplification. Even if you don't think there are Binary solution situations, you're only fighting the simplification, not the greater issue of the moral question of facing an all-evil solution set.

Eighth_Seraph
2007-04-01, 10:27 PM
I've been waiting for another one of these rants to pop up so I could post this.

A paladin's code of conduct will, logically, depend on the views of his deity, and what that deity would consider to be an evil act, as well as how understanding that deity may be. It's also important to point out that the deity will know the details of the situation and understand why the paladin made the decision he did. Killing a newborn child may be an irredeemably evil act if placed in a vacuum, but is it still if it also saved the world? Any deity that promotes kindness and is kind in turn will understand the need for such an act, see that the paladin followed the deity's underlying principle by working to save millions of people and simply make sure that the paladin seeks to make amends with the child's family and be at peace with them.

If through inaction the demon is released and wreaks havoc, the deity will see that the paladin followed the underlying principles by being unable to do harm to what he's dedicated himself to protect, and send the paladin off to accept the consequences of his actions in a geas to destroy the demon he allowed to be released.

Unless the paladin's code said never to harm an innocent, no matter what the consequences and the deity was St. Cuthbert or some other LN stick in the mud, the paladin would not fall, because he was holding true to the basic teachings and principles.

This argument has been done a thousand times, each bloodier than the last with no end in sight; if it becomes clear that this is getting nowhere, simply agree to disagree, m'kay?

EvilElitest
2007-04-01, 10:31 PM
I've been waiting for another one of these rants to pop up so I could post this.

A paladin's code of conduct will, logically, depend on the views of his deity, and what that deity would consider to be an evil act, as well as how understanding that deity may be. It's also important to point out that the deity will know the details of the situation and understand why the paladin made the decision he did. Killing a newborn child may be an irredeemably evil act if placed in a vacuum, but is it still if it also saved the world? Any deity that promotes kindness and is kind in turn will understand the need for such an act, see that the paladin followed the deity's underlying principle by working to save millions of people and simply make sure that the paladin seeks to make amends with the child's family and be at peace with them.

If through inaction the demon is released and wreaks havoc, the deity will see that the paladin followed the underlying principles by being unable to do harm to what he's dedicated himself to protect, and send the paladin off to accept the consequences of his actions in a geas to destroy the demon he allowed to be released.

unless you play FR, a paladin's code comes not from his god but from the raw power of Law and Good. So it is not up to his god weather he falls or not.


Unless the paladin's code said never to harm an innocent, no matter what the consequences and the deity was St. Cuthbert or some other LN stick in the mud, the paladin would not fall, because he was holding true to the basic teachings and principles.
The paladin's code is the same for everyone, and it does say not to hurt innocents


This argument has been done a thousand times, each bloodier than the last with no end in sight; if it becomes clear that this is getting nowhere, simply agree to disagree, m'kay?
Where is the fun in that?
from,
EE

Foeofthelance
2007-04-01, 10:33 PM
Actually, EE, Kreistor stated quite clearly in his original post that he was the DM. I claimed a similiar mantle (though it really is his decision if I can share it with him) when I posted the elaborated version which removed the Paladin's powers and outside interference.

So yes, we are the DM(s).

And the debate was never about whether the paladin should lose his powers, but which was the choice more in line with his philosophy.

Kreistor
2007-04-01, 10:44 PM
And the debate was never about whether the paladin should lose his powers, but which was the choice more in line with his philosophy.

Actually, that is how it started, but I kinda brought it back to a more general concept of good and evil. The paladin can't fall unless his decision is evil, so the first step is to prove it evil. Thus, the debate ignores the details of the paladin's consequences because doing evil is actually something all good characters want to avoid.

EvilElitest
2007-04-01, 10:46 PM
Actually, EE, Kreistor stated quite clearly in his original post that he was the DM. I claimed a similiar mantle (though it really is his decision if I can share it with him) when I posted the elaborated version which removed the Paladin's powers and outside interference.

In his world he stated his was hte DM, as he is not the ultimate DM what he does in his games doesn't matter. You posting something that removes the paladin's powers just makes your situation more railroaded. In the context of D&D none of us are the DMs, because we are not agruing in your worlds, but in a general term. If the paladin can't follow his code, as shown in the SRD then he falls.


So yes, we are the DM(s).

And the debate was never about whether the paladin should lose his powers, but which was the choice more in line with his philosophy.
Nether choice would be in line with his philosophy because nether follows his code acording to teh SRD.
I'll be back on Friday to keep agruing.
from,
EE

Kreistor
2007-04-01, 10:58 PM
If through inaction the demon is released and wreaks havoc, the deity will see that the paladin followed the underlying principles by being unable to do harm to what he's dedicated himself to protect, and send the paladin off to accept the consequences of his actions in a geas to destroy the demon he allowed to be released.

There is another underlying principle to Good, and that is, "protect innocent life." First sentence in the Good vs. Evil section, PHB pg 104. Your inaction has failed to protect innocent lives, and so it too violates an underlying principle.

That's part of the dilemma. Both solutions violate one section of the definition of Good.

Foeofthelance
2007-04-01, 11:01 PM
EE, when I restated the dilemma I said the Paladin had used his powers up in the course of fighting down to the ritual chamber. I removed all of his support characters through enemy action, which has happened in many a game as the various horror stories on these boards shows. Neither is railroading. The first is player choice, the second just bad luck. If I had instead said that upon reaching the chamber the paladin's god stripped him of his powers at the same time he laid the rest of the party low, then that would be railroading.

You've been presented with a choice, which you seem unable to accept for some unknown reason, and insist the SRD backs you up. To a certain point it does, but when the person posing the original dilemma claims that he is the DM, saying he isn't the world's only DM is just ignoring the question at hand. He has given the rulings and information that has been necessary to make the decisions, and has even assured you that you have no need to worry about falling for your choice. If you had posted the dilemma you are more then welcome to allow for your own rulings. Kreistor posted the dilemma, so it's his rules to be following.

So please stop ignoring the question, which is the choice that should be made, either kill the child or abstain from shedding innocent blood? Adding an answer as to why you made your choice would also be appreciated (and probably required by the board's posting rules.)

I am more then willing to wait until Friday to hear what you've decidedafter a week of contemplation.

Kreistor
2007-04-01, 11:08 PM
So please stop ignoring the question, which is the choice that should be made, either kill the child or abstain from shedding innocent blood? Adding an answer as to why you made your choice would also be appreciated (and probably required by the board's posting rules.)

Actually, he's stated many times that it really doesn't matter which you choose. The paladin Falls because both options are evil to him.

Really, there's nothing more to argue about with him. Life will place him in the dilemma some day, and then he'll see the irrelevance of his position.

Foeofthelance
2007-04-01, 11:12 PM
Probably. But I admit to actual curiosity as to which he'd choose. Sometimes answering a question like this can tell a lot more about a person.

Personally, I'm not sure if I should be worried or glad that everyone I have asked IRL has been willing to kill the child, and have been able to say so with out any seemingly long period of thought.

Kreistor
2007-04-01, 11:17 PM
Sometimes answering a question like this can tell a lot more about a person.

Ah, but not telling us reveals just as much. He's a wishful thinker. He'll lock up when faced with the dilemma unable to take any action, because he's convinced that the situation as perceived can't exist.

Foeofthelance
2007-04-01, 11:20 PM
Ah well, back on topic then.

So folks, what would you do, and why? I've already admitted to killing the child, and my plans to crusade afterwards, even if I was powerless. Give us your opinion, why, and if you feel, what you might do afterwards!

Slokkva
2007-04-02, 01:34 AM
Black and white means only two options/ideas/views ect.

Black white doesn't mean only two options..I already explained this..there are other options such as purple. You are avoiding my other question to you...explain your "logic" and "third option always exists theory" on my other post where I stated binary means on/off, up/down, left/right things you can't possibly do at the same time....explain your theory of the always existing third option to my post where I explain action = option = decision = action.
You don't reply to it because you know there is no third option, you know I'm right, but choose to stick to black/white theory and use it to say black/white isn't binary (which I agree it isn't) and say that since black/white isn't binary, binary situations don't exisit....which is wrong on even the most basic level of comprehension.


You see me as running away. Good for you, i hope you have fun doing that. Just, if i am running away, why am i still replying to you. I don't belive in Binary choices, so avoiding them is not running aways as i don't consider them possible.

To consider something is not possible that is truely possible and can be scientificly proven is wrong..I don't care how you spice it up, it's wrong. I can say I don't believe 5 + 5 = 10, I can argue that point until I'm blue in the face, but the end result is I'm wrong, because 5 + 5 actually does equal 10, and just because I don't believe in it doesn't make it true. Just like you are saying binary choices don't exist...they do exist..and you are wrong...hands down wrong...but you continue to avoid the fact you are wrong by making comments that make no sense.


I only gave you two choices, hence binary situation. But you did not follow that, proving it was not a binary situation. I am not following your binary choices because i don't think them binary.

What you present isn't a binary situation, I already explained this, time and time again....everything I present to you was a true binary situation. And again you avoid them by saying they are moot, then create your own situation to make it look like you are right, because you've made the story fit your arguement...if you want to prove me wrong, try using my situation and give me proof of this third option theory you hold onto so dearly...if you can do this, then I'll have no option but to say you are right, and I am wrong.
The thing is, you can't, you know I'm right but refuse to admit it...


So i can't counter muitiple points? Strange.

You can counter all the points you want to, but what you are doing is taking bits and pieces of what I am saying and formulating a reply with that. I'm challenging you to quote me using all of my words and prove your theory.
You've yet to do this because you know it isn't possible.


But by your logic, wouldn't eating the lobster when i get it count as "Eating the lobster". I was given two choices out of context, and i eat the lobster.

Again you are taking bits and pieces of what I said...you can't make a choice to eat the lobster until you actually have the lobster to eat. Stealing a car, and driving to the restuarant are actions taken prior to the yes/no situation of "eat the lobster" or "don't eat the lobster", so in fact stealing a car doesn't fall under "eat the lobster" because there is no lobster yet.


Oh insults now. Because nothing makes your point look good than losing one's cool. Yes but if by you defination not doing something is an action, then aren't their a few million binary choices right now at this very moment? I could dance, i could not dance, at the same time i could reply i could not reply, i could sing, i could not sing, i could sleep, i could not sleep.

It wasn't an insult, if you percieve as one, then I apologize. Calling you stupid is one thing...to say you are acting stupid is another....even a genius can act stupid. But I am proud of you, you just made a realization that yes binary situations exist...literly millions of them at this very second. It all depends on whether you choose to acknowledge those choices.


What led you to that?
I assumed this because you can't go to a club you don't have a car, you were pretending to know how to drive...these are usually things that deal with age, such as not being old enough to go to the club, not old enough to drive or know how to drive. But I could be totally wrong and apologize again for the comment.


1. So you judge me by my apperent age and so you simple say i "can't possible" have an option. OK have fun with that.
2. no i comprehend what you are trying to say. I just disagree. Is that so hard to swallow.
3. If I wanted to get a rise out of you, why have i been agruing on this thread before you showned up?

I'm not judging you, I'm basing my opinion of you based on your ability to comprehend what I am saying, and so far you haven't shown me any sign of being able to do so...such as your comment about "If I'm not replying to this thread and playing PS3, I'm not "not replying to this thread" I'm "playing PS3."
By choosing to play PS3, you ARE choosing "not to reply to this thread."
I'm can't imagine how this doesn't make sense to you, but apparently it doesn't sense you continue to make the claim that binary desicions don't exist.


Very militaristic way of looking at it. Because i disagree with you and are apprently younger i must be inately naive and foolish? Right, well you go on and have fun with that. personally i don't think i need the advice from a hot tempered forum member to say i haven't been "taught" comprehension skills. I disagree with you. That is all. You want to bring in a little rant about me being to inferior to talk with you, fine but of the two of us who would be acting more inmature?

I never said anything about you being inferior, I'm just making the statement you don't comprehend well, and if you are young...don't drop out of school, it will teach the skills you need to comprehend things you're not able to at this point in time. I'm not hot tempered either....but you did make a statement that surprised me. The militaristic comment isn't on base at all, I am in the military, Air Force to be more specific...I've been in for 8 years now, and I've never encoutered what you claim while I've been in...age has very little to do with being naive or being foolish...there are people both younger and older than me that are naive and foolish and people that are younger and older than me that are better educated and not naive at all.


Yes sensai, i will stick to my coloring books. Look you can wave your ego around all you want, that doesn't change the fact i am obliged to agrue on this forum and i can present points like anyone else. If my points were so inmature, then why haven't you properly countered them as yet?

I have countered everything you have said a dozen times...you just choose to not accept them, you continue to manipulate the information to use it to back up your claims...that isn't debating. I never said you can't reply, but just do about things you can back up, I could refer to the not "not replying to this thread" comment again, but I think you understand what I am getting at. If you notice I haven't mentioned anything about paladin rules, code or anything about that part since I don't know everything there is to know about them, so I won't make any statements that I know I can't back up or prove....I could make random statements like "There's no such thing as a LG Paladin, or It's impossible for a paladin to be truely LG." But I don't since I can't prove the theory....instead I talk about what I do know and can prove...binary situations and binary choices...and it is relative since this thread deals with them in alot of moral situations such as the one presenting with said paladin and demon...kill the child or not kill the child...no other way around it.....If your God could cast protection from evil on the child then that means they can do everything else on thier own...which means the God doesn't need you, and the paladin class wouldn't exist.



But by then it is no longer a binary situation, it is simple me saying that i stayed in. My description of my action would not truly describe what i did. For example, after i talked with my friend, i then ate dinner and watched Snatch, then took the dog for a walk then went to sleep. But because my GF (I have a GF?) only asked what i did that night, i did not consider anying of my actions note worth enough to mention. But i still did them.

Quoting you here because you are saying "it is no longer a binary situation"
Which says loud and clear that you accept the fact binary sitiations exist!!
Because if it is no longer a binary situation...it had to exist in the first place...

As as for binary choices...they exist also....just reread my post about the action = options = decision = action....and then try and prove they don't.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-02, 02:50 AM
Could you point out where in the rules it says that it's Good to kill Evil creatures?

Right in the section on Alignments in the Players Handbook, pg. 103 it describes a Good-aligned book of Pelor that kills (blasts) the Evil-aligned when it is kissed by an Evil aligned person. Page 9 of the Book of Exalted Deeds adds 'a paladin smiting a blue dragon or blackguard is not commiting an evil act: the cause of good expects and often demands that violence be brought to bear against it's enemies.'

You could certainly postulate that it's just a neutral act, but why? Where would one get the formula that a Good deed plus an Evil deed is a Neutral deed? Show me where it says that in the rule books.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-02, 02:57 AM
Probably. But I admit to actual curiosity as to which he'd choose. Sometimes answering a question like this can tell a lot more about a person.

Personally, I'm not sure if I should be worried or glad that everyone I have asked IRL has been willing to kill the child, and have been able to say so with out any seemingly long period of thought.

I would be worried. The dilemna depends on either god-like knowledge that the demon will kill more people, or an assumption that it will do what it did before. IRL people don't get god-like knowledge of the future, so it's just an assumption that they're killing a child on.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-02, 03:58 AM
I think the point people are missing is the fact what they are considering "options" are actually "actions".

I'll give a couple examples to prove my point.
It looks something like this.... action = option = decision = action

action = a glass with a liquid content is placed in front of you
option = this is where you look at the options given to you, in this case you have 2 options A. drink or B. do not drink
decision 1= yes I choose to drink it
action variable 1 = you drink some of it, throw the rest away
action varabile 2 = you drink all of it
action variable 3 = you drink some of it and give the rest to your friend

decision 2= no I choose not to drink it
action variable 4 = you do not drink it and leave it sit there
action variable 5 = you do not drink it and throw the glass against the wall
action variable 6 = you do not drink it and give it to your friend

Actions aren't the same thing as options. Options are what you have to base a decision on.
Actions are the result of the decision you made based on the options given to you.

Using your example though, what if someone took the glass to their lips, and put the liquid in their mouth but did not yet swallow? Then it's up to interpretation whether any drinking did or did not, will or will not occur. So based on that, what choice of the two would you say the person had made? Can you tell?

There are fuzzy states between every supposedly binary state. Computers for example are held up as a triumph of binary logic. Each bit of memory is in either a high voltage, or low voltage state. But even computers have this fuzzy characteristic to them. For example, what state is a bit of memory in when the power to it is turned off? Then it can't be read at all! Or when the voltage state is so exactly between high and low that the computer can't tell the difference?

So your example at the very least needs a third state to represent the lack of a choice made one way or another. Ambivalence, in other words. I'm confident that other options are possible, as well, if you critically examined this model. So I think it's valid for people to say that dilemna's like this are false. They can't exist IRL, but they can exist in places like D&D.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-02, 04:18 AM
Well, no I am not a god, but then neither were the folks who wrote the SRD. They did however, provide something called Rule 0, which plainly states in the DMG:

What the DM rules is the final ruling.

Those who posed the situation, both myself and Kreistor, would there by qualify as the DM for this particular situation. We have both said the Paladin will not fall as a consequence of his choice. You did. By rule 0, we are then correct, and the paladin does not fall.

Wait, wait... listen to yourself. You posed the dilemna on a message board for first OotS readers, then to players of D&D for them to read and answer. So now you're telling us that you are the DM's and therefore everything you say about this situation that you've posed is correct because you're the DM?

What's the point of this post then? Is it some kind of ego trip or 'we said this out loud on a message board so now what we say is law!' If you've already decided the results why are you debating at all? Just houserule whatever you want, and realize that it's not RAW you're talking about. It's special child-murdering-is-ok-for-Paladins-as-long-as-they-didn't-see-another-better-choice rules. I'm cool with you playing that way, but I wouldn't participate in what I perceive as watering down good and evil until there's no differece except for the alignment aura.

Believe it or not, the rule you quoted is exactly what protects people from this kind of 'what we say is law!' rule manipulation. I say the Paladin falls for commiting a willing Evil act. The RAW agrees with me. I say that killing an innocent child anywhere is an Evil act. So I say it's fair that willing murdering an innocent child would make a Paladin fall, regardless of the whole demon dilemna. If you disagree and want to play a different way, fine. That's how Rule 0 works.

Rule 0 does not make one correct. It allows for corrections.

pjackson
2007-04-02, 05:03 AM
I accept that Lawful Neutral people think that there is such a thing as inherent evil. Rules are LN's thing, after all. But I do not accept that the Alignment section in the PHB is intended to be read as more than guidelines. So, no, noting written there is inherently anything, except for Lawful Neutral cahracters for which Rules are everything.


Lawful Neutral is a game term which does not work terribly well in the real world.
The Alignment section in the PHB is there so players and the DM can have a common understanding of what the alignments mean within the game world.
They are the definitions of what the terms mean within the game world of D&D and OOTS, whether you accept them or not.



You see, when writing the Alignments, if you write them as rules, you are writing them from a LN perspective. LN does not get to define Good, Evil, or Chaos. Good defines good. Evil defines evil. Chaos defines Chaos.

Good and Law are not inherently compatible. They can coexist, but Lthe Lawful alignment part of the LG definition is what causes the Dilemma. You are giving the Lawful part of the LG alignment priority over the Good part in your definition of LG when you suggest that there is inherently evil actions.


In the world of D&D they are compatible, and the Paladin is the embodiment of that compatibility. By saying they are incompatible you are saying that the Paladin as defined is incompatible with the worlds you run. Thus the existance of such a Paladin in one of your worlds in an inconsistancy, which was my original complaint about the scenario.



Now you are handing your soul to evil again. All evil has to do is place you in that situation enough times and you wind up having to do evil.


Please stop repeating that lie. I never have to do evil, though it is inevitable that like anyone who is not a saint I will sometimes do evil. That does not "hand my soul to evil".



Doing evil or good cannot ultimately descend to "you are evil if you aren't smart enough to be good". No one can solve every problem in this world.


True.



Suggesting that there was a good solution that the person didn't see and that they are evil for having missed it is coarse and mean.


Not true. There is nothing coarse or mean about what I said. Doing evil because you failed to find the good solution does not make you evil. It makes you human. Not regretting having done the evil would make you evil.

Suppose in Paladin/baby scenario it was a trick and what is required to complete the ritual is not the sacrifice of the baby, but the killing of the baby by the Paladin. Would that change your opinion that killing the baby is the good option?



I do not agree with the "third option is always there" crowd. If you see only two options, then one must be good, because good can not come down to how smart you are.


Good does not come down to how smart you are, though wisdom does make it easier to avoid evil. But it is quite possible to see only 2 options which are both evil, particularly if some evil person is trying to hide the good option. If you can't see a good option then doing the lesser evil but regretting it and repenting afterwards is a good way to act.
But a Paladin tries to live to a higher standard, and should fall for doing the lesser evil act. He would remain Good and be able to atone, but a SRD Paladin should fall (and that is what is generally meant by Paladin with the context of these threads).



My campaign is Noir, so the risk is there.


That does not follow. The situation can not possibly arrive accidentally, since to convince the Paladin in character that everthing is as it seems and there is no doubt would require a lot of work. Especially in a Noir setting where things are often not what they seem and deceptions are common.



There's lots of morally difficult situations, just none are potentially placing the characters in situations that are that bad; however, the danger is that the players will go a direction I didn't predict and create the situation themselves.

Morally difficult situation can arise, but not like the one presented. The elimination of doubt could not happen without deliberate effort.

pjackson
2007-04-02, 05:33 AM
So please stop ignoring the question, which is the choice that should be made, either kill the child or abstain from shedding innocent blood? Adding an answer as to why you made your choice would also be appreciated (and probably required by the board's posting rules.)


I answered that long ago, before the thread was moved to this forum, and that is not the question I have been discussing.

The next question was should the paladin fall if he kills the baby?
My answer to that is killing the baby is an evil act and the code says that if a paladin commits an evil act he falls. He remains good and can atone, if he regrets the action and repents.

Then there was the proposition that if there are only 2 options and both appear evil, the lesser evil one must actually be good. I disagreed with that.

I also said that in a world where a Paladin exists (as defined by the SRD as the original setting was the OotS world) there must always be a third option or the world is inconsistant. At the very least the Paladin is entitled to doubt the truth of the situation since it seems to invalidate the code he lives by (which code is backed by the powers of Good and Law so must be truthful).

The ruling that they can be do doubt takes the situation away from what can arise within a well run game, and makes the question you want to discuss uninteresting to me.

Slokkva
2007-04-02, 05:54 AM
Using your example though, what if someone took the glass to their lips, and put the liquid in their mouth but did not yet swallow? Then it's up to interpretation whether any drinking did or did not, will or will not occur. So based on that, what choice of the two would you say the person had made? Can you tell?

There are fuzzy states between every supposedly binary state. Computers for example are held up as a triumph of binary logic. Each bit of memory is in either a high voltage, or low voltage state. But even computers have this fuzzy characteristic to them. For example, what state is a bit of memory in when the power to it is turned off? Then it can't be read at all! Or when the voltage state is so exactly between high and low that the computer can't tell the difference?

So your example at the very least needs a third state to represent the lack of a choice made one way or another. Ambivalence, in other words. I'm confident that other options are possible, as well, if you critically examined this model. So I think it's valid for people to say that dilemna's like this are false. They can't exist IRL, but they can exist in places like D&D.


I can see what you are saying, but unfortunatly what you are saying is a false statement.
If the person raises thier glass with the intention of of drinking the liquid, the binary equation has been solved by "I choose to drink". Now we move on to the action taken after the decision was made...put the glass to said lips and took a sip. Now whether or not they drank any isn't relavent because of free will....free will allows us to change our mind at any point in time.

It's the same as saying, I choose not to drink and the following action would be to pour it out, but right before you pour it out, you change your mind and decide to drink it.

So the binary equation stays true, it's one or the other, if you change your mind and do the opposite of your original decision then that's fine, it's still binary, you just used free will to change your mind and change the decision you made.

If you read the example you quoted, don't get confused with the decision and the action....making the decision to drink, doesn't consitute the action of actually drinking it. I just used "drink" or "don't drink" for lack of better words to describe the choices.

And to answer your statement about computers....it all depends on where the memory bit is when the power is removed. If it is in the RAM the high becomes low and the low stays low, if it is in the ROM then the state is saved at either the high or low state that it is was when power was removed.
It can be read with an oscilloscope, I know because I work with them and we read highs and lows almost daily when doing inspections for tolerance levels and troubleshooting.

Also there is no such thing as the voltage level being so close to high and low that computer can't tell the differance...if that were to happen you computer wouldn't work at all, because it would lock every few seconds due to this situation. Computers have a definite high and definite low value, the only reason a computer will lock up is if it is expecting a low, and gets a high and vice versa, or if a memory bit is lost which causes the program to become lost. receiving packets are basicly numbered 1 2 3 4 5 6 etc.
if a bit gets dropped it looks like this 1 2 3 5 6 etc. which the computer locks because it can't find the 4th bit and halts the system.

Hope this helps some.

Jayabalard
2007-04-02, 07:51 AM
Sorry, been busy and I won't really get a chance to get caught up today... but:
Really, there's nothing more to argue about with him. Life will place him in the dilemma some day, and then he'll see the irrelevance of his position.

...

Ah, but not telling us reveals just as much. He's a wishful thinker. He'll lock up when faced with the dilemma unable to take any action, because he's convinced that the situation as perceived can't exist.I don't think that anyone in this thread has claimed to be a paladin in real life, so questions of "which one would you choose" doesn't seem very relevant; and just because someone has their eyes open and know that both choices mean doing evil doesn't mean that they won't be able to take action.

EvilElitest
2007-04-02, 08:15 AM
last post before my trip
[Scrubbed entirely due to persistent flaming]

Slokkva
2007-04-02, 10:02 AM
EE,

Since you are leaving and by the time you get back this thread will probably be on page 4 or higher, I'm not going to reply in great detail....I'll just say this...believe what you want to, it's your right, but it doesn't make you right.

But I would like to summarize our "debate" up to this point.

Me: 5+5=10
You: no it doesn't
Me: 5+5=10
You: I don't believe you
Me: 5+5=10
You: I don't believe it does, so there for it doesn't
Me: 5+5=10 you little twerp
You: No it doesn't you egomaniac...leaving on a trip see ya friday


Have fun on your trip, maybe we can duke it out when you get back.
And you being 15 doesn't mean I won't take what you say seriously....I take everything everyone says seriously. The only reason I didn't ignore everything you were saying was because I was taking you seriously.

P.S. Is this Scientific enough for you? A study done with humans and animals from the University of Oxford. It discusses binary choices and situations

Behavioral Ecology Advance Access published online on March 3, 2007
Behavioral Ecology, doi:10.1093/beheco/arm005

Choice processes in multialternative decision making
Cynthia Schuck-Paim and Alex Kacelnik
Zoology Department, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, OX1 3PS Oxford, UK

Address correspondence to A. Kacelnik. E-mail: [email protected]

Cynthia Schuck-Paim is now at the Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Sao Paulo, Rua Tucuma 141—A. 102, 01455-010 Sao Paulo, SP, Brazil. E-mail: [email protected]


Abstract

We study how the mechanisms of choice influence preferences when animals face more than 2 alternatives simultaneously. Choice mechanisms can be hierarchical (if alternatives are assigned to categories by their similarity and choice is between categories) or simultaneous (if options enter the choice process individually, each with its own value). The latter, although simpler, can lead to counterintuitive outcomes because expressed preference between options depends not only on the kinds of options present but also on the number of exemplars within each kind, so that decision makers have a higher probability of picking an option of a given class when exemplars in this class are common. Higher preference for commoner options has indeed been shown in humans, and if present in animals, it would affect many choice domains, including prey and mate choice. We studied the problem using starlings making risk-sensitive choices. Subjects chose between a risky option and 1 (in binary choices) or 2 (in trinary choices) fixed options that were identifiable as distinct but were identical in reward rate and had no variance. Preference between the risky and each fixed option was unaltered between binary and trinary contexts, but subjects chose a higher proportion of the fixed kind when this was represented by 2 rather than 1 distinct food sources. This means subjects were objectively risk prone in binary and risk averse in trinary contexts. These results fit accounts based on learning principles, but contradict the expectations of functional models of choice, including risk-sensitivity theory.

Informatio gathered from the following website: http://beheco.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/arm005v1



Also here is a link to a 60 page report from 2 men at the University of Wisconsin that deals with Identification of binary choice models with social interactions.

Since you claim binary situations or choices don't exist in the real world...you might find it interesting reading.

http://72.14.253.104/search?q=cache:PomZS10Io5UJ:www.columbia.edu/~mh530/Durlauf.pdf+binary+choice&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=8&gl=us

Jayabalard
2007-04-02, 10:23 AM
Me: 5+5=10 11
You: no it doesn't
Me: 5+5=10 11
You: I don't believe you
Me: 5+5=10 11
You: I don't believe it does, so there for it doesn't
Me: 5+5=10 11 you little twerp
You: No it doesn't you egomaniac...leaving on a trip see ya fridayChanged to reflect the debate from the perspective of someone who doesn't agree with you. More debate, less contradiction. Argument is an intellectual process. Contradiction is just the automatic gainsaying of any statement the other person makes.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-02, 10:34 AM
I can see what you are saying, but unfortunatly what you are saying is a false statement.
If the person raises thier glass with the intention of of drinking the liquid, the binary equation has been solved by "I choose to drink". Now we move on to the action taken after the decision was made...put the glass to said lips and took a sip. Now whether or not they drank any isn't relavent because of free will....free will allows us to change our mind at any point in time.

It's the same as saying, I choose not to drink and the following action would be to pour it out, but right before you pour it out, you change your mind and decide to drink it.

So the binary equation stays true, it's one or the other, if you change your mind and do the opposite of your original decision then that's fine, it's still binary, you just used free will to change your mind and change the decision you made.

If you read the example you quoted, don't get confused with the decision and the action....making the decision to drink, doesn't consitute the action of actually drinking it. I just used "drink" or "don't drink" for lack of better words to describe the choices.

The way I see it, you still have at least four valid decisions, possibly more.

A - Decide to drink.
B - Decide not to drink.
C - Make no decision at all.
D - Gather more information.

The third selection by the way is that state that your mind was in before being shown the liquid in the first place and presented with the decision. You can't decide yes or no on a decision you aren't even aware of, after all. The fourth would require putting the liquid in your mouth or testing it in some other way. In either case, a commitment yes/no has not been arrived at yet.

I also disagree with the assertion that someone putting a liquid into their mouth has necessarily decided to drink it. They may just be tasting it, in an effort to gain more information before they do drink it. That's what taste receptors in the mouth are for, after all. If it tasted like a bitter poison, no one is going to choose to drink it, they would spit it out. In fact just from looking at a strange liquid, very few people would automatically swallow it unless they were extremely thirsty and didn't want to wait to test it.

I understand what you're saying, but the system you describe requires a human being to make a choice on EVERYTHING that might ever be presented to them in their lifetime. That's simply too many choices to make, we would be paralyzed by deciding if we liked Red or Blue on a dress, then have to decide if Black would be better and go through the entire color spectrum. Not even for a dress you bought, but even one on someone else everytime we percieved something that requires a choice.

Most of the time, decisions are going to remain unchosen. We'll see the cup of liquid, and not even spend an instant to decide at all. That's not the same thing as deciding not to drink, though. Sometimes we will want to decide, and need more information. There is more than 2 possible ways for a decision to go. "Yes or no" simply don't cover everything.

Foeofthelance
2007-04-02, 11:59 AM
Wait, wait... listen to yourself. You posed the dilemna on a message board for first OotS readers, then to players of D&D for them to read and answer. So now you're telling us that you are the DM's and therefore everything you say about this situation that you've posed is correct because you're the DM?



No, I said that when the original dilemma was posted Kreistor quite clearly said that he was indeed the DM, and that his ruling that the Paladin did not fall should therefore be accepted, despite the SRD saying the Paladin should fall for killing the child, as EE seems to believe that qualifies as an even act. I then admitted that I had claimed similiar powers when I restated the dilemma so that the paladin had used all of his powers working his way down, and the rest of the party had been incapacitated in the course of combat.

Now, does my qualifying as a DM for purposes of ruling on things such as whether the Paladin falls as a result of choice automatically make my decision to slay the child the right one? No it does not. I never said it did. All I did was to ask EE to stop saying the paladin would fall.

Just to be fair, from page 1 iteself...


You're assuming a kinder gentler world where the third option exists. I'm not giving it to you. I'm the DM, and it is not there to find.
then proceed through the original dilemma.


(OK, admittedly, Kreistor still hasn't said whether I can claim to be a DM for this exercise, so feel to free to argue that. But can we at least ecept his rulings on this? It really hasn't been much more then 'No, the paladin doesn't fall!')

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-02, 12:38 PM
No, I said that when the original dilemma was posted Kreistor quite clearly said that he was indeed the DM, and that his ruling that the Paladin did not fall should therefore be accepted, despite the SRD saying the Paladin should fall for killing the child, as EE seems to believe that qualifies as an even act. I then admitted that I had claimed similiar powers when I restated the dilemma so that the paladin had used all of his powers working his way down, and the rest of the party had been incapacitated in the course of combat.

Now, does my qualifying as a DM for purposes of ruling on things such as whether the Paladin falls as a result of choice automatically make my decision to slay the child the right one? No it does not. I never said it did. All I did was to ask EE to stop saying the paladin would fall.

...

(OK, admittedly, Kreistor still hasn't said whether I can claim to be a DM for this exercise, so feel to free to argue that. But can we at least ecept his rulings on this? It really hasn't been much more then 'No, the paladin doesn't fall!')

I'll admit that Kreistor was the DM in this case, but Rule 0 doesn't make him right. It can make the DM tyrannical and closeminded, but Rule 0 doesn't make him correct in his interpretation of RAW. This is about whether it is correct to make the Paladin fall. By RAW, the Paladin falls for commiting a willing Evil act, always. In Kreister-verse, the Paladin doesn't fall for certain willing Evil acts depending on the circumstances but Kreistor-verse is a houserule apart from the RAW.

RAW is the only gold standard we have to discuss this, as I have no idea what special houserules you may/may not have for your games. Maybe you've houseruled away the Paladin CoC and all alignment restrictions. It's very valid to do this, as alignment is a somewhat difficult to understand and often faulty mechanic. But it's RAW so you have to include it in your discussions of D&D rule situations involving alignment oriented classes.

So as much as it annoys you, I think that if what EE said was that 'By RAW, the Paladin falls,' then EE is right. Unless you disagree that killing an innocent child is Evil, I suppose.

Roland St. Jude
2007-04-02, 01:16 PM
Sheriff of Moddingham: This is the one and only warning for this thread. If there are any further flames or discussions of real world religion or politics, I'll be shutting the thread down. Please obey the Rules of Posting. Thank you.

Foeofthelance
2007-04-02, 02:23 PM
No, EE is quite correct that the paladin falls by the Rules as Written. The problem I had with that is that he insisted that the choice was a form of railroading. If the Paladin was doomed to fall by either choice, I would agree with him, then it would be railroading. But it was stated that the Paladin woudln't fall, so as to prevent railroading.

Think of it as presented in this scene.

DM> So you've managed to make your way to the bottom of the pit, just as the summoning begins. The rest of your party is unconcious but safe for the moment, as you are sure that you have slain all of the cultists. Unfortunately the battle down was so severe that you've used up all of your healing and protection abilities. All you have left is that one use of Detect Evil, right?

Player> Yeah, that's it. And I'm out of arrows too.

DM> Ok. You see the vessel for the demon to inhabit, a squalling two year old boy tied down to the altar. You can feel the demon's aura as it moves to this plane to inhabit it's host. Remember, the scrolls you found on the cult's High Priest were fairly clear this is a rather powerful demon, and that it's first act will be to devour the souls of all with in ten miles, starting with the child's.

PC> OOC, how powerful is this thing really?

DM> It doesn't really have a CR, though the module says I can sub in a Balor if needs be.

PC> That's a bit extreme for a level 9 module isn't it?

DM> They say its meant as a plot hook. If you let it manifest I guess you can run away and try and level up.

PC> Yeah, ok. That makes sense. Well, what are my options?

DM> Well, you can of course let it manifest. Or you can kill the child, that would interrupt the process. Um, is the sword adamantine?

PC> Mine? No, it's the silver one. I left the admantine back at the inn.

DM> Ah, ok then. Unfortunatley the ritual markings are cast in stone, and you can't do enough damage to break them in the next two rounds. You don't have protection from evil right?

PC> Right, I used my last one during the fight with the Eryines on the level above us.

DM> Ok, so then you can't cast it around the child to prevent the posession. I guess all you can do is kill the child or run.

PC> But the child is innocent. If I kill him then I would fall wouldn't I?

DM> Well, yeah, but that seems a bit unfair. Let's say your god understands you've got to make a nasty choice, to either kill the child or let the demon loose. So while you're trying to make your decision you hear your god's voice in your head, "Do not fear my champion. Fate has given you an ugly choice, but I shall stand by you no matter which path you take." Basically he's saying you won't fall for your next action.

PC> But the rules say I would fall.

DM> Come one man, it's just a story. It'd be a bit of a bummer if you fell for choosing to save the world, so you won't.

PC> But the rules say I would fall.

DM> Yeah, but that wouldn't be fair to you in this case, so for the moment I'm suspending them. I'm not saying you can start killing children left and right, but just this once if you choose.

PC> But the rules man, the rules!

Just seems a bit silly doesn't it?

Jayabalard
2007-04-02, 02:47 PM
That's seems like a pretty railroaded scenario to me. And I'm not sure who you're claiming is silly, the PC or the DM... perhaps both?

Foeofthelance
2007-04-02, 02:53 PM
Actually in that case it really is a bit of both, and the module I used as an example probably wasn't a very good one, and fortunately it doesn't exist outside of my warped and twisted brain.

The point I was trying to make is that when someone refuses something on the basis of percieved consequence, then has said consequence removed, and continues to refuse based on the removed consequence, I find it silly.

Maybe my definition of being railroaded is different then the majority of the boards. The dilemma I posted has the paladin being out of options as a result of player action, and combat. Perhaps if some on can tell why they see it as railroading?

Jayabalard
2007-04-02, 03:05 PM
it's kind of a ridiculous way of removing the consequences, by DM fiat alone, and so it's understandable that a player is going to disagree, especially since that makes the situation all the more railroaded. If it wasn't such an absurd way of removing the consequences it might actually make that point.

It's railroading because you've made up both sides of the situation: both the scenario, and the "players" actions up to this point were completely controlled by the DM (you). From an outside perspective, there's no difference between that and handing a player the situation by DM fiat.

It really wasn't the result of player action, certainly not of the "player" that you're asking to resolve the situation.

Foeofthelance
2007-04-02, 03:46 PM
Ok, now that I can understand. The reason I don't view it as railroading is because I have seen and been in situations such as that, where the DM had one thing planned, and as a result of the their own actions the characters weren't able to access their full range of choices.

The reason I don't think of it as railroading is that the situation I posted assumes that it was player action that has removed the Paladin's abilities, not the DM. ("No, I used my last Protect against the Eryines.") But how else to set up the dilemma? If the dilemma as written didn't include a tough night of battling for the party, and the Paladin was then left what ever abilities he wanted, there wouldn't be a dilemma. If there still was, then I would agree that it was railroading.

I guess the biggest problem with the dilemma is that in order to be posted it has to be assumed that the game up until then had been played in a certain manner. Unfortunately, the only solution I can see to test it would be to run such a campaign, but either side would be biased, as the DM would have to continuously bombard the party with threats that would drain the paladin of his abilities as well as knock out, if not kill, the rest of the party members. The Party members on the other hand, would be doing everything they could to survive (duh) as well as verything they could do to save the paladins abilities.

Jayabalard
2007-04-02, 04:33 PM
other railroading:
-The paladin knows that killing the child will stop the demon, somehow, from a source that's beyond question, but didn't know to save a protection from evil. By suspender of belief just can't cover that.
-What sort of idiot leaves a adamantium sword in an inn? That's just asking for it to get stolen. We're not talking modern day hotels, there might not even be locks on the inn doors...
-What sort of idiots use up all of their ranged fighting options before getting to the final fight? What's my party wizard doing during this, sitting on his hands? Great, out of arrows, AND he's out of all ranged spells? What sort of idiot gods entrusted the fate of the world to us?

plus the stuff I listed above and the bit where the DM makes up the absurd scenario to push his personal ideas of morality in the first place.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-02, 04:38 PM
Ok, now that I can understand. The reason I don't view it as railroading is because I have seen and been in situations such as that, where the DM had one thing planned, and as a result of the their own actions the characters weren't able to access their full range of choices.

The reason I don't think of it as railroading is that the situation I posted assumes that it was player action that has removed the Paladin's abilities, not the DM. ("No, I used my last Protect against the Eryines.") But how else to set up the dilemma? If the dilemma as written didn't include a tough night of battling for the party, and the Paladin was then left what ever abilities he wanted, there wouldn't be a dilemma. If there still was, then I would agree that it was railroading.

I guess the biggest problem with the dilemma is that in order to be posted it has to be assumed that the game up until then had been played in a certain manner. Unfortunately, the only solution I can see to test it would be to run such a campaign, but either side would be biased, as the DM would have to continuously bombard the party with threats that would drain the paladin of his abilities as well as knock out, if not kill, the rest of the party members. The Party members on the other hand, would be doing everything they could to survive (duh) as well as verything they could do to save the paladins abilities.

I know, but I kinda tend to think (or would like to think) that a Paladin wouldn't include killing an innocent child on his/her list of possible responses to any given situation. Instead of arguing the rules, maybe ask the DM "Umm.. guy? I'm a Paladin. We don't kill kids as a general rule. That's what demons do, not Paladins. Why are you asking me to do that now?" And a clever Paladin would just cut the restraints and free the child.

The whole thing is so contrived it's not realistically possible. It reeks of the fallacy of the excluded middle and the DM deliberately wanting that kid dead at the Paladins hand, for whatever story reason. It is story railroading, which is not a always a bad thing, but can be a sign of poor DMing. I mean, if you have to invoke a characters God to tell them that they won't suffer a metagame consequence for the railroaded action, that's a bad sign.

Kreistor
2007-04-02, 08:31 PM
Suppose in Paladin/baby scenario it was a trick and what is required to complete the ritual is not the sacrifice of the baby, but the killing of the baby by the Paladin. Would that change your opinion that killing the baby is the good option?

No, it does not. The paladin is acting to the best of his knowledge. That his knowledge is incorrect is not his fault (unless he acted like Miko and failed to seek all possible knowledge, but my description suggests the paladin did everything in his power to learn everything he could).

Your example falls back to my example of the Paladin in the Trianing Yard. He hits teh Dummy and discoveres there was a child inside and he's just killed it. In both your example and mine, the Paladin kills without knowing all the facts.

Does it matter that the paladin killing the child willingly has had the truth of the ritual hidden from him? Does it matter that the other was unaware of the child in the dummy?


Please stop repeating that lie. I never have to do evil, though it is inevitable that like anyone who is not a saint I will sometimes do evil. That does not "hand my soul to evil".

Do you contend that other people can not manipulate you such that you can be placed in a position where you must make a decision?



I answer yes to both. Intent does matter. You are not responsible for the fraud others commit.

There is a difference between results that you did not foresee and results others have manipulated to ensure your failure. Unforeseen results based on your actions are your responsibility, but the results in your example are manipulated by others, not unforeseen. That makes the results their responsiblity, not yours. You were not complicit in the deception, and not guilty of it.


That does not follow. The situation can not possibly arrive accidentally, since to convince the Paladin in character that everthing is as it seems and there is no doubt would require a lot of work. Especially in a Noir setting where things are often not what they seem and deceptions are common.

Players do not always act predictably. They sometimes take paths unforeseen. As such, a player can, through no intent, place himself into a problem situation. If you haven't seen that happen in your campaigns, then you're luckier than me and my DM's when I played.

Film Noir is inherently dangerous to paladins. Noir requires that heroes work with unsavory and evil characters, which places good characters in morally ambiguous situations. Because the campaign is Noir, a paladin (which i don't currently have in the party) has to be very careful not to overreact. Noir is gray, not black and white.


Morally difficult situation can arise, but not like the one presented. The elimination of doubt could not happen without deliberate effort.

The Paladin's Dilemma is an extreme designed to make the situation easy to conceptualize. Lesser dilemmas where all options seem superficially evil are more difficult to debate, but far more common.


Good does not come down to how smart you are, though wisdom does make it easier to avoid evil. But it is quite possible to see only 2 options which are both evil, particularly if some evil person is trying to hide the good option. If you can't see a good option then doing the lesser evil but regretting it and repenting afterwards is a good way to act.
But a Paladin tries to live to a higher standard, and should fall for doing the lesser evil act. He would remain Good and be able to atone, but a SRD Paladin should fall (and that is what is generally meant by Paladin with the context of these threads).

You too? Look, this hasn't been about just the paladin for a very long time, and it hasn't been about the SRD alone. If you want to view page 104 and 105 as absolute rules, go ahead. If you do, then yes the paladin falls.

I do not. I view them as guidelines, thus the suggestion that killing any innocent life in any situation is evil is false.

Kreistor
2007-04-02, 08:59 PM
it's kind of a ridiculous way of removing the consequences, by DM fiat alone,

Uhm... what is it that Dm's do, besides design problems for you to overcome? Do you think we just magically create situations without considering means of overcoming them? We create the situations and examine them to ensure the options we need are present for you to overcome.

Removing them by DM fiat? No, I'm putting the options that are there by DM fiat.

When designing a ritual for the evil cultists, there are no rules by which I must design. If you need proof of that, crack open the Return ot the Temple of Elemental Evil and see what Monte Cook put in there. Not the dungeon crawl version most people play, but the advanced version.

So, when creating a ritual that the evil cultists are performing, it is up to me to define all the parameters of that ritual. I define how the ritual is perfomred, where the weak points are, and all the rest of it. It's all me, or for you it's your DM. That's not railroading, that's basic design.

That I didn't place a joy-happy, kind-nice alternative for stopping the ritual is my perogative, not railroading, any more than it's not railroading when I do provide a happy-nice option.

By your definition, I'm railroading any time I'm not providing an option you want to perform. I'm sorry, but I don't know people that well. I don't know when an option I view as acceptable is unacceptable to them.

That has come up in game. People assumed that I thought like them on certain subjects they considered to be verbotten. We all have our buttons that we hide from others. And now I have disappointed a player and a friend.

So, no, if your definitions of railroading were true, all DnD is railroading because I design all of the modules my players participate in.

Foeofthelance
2007-04-02, 11:58 PM
other railroading:
-The paladin knows that killing the child will stop the demon, somehow, from a source that's beyond question, but didn't know to save a protection from evil. By suspender of belief just can't cover that.
-What sort of idiot leaves a adamantium sword in an inn? That's just asking for it to get stolen. We're not talking modern day hotels, there might not even be locks on the inn doors...
-What sort of idiots use up all of their ranged fighting options before getting to the final fight? What's my party wizard doing during this, sitting on his hands? Great, out of arrows, AND he's out of all ranged spells? What sort of idiot gods entrusted the fate of the world to us?


Point the First- The paladin could have choosen to save the ability, but instead chose to use it in a more immediate situation, the fight with the Eryines. Remember, long time battling. Tough choices were made, and it could be expected that some one else was going to survive as well, though this turns out not to be the case.

Point the Second- Ok, suggesting the paladine has an adamatine sword was probably just stupidity on my case, as I think it was also said he had a silver one. Am I allowed to retcon that, with an excuse of tiredness? and not get accused of railroading? Please?

Point the Third- Even if you did have a few arrows (that was mainly for extra flavor for showing it had been a tough night's fighting) would it really matter? You'd still be fighting a demon on your own. The party's mage, and cleric, and rogue, and the other two fighters, all got knocked out earlier, and you ran out of Lay On Hands to revive them.

Slokkva
2007-04-03, 01:11 AM
The way I see it, you still have at least four valid decisions, possibly more.

A - Decide to drink.
B - Decide not to drink.
C - Make no decision at all.
D - Gather more information.

The third selection by the way is that state that your mind was in before being shown the liquid in the first place and presented with the decision. You can't decide yes or no on a decision you aren't even aware of, after all. The fourth would require putting the liquid in your mouth or testing it in some other way. In either case, a commitment yes/no has not been arrived at yet.

I also disagree with the assertion that someone putting a liquid into their mouth has necessarily decided to drink it. They may just be tasting it, in an effort to gain more information before they do drink it. That's what taste receptors in the mouth are for, after all. If it tasted like a bitter poison, no one is going to choose to drink it, they would spit it out. In fact just from looking at a strange liquid, very few people would automatically swallow it unless they were extremely thirsty and didn't want to wait to test it.

I understand what you're saying, but the system you describe requires a human being to make a choice on EVERYTHING that might ever be presented to them in their lifetime. That's simply too many choices to make, we would be paralyzed by deciding if we liked Red or Blue on a dress, then have to decide if Black would be better and go through the entire color spectrum. Not even for a dress you bought, but even one on someone else everytime we percieved something that requires a choice.

Most of the time, decisions are going to remain unchosen. We'll see the cup of liquid, and not even spend an instant to decide at all. That's not the same thing as deciding not to drink, though. Sometimes we will want to decide, and need more information. There is more than 2 possible ways for a decision to go. "Yes or no" simply don't cover everything.

I can fully agree with everything you just said Tokiko. So through process of elimination I'll prove we are both right.

Given your choices of A through D

Given 4 choices as you stated ( and like I said in the original post, your decision of A and B would be based on what was in the glass)
Since you don't know, you choose option D. You ask the person "What is this?" or taste it to find out. Once you've collected all the information you need you are ready to acknowledge the the binary of "do I drink it" or "do I not drink it." Or you can choose to ignore the binary, and make no decision at all, option C. In which case option C would be the glass was set down, you didn't see it, or didn't think it was for you, and ignored it all together.

But if you choose not to ignore it, such as ooo that taste good I think I'll drink or that is nasty I don't want it, then option C doesn't exist anymore, because in a given situation such as this, once you acknowledge something (in this case a glass with liquid) you can no longer ignore it, so now you have Option A and B, drink it or don't drink it. Once you decide on one or the other, you have just made a binary decision, with no railroading what so ever.
But like I stated earlier, the use of free will allows you to change your mind at any given time. So you can choose to drink all, some, or none at all.

I also strongly agree with the statement you made about the dresses and colors, we would be paralyzed if we had to sit and think about every decision we make. There are other types of decision making processes, all I'm simply trying to do is make people aware that binary choices and situations do exist...I certainly am not trying to advocate that they are the only decisions we ever make.....sorry if I confused you or anyone else with that.

I'll make a quick example of what I mean.

You go to your favorite steakhouse (if you are a vegetarian, please just work with me here)
Server seats you and asks what would you like to drink. Given they have 50 different drinks (beer, tea, water, soda of all sorts) you make an quick decision of tea. (since you've had it before and know you like it)
This is the typical decision making process most people do...it saves time and it requires minimum effort since you don't have to gather information about every option available to you.

You look at the menu, there are tons of choices here, none of which are binary. Again wanting to save time and not gather information about every option, you decide to go with the ribeye steak.
How do you want it cooked?..again you know what you like and ignore all the possible options and choose the one that suits you. For me it would be medium rare...yummy. (currently stationed in Iraq and haven't had a good steak in months...just a little side note)

So now the steak along with the sides you chose arrive.
Now up to this point you still haven't made any "noticable" binary decisions.
Although you've made many I won't go into detail at this time, I just want to finish the scenerio first.

You look at the steak and it looks great!! So you decide to taste it, to see if it tastes as good as it looks.
It taste great too!! You see the condiments sitting on the table...we'll say 4 for the sake of ease....A-1, hot sauce, salt, pepper, mustard.
You say to yourself "I've never tried A-1 on a steak before, I think I'll do it this time." This is an impulse decision, the type of decision where there was no real reason for doing it, you just decided to do it.

So since this is new to you you decide to dab a little on your plate and cut another small piece of steak off and taste it.....it's gross and you don't like it, so you decide not to put any on the rest of your steak.

Now that you've explored many different options the time has come to eat the steak....you have all the information you need, you've chose to not ignore the steak. You know the steak tastes really good...so you decide to eat teh rest of it....you just made a binary decision of "eat the steak" or "not eat the steak"

Other binary decision you made but maybe weren't aware of. When the server went to seat you, he presented you with a table, and you were given a choice. You could either sit at the table, or request another one...that's binary, while waiting for the steak you drank some of your tea....that's binary because you could have drank it or not drank it.

So you see we are both correct. Everyone makes binary decisions all the time and usually aren't aware of the fact we're even making a decision at all...it's instinct. But you are correct there are millions of decisions I could be making at this very point in time, but I choose to ignore them since they aren't relative to anything I'm doing right now.

Hope this helps

Eighth_Seraph
2007-04-03, 01:57 AM
Alright, things seem more level-headed now, and I don't feel dirty for posting here anymore. In any case, I'm in full agreement with Foeofthelance (I need to find an abbreviation for that) and Kreistor. The gods in general should be a wise bunch, and any that have paladins in service know to kind or just or both. Though it may be tempting to call it such, the intercession of the paladin's deity in assuring his servant that he would not fall from either action is not a deus ex machina, it's what happens when you're actively serving a god.

The paladin sees only two options and has no time to search for more; one leads to personal torture and shame, the other to general pain and destruction (as well as personal torture and shame). A Lawful god would be utilitarian enough to understand that killing the child was necessary; just enough to expect indecision. A Good god would understand the difficulty of the situation and would not punish the paladin either way, except by dealing with the consequences of his actions (or lack thereof). Even in-game or OoC, there's no reason at all for the paladin to fall in a situation where only two such alternatives exist.

Jayabalard
2007-04-03, 09:14 AM
Good does not come down to how smart you are, though wisdom does make it easier to avoid evil. But it is quite possible to see only 2 options which are both evil, particularly if some evil person is trying to hide the good option. If you can't see a good option then doing the lesser evil but regretting it and repenting afterwards is a good way to act."But goodness alone is never enough. A hard cold wisdom is required, too, for goodness to accomplish good. Goodness without wisdom invariably accomplishes evil." -V. M. Smith


Uhm... what is it that Dm's do, besides design problems for you to overcome? Do you think we just magically create situations without considering means of overcoming them? We create the situations and examine them to ensure the options we need are present for you to overcome.

Removing them by DM fiat? No, I'm putting the options that are there by DM fiat.Generally we don't change rules for arbitrary reasons. Saying "yes it's evil but this time it's ok" to a paladin is an absurd way to remove the consequences of their actions; there's no fluff or lore reason for that to be the case other than the fact that DM is pushing their own personal morality, ie, removing the consequences by DM fiat alone.

Foeofthelance
2007-04-03, 11:27 AM
Jayabalard, I would agree with you, if it was a blanket ruling. But it is only this one child and it is only this one time. Even then the DM isn't ruling that the Paladin has to kill the child. All the DM is saying that in this case the Paladin may need to make an ugly choice, and the gods understand that saving the world may come at a price, so they won't hold it against him.

It isn't "You must kill the child! You must!" so much as it is "Well, dude bummer. We don't hve the good options left anymore. Don't worry about falling though, the god's have ruled in your favor. No matter what you choose this one time, you get to keep your powers."

Eigth, if it helps, just call me Foe. Its what it gets shortened to on every other forum I post on.

Kreistor
2007-04-03, 11:33 AM
Generally we don't change rules for arbitrary reasons. Saying "yes it's evil but this time it's ok" to a paladin is an absurd way to remove the consequences of their actions; there's no fluff or lore reason for that to be the case other than the fact that DM is pushing their own personal morality, ie, removing the consequences by DM fiat alone.

It's only arbitrary if I don't have a reason. I don't agree with the basic premise of no win situations, and so I therefore have a reason, which makes it non-arbitrary. That you don't like that reason does not mean I lack one.


"But goodness alone is never enough. A hard cold wisdom is required, too, for goodness to accomplish good. Goodness without wisdom invariably accomplishes evil." -V. M. Smith

Grandiose statement... much like a certain grandiose situation.

This statement is not about doing evil: it is about unforeseen consequences. Every act we perform can have repercussions we will never be able to predict. We are responsible for correcting those consequences, in many cases, because we caused them to occur, but does that make us evil for it?

If the cause of those unintended repercussions is due to willfully ignoring the reasonable possibility of those consequences, then yes, our willful ignorance has caused us to do evil. But what if the possibility was not reasonably predictable? A pilot takes up a plane and part of the plane rips away causing peopel to fall to their deaths. The pilot performed the action that caused the death of his passengers, but did the pilot do evil? No, because it was not reasonably predictable.

What, then, if the person performing the action is mentally deficient? Such a person does not understand the world well enough to predict repercussions in the first place. Every action now has unforeseen repercussions: you're declaring this person inherently evil, because they can't avoid repercussions we easily avoid.

Besides, wisdom is not 100%. A wise man doesn't always take the wisest choice. Smith may as well be saying "Goodness invariably accomplishes evil", since no one person can always be perfectly wise in every situation.

Jayabalard
2007-04-03, 11:34 AM
Actually, if it was a blanket ruling at least it would be consistent. In this case, it's good only because the gm says so (rule 0), not because it's consistent with the rules or with the fluff concepts of a paladin.

Foeofthelance
2007-04-03, 11:51 AM
Right, but the only reason the DM is making the ruling is to give the Paladin his full range of options, which have been slowly reduced by the end of the night. The rogue got knocked out here, using X points of Lay on Hands, there were several Mind Control fights, so Circle of Protection got used up protecting the party, etc.

The DM, seeing the Paladin would only be left with one option if he didn't want to fall, when there are only two options left as far as anyone can tell, rules the consequence out so that the Paladin has all of the remaining choices available. Yes, this is contrary to the RAW and SRD, but the DM is trying to give a player some leeway in a bad situation.

Maybe if the rest of the party was there the DM could rule in accordance with the SRD/RAW. If the Paladin had any Circle of Protection left, the ruling wouldn't even be necessary. Yet this is not the case, so the DM does what he sees as necessary for the Player to have all options available, to prevent a TPK, etc. Why is this a bad thing?

Jayabalard
2007-04-03, 11:56 AM
Of course, that doesn't mean that the paladin is going to be willing to take the evil option, even if the GM assures him that it is in fact good (which it's not) and that he won't fall for doing so, does it?

Foeofthelance
2007-04-03, 12:02 PM
No it doesn't. That was the point I was trying to make. The only reason to rule the Paladin won't fall is not to get the paladin to kill the child. If that was the case the DM would say "You have to kill the child" and that would be railroading. The only reason to rule against the Paladin falling was to make sure he had every option available.

EvilElitest
2007-04-06, 01:03 AM
Found a computor, but i only have time for a few posts. Be back tomorrow



EE,

Since you are leaving and by the time you get back this thread will probably be on page 4 or higher, I'm not going to reply in great detail....I'll just say this...believe what you want to, it's your right, but it doesn't make you right.

That statment goes both ways, you also can believe what you want to, but that does not make you right.

But I would like to summarize our "debate" up to this point.

Me: 5+5=10
You: no it doesn't
Me: 5+5=10
You: I don't believe you
Me: 5+5=10
You: I don't believe it does, so there for it doesn't
Me: 5+5=10 you little twerp
You: No it doesn't you egomaniac...leaving on a trip see ya friday
No, just no. Not fair at all and you know this. Because i am not agruing against a fact. This computor does not do links, so i can't check those out, but up until possible now, you have not produced any hard evidience. All you said is that binary situations are possible, based on
(Instert you option here)
And i've said no because not doing somthing isn't and actions. I'm eating some pizza while i reply, but my actions is non "Not inventing a new scientific theory." Its "eating pizza while replying on forum. The argument can't work on the basis you described because
You have not proven your point based on anything other than you option. If i said 5+5 does not = ten, then i would have to show some basis to back that up, as you have a massive amount of evidence to demostrate that yes, five plus five equals ten. But you don't win by just saying i'm wrong and visa versa. So even if you don't use any back up evidence, you have to prove me wrong using logic. For example, say
"Well if you have five gumdrops, and you add five more, what do you get?"
If i say something like
"I refuse to answer that question based on nothing"
or
"Cheese"
I have already lost, becasue apperently i am ether deranged or trying to egg you on.
But if i say
"I don't belive that system works, based on (over complacated mathimatic theory)" then i have stated my argument. But using logic, unless the entire math system as i know it is wrong, you should win by vitue of logic and common sense.
But that is not the case here
Acording to your logic, if i have only two choices "To do" "Or not to do" i have made a binary choice. But I say not, because "Not to do" is not an action in and of itself. That is not agruing to a brick wall, because i have presented my point. Don't color my agrument with something you yourself know is untrue.


Have fun on your trip, maybe we can duke it out when you get back.
And you being 15 doesn't mean I won't take what you say seriously....I take everything everyone says seriously. The only reason I didn't ignore everything you were saying was because I was taking you seriously.
What i was refering to is you blatent disrepect based on my age. While i will admit that my response was far to heated then nessary, i for one am quite offended when faced with

P.S. Is this Scientific enough for you? A study done with humans and animals from the University of Oxford. It discusses binary choices and situations

Behavioral Ecology Advance Access published online on March 3, 2007
Behavioral Ecology, doi:10.1093/beheco/arm005

Choice processes in multialternative decision making
Cynthia Schuck-Paim and Alex Kacelnik
Zoology Department, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, OX1 3PS Oxford, UK

Address correspondence to A. Kacelnik. E-mail: [email protected]

Cynthia Schuck-Paim is now at the Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Sao Paulo, Rua Tucuma 141A. 102, 01455-010 Sao Paulo, SP, Brazil. E-mail: [email protected]
Get back to you on that one

A
bstract

We study how the mechanisms of choice influence preferences when animals face more than 2 alternatives simultaneously. Choice mechanisms can be hierarchical (if alternatives are assigned to categories by their similarity and choice is between categories) or simultaneous (if options enter the choice process individually, each with its own value). The latter, although simpler, can lead to counterintuitive outcomes because expressed preference between options depends not only on the kinds of options present but also on the number of exemplars within each kind, so that decision makers have a higher probability of picking an option of a given class when exemplars in this class are common. Higher preference for commoner options has indeed been shown in humans, and if present in animals, it would affect many choice domains, including prey and mate choice. We studied the problem using starlings making risk-sensitive choices. Subjects chose between a risky option and 1 (in binary choices) or 2 (in trinary choices) fixed options that were identifiable as distinct but were identical in reward rate and had no variance. Preference between the risky and each fixed option was unaltered between binary and trinary contexts, but subjects chose a higher proportion of the fixed kind when this was represented by 2 rather than 1 distinct food sources. This means subjects were objectively risk prone in binary and risk averse in trinary contexts. These results fit accounts based on learning principles, but contradict the expectations of functional models of choice, including risk-sensitivity theory.

Informatio gathered from the following website: http://beheco.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/arm005v1


While i can truly judge because it is out of true context, i am going to make a guess here. I think the writer is refering to animal's tendency to make a situation into a binary one by narrowing down the options to two
I'll give an example
I am going to eat lunch. Just by that statement, i could eat anything in the world
Now i can't drive and live to far away from the nearest food store, so take out a massive amount of options, because i am not willing to steal a car
I don't have any money on me so i can't order pizza
For no apperent reason, i forgot how to good.
We have a black out and i can't use hte micro wave or the toaster.
So, while i could solve any of those problems, i don't want to, so i narrow the options down to
Bread
Ice Cream
Apple
Banna
Pinapple
Cookie
Chicken
Penut butter
Now i am allergeic to Penut butter, so i take that off the list, the banna has gone bad so i take that off the list and i don't like chicken so none of that. While the option to eat those things exists, for my own reasons i choose not to follow it. Now i like cookies and ice cream, but i want to loose weight and i have not eaten dinner yet. So while the option to eat those exists, i choose not to follow though. My sister wishes to eat the pinapple, so while i could, because i want her to be happy and eat it i choose not to. So my options are apple and slice of bread. I have made this situation into a "Binary choice" because i am only willing to consider two options, bread or apple. If i wanted to i could eat others things, or do other things, but i don't want to. I refuse to consider other options, because i don't really have any need two. So i choose apple.


Also here is a link to a 60 page report from 2 men at the University of Wisconsin that deals with Identification of binary choice models with social interactions.

Since you claim binary situations or choices don't exist in the real world...you might find it interesting reading.

http://72.14.253.104/search?q=cache:PomZS10Io5UJ:www.columbia.edu/~mh530/Durlauf.pdf+binary+choice&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=8&gl=us
Get back to you on that.

Edit this later
from
EE

EvilElitest
2007-04-06, 01:14 AM
I can't tell if i am double posting or not, but if i am i assure you i am very sorry indeed.

No, I said that when the original dilemma was posted Kreistor quite clearly said that he was indeed the DM, and that his ruling that the Paladin did not fall should therefore be accepted, despite the SRD saying the Paladin should fall for killing the child, as EE seems to believe that qualifies as an even act. I then admitted that I had claimed similiar powers when I restated the dilemma so that the paladin had used all of his powers working his way down, and the rest of the party had been incapacitated in the course of combat.

1. Seems a bit pushing to claim the title of DM
2. If Kreistor says that he is going against the SRD's ruling on the situations and say that killing an innocent baby is a good act, then he must be ether
A) Following his own aligment system seperate from the SRDs, that he has necelted to tell us about
B) He is simple not following the SRD at all, and so is houseruling, and that is quite irrelvant, because want you house rule in your game is not the same for everyone. I don't play Kreistor's game, and so his house rule is irrelvant to my game. I house rule in my game as well, but i don't make people from other games follow them. For us to ague on equal ground means that i have to be following hte same set of rules.



Now, does my qualifying as a DM for purposes of ruling on things such as whether the Paladin falls as a result of choice automatically make my decision to slay the child the right one? No it does not. I never said it did. All I did was to ask EE to stop saying the paladin would fall.

Just to be fair, from page 1 iteself...


then proceed through the original dilemma.

But the paladin does fall. He falls acording to the aligment system that i presume we are all following. If you are not following it, then you have not informed us of the details of your aligment system


(OK, admittedly, Kreistor still hasn't said whether I can claim to be a DM for this exercise, so feel to free to argue that. But can we at least ecept his rulings on this? It really hasn't been much more then 'No, the paladin doesn't fall!')
But if the paladin does fall, and he would acordoing to the SRD then yes he would not be doing the morally correct thing by a LG stand point.
LG, no
NG, no
CG, mostly no,
LN, yes
N, could be yes
CN, hell yes
LE, yes
NE, Yes
CE, yes
from,
EE

EvilElitest
2007-04-06, 01:29 AM
Possible triple post, quite sorry if so, but i'm pretty sure this is my last one, as i need to leave soon.


No, it does not. The paladin is acting to the best of his knowledge. That his knowledge is incorrect is not his fault (unless he acted like Miko and failed to seek all possible knowledge, but my description suggests the paladin did everything in his power to learn everything he could).

If he is acting to the best of his knowlage, then how does he know that this thing could kill gods. Or for that matter, how does he know that praying will not work. he gets a two percent chance of divine intervention.


Your example falls back to my example of the Paladin in the Trianing Yard. He hits teh Dummy and discoveres there was a child inside and he's just killed it. In both your example and mine, the Paladin kills without knowing all the facts.
Wrong, because the action of stabing a baby is innatly evil, while the action of stabing a dummy is not.


Does it matter that the paladin killing the child willingly has had the truth of the ritual hidden from him? Does it matter that the other was unaware of the child in the dummy?
Two different examples. In the child killing one, the paladin is "aware" that he would kill he kid. his action would kill a baby. No he is not aware that he is in fact attacking a log, but that is besides the point. He is quite aware and willing/knowingly killing a baby. THe other guy has not awarness at all of the situation, he is simply stabbing a pratice dummy and had not idea it is a hidden villager. His action is stabbing a pratice dummy, very hard to call that as an evil act.


You too? Look, this hasn't been about just the paladin for a very long time, and it hasn't been about the SRD alone. If you want to view page 104 and 105 as absolute rules, go ahead. If you do, then yes the paladin falls.

I do not. I view them as guidelines, thus the suggestion that killing any innocent life in any situation is evil is false.
For the first paragraph.
If we are ignoring hte rules as yousee fit, then we have left the area of a real game and are in your own personal game/world where only your word is law. Such a situation, as one might say would be tyranny because you word "IS law" and nothing can ague with that. Because of that, the rules that we are refering to are meanless, as are any agurement we put up against you, but that is only in your own little homebrew, not able to be applied here on this board, where it is expected that we all are following the same rules
For the second paragraph
Good for you, but I and the SRD disagree with you.
from,
EE

Ulzgoroth
2007-04-06, 02:28 AM
Morality discussion. With paladins. Its like a planar binding spell...

With regards to binary choices...Binary choices most assuredly exist:
Kill yourself in the next 5 seconds or not? There's a lot more than two things you can do in that time, but only two answers to the question (well, close enough).
Binary situations...is inadequately defined. There's no situation you can put a human in by any power I can imagine where there are exactly two things they can possibly do. On the other hand, you can (especially with adequate unobtanium) create situations where all choices can be partitioned into two sets where anything in a given set has a similar outcome.

But really, what does it matter? Two choices or twenty, the part that really matters is that given a comprehensive list of choices, regardless of the nature of the individual choices, you can always identify a 'good'/'right'/'best' choice (or concievably set of equally good choices). And taking that choice cannot be 'wrong', because if it is then by our selection all choices are 'wrong' and morality is broken here.

And, because people have said it too many times...where in the PHB is it written that killing an innocent is absolutely always evil? It might be there, but I honestly can't find it.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-06, 02:58 AM
Morality discussion. With paladins. Its like a planar binding spell...

With regards to binary choices...Binary choices most assuredly exist:
Kill yourself in the next 5 seconds or not? There's a lot more than two things you can do in that time, but only two answers to the question (well, close enough).
Binary situations...is inadequately defined. There's no situation you can put a human in by any power I can imagine where there are exactly two things they can possibly do. On the other hand, you can (especially with adequate unobtanium) create situations where all choices can be partitioned into two sets where anything in a given set has a similar outcome.

But really, what does it matter? Two choices or twenty, the part that really matters is that given a comprehensive list of choices, regardless of the nature of the individual choices, you can always identify a 'good'/'right'/'best' choice (or concievably set of equally good choices). And taking that choice cannot be 'wrong', because if it is then by our selection all choices are 'wrong' and morality is broken here.

The point that at issue in this thread was:

(a) Choices can be limited to a specific small set.
(b) Of that set, there would always be a good choice and a bad choice.

Which I disagree with, because it's very closeminded. If you stand at a fork in the road, people will insist that you can only walk left or right.. but there are actually an infinite amount of paths that can be taken.

When you phrase a question in such a way to evoke only two possible answers, you are actually committing the the fallacy of the excluded middle, and bringing in a host of assumptions into your question as well.

"Kill yourself in 5 seconds or not?" assumes that you will be capable of commiting such in 5 seconds. Many people could not do that in 5 seconds, so asking the question is pointless and misleading.

It's also unclear. Do you mean that you will decide to kill yourself in 5 seconds or will you actually kill yourself in 5 seconds? That's more based on syntax than logic, but it does reveal that you're asking mutiple questions at the same time. The answer can be yes or no or both or either.


And, because people have said it too many times...where in the PHB is it written that killing an innocent is absolutely always evil? It might be there, but I honestly can't find it.

pg. 104 Good vs. Evil:


Good characters and creatures protect innocent life. Evil characters or creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit.

Ulzgoroth
2007-04-06, 03:47 AM
The point that at issue in this thread was:

(a) Choices can be limited to a specific small set.
(b) Of that set, there would always be a good choice and a bad choice.

Choices with distinguishable effects can be limited to a small set. They aren't likely to be, but they can be. Because I don't care if it's realistic:
level one, naked half-elf commoner with alertness for their feat and the basic ability array is standing in a room with closing walls (made entirely of force). There's a door open, which leads to an unspecified 'out'. No one else exists, for simplicity, the situation is considered over when the commoner's soul is no longer in the room one way or another, and as soon as they cross the threshold they'll be teleported completely clear and the room sealed. Millions of possible actions probably exist, but whatever they do they ultimately either wind up a thin slime leaking though the open doorway or teleporting out. Maybe, if they try really hard, they can invent some complexity like managing to break a limb before teleporting out, or teleporting out prone instead of standing. Do you consider those meaningful alternatives?

As for (b), well...so long as you can order options (or note them equally good) there has to be one at least as good as any other and one at least as bad as any other (false statement, if the set of options is not closed when projected onto good-bad space. If you really want to go there, I'll haul out set theory books this weekend and try to figure out if that diversion means anything to real people.). If you can't call the 'good as any other' choice good, then there is no valid meaning for good action in this decision space. Likewise for bad action if you can't call the 'bad as any other' choice bad. Supposing that not all actions are equally good, I for one want to be able to speak of good actions and bad actions.

If that didn't make sense to you it's almost certainly my fault.


"Kill yourself in 5 seconds or not?" assumes that you will be capable of commiting such in 5 seconds. Many people could not do that in 5 seconds, so asking the question is pointless and misleading.

It's also unclear. Do you mean that you will decide to kill yourself in 5 seconds or will you actually kill yourself in 5 seconds? That's more based on syntax than logic, but it does reveal that you're asking mutiple questions at the same time. The answer can be yes or no or both or either.

I think I'm pretty generous with syntactic rubber, but I can't stretch it that far. Kill yourself means kill yourself, not decide to or anything else. But it isn't really a choice if only one selection is possible...and, because I stated it in terms of outcomes, you can't actually make the choice proposed with certainty regardless. Oops.

Re-design (and taking out pointless acts of violence): Our subject has at least one free and adequate manipulatory appendage. 'press the button under your hand in the next 5 seconds, or don't?' Yes, I promise that the button can be pushed without difficulty.


pg. 104 Good vs. Evil:
Good characters and creatures protect innocent life. Evil characters or creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit.
Yes, I did see that. But the statement I'm objecting to is negative, not positive. Actions of Evil persons do include killing innocents. Actions of Evil persons also include breathing in many cases. Without equating breathing and killing innocents, the above statement in no way requires that good never debase or destroy innocent life.

And before we try to extrapolate to 'good creatures and characters always protect all innocent life'...that simultaneously eliminates all non-omnipotent good and indicates by analogy that 'evil creatures and characters always debase and destroy all innocent life', so if there's any evil anywhere, we don't need to worry about the innocents anymore. They're gone.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-06, 10:33 AM
Choices with distinguishable effects can be limited to a small set. They aren't likely to be, but they can be. Because I don't care if it's realistic:
level one, naked half-elf commoner with alertness for their feat and the basic ability array is standing in a room with closing walls (made entirely of force). There's a door open, which leads to an unspecified 'out'. No one else exists, for simplicity, the situation is considered over when the commoner's soul is no longer in the room one way or another, and as soon as they cross the threshold they'll be teleported completely clear and the room sealed. Millions of possible actions probably exist, but whatever they do they ultimately either wind up a thin slime leaking though the open doorway or teleporting out. Maybe, if they try really hard, they can invent some complexity like managing to break a limb before teleporting out, or teleporting out prone instead of standing. Do you consider those meaningful alternatives?

If the commoner had a prismatic sphere or anti-magic shell spell cast on them before being placed in the room, the result would be different from either of those two options. There's also a chance that the half elf fails to perceive the exit, eliminating the choice itself. There's always the possibility of a curve ball being thrown or a monkey wrench tossed in the gears.

Yes, you could specify that the half-elf knew the way out, and didn't go in with any spells on them. However, where does it end? Your power to limit the situation is itself limited by the amount of time you want to spend coming up with rules to prevent other options from being exposed or the choice itself being eliminated.


As for (b), well...so long as you can order options (or note them equally good) there has to be one at least as good as any other and one at least as bad as any other (false statement, if the set of options is not closed when projected onto good-bad space. If you really want to go there, I'll haul out set theory books this weekend and try to figure out if that diversion means anything to real people.). If you can't call the 'good as any other' choice good, then there is no valid meaning for good action in this decision space. Likewise for bad action if you can't call the 'bad as any other' choice bad. Supposing that not all actions are equally good, I for one want to be able to speak of good actions and bad actions.

If that didn't make sense to you it's almost certainly my fault.

Actually, I agree with 'as bad/as good' assessment you made, as long as we realize that when you deal with the lesser of two evils, you're still dealing with evil. That you can't find a better, more 'Good' choice doesn't make the best one you found 'Good' in any measure.


I think I'm pretty generous with syntactic rubber, but I can't stretch it that far. Kill yourself means kill yourself, not decide to or anything else. But it isn't really a choice if only one selection is possible...and, because I stated it in terms of outcomes, you can't actually make the choice proposed with certainty regardless. Oops.

Re-design (and taking out pointless acts of violence): Our subject has at least one free and adequate manipulatory appendage. 'press the button under your hand in the next 5 seconds, or don't?' Yes, I promise that the button can be pushed without difficulty.

Even that example has holes in it. How much pressed is pressed? What if you decide to press it, but are prevented in some manner? What if someone else presses it first, does that count as you pressing it, or not?

My point is it's not possible to design a truely binary situation in the real world. Yes, you can make the alternatives horrendously difficult and nearly impossible to imagine or rationalize, but there's always going to be more options out there. The only place this is not true is in 'ideal' enviroments or fields like pure science or mathematics.


Yes, I did see that. But the statement I'm objecting to is negative, not positive. Actions of Evil persons do include killing innocents. Actions of Evil persons also include breathing in many cases. Without equating breathing and killing innocents, the above statement in no way requires that good never debase or destroy innocent life.

And before we try to extrapolate to 'good creatures and characters always protect all innocent life'...that simultaneously eliminates all non-omnipotent good and indicates by analogy that 'evil creatures and characters always debase and destroy all innocent life', so if there's any evil anywhere, we don't need to worry about the innocents anymore. They're gone.

That's pretty black and white thinking. Just because I protect innocent life that doesn't make me 100% 'Good' necessarily, and when I destroy innocent life it's Evil, but it doesn't make me entirely 'Evil.' I also fail to see how the fact that most primarily Evil breathe necessarily means that breathing is somehow Evil, or that destroying innocent life is 'Good' because Good creatures are capable of doing it? You're adding in the 'always' into my quote to make it absolute when it's not. No mortal is perfectly good or perfectly evil so obviously this would make either extreme impossible.

Jayabalard
2007-04-06, 12:44 PM
My point is it's not possible to design a truely binary situation in the real world. Yes, you can make the alternatives horrendously difficult and nearly impossible to imagine or rationalize, but there's always going to be more options out there. The only place this is not true is in 'ideal' enviroments or fields like pure science or mathematics.I think you two are not using words to mean the same thing. You can have binary questions (do you kill your self or not) but that doesn't mean they are binary situations.

Tokiko is talking about binary situations... and stating factually that there are always more than just two options ; Ulzgoroth is talking about binary questions, which is not the same thing.

"Kill yourself in the next 5 seconds or not?" is not a binary situation, but is a binary question: the first answer is one option (kill yourself); the second answer is to select one of the nearly infinite number of other options (any of the ones that include not killing yourself). Nearly infinite options, 2 answers; binary question, but not binary situation.

Does that help clear up the difference?

if not, then you're arguing semantics, and that really deserves it's own thread :smalltongue:

Kreistor
2007-04-06, 02:01 PM
Wrong, because the action of stabing a baby is innatly evil, while the action of stabing a dummy is not.

EE, why are you even trying anymore? We differ on this very statement. I do not agree with it. You treat the section on alignment like rules, and so killing an innocent is inherently evil. I treat them as guidelines, and so killing an innocent is usually evil. We'll never agree on the "always" part. Nothing you can say will ever convince me otherwise.

If all you can do is repeat yourself, we're done.


Good for you, but I and the SRD disagree with you.

Where does it say the Alignment section is a rule? I'm sure you can quote that, if the SRD agrees with you. I'll give you a few quotes from the PHB...

"Alignment is a tool for developing your character's identity. It is not a straitjacket..."

Not a straitjacket means not an absolute, which suggests the entire section is not a flat out rule.

"'Good' implies altruism..."

Implies? Implication is up to interpretation. If it were intended as a list of rules, then it would be written as a list of rules. It's not and it self-referentially acknowledges that fact.

Here's a good relevant one.

"Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life whether for fun or profit."

If these are rules, then if destroying innocent life is not done for "fun or profit", then it's not evil. You see, as a rule, it must be interpreted literally The literal interpretation says that killing innocents for fun or profit is evil. Killing to save other lives is neither fun nor profitable, so therefore it makes the act non-evil. Neither is it good, but in the Paladin's Dilemma, the Paladin has now commited a willful Neutral act, which doesn't cause a Fall.

Anyway, good luck with that proof.

Jayabalard
2007-04-06, 02:58 PM
Actually, the fundamental difference between your point of view and his (and mine) is that you think the ends justify the means; that something evil for the greater good becomes non-evil.

Implies denotes a specific logical construct (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Logical_implication), which is not up for interpretation. "A implies B" is generally written to A => B and is the same logical statement (same truth table) as "if A then B".

The SRD is using implies so the statement can be rewritten: if good then altruism.

Truth table for implication
{table]A|B|A => B
false|false|true
false|true|true
true|false|false
true|true|true
[/table]

Good implies Altruism; good is A, Altruism is B;
assume that the SRD statement is truth
Assume that altruism is false
Therefore good is false
QED.

Alignment is not a straight jacket, I agree... you can start off lawful good, and do evil acts if you want... but you won't remain lawful good for very long, and that isn't really relevant to the discussion. The reason for this is that your actions are not ever determined by your alignment... it's the other way around, your alignment is determined by your actions.

The greater good is both fun and profitable; killing innocent for the greater good is therefore an evil act.

MethodicalMeat
2007-04-06, 03:18 PM
The question is a very difficult one, if I may state the obvious. On the one hand, our paladin, who shall be called Mortimer, can spare the child and plunge the world into darkness for hundred years or so, on the other hand, Morty can plunge his sword into the babe's breast, and avert said hundred years of darkness. So let's look at this from the view point of the gods. The good gods face a conundrum, "Do we punish Mort for the murder of a child, or do we reward him for saving the world form one hundred years of darkness?" There is no obvious answer to this question, the contemplation required to justify or damn the action would take time, time that Morty does not have, so he must make a decision, now. Where I Mort, I would hesitate, then strike the child, knowing full well that I had commited evil, but praying to all the gods that they understood the sacrifice I had forced upon this innocent child, and assuming I was not consumed in a blast of demonic essence (would that the gods would be so kind), I would beg the child's forgiveness, beg like servant on my knees. I seem to have gone on a tangent, and I apologize. I think, that ultimately, one must consider the sheer amount of suffering that would result from not killing the child. The act of refusing to kill the child is inherintly selfish, what right do you have to destroy the lives of an entire world, so that one child might live a seconds longer. Which brings me to my next point, does the child not die, or suffer the same hundred years of darkness as everyone else, if you "spare" him or her?

Ulzgoroth
2007-04-06, 03:27 PM
If the commoner had a prismatic sphere or anti-magic shell spell cast on them before being placed in the room, the result would be different from either of those two options. There's also a chance that the half elf fails to perceive the exit, eliminating the choice itself. There's always the possibility of a curve ball being thrown or a monkey wrench tossed in the gears.

Yes, you could specify that the half-elf knew the way out, and didn't go in with any spells on them. However, where does it end? Your power to limit the situation is itself limited by the amount of time you want to spend coming up with rules to prevent other options from being exposed or the choice itself being eliminated.

It seems to me that when specifying a situation it is not mandatory to list every possible thing that does not happen. Specifying the complete set of things that are the case is sufficient. This situation is completely specified, with the implied addition of standard physics in effect. If there were spell or other effects on the commoner, they would be enumerated in the situation. If there were conditions under which the environment acted in ways contrary to its description, they would be added to the description to make it accurate.


Actually, I agree with 'as bad/as good' assessment you made, as long as we realize that when you deal with the lesser of two evils, you're still dealing with evil. That you can't find a better, more 'Good' choice doesn't make the best one you found 'Good' in any measure.

So you are saying that, having looked at the entire universe of choices and picked one that is at least as good as every other, that choice may be not good? That is, it's possible that a situation exists where absolutely any action you take is wrong?

How could you possibly get any meaning from a system like that? Essentially, your moral judement is throwing up it's hands in disgust and quitting...


Even that example has holes in it. How much pressed is pressed? What if you decide to press it, but are prevented in some manner? What if someone else presses it first, does that count as you pressing it, or not?

My point is it's not possible to design a truely binary situation in the real world. Yes, you can make the alternatives horrendously difficult and nearly impossible to imagine or rationalize, but there's always going to be more options out there. The only place this is not true is in 'ideal' enviroments or fields like pure science or mathematics.

So, actually, with a little cooperation or a little brute force, and a lot of straps, I'm pretty sure it's possible to arrange that you won't do anything at all noticible other than press or not press the button for 5 seconds.

Also, your 'holes' aren't. There are situations arguably within my spec. in which you don't have the intended choice, but I hope you're not saying that the situation I actually described is somehow a theoretical or even practical impossibility.


That's pretty black and white thinking. Just because I protect innocent life that doesn't make me 100% 'Good' necessarily, and when I destroy innocent life it's Evil, but it doesn't make me entirely 'Evil.' I also fail to see how the fact that most primarily Evil breathe necessarily means that breathing is somehow Evil, or that destroying innocent life is 'Good' because Good creatures are capable of doing it? You're adding in the 'always' into my quote to make it absolute when it's not. No mortal is perfectly good or perfectly evil so obviously this would make either extreme impossible.

No, the thinking I'm specifically saying not to attempt to use is pretty black and white. I'm adding 'always' and 'all' because if one reads what is actually written, without those words, it doesn't say that killing innocents is strictly non-good. The sentences you quoted at me are about what the alignments do do. They don't say anything about what they don't.

Likewise, the example of breathing is to point out that 'evil creatures do X' cannot be taken to mean 'good creatures never do X'.

Jayabalard:
Nice invocation of boolean logic, but you need to actually go somewhere with it. Good implies altruism. Check, and so having no altruism impplies not being good. However, killing any given person does not necessarily imply having no altruism (or at the least, you haven't shown that it does), and so the statement presented does not suffice to show what you want.

And I'm rather alarmed that you think the Greater Good is necessarily (or even probably) either fun or profitable for the person supporting it. Considering little things like grisly self-sacrifice have been known to come up in the line of that duty.

Even more alarmed, though, that after going to the trouble of invoking the definition of 'implies', you'd go and claim that the converse of an implication is the same as the implication. Evil implies killing etc. It need not be true that killing etc. implies evil.

Jayabalard
2007-04-06, 03:55 PM
Jayabalard:
Nice invocation of boolean logic, but you need to actually go somewhere with it. Good implies altruism. Check, and so having no altruism impplies not being good. However, killing any given person does not necessarily imply having no altruism (or at the least, you haven't shown that it does), and so the statement presented does not suffice to show what you want. No I think I took it a sufficient distance to show that implies does not mean "open to interpretation", which is all I was really interested in refuting.


Even more alarmed, though, that after going to the trouble of invoking the definition of 'implies', you'd go and claim that the converse of an implication is the same as the implication. Evil implies killing etc. It need not be true that killing etc. implies evil.hmmm; I think you may need to be a little more clear. I took the statement from the SRD (good implies altruism) and presented the contrapositive (not altruism implues not good), not the converse of the statement.

lets look at another one;
-"good implies protecting the innocents."
-Killing is not a member of the set protecting
-so by contrapositive: killing the innocents implies not good.

Kreistor
2007-04-06, 04:09 PM
lets look at another one;
-"good implies protecting the innocents."
-Killing is not a member of the set protecting
-so by contrapositive: killing the innocents implies not good.

If a being is defined as just a physical body, then statement true is true; however, there is also the soul in DnD. The nature of the soul was dealt with in Planescape, and with spells like Raise Dead, so the Soul exists. Which has greater priority -- the soul or the body? If the being is in a state such that killing the body saves the soul, then the soul at least was protected.

Statement 3, however, does not lead to "killing innocents is evil", beause tehre are three alignments, not two. Not Good includes both Neutral and Evil, so though it may not be Good, it is not with certainty an evil act.


Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life whether for fun or profit.

For it to be evil, it must b for malicious or selfish purposes; thus, killing innocents for their own protection or the protection of others is a Neutral act.

Ulzgoroth
2007-04-06, 04:09 PM
No I think I took it a sufficient distance to show that implies does not mean "open to interpretation", which is all I was really interested in refuting. Nor did I try to use it to imply that killing is evil.
So, you didn't actually mean anything by this:

Good implies Altruism; good is A, Altruism is B;
assume that the SRD statement is truth
Assume that altruism is false
Therefore good is false
QED.
I take it? Using 'QED' to mean 'I've proved nothing important!' hurts...


hmmm; I think you may need to be a little more clear. I took the statement from the SRD (good implies altruism) and presented the contrapositive (not altruism implues not good), not the converse of the statement.
I suppose I should have quoted to be clear, that was directed at your last paragraph where (I presume) you converted 'evil implies killing innocents for gain' into 'killing innocents for the greater good implies killing innocents for gain implies evil'.

Somehow defining the greater good as identical to personal gain in the process...

lets look at another one;
-"good implies protecting the innocents."
-Killing is not a member of the set protecting
-so by contrapositive: killing the innocents implies not good.
That's both logically erronious and based on wrong statements.
Logic error:
It is possible to do things that are not 'protecting the innocents' while still protecting the innocents. It's even possible to interact with innocents in ways other than protecting them while still protecting them. Second statement needs to be stronger for the conclusion you want.

Bad assumption:
"good implies protecting the innocents."
By adding 'the', unless we have radically different understandings of that sentence, you've made it the obligation of good to successfully protect every innocent in the world. Poof, good instantly ceases to exist.

Jayabalard
2007-04-06, 04:46 PM
So, you didn't actually mean anything by this:

I take it? Using 'QED' to mean 'I've proved nothing important!' hurts...I'm sorry, is that supposed to be some sort of flame? otherwise I'm not really sure what you're driving at.


I suppose I should have quoted to be clear, that was directed at your last paragraph where (I presume) you converted 'evil implies killing innocents for gain' into 'killing innocents for the greater good implies killing innocents for gain implies evil'.

Somehow defining the greater good as identical to personal gain in the process...the line I converted was "Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit."

neither equivalent nor implication are not the same thing as identical, and I don't believe that I claimed otherwise.


That's both logically erronious and based on wrong statements.
Logic error:
It is possible to do things that are not 'protecting the innocents' while still protecting the innocents. It's even possible to interact with innocents in ways other than protecting them while still protecting them. Second statement needs to be stronger for the conclusion you want.I guess you could claim that killing someone is protecting them, but if so we'll just have to agree to disagree.

Bad assumption:
"good implies protecting the innocents."
By adding 'the', unless we have radically different understandings of that sentence, you've made it the obligation of good to successfully protect every innocent in the world. Poof, good instantly ceases to exist.That's not really assumption, though it was paraphrased; lets go back to the original then if you don't like the simplified paraphrased version: "Good characters and creatures protect innocent life."

rewording into a implication statement: "Good character and/or creature" implies that you do "protect innocent life."

"not killing" is a subset of "protect"

by substitution: "Good characters and creatures do not kill innocent life."

by substitution: "Good character and/or creature" implies that you do "not kill innocent life."

contrapositive: if you do not "not kill innocent life." then you are not a "Good character and/or creature"

definition of logical not: if you do "kill innocent life." then you are not a "Good character and/or creature"

Kreistor
2007-04-06, 04:54 PM
definition of logical not: if you do "kill innocent life." then you are not a "Good character and/or creature"

However, the Alignment description tells us that alignments are not that restrictive. A Good character can be greedy, or periodically do evil acts, and still be Good.

Alignment is not a straitjecket, which makes your "logical not" false.

EvilElitest
2007-04-06, 05:21 PM
I'll be back for good around 8:00 i warrent.


EE, why are you even trying anymore? We differ on this very statement. I do not agree with it.

Why am i trying? Because i don't bend to your will and have no need or reason not to. This topic was put onto a thread, and the debeat keeps going. Just because you think your right, does not make it so. Visa versa to me. So while this aligment system of intent over actions work in your game fine, but you did not make D&D, and that is what i assume we are talking about here. You don't agree wtih me, good for you but i and the vast majoraty of this board don't play in your game.



You treat the section on alignment like rules, and so killing an innocent is inherently evil. I treat them as guidelines, and so killing an innocent is usually evil. We'll never agree on the "always" part. Nothing you can say will ever convince me otherwise.
Good for you. I don't need to convience you in your games, but in any game that follows the SRD then yes, your wrong. Maybe not in the games your DM, but as i said, you did not write the PHB.


If all you can do is repeat yourself, we're done.
Ignoring a point does not make it go away.


"Alignment is a tool for developing your character's identity. It is not a straitjacket..."

Not a straitjacket means not an absolute, which suggests the entire section is not a flat out rule.
No that is saying that players have a certain amount of flexabilty when playing their aligment, as long as they stick to their aligment. So Roy does not have to be the "perfect" LG character, but he still has to be LG. A LN character does not have to follow every single law he ever sees, but he must follow a certain set of laws/code and act in an extreamly lawful manner. If he does not do so, then he is apperently not Lawful.


"'Good' implies altruism..."

Implies? Implication is up to interpretation. If it were intended as a list of rules, then it would be written as a list of rules. It's not and it self-referentially acknowledges that fact.
That means that alrtuism is mostly (99% of the time) good in and of itself. A good person doesn ot need to act so all the time, and a evil person can act so but for selfish reasons, but the action is good.


Here's a good relevant one.

"Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life whether for fun or profit."[


If these are rules, then if destroying innocent life is not done for "fun or profit", then it's not evil. You see, as a rule, it must be interpreted literally The literal interpretation says that killing innocents for fun or profit is evil. Killing to save other lives is neither fun nor profitable, so therefore it makes the act non-evil. Neither is it good, but in the Paladin's Dilemma, the Paladin has now commited a willful Neutral act, which doesn't cause a Fall.
End's justifies the means is not good. Neutral maybe, but not good. A truly evil person would kill innocent for fun or profit, but killing hte innocent is an evil act. The paladin would not be evil, but would fall, as paladins are not allowed to commit evil acts. Is killing innocents evil? i can't belive you are really asking that. If you really really insiste i will resort to obtaining a quote from the PHB or the SRD, but i don't want to go there. I would much rather settle this is a diplomatic manner, but if you insist i will do so.
Also, while killing an innocent because you want to pervent something, that is killing for profit. You kill the innocent and the your world is "Saved" and you don't have to restor to finding another way. Hence profit. You gained somthing and had to kill for it. Not personal profit but proftic note hte less


Anyway, good luck with that proof.
Saying that you are right and i am wrong is not proof.


However, the Alignment description tells us that alignments are not that restrictive. A Good character can be greedy, or periodically do evil acts, and still be Good.

Alignment is not a straitjecket, which makes your "logical not" false.
wrong, becasue that defeats the purpose of a aligment. If you run a game where anyone can do any action, then yes, not rules for morals. But 3.5 does not do that.
Aligment not being a straitjacket referes to the fact that a good guy can be greedy but will not commit evil on that greed. A good person can never periodically commit evil acts.
George the rouge is CG. He loots his enemie's bodies, he steals from the main villian's treasurary, and he does not give money to chairaty. I presume he does many good actions as well because he keeps his aligment, but he commits not evil acts, hence he is not evil.

from,
EE

Jayabalard
2007-04-06, 05:28 PM
However, the Alignment description tells us that alignments are not that restrictive. A Good character can be greedy, or periodically do evil acts, and still be Good.

Alignment is not a straitjecket, which makes your "logical not" false.Fallacious logic; I did not claim any restriction on behavior, ever. Simply that if you do kill innocents, you are not doing good, and not a good person.

However, the Alignment description tells us that alignments are not that restrictive. True statement: Alignment puts no restrictions on behavior whatsoever.

A good character can act in a greedy fashion, or periodically do evil acts. True statement

and still be good. Not a true statement. A person who does evil does not remain good for very long; their alignment changes to reflect the person that they are, not the person that they profess to be, or even the person that they aspire to be.

Alignment is not a straitjacket. True statement: It can't be a straitjacket, since it has absolutely no control over your character's actions in any way whatsoever. Alignment is a reflection of your actions, not the other way around.

Ulzgoroth
2007-04-06, 05:29 PM
the line I converted was "Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit."

neither equivalent nor implication are not the same thing as identical, and I don't believe that I claimed otherwise.
Thank you for copying the line, but do you not see that to derive what you did you have to assume the converse? While it's not something I'd say in anything other than raw RAW logic, evil -> (debase or destroy innocent life for fun or profit) does not actually imply (debase or destroy innocent life for fun or profit) -> evil.

I guess you could claim that killing someone is protecting them, but if so we'll just have to agree to disagree.
Semantic quibble on my part, maybe. 'protect innocents' doesn't mean non-protection forms of interaction aren't allowable. You can potentially both protect someone and kill them, though obviously not at the same time (unless you're somehow protecting them by killing them, odd but not unimaginable.).

That's not really assumption, though it was paraphrased; lets go back to the original then if you don't like the simplified paraphrased version: "Good characters and creatures protect innocent life."

rewording into a implication statement: "Good character and/or creature" implies that you do "protect innocent life."

"not killing" is a subset of "protect"

by substitution: "Good characters and creatures do not kill innocent life."

by substitution: "Good character and/or creature" implies that you do "not kill innocent life."

contrapositive: if you do not "not kill innocent life." then you are not a "Good character and/or creature"

definition of logical not: if you do "kill innocent life." then you are not a "Good character and/or creature"
So, you are using the definition I thought. Consider. 'Protect innocent life' can mean anything from always protect every innocent in the multiverse to protect one innocent once (though you wouldn't usually use it at the bottom end). Whereas '...creatures do not kill...' means 'never kills any', always. For your substitution to be sound, you have to be using 'protect innocent life' to mean 'always protect all innocent life'. Which is impossible for sub-deities.


That means that alrtuism is mostly (99% of the time) good in and of itself. A good person doesn ot need to act so all the time, and a evil person can act so but for selfish reasons, but the action is good.
This is not compatible with any meaning of the word 'implies' that I'm aware of. That's something more akin to 'altruism usually implies good', which is very much not what they said.

Is killing innocents evil? i can't belive you are really asking that. If you really really insiste i will resort to obtaining a quote from the PHB or the SRD, but i don't want to go there. I would much rather settle this is a diplomatic manner, but if you insist i will do so.
Please do, I specifically asked for one. I am currently not convinced that the PHB actually says anything of the kind.

Jayabalard
2007-04-06, 05:43 PM
Thank you for copying the line, but do you not see that to derive what you did you have to assume the converse? While it's not something I'd say in anything other than raw RAW logic, evil -> (debase or destroy innocent life for fun or profit) does not actually imply (debase or destroy innocent life for fun or profit) -> evil.Sorry, but I still don't have any what you're talking about... Perhaps if you could quote it, so that I have some idea what you're referencing?

Kreistor
2007-04-06, 06:09 PM
Fallacious logic; I did not claim any restriction on behavior, ever. Simply that if you do kill innocents, you are not doing good, and not a good person.

Jay, you are mixing and matching your "good character" definitions to suit your convenience. There are two definitions,,,

1. Good character -- a character wiht the Good alignment type
2. Good character -- a character that is performing a good act

For instance, Roy is type lawful good and therefore is a good character.
and
Belkar saved Hinjo's life which was a good act so he was a good character at the time.

You begin with the statement "Good characters and creatures do not kill innocent life." This quote comes from the PHB Good and Evil section, so the definiiton for this is "good character" is Definition 1.

In thi series...

rewording into a implication statement: "Good character and/or creature" implies that you do "protect innocent life."

"not killing" is a subset of "protect"

by substitution: "Good characters and creatures do not kill innocent life."

by substitution: "Good character and/or creature" implies that you do "not kill innocent life."

contrapositive: if you do not "not kill innocent life." then you are not a "Good character and/or creature"
results in

definition of logical not: if you do "kill innocent life." then you are not a "Good character and/or creature"

But, because you began with Definition 1, you retain definition 1 for the final statement.

[removed a statement related to a quote... I don't need that quote because Jay already recognizes it. Alignments are not absolutes: a lawful good character can have a greedy streak, for instance... PHB pg 103]

Your counter-argument above conveniently switches to definition 2, as if your progression had somehow conveinently switched from proving something related to Definition 1 had also proven the same for Definition 2. No: your progression begins and ends with definition 1, and has no relevance to definition 2.

The PHB denies your "logical not" at its face through my quote above. I am not, and never was, referencing definition 2. Please retain consistency with your definitions.

Kreistor
2007-04-06, 06:20 PM
End's justifies the means is not good. Neutral maybe, but not good. A truly evil person would kill innocent for fun or profit, but killing hte innocent is an evil act.

Okay, let's try this again...


Good characters and creatures protect innocent life. Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit.

There are three states of alignment. Neutral is not mentioned above. Sentence 1 says that not protecting innocnet life is not good. Sentence 2 says that destroying innocent life for fun or profit is evil. This leaves for neutral the destruction of innocent life tha is not for fun or profit.

The Paladin in the dilemma does not gain by killing the child, and he does not have fun doing it; therefore, it does not fall under the limitations of destroying innocent life in setence 2. This makes the act neutral, not evil; therefore, the paladin does not fall since the paladin can perform neutral acts at will.

You have been defining evil as "not good" and relying entirely on sentence 1 to prove the act of killing the child is evil. There are two sentences peraining to treatment of innocents, not one. You have been ignoring the second.

If these are rules, then you can't ignore sentence 2.

Ulzgoroth
2007-04-06, 07:19 PM
Sorry, but I still don't have any what you're talking about... Perhaps if you could quote it, so that I have some idea what you're referencing?



The greater good is both fun and profitable; killing innocent for the greater good is therefore an evil act.
This is what I was originally referring to.



Thank you for copying the line, but do you not see that to derive what you did you have to assume the converse? While it's not something I'd say in anything other than raw RAW logic, evil -> (debase or destroy innocent life for fun or profit) does not actually imply (debase or destroy innocent life for fun or profit) -> evil.
"Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit." was the helpful quote you presented. Though it's not a quote from PHB, as far as I can tell...

In any case, the logical statement form of this sentence {evil -> (debase or destroy innocent life for fun or profit)} cannot possibly be used to prove that someone must be evil. If it's actually in the rules, it can only prove that someone isn't evil.

Kreistor
2007-04-06, 08:19 PM
"Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit." was the helpful quote you presented. Though it's not a quote from PHB, as far as I can tell...

It is the sentence immediately after "Good characters... protect innocent life." Pg 104, second sentence after the "Good vs. Evil" heading.

EvilElitest
2007-04-06, 08:21 PM
Okay, let's try this again...

Good characters and creatures protect innocent life. Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit.

There are three states of alignment. Neutral is not mentioned above. Sentence 1 says that not protecting innocnet life is not good. Sentence 2 says that destroying innocent life for fun or profit is evil. This leaves for neutral the destruction of innocent life tha is not for fun or profit.

Yes the first sentence does say that not protecting innocents is not good. But then, by killing the baby, are you not protecting its innocent life? Just by the by. Seems mighty flip floppy to me. And so ends don't justify the means. And that statment ignores neutral because it is part of the "Good vs. Evil" section. Later it covers it
"People who are neutral with respect to good and evil have compunctions against killling the innocent but lack the commitment to make sacrifices to protect or help others."
Sounds more like our paladin in moralaity, but even so he still kills an innocent, and no where, and i repeat no where does it say that killing an innocent is not evil.


The Paladin in the dilemma does not gain by killing the child, and he does not have fun doing it; therefore, it does not fall under the limitations of destroying innocent life in setence 2. This makes the act neutral, not evil; therefore, the paladin does not fall since the paladin can perform neutral acts at will.
While i would think that hte paladin would noth ave fun doing it, he would profit for it, as i mentioned before.


You have been defining evil as "not good" and relying entirely on sentence 1 to prove the act of killing the child is evil. There are two sentences peraining to treatment of innocents, not one. You have been ignoring the second.

If these are rules, then you can't ignore sentence 2.
(sign). I'll ask you again not to say things you yourself know are not true. I have never said that evil is "Not good". I have said that that killing an innocent is in and of itself evil. Killing a goblin before he kills an innocent villager is not evil because no the goblin is not innocent. A neutral person could very well kill hte baby, but i would like to point out that there is not a neutral paladin. Under the same note, it would still be an evil act. If a paladin, who can't not, i repeat can not commit evil then he would fall for his crime. If the paladin, what was his name, mortamir? Anyways, if the paladin thought it was nessary to commit evil to protect good, then he kill hte baby. And he would fall. And in falling, he has proven himself unable to hold himself up to the duty of a paladin, aka not commit evil. Now i would imagine he could atone. His aligment is still LG i would imagine but his powers are gone. Just atone, stop trying to wiggle out of your consiquinces.
from,
EE

Counterpower
2007-04-06, 08:56 PM
One quick point I want to make? Basing the entire definitions of two opposing moral viewpoints on two sentences probably is a bad idea.

Kreistor
2007-04-06, 09:01 PM
Sounds more like our paladin in moralaity, but even so he still kills an innocent, and no where, and i repeat no where does it say that killing an innocent is not evil.

This is proof? Lack of proof of the contrary is not proof of the positive. You're merely stating that you can't prove your point, but since I can't prove the opposite to your satidfaction, then your statement must be true.

Sorry, but you haven't disproven anything.


While i would think that hte paladin would noth ave fun doing it, he would profit for it, as i mentioned before.

Dude, you write a lot of text when you get going. If you said something, please do as I do and quote yourself if you claim to have said something. I don't have time to re-read everything, but you should already know where it is, if you really did say it.


I have said that that killing an innocent is in and of itself evil.

But the way you prove that using the PHB is solely with the "Good characters... protect innocent life" sentence.


A neutral person could very well kill hte baby, but i would like to point out that there is not a neutral paladin.

PHB pg 103 "A lawful good character may have a greedy streak that occasionally tempts to take something or hoard something he has, even if that's not lawful or good behavior. ... A good character can lose his temper..."

Not only can the paladin perform a neutral act and remain lawful good, but his code requires a willful evil act (not willful non-good act) to cause him to Fall. If killing the child is a neutral act, even if willful, the paladin cannot Fall. It is not required of a character to always be consistent with his alignment, and it is not disallowed to have a bad habit that is outside the alignment, so long as it is not excessively prevalent.

The difference with the paladin is only which bad habits are allowable. He cannot grossly violate the Code (which insludes acting honorably), but how far is a gross violation? If he cheats at cards, that's arguably not a gross violation, since the only harm done is a little money stolen. The problem with using the word "gross" is that it is up to individual interpretation. One DM may say something is gross where another would say it is slight. But, the word gross does demand that there is leeway. The paladin can have bad habits, with the DM the utimate judge of how severe that habit can be before it becomes a problem.

EvilElitest
2007-04-06, 09:26 PM
This is proof? Lack of proof of the contrary is not proof of the positive. You're merely stating that you can't prove your point, but since I can't prove the opposite to your satidfaction, then your statement must be true.

Sorry missed. I have stated that the mindset is LN, the action is evil, Also if you are talking about my proof, i think you got the wrong quote. This statement was about Intent vs. Action, but if you insist. Good means protecting innocents. The baby is innocent. Killing the baby is evil. You have yet to disprove that and prove that killing innocents is not only not evil, but good. Also my statment is that it is closer to the rules disribed. I don't like only using two sentences out of context, but if you insist. Good is protecting innocents, aka not hurting innocents. So as my statment that killing innocents can't be good is closer than yours.


Sorry, but you haven't disproven anything.
Or you refuse to acknolage it.


Dude, you write a lot of text when you get going. If you said something, please do as I do and quote yourself if you claim to have said something. I don't have time to re-read everything, but you should already know where it is, if you really did say it.
Fine, though i find that you know, reading the thread is tends to bring better results.

Also, while killing an innocent because you want to pervent something, that is killing for profit. You kill the innocent and the your world is "Saved" and you don't have to restor to finding another way. Hence profit. You gained somthing and had to kill for it. Not personal profit but proftic note hte less

But the way you prove that using the PHB is solely with the "Good characters... protect innocent life" sentence.
I have said this quite a few times, don't say i did somthing that we both know is not true. I refuse to respond to that, you are the one who brought up those two sentences.



PHB pg 103 "A lawful good character may have a greedy streak that occasionally tempts to take something or hoard something he has, even if that's not lawful or good behavior. ... A good character can lose his temper..."
THough it often leads to it, greed is not inheritly evil. So a paladin could very well be greedy when it comes to items, but not to the extent that he/she hurts innocents. For example, a paladin who is hired to protect a village from bandits will not aks for payment first, becuase it is their duty to protect the innocents and ought to do the task anyways. He could request some money, but should not be motivated by it. A LG can lose their temper, because that is not inheritly evil. Roy yells at people all the time, but keeps his aligment. Why? Because none of his actions are evil. Greed and losing your temper are not evil acts in and of themselves though they can lead to evil.


Not only can the paladin perform a neutral act and remain lawful good, but his code requires a willful evil act (not willful non-good act) to cause him to Fall. If killing the child is a neutral act, even if willful, the paladin cannot Fall
But killing a child is not a neutral act. Killing the child is a evil act. It is not good, killing innocents, and it is not lawful, breaking the code. A neutral person could kill the baby, but that would be a neutral person commiting an evil act.

It is not required of a character to always be consistent with his alignment, and it is not disallowed to have a bad habit that is outside the alignment, so long as it is not excessively prevalent.
no, a character does not alwaysh ave to be consistent with his alignment but he has to still commit actions that go along with his aligment to keep it. For example, a CE person gives money to chairaty for no reason other than whim (he has not hidden motive ect) and hands out money to beggers on the streets. To still be CE, he must be doing some other evil actions to keep that aligment. Also, while the paladin in your situation would not lose his aligment i warrent, As i already stated he would however lose his paladin powers. Because a paladin code, unlike an aligment is not flexible.


The difference with the paladin is only which bad habits are allowable. He cannot grossly violate the Code (which insludes acting honorably), but how far is a gross violation?
Don't commite inheritly evil acts, or inherilty dishonorable acts.


If he cheats at cards, that's arguably not a gross violation, since the only harm done is a little money stolen.
.....what.
Cheating is dishonorable on quite a few counts
1. Stealing money from people
2. cheating
3. Lying
4. Aciting on your greed.
5. Selfish
6. Not playing fair
It is also semi evil
1. Causing harm to people (taking money from people
2. Taking something that does not belong to you.
from,
EE

Kreistor
2007-04-06, 10:25 PM
Good means protecting innocents. The baby is innocent. Killing the baby is evil.

False jump in logic. The correct progression is: "Good means protecting innocents. The baby is innocent. Killing the baby is not good."

You actually have to find somewhere that it states that killing an innocent for any reaon is evil. That's the incorrect leap you're making. You're ignoring "Evil characters... destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit." in your progression. That statement demands that the motive for destroying the innocent life is actually important for determining whether it was a Neutral or Evil act in killing the child.

So does your sentence 3. "People who are neutral... have compunctions against killing the innocent..." Compunction means "any uneasiness or hesitation about the rightness of an action" (dictionary.com). That doesn't even come close to "will not do it under any circumstances". Killing innocents is an acceptable, though regrettable, act to neutral people.


I don't like only using two sentences out of context, but if you insist.

Actually, I don't think you know the context. There is no missing context. Those two sentences make up the first two sentences and entire paragraph of the "Good vs. Evil" section of the PHB. It is followed by a new paragraph that begins "Good implies altruism...".

You really should look these things up yourself, you know.


Good is protecting innocents, aka not hurting innocents. So as my statment that killing innocents can't be good is closer than yours.


And Evil is killing them for purely selfish reasons, by sentence 2. The paladin is performing neither a good nor evil act by literal interpretation, which leaves only the middle ground, neutral, as its definition.

Neutral allows killing innocents, though their compunctions on such matters suggest that they'll do it with regret.


Fine, though i find that you know, reading the thread is tends to bring better results.

I agree. You missed that I said "re-read".


Also, while killing an innocent because you want to pervent something, that is killing for profit. You kill the innocent and the your world is "Saved" and you don't have to restor to finding another way. Hence profit. You gained somthing and had to kill for it. Not personal profit but proftic note hte less

"Saving the world" is personal profit? It is prevention of loss, not the acquisition of gain. Profit is defined as gain[/b[]. How does the paladin have more coming out of the ritual than he had going in if he kills the child? For profit to exist, he must have more after he kills the child than he had before. If there is no net difference between the two states, there is no gain and therefore no profit.


Don't commite inheritly evil acts, or inherilty dishonorable acts.


.....what.
Cheating is dishonorable on quite a few counts


Crack open your PHB, dude, and stop going by memory. It says [b]grossly violate the Code, not any violation. Grossly means severe. A paladin must severely violate the code in order to Fall. That's why I chose cheating at cards as the example in the first place. Some would say it's not a gross violation and others would say it is.

Let's ask you this: can you imagine any violation of the Code that would not result in the Paladin Falling? If your answr is "No", then you are ignoring the text (specifically the word "grossly") and replacing it with your own word (specifically "any"). So, let's ignore my example and go with yours. Give me an example of a violation of the Paladin's Code that will not result in the Paladin Falling. They exist, according to the PHB...

EvilElitest
2007-04-06, 11:53 PM
False jump in logic. The correct progression is: "Good means protecting innocents. The baby is innocent. Killing the baby is not good."

False jump in logic? Strang, it seems closer than yours, at least i stay by my world.


You actually have to find somewhere that it states that killing an innocent for any reaon is evil. That's the incorrect leap you're making. You're ignoring "Evil characters... destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit."
I have already made it clear, killing innocents for you cause is evil, the paladin is willing to kill an innocent for his cause, hence profti.


in your progression. That statement demands that the motive for destroying the innocent life is actually important for determining whether it was a Neutral or Evil act in killing the child.
morals are judged by actions, not by intent.


So does your sentence 3. "People who are neutral... have compunctions against killing the innocent..." Compunction means "any uneasiness or hesitation about the rightness of an action" (dictionary.com). That doesn't even come close to "will not do it under any circumstances". Killing innocents is an acceptable, though regrettable, act to neutral people.
A neutral person can kill innocents every once and a while without a problem yes, LN. But killing innocents is not a neutral act, the idea is absurd. A neutral person can get away with more than a good one in killing innocents, but not for long before becomeing evil. So a neutral might hurt innocents for the greater good twice, but third times a charm and smack down the evil label on him.


Actually, I don't think you know the context. There is no missing context. Those two sentences make up the first two sentences and entire paragraph of the "Good vs. Evil" section of the PHB. It is followed by a new paragraph that begins "Good implies altruism...".
You forgot the part about aligments, the rest of the paragraph, the description of the morals and the paladin's code.

You really should look these things up yourself, you know.
I did, and i see a very different view. One that does not say Ends justifies the means.


And Evil is killing them for purely selfish reasons, by sentence 2. The paladin is performing neither a good nor evil act by literal interpretation, which leaves only the middle ground, neutral, as its definition.
Killing a baby who has done nothing wrong because of your inabilty to find another way out of the situation is selfish, the baby is suffereing for your incompatence.


Neutral allows killing innocents, though their compunctions on such matters suggest that they'll do it with regret.
Neutral people can get away with evil action but are not allowed to do it before becoming evil. A paladin can be greedy, but if he starts putting money before other's lives he could be come neutral, if he starts killing innocents for money he could become evil. you ougt to reread the section on neutral.



"Saving the world" is personal profit? It is prevention of loss, not the acquisition of gain. Profit is defined as gain[/b[]. How does the paladin have more coming out of the ritual than he had going in if he kills the child? For profit to exist, he must have more after he kills the child than he had before. If there is no net difference between the two states, there is no gain and therefore no profit.
While no phyical gain, apart from the paladin's life/relgion/church ect being intacted. But the paladin is acting very selfish, he is putting his morals above the needs of the child and is killing it. The child is paying for the paladin's incompatence. The paladin can't find a good way out (and their always will be one) and the child is paying for it. Selfish.


Crack open your PHB, dude, and stop going by memory.
I will say it again, stop making claims that both you and I know are untrue.


It says [b]grossly violate the Code, not any violation. Grossly means severe. A paladin must severely violate the code in order to Fall. That's why I chose cheating at cards as the example in the first place. Some would say it's not a gross violation and others would say it is.
Horray for taking my words without the added context. Is adding in the reasons why it is highly dishonorable not enough for you? Does it make two sides of the story appear? I stated quite a few reason why cheating at cards is wrong. I am presuming that the paladin is doing this for personal profit as you give no details as you tend to do


Let's ask you this: can you imagine any violation of the Code that would not result in the Paladin Falling?
yes.


If your answr is "No", then you are ignoring the text (specifically the word "grossly") and replacing it with your own word (specifically "any"). So, let's ignore my example and go with yours.
yet again you seem unable to forcus on what i am saying and jump to conclusions. Will you stop saying things that we both know are untrue.


Give me an example of a violation of the Paladin's Code that will not result in the Paladin Falling. They exist, according to the PHB...
A simple example
Stabbing an enemy in the back to stop him from killing a baby. The enemy is known as evil and has proven intentions to kill the baby quite a few times. The paladin could find another way, but goes for the simplest. As it is a minor voilation, he does not fall. If he has done this 11 times before without even considering other options, then he falls.
Disobeying a direct order via loop hole. If the king's advister says that the paladin cannot leave his household, the paladin "Sells" his house to his wife, thus making him homeless and leaves. The advisor is evil by the way
Not telling the whole truth
from,
EE

Foeofthelance
2007-04-07, 12:31 AM
While no phyical gain, apart from the paladin's life/relgion/church ect being intacted. But the paladin is acting very selfish, he is putting his morals above the needs of the child and is killing it. The child is paying for the paladin's incompatence. The paladin can't find a good way out (and their always will be one) and the child is paying for it. Selfish.

So one child should not have to die because of the paladin's incompetence, but instead the entire world has to be put at risk? Remember, that is what the other half of that option says. Kill the child, save the world. Spare the child, imperil the world.

First, the paladin is not putting his morals above the child's needs, he is putting the fate of the world above the child's needs. Putting his morals above a child's needs would be more along the lines of not giving money to a starving homeless child, because the Paladin believes that begging is wrong as it encourages sloth. He is putting the needs of the world against the child's needs. Since the rest of the world has many more children in it, it stands to reason that the world would come out on top.

Second the Paladin is not getting anything out of this. Out Of Game the player may expect gold or experience, but in game and in character the Paladin is trying to prevent great evil from befalling the world. Whether or not the church/order survives is irrelevant to the Paladin. For all we know Mortimer is the champion of Zilern, a low ranked diety whose sole purpose is to find a few select people and put them in the way of things that threaten to obliterate existence. He isn't worshipped, he has no church, and all of his powers are donated by various gods who need to keep him around to foil anything they may miss. There is no profit in this for the Paladin. All he gets for killing the child is the knowledge that he killed the child, and has to live with the guilt of that act. This doesn't necessarily make the act evil, mind you, just something the Paladin regrets strongly.

Finally, calling a Paladin who just battled his way through an evil cult, and has sadly found himself out of options, incompetent seems a bit harsh. Considering he is the only one still standing, he is probably one heck of a fighter. There is not always a good way out. We hope there is, and we hope that when we're wrong that something will save us. Unfortunately that's not the way it works.



End's justifies the means is not good. Neutral maybe, but not good.


The action is killing the child, which is not good. The End's is saving the world. The Ends justifies the means. Therefore the action neutral, and the Paladin should not fall.



EE Said:
Just atone, stop trying to wiggle out of your consiquinces.





Thus the child dies.

What should be important is what I do next. Perhaps ressurection. Maybe it can't as any attempt to restore the vessel restores the demon as well. Maybe I don't have the levels or gold. In that case, my next stop is at a good aligned temple. I don't ask about my powers if their gone. My purpose has never been my powers, but the protection of innocents and doing good deeds. Instead I ask about the child's soul. Is it safe? If not where is it, and I how do I rescue it?

If the child's soul is safe, all well and good. If the child's soul is in the possession of the demon I won't worry. because no matter what the answer is, my next stop is going to be the nearest portal to Hell or the Abyss or Plane of Wherever this guy makes his home. Then I will fight my way through what ever comes at me, and either I will die, or I will slay the demon, to ensure that no matter what, none of this ever has to happen again.

That is the right thing to do


That was all the way back in my first post, page two. When I first answered the question I did much more then plan for atonement. Arguing that the Paladin should not fall is not ignoring the consequences, it is dilemma's assumption that one can be forced to pick from two bad (not, I specify, evil) choices, and still do good.

Kreistor
2007-04-07, 01:29 AM
I have already made it clear, killing innocents for you cause is evil, the paladin is willing to kill an innocent for his cause, hence profti.

That is true if, and only if, the paladin's organization has stated that it's purpose is "the saving of the world", and even then, that's a huge maybe. There are two counter-arguments.

Since the paladin's Code does not include "Saving the world", then Saving the World is not the cause of all paladins. A cause is "a principle, ideal, goal, or movement to which a person or group is dedicated:" They have to specifically dedicate themselves in order for it to be a cause. So, for any paladin that does not join an organization that swears to save the world, your statement is inherently incorrect.

A cause is not "something I happened to realize I should do today." A cause is a lifelong goal. For instance, the Heart and Stroke Foundation has a cause to rid the world of heart disease. But if I happen upon a heart attack victim and save him with CPR, I do not have a cause that states "I am dedicated to saving lives". I am an engineer that happens to know CPR because my dad had a heart attack, and that was convenient when I came across the dying man.

Just by going and stopping the end of the world, that does not give the paladin a cause to save the world.

And second, the "gain" thing still applies. Saving the world is still not a profit to the organization of a paladin that does swear to such a cause. There is that lack of improvement in the organization's status in the end of the day. The world was saved, yes, and that was a success, yes, but it was not a profitable event. Success in your goals does not equate to profit.


A neutral person can kill innocents every once and a while without a problem yes, LN. But killing innocents is not a neutral act, the idea is absurd.

But the text clearly differs from your statements. Sentence 2 specifies when killing innocents is evil. Sentence 3 specifies that killing innocents is not disallowed. Logic dictates that Neutral, then, can kill innocents for non-evil reasons and the act is a Neutral one.


The child is paying for the paladin's incompatence. The paladin can't find a good way out (and their always will be one) and the child is paying for it. Selfish.

That is not your judgement to make. Only the DM can make that judgement since it is the DM that created the situation and the choices that could be made.


Stabbing an enemy in the back to stop him from killing a baby. The enemy is known as evil and has proven intentions to kill the baby quite a few times. The paladin could find another way, but goes for the simplest. As it is a minor voilation, he does not fall. If he has done this 11 times before without even considering other options, then he falls.

Actually, I don't see any violation here. There is nothing in the definition of "honorable" that demands that attacking from behind is dishonorable.

Oh, wait, that proves my point. Some peopel think that attacking from behind is dishonorable. Some don't. Woah... there's flexibility in the Paladin's Code all of a sudden! Whooops. Didn't you say that the Paladin's Code was inflexible? Let's see...


As i already stated he would however lose his paladin powers. Because a paladin code, unlike an aligment is not flexible.

Yep, you did! Wow... honorable is a flexible word... Let's see... Was the Japanese sense of honour different from France's? Hrmmm... yeah it was. How about Britain and France? Well, Britain used Longbows in their army beside their knights, but the French felt that was dishonourable and so they cut off the index and middle fingers of archer's hands. (That's where the V for victory came from. It was a taunt for French knights showing them that they still had their shooting fingers.)

If honourable is a subjective term, then the paladin's Code is also subjective. And that makes it flexible.

sapphail
2007-04-07, 02:12 AM
First, the paladin is not putting his morals above the child's needs, he is putting the fate of the world above the child's needs. Putting his morals above a child's needs would be more along the lines of not giving money to a starving homeless child, because the Paladin believes that begging is wrong as it encourages sloth. He is putting the needs of the world against the child's needs. Since the rest of the world has many more children in it, it stands to reason that the world would come out on top.

The action is killing the child, which is not good. The End's is saving the world. The Ends justifies the means. Therefore the action neutral, and the Paladin should not fall.


Sorry to have to quote from memory (I can't find the book) but the 1st Ed. PHB makes the ruling: 'A paladin may not burn a village infected with plague to stop it spreading to the countryside. This is not a good act.' Again, I apologise for having to approximate the quote (and if anyone can find it and quote it in full, I'd appreciate it), but the ruling is explicit: the end does not justify the means. As the path of action suggested involves the murder (and there's no other word for it; 'sacrifice' just smacks of sophistry) of an innocent, and a child at that, the paladin is due for a long hard fall.

SolkaTruesilver
2007-04-07, 09:39 AM
(arg. I haven'T had the time to go trough the 16(?) pages of arguments. I will ASAP)

But here's my 2 cents about the dilemma:

First, I'd say kill the child, nothing more asked. If not, his SOUL will be destroyed, consumed, and everything else. And allowing the destruction of the soul of a pure child is a much worse thing than killing it. (but even then, It is an evil act. I just chose evil rating 10 over evil rating 1000. The following still happens)

IF, in the dilemma, the child is supposed to survive the ritual.

It depends on which philosophy the Paladin follows. If he follows an interventionist God, that mostly say "do no let Evil happen", then he should act. If his God is "Consider your options, and never do evil", then he should do nothing, and fight the demon once he enter this world. The trade off is a evil deed rated 10 right now against a future evil deed rated 100, that can be fought.

But you consider the whole problem in a ponctual manner, and I refuse to acknowledge that the damn game will be over after the choice I make. There is always the after. If I kill the child, I will take the body with me, and search everywhere in the land for a cleric to raise it, or a ritual that will allow me to sacrifice 2-3 levels in order to have a True Resurrection cast on it, and he be purged.

If I saved the child, I first put him to safety, and then begin a crusade to stop the demon. It's my #1 priority, and nothing can divert me from this goal (except if I learn that Excalibur is somewhere, and is the only sword that can allow me to kill it, off course).


So, 2 variables: Do you follow an interventionist/contemplationist philsophy, and what can you do in the aftermath to limit the damage you've done? A paladin doesn't just say "screw it" when he looses his powers. He'll work twice as hard to restore the broken pots. Even if he knows that he will never regain his power. It's not his powers he cares about, it's the suffering he caused.

Kreistor
2007-04-07, 10:29 AM
Sorry to have to quote from memory (I can't find the book) but the 1st Ed. PHB makes the ruling: 'A paladin may not burn a village infected with plague to stop it spreading to the countryside. This is not a good act.' Again, I apologise for having to approximate the quote (and if anyone can find it and quote it in full, I'd appreciate it), but the ruling is explicit: the end does not justify the means. As the path of action suggested involves the murder (and there's no other word for it; 'sacrifice' just smacks of sophistry) of an innocent, and a child at that, the paladin is due for a long hard fall.


The problem with something like this is that it ignores the DM. This statement punishes the player if the DM does not provide other avenues to deal with the plague.

It shifts resonsibility for maintaining the Paladin's status to the DM without saying the DM is responsible for placing good solutions to the problem in the encounter.

The plague concept is a nasty one. The DM can define the plague such that it can re-infect those that have been cured, because the world is fantasy and our rules for infection do not apply. Thus, the paladin's Cure Disease doesn't help. The paladin is immune, so he'll get out of this, but how can you save the world, if the DM doesn't put in a quest to find a magical cure for the plague? The only way out is to prevent the villagers from leaving and making certain they all die, which isn't an active evil like killing them all. It also ignores that killing the infected at some point may be a mercy, if the plague causes tremendous pain and suffering.

That is why the rules for the paladin's status changed. It was too easy to create a situation where the palain would Fall regardless of the player at the controls. I've read stories where childish DM's described how they forced their hated paladins into such situations in game. It needs to be a lot harder: it needs to be by the mistake of the player, not the design of the DM.

EvilElitest
2007-04-07, 10:36 AM
So one child should not have to die because of the paladin's incompetence, but instead the entire world has to be put at risk? Remember, that is what the other half of that option says. Kill the child, save the world. Spare the child, imperil the world.

Ends don't justify the means. Your missing something important there. Such a mindset is Neutral at best. One evil act for the "Greater Good" does not even out. Killing a child to further good destroys the fundamentals of the good, protecting the innocent (the kid), feeling for others (the child) and trying when all hope seems lost. It is the same with Law vs. Chaos
Example
The drow priestess of Lolth has been given a task. She has to cause chaos. She and her soilders must commit as many chaotic acts as possible. So she (well call her Jil) says that if her soilders walk around the surface randomly and kill whatever they find, that willl be chatoic evil acts. Her soilders do that for a few days, but while they kill some people, a few of them are killed and many of them don't go in the right places. So she orginizes her troops (numbering ten thousand) into groups of twenty and send each one into a different area. She uses a gride like map of the area to have each of her raiders attack a different place at a different time. She trains all her troops to wield the same weapons and act in a miltary fashion (obeying orders, doing their duty, orginized miltary ect). She then enforces her men with a code of drow honor, dying before betrying their mistress, only attack at night ect.
In trying to cause more chaos, she has become lawful, thus ruining the very thing she strives for.



First, the paladin is not putting his morals above the child's needs, he is putting the fate of the world above the child's needs.
Wrong, the paladin i putting his morals (ends justifies the means) above the child's feelings and needs.


Putting his morals above a child's needs would be more along the lines of not giving money to a starving homeless child, because the Paladin believes that begging is wrong as it encourages sloth.
Sin of hubris.

He is putting the needs of the world against the child's needs. Since the rest of the world has many more children in it, it stands to reason that the world would come out on top.
Sin of hubris. Need of the world. He is a paladin of one god. He can't repersent the need of the world without the consent of the world. Unless his god in the only god, their must be many other gods who would view his actions as evil. Including the raw power of good (where paladin's get their power) that dictats taht a paladin can commit not evil. The paladin cannot use the 'need of the world" without a "Ends justifies the means" ideal. And that ideal is LN


Second the Paladin is not getting anything out of this. Out Of Game the player may expect gold or experience, but in game and in character the Paladin is trying to prevent great evil from befalling the world.
Is the paladin getting something phyical like gold or exp? No. Is he still doing it for personal profit? Yes. He is faced with a moral decsion, and choices not to follow his code. His incompatence got him into this situation, and so he is now willing to kill the kid in order to protect his perfect world, or at least non demon controled world
So it ends justifies the means
Ends, killing kid
Means, paladin's world remains intacted.


Whether or not the church/order survives is irrelevant to the Paladin. For all we know Mortimer is the champion of Zilern, a low ranked diety whose sole purpose is to find a few select people and put them in the way of things that threaten to obliterate existence. He isn't worshipped, he has no church, and all of his powers are donated by various gods who need to keep him around to foil anything they may miss. There is no profit in this for the Paladin. All he gets for killing the child is the knowledge that he killed the child, and has to live with the guilt of that act. This doesn't necessarily make the act evil, mind you, just something the Paladin regrets strongly.
If Zilern promotes ends justifies the means, i would think he is LN. Also he is working for profit even more so
Gaining favor for his god
Bear in mind, the paladin's powers are not draw from the gods, but by the raw power of Law and Good. Hence why you can have paladin's who don't follow a god.


Finally, calling a Paladin who just battled his way through an evil cult, and has sadly found himself out of options, incompetent seems a bit harsh. Considering he is the only one still standing, he is probably one heck of a fighter.
But not a good enough tataticion to perpare protection from evil? Yeah. He failed. he tried and failed to get to the alter in time. Cold, but true. Hence he failed his mission. He also failed to prepare a spell he knew was going to be needed.

There is not always a good way out. We hope there is, and we hope that when we're wrong that something will save us. Unfortunately that's not the way it works.
No such thing as binary situations, as Steph E said, it is a con. And so yes their is a good way out, the paladin just can't seem or doesn't want to find it. (he could pray for the 2 percent chance of divine intervention). Also the idea that none of the other gods are not involves is absurd.



The action is killing the child, which is not good. The End's is saving the world. The Ends justifies the means. Therefore the action neutral, and the Paladin should not fall.
Ends don't justify the means, at least from a good stand point. Killing the child is evil, the ends can be considered good. Neutral. But a paladin, unlike a LG fighter is unable to commit and evil act. Ever. And a paladin can't use Ends justifies the means. And so he falls. He stays LG i would imagine, but he falls.


That was all the way back in my first post, page two. When I first answered the question I did much more then plan for atonement. Arguing that the Paladin should not fall is not ignoring the consequences, it is dilemma's assumption that one can be forced to pick from two bad (not, I specify, evil) choices, and still do good.
So you admit that the paladin would fall and you would then atone. Alright then. If the paladin falls, then the action was evil. He atones, and he has his powers back, raises the kid ect. The argument was over wheather or not the paladin would fall.


That is true if, and only if, the paladin's organization has stated that it's purpose is "the saving of the world", and even then, that's a huge maybe. There are two counter-arguments.

Since the paladin's Code does not include "Saving the world", then Saving the World is not the cause of all paladins. A cause is "a principle, ideal, goal, or movement to which a person or group is dedicated:" They have to specifically dedicate themselves in order for it to be a cause. So, for any paladin that does not join an organization that swears to save the world, your statement is inherently incorrect.
........what?
the paladin is the embodyment of Lawful Good.
Hence his cause is auto maticlly trying to spread the powers of Lawful Good. The paladin's church can add other causes to the paladin, but he can't ignore his first duty, embodyment of Law and Good.
It is profit because
Ends' saving the world
Means, killing the kid.
Ends justifies the means is for profit.

And second, the "gain" thing still applies. Saving the world is still not a profit to the organization of a paladin that does swear to such a cause. There is that lack of improvement in the organization's status in the end of the day. The world was saved, yes, and that was a success, yes, but it was not a profitable event. Success in your goals does not equate to profit.
yes, success in your goal may not equal phyical profit, but hte profit is the ends themselves.

That is not your judgement to make. Only the DM can make that judgement since it is the DM that created the situation and the choices that could be made.
But hte DM is apperently following his own different aligment system.

But the text clearly differs from your statements. Sentence 2 specifies when killing innocents is evil. Sentence 3 specifies that killing innocents is not disallowed. Logic dictates that Neutral, then, can kill innocents for non-evil reasons and the act is a Neutral one.
Neutral has compuctions about killing innocents.
Killing innocents is evil.
Neutral can get away with it every so often, but must can't do it regually or they will become evil
A paladin can not commit evil acts.
Killing innocents is a evil act, but neutral can get away with it. It is not a nuetral act, killing is.
A paladin gets only one chance and so by killing baby, paladin falls

Actually, I don't see any violation here. There is nothing in the definition of "honorable" that demands that attacking from behind is dishonorable.
................
...............
...............
Ok, i'm going to presume you misunderstood.
Attacking an enemy who does not know you are their and has had not warning.
Another example is killing an enemy in his/her sleep.

Yep, you did! Wow... honorable is a flexible word... Let's see... Was the Japanese sense of honour different from France's? Hrmmm... yeah it was. How about Britain and France? Well, Britain used Longbows in their army beside their knights, but the French felt that was dishonourable and so they cut off the index and middle fingers of archer's hands. (That's where the V for victory came from. It was a taunt for French knights showing them that they still had their shooting fingers.)
Wow, that is rather absurd.
A code of honor is not flexible.
Honor in and of itself varies from culture.
A paladin's code of honor would have to be a LG one, no cheating, no using posion, no lying ect. LG
I would never consider Japan Britian of France to be LG nations
Japan's code of honor was inflexible as they come.
I would say it was LN or LE,depending on the era.
Britian i would say would be LN or N, same with France.
The codes of honor are inflexible.

It depends on which philosophy the Paladin follows. If he follows an interventionist God, that mostly say "do no let Evil happen", then he should act. If his God is "Consider your options, and never do evil", then he should do nothing, and fight the demon once he enter this world. The trade off is a evil deed rated 10 right now against a future evil deed rated 100, that can be fought.
In D&D morals are not relavite, they are active forces.


The problem with something like this is that it ignores the DM. This statement punishes the player if the DM does not provide other avenues to deal with the plague.

It shifts resonsibility for maintaining the Paladin's status to the DM without saying the DM is responsible for placing good solutions to the problem in the encounter.
As their are no such things as binary situations, then you don't need to bring the DM into the picture, the statment presumes the DM is being realistic and allowing the paladin to find another way.

The plague concept is a nasty one. The DM can define the plague such that it can re-infect those that have been cured, because the world is fantasy and our rules for infection do not apply. Thus, the paladin's Cure Disease doesn't help. The paladin is immune, so he'll get out of this, but how can you save the world, if the DM doesn't put in a quest to find a magical cure for the plague? The only way out is to prevent the villagers from leaving and making certain they all die, which isn't an active evil like killing them all. It also ignores that killing the infected at some point may be a mercy, if the plague causes tremendous pain and suffering.
If you look at the situation as if it were a novel. If the DM does not allow any cure via railroading, then yes their is no way to stop the plauge. But a good DM, or a good writer would not do that, as it makes the game go from
"What do you do?"
to
"This happens"

That is why the rules for the paladin's status changed. It was too easy to create a situation where the palain would Fall regardless of the player at the controls. I've read stories where childish DM's described how they forced their hated paladins into such situations in game. It needs to be a lot harder: it needs to be by the mistake of the player, not the design of the DM.
Yes it does. But the demon summoning situation is a situation where the DM is forcing them to fall, unless their happens to be a good way out of this situation.
from,
EE

Kreistor
2007-04-07, 12:51 PM
If you look at the situation as if it were a novel. If the DM does not allow any cure via railroading, then yes their is no way to stop the plauge. But a good DM, or a good writer would not do that, as it makes the game go from
"What do you do?"

So, tell me something. Just a bit of history. If a spanish soldier in the 1600's found he had small pox and walked into a native american village knowing he would infect the population, is that an evil act?

Foeofthelance
2007-04-07, 03:14 PM
Eh, my computer choked while posting this. The One below is the real post.Nothing to see here, move along...

Foeofthelance
2007-04-07, 03:37 PM
But not a good enough tataticion to perpare protection from evil? Yeah. He failed. he tried and failed to get to the alter in time. Cold, but true. Hence he failed his mission. He also failed to prepare a spell he knew was going to be needed.


Eveery time I posted the dilemma I said the Paladin had chosen to use Protection From Evil in a more immediate situation prior to reaching the altar. There is a difference between using all your daily uses of an ability and not preparing it.



Sin of hubris. Need of the world. He is a paladin of one god. He can't repersent the need of the world without the consent of the world. Unless his god in the only god, their must be many other gods who would view his actions as evil. Including the raw power of good (where paladin's get their power) that dictats taht a paladin can commit not evil. The paladin cannot use the 'need of the world" without a "Ends justifies the means" ideal. And that ideal is LN


For an example I am going to use the Forgotten Realms Setting. The Zhentarim Nation is evil, and generally does not get along with Elminister, a force of good. That said, I doubt they would be complaining if Elminister prevented some crack pot Red Wizard of Thay, another evil group in the realms, from summoning a demon that would then try and conquer all of the Dalelands and the Zhentarim holdings. Good tries to save as many people as possible. Balancing the needs of the child against the needs of the world is not means to an end. Choosing to kill the child is the means to the end.


So you admit that the paladin would fall and you would then atone. Alright then. If the paladin falls, then the action was evil. He atones, and he has his powers back, raises the kid ect. The argument was over wheather or not the paladin would fall.

When that was posted we had not yet begun to debate whether or not the Paladin should fall. I only covered the aspects of what I would do IF he fell. If he didn't fall all I would have done is gone back to the local inn and collapsed into bed for a few weeks. I didn't think it was necessary for me to post something as mundane as that though. We have an evil action leading to good consequences, which results in a neutral balancing, and I do not think the Paladin should fall for what equates to a neutral event.

The problem that I have with your opinion is that it focuses too narrowly on one aspect of the problem, that is killing the child. It ignores everything else that has been presented. Let me use a (less severe) real world example:

I am crossing the street, and am hit by a car. Well, whose fault is it?

Did I look both ways or was I ignoring traffic?
Was the light in my favor or his?
Was the driver drunk, speeding, or driving in any other dangerous manner?

All of this needs to be taken into consideration before assigning blame. Just as I think everything needs to be taken into consideration before deciding the Paladin falls. Just pointing at the Paladin choosing to slay the child and deciding he falls likewise ignores everything else. He sees no other option. He doubts he can win a one on one duel with the demon. And he has the fate of the world to consider. When I decided whether or not the Paladin should fall (and I still say he should not) I made sure to take everything into account, instead of focusing narrowly on one aspect.

EvilElitest
2007-04-07, 09:49 PM
So, tell me something. Just a bit of history. If a spanish soldier in the 1600's found he had small pox and walked into a native american village knowing he would infect the population, is that an evil act?
First off, i really don't think there were many good people in the conquest of america, more so in the ranks of the Spanish.
Two, does he know that it will have an awful affect on the Natives? If so, then yes i surrpose.
You have to consider the situation. Now i am going to presume that this Spanish soilder is at war with the natives, or at least has ideas of defeating them (not good). Now being native american i may be a tad bias, but i don't think that the Spanish were really good in the spanish conquest. I would consider most of them neutral, some evil.
Now if he goes in to the village with peaceful (or at least not violent) intentions not knowing that small pox would destroy the village, then I don't consider the action evil, he only thought he was minorly sick.
If he knew that Small box+native american=death then different story. If he goes into the village that is full of innocent native americans, or at least non voilent native americans with the intnetion of making them all die of small pox, then yes it is an evil act. If the natives are attacking his camp and hostil but he sneaks in with the intention of saving his people by making all of them sick, i would think it would be a evil act as innocent natives would be killed by its spreading. If somehow he was able to control the disease so only the "Evil" natives were harmed, and by evil i mean the ones attacking his camp, then i don't think it would be an evil act, but certainly a dishonorbale act if you refer to LG honor.
Bear in mind that last part falls apart as the natives were pretty much only defending themselves from the Spanish who came with full intention of conquest and turned out to kill/rape/enslave most of the population. So the natives are far more likely to be innocent by default. True i don't think the spanish guy would care
Lets put it in a fantasy setting
There is a orc war camp that is going to attack the humans near by. Their are no women or children in their ranks, just soilders who have already destroyed quite a few cities with unspeakable brutality. They are going to destroy a peaceful city in a few days and have alll the citie's babies eaten in a sick sacerfice to their god.
A paladin has smallpox, and he knows that orcs are really badly effected by small pox. So he sneaks into the war camp and infects them all. about 70% die and the rest go home. The city is saved. Then it is not an evil act, but hte paladin might fall for dishonorable conduct.
The real question is, would the paladin fall for the killing of the innocent orc babies back home who dies of smallpox from the returned soilders.




Eveery time I posted the dilemma I said the Paladin had chosen to use Protection From Evil in a more immediate situation prior to reaching the altar. There is a difference between using all your daily uses of an ability and not preparing it.

The point remains that the paladin somehow failed to save the child in time and the child pays for it if the paladin kills him. My real question is this,where the hell are the gods?


For an example I am going to use the Forgotten Realms Setting. The Zhentarim Nation is evil, and generally does not get along with Elminister, a force of good. That said, I doubt they would be complaining if Elminister prevented some crack pot Red Wizard of Thay, another evil group in the realms, from summoning a demon that would then try and conquer all of the Dalelands and the Zhentarim holdings. Good tries to save as many people as possible. Balancing the needs of the child against the needs of the world is not means to an end. Choosing to kill the child is the means to the end.
Ok, i have no idea what your talking about the FR example. I am familer with the groups involved and Elminister, but i have no idea of the relevence. Details? The only point you made is ends justifies the means, and that is frankly neutral at best, not good as Kore proved.


When that was posted we had not yet begun to debate whether or not the Paladin should fall. I only covered the aspects of what I would do IF he fell. If he didn't fall all I would have done is gone back to the local inn and collapsed into bed for a few weeks. I didn't think it was necessary for me to post something as mundane as that though.
Irrelvant, you still admitied what you would do if the paladin would fall. If hte paladin fell, as well he should, then he ought to atone. Big deal, get over it.


We have an evil action leading to good consequences, which results in a neutral balancing, and I do not think the Paladin should fall for what equates to a neutral event.
Paladin falls for commiting an evil action, not for "Ends justfies the means." Sounds tough? Don't be a paladin.


The problem that I have with your opinion is that it focuses too narrowly on one aspect of the problem, that is killing the child. It ignores everything else that has been presented.

And you seem to ignore the child's feelings. I don't want to be killed for doing nothing, i don't expect others to be killed for not doing anything. A paladin falls for commiting evil
Hence he would fall for killing the kid.
Might stay LG but still fall
Suck it up and atone.


Let me use a (less severe) real world example:

I am crossing the street, and am hit by a car. Well, whose fault is it?

Did I look both ways or was I ignoring traffic?
Was the light in my favor or his?
Was the driver drunk, speeding, or driving in any other dangerous manner?
Dude, this is an absurd example. Really quite absurd.
1. No real relevence
2. Who fault it is in debeatable depending on details so i can't tell in this example. But apperenly i have barely enough details about the demon summoning to know that the paladin ought to fall for falling his duty, killing the baby thus commiting an evil act



All of this needs to be taken into consideration before assigning blame. Just as I think everything needs to be taken into consideration before deciding the Paladin falls. Just pointing at the Paladin choosing to slay the child and deciding he falls likewise ignores everything else. He sees no other option. He doubts he can win a one on one duel with the demon. And he has the fate of the world to consider. When I decided whether or not the Paladin should fall (and I still say he should not) I made sure to take everything into account, instead of focusing narrowly on one aspect.
The paladin sees not other option, good for him. But he still killed an innocent. Thus he commited an evil act. Stop trying to weasel out of it.
Taken everything into consideration has already been done, and so you could have your LN fighter believe in that.
But the paladin failed his duty, he could not find a good way out and killed the kid. Thus he commited an evil act and failed
As counter power said

Is that absolute certainty? No. There is still a chance that he can be stopped, even after the summoning. Given that chance, why are you giving up on finding that slim hope? Hope is one of good's weapons. The faiththat your effort, determination, and skill will be rewarded with victory, instead of saying "There's no way I can avoid doing evil, so I'll have to satisfy myself with doing as little evil as possible." We call that giving up on Good, not defending it. The first part of that statement, "there's no way I can avoid doing evil", is a prophecy that will come true, every time you say it. If you don't even try to avoid evil, then you will end up doing evil. A much more Good train of thought would be "I can't stop the summoning, unless I commit evil, which I refuse to do. I'd better find a way to kill or imprison the demon."

his duty.
from,
EE

Kreistor
2007-04-07, 10:28 PM
First off, i really don't think there were many good people in the conquest of america, more so in the ranks of the Spanish.
Two, does he know that it will have an awful affect on the Natives? If so, then yes i surrpose.
You have to consider the situation. Now i am going to presume that this Spanish soilder is at war with the natives, or at least has ideas of defeating them (not good). Now being native american i may be a tad bias, but i don't think that the Spanish were really good in the spanish conquest. I would consider most of them neutral, some evil.
Now if he goes in to the village with peaceful (or at least not violent) intentions not knowing that small pox would destroy the village, then I don't consider the action evil, he only thought he was minorly sick.
If he knew that Small box+native american=death then different story. If he goes into the village that is full of innocent native americans, or at least non voilent native americans with the intnetion of making them all die of small pox, then yes it is an evil act. If the natives are attacking his camp and hostil but he sneaks in with the intention of saving his people by making all of them sick, i would think it would be a evil act as innocent natives would be killed by its spreading. If somehow he was able to control the disease so only the "Evil" natives were harmed, and by evil i mean the ones attacking his camp, then i don't think it would be an evil act, but certainly a dishonorbale act if you refer to LG honor.
Bear in mind that last part falls apart as the natives were pretty much only defending themselves from the Spanish who came with full intention of conquest and turned out to kill/rape/enslave most of the population. So the natives are far more likely to be innocent by default. True i don't think the spanish guy would care
Lets put it in a fantasy setting
There is a orc war camp that is going to attack the humans near by. Their are no women or children in their ranks, just soilders who have already destroyed quite a few cities with unspeakable brutality. They are going to destroy a peaceful city in a few days and have alll the citie's babies eaten in a sick sacerfice to their god.
A paladin has smallpox, and he knows that orcs are really badly effected by small pox. So he sneaks into the war camp and infects them all. about 70% die and the rest go home. The city is saved. Then it is not an evil act, but hte paladin might fall for dishonorable conduct.
The real question is, would the paladin fall for the killing of the innocent orc babies back home who dies of smallpox from the returned soilders.


And you wonder why it is hard to make any sense of what you say. That was really freakin' huge. Let's consider this again. You said...


morals are judged by actions, not by intent.

What action has the soldier commited?

He walked into a village. He performed no other action.

The small pox virus, an entity unto itself, killed the people, not the soldier. The soldier just walked into a village. Last I checked, walking into a village wasn't an evil act.

And yet here you are jumping through hoops as if the soldier was responsible for killing everyone in the village.

So, tell me, why is this soldier walking into the village responsible for the deaths of anyone?

You can jump through hoops if you want to, but there is only one answer.

EvilElitest
2007-04-07, 10:33 PM
And you wonder why it is hard to make any sense of what you say. That was really freakin' huge. Let's consider this again. You said...

Irrelevant, did you read it.


What action has the soldier commited?


He walked into a village. He performed no other action.

The small pox virus, an entity unto itself, killed the people, not the soldier. The soldier just walked into a village. Last I checked, walking into a village wasn't an evil act.

And yet here you are jumping through hoops as if the soldier was responsible for killing everyone in the village.

So, tell me, why is this soldier walking into the village responsible for the deaths of anyone?

You can jump through hoops if you want to, but there is only one answer.
I already explained this but yes. His action is "Walking into villlage and knowingly infecting population. Unless all of the villlagers are pure evil, it would be an evil act, yes. And an dishonorable one from a LG standpoint.
Saying hte small pox virus that killed the people is like saying the it was the bullet that killed the guy not me. Is shooting a gun an evil act? No. Is shooting an innocent guy an evil act. Yeah.
And please read what i said, ignoring it does not make it go away.
from,
EE

Foeofthelance
2007-04-07, 10:49 PM
My real question is this,where the hell are the gods?


It has been said before that the gods are off busy doing Godly things, or are otherwise incapable of interfering. Which is the entire reason the characters are there. Deus Ex Machina is a tool of the DM, not a weapon for the player.



EE Said: So you admit that the paladin would fall and you would then atone.




My Reply: I only covered the aspects of what I would do IF he fell.



EE's Reply to My Reply: Irrelevant, you still admitted what you would do if the paladin would fall. If the paladin fell, as well he should, then he ought to atone. Big deal, get over it.

Explaining what I would do IF the Paladin falls is not the same thing as saying the Paladin SHOULD fall. I answered two seperate questions. The first question was which course of action I would take. I said slay the child and then continued explaining what I would do given a certain set of circumstances. It was then raised whether the Paladin should fall, and I said no. Please do not use my answer from the first as my answer to the second.





Quote:
Let me use a (less severe) real world example:

I am crossing the street, and am hit by a car. Well, whose fault is it?

Did I look both ways or was I ignoring traffic?
Was the light in my favor or his?
Was the driver drunk, speeding, or driving in any other dangerous manner?


Dude, this is an absurd example. Really quite absurd.
1. No real relevence
2. Who fault it is in debeatable depending on details so i can't tell in this example. But apperenly i have barely enough details about the demon summoning to know that the paladin ought to fall for falling his duty, killing the baby thus commiting an evil act (Emphasis Mine)



Quote:
All of this needs to be taken into consideration before assigning blame. Just as I think everything needs to be taken into consideration before deciding the Paladin falls. Just pointing at the Paladin choosing to slay the child and deciding he falls likewise ignores everything else. He sees no other option. He doubts he can win a one on one duel with the demon. And he has the fate of the world to consider. When I decided whether or not the Paladin should fall (and I still say he should not) I made sure to take everything into account, instead of focusing narrowly on one aspect.



The example you assumed was absurd was rhetorical in nature. It is not meant to be determined who is at fault, but merely to be used as example for my second paragraph. The point was that looking at only one piece of information when making a decision is not generally a wise course of action.



The paladin sees not other option, good for him. But he still killed an innocent. Thus he commited an evil act. Stop trying to weasel out of it.


Nobody is trying to weasel out of anything. We are merely arguing that taken in the context of the situation it is not sufficient cause for the paladin to fall. I will agree with you that ends does not always justify the means, and that the Paladin should not use that as an everyday philosophy. I do, however, believe that there are times when the ends do justify the means, and that this is one of them.

EvilElitest
2007-04-07, 10:57 PM
It has been said before that the gods are off busy doing Godly things, or are otherwise incapable of interfering. Which is the entire reason the characters are there. Deus Ex Machina is a tool of the DM, not a weapon for the player.

I find it really odd the gods don't view the destruction of the world worth their time.


Explaining what I would do IF the Paladin falls is not the same thing as saying the Paladin SHOULD fall. I answered two seperate questions. The first question was which course of action I would take. I said slay the child and then continued explaining what I would do given a certain set of circumstances. It was then raised whether the Paladin should fall, and I said no. Please do not use my answer from the first as my answer to the second.
I didn't intent to. My point was you stated what you would do if you fell. Now the paladin will fall for commiting evil, and you stated a perfectly good thing to do afterwards. What is wrong with that?



Quote:
Let me use a (less severe) real world example:

I am crossing the street, and am hit by a car. Well, whose fault is it?

Did I look both ways or was I ignoring traffic?
Was the light in my favor or his?
Was the driver drunk, speeding, or driving in any other dangerous manner?
Dude, this is an absurd example. Really quite absurd.
1. No real relevence
2. Who fault it is in debeatable depending on details so i can't tell in this example. But apperenly i have barely enough details about the demon summoning to know that the paladin ought to fall for falling his duty, killing the baby thus commiting an evil act (Emphasis Mine)
you migth want to really quote this, or it would look like you wrote it.



The example you assumed was absurd was rhetorical in nature. It is not meant to be determined who is at fault, but merely to be used as example for my second paragraph. The point was that looking at only one piece of information when making a decision is not generally a wise course of action.
rhetorical or not, it is quite irrelevant



Nobody is trying to weasel out of anything. We are merely arguing that taken in the context of the situation it is not sufficient cause for the paladin to fall. I will agree with you that ends does not always justify the means, and that the Paladin should not use that as an everyday philosophy. I do, however, believe that there are times when the ends do justify the means, and that this is one of them.
Wait, i think we have a flip flopping here.
You are trying to weasel out of the paladin falling. Just have him fall and atone. Ain't that hard.

I will agree with you that ends does not always justify the means

I do, however, believe that there are times when the ends do justify the means, and that this is one of them.
Ok, so the paladin can commit evil when he can't find a good option. Right...................
from,
EE

Foeofthelance
2007-04-07, 11:14 PM
I find it really odd the gods don't view the destruction of the world worth their time.


Not really. Quite often gods are forbidden from interfering too directly in the mortal realms, as such actions tend to cause Really Bad Things to happen. Which is why they have clerics, paladins, and worshippers in general to take care of things for them.



Wait, i think we have a flip flopping here.



There was no flip-flopping. My statement was that it does not means Always justify the ends, but that there are times that it does. I also said that in this case I believe they did, which has been what I have been saying all along.



Ok, so the paladin can commit evil when he can't find a good option. Right...................


No, the Paladin can not do evil when he can't find a good option. But he can look for a neutral option, as well as take the lesser of two evils when prevented with two choices. There is a difference there.

EvilElitest
2007-04-07, 11:33 PM
Not really. Quite often gods are forbidden from interfering too directly in the mortal realms, as such actions tend to cause Really Bad Things to happen. Which is why they have clerics, paladins, and worshippers in general to take care of things for them.

Not in GreyHawk, default champain, not in FR, nor most of the more normal champains. Ebberon maybe, but the gods still exist and would be willing to pervent the lose of the universe. Also even if the gods can't do anything directly, why aren't their more people sent. Like a celestrail.



There was no flip-flopping. My statement was that it does not means Always justify the ends, but that there are times that it does. I also said that in this case I believe they did, which has been what I have been saying all along.

But when do you draw the line? What stops you from becoming Kore?


No, the Paladin can not do evil when he can't find a good option. But he can look for a neutral option, as well as take the lesser of two evils when prevented with two choices. There is a difference there.
Taking the lesser of two evils is still commiting evil. Hence he falls. Also where does it say killing an innocent is a neutral option. It is an evil option, just neutral people can sometimes do it. Anyways, the lesser of two evils is still evil.
from,
EE

Foeofthelance
2007-04-07, 11:53 PM
Not in GreyHawk, default campaign, not in FR, nor most of the more normal campaigns. Ebberon maybe, but the gods still exist and would be willing to prevent the lose of the universe. Also even if the gods can't do anything directly, why aren't their more people sent. Like a celestrail.

At that point, why bother playing the game? The entire point is for the players to overcome problems. Counting on the DM to give you a Divine out to every problem you object to doesn't work.


But when do you draw the line? What stops you from becoming Kore?


Now that is an interesting question, and a rather personal one, which means my reply to it will be entirely opinion. Nonetheless I think it a fair one. Kore, (and I assume you mean the dwarven paladin from the Goblins comic) suffers from the same view of total evil that Miko seems to suffer from. He even executes a small dwarven child simply because the boy had the misfortune to be adopted by an ogre of unknown alignment. (As far as I know Kore never actually uses Detect Evil on either of them.)

Myself, I draw the line quite bit far back. In my view a Paladin should do the right thing when balancing the line between good and law. As i stated earlier, my ideal would be some one like Bahzell Bahnahkson, from David Weber's Sword Gods books. I would have no problem stabbing an enemy in the back, if I knew or believed that such an enemy posed too great a threat for me to deal with 'honorably', especially when my goal is to protect those who would be endangered by his survival. If a BBEG took a small child hostage I would seek to delay until the child could be rescued by one of my party members, but if that same child was destined to destroy the world in hellish apocalypse I would not hesitate to destroy it. For me, the ideals are ranked Right, Good, Honor, Law in that order. My honor should be above the law (though that has more of a military aspect to it, as it has more to do with obeying orders then the law), but my honor does not come before the greater good. Most importantly I shoudl always try to do the right thing by the greatest number of people. But remember, that is all opinion.

Kreistor
2007-04-08, 12:05 AM
His action is "Walking into villlage and knowingly infecting population.

Infecting the population is not an action. It is something that occurs, but not something he does.

dictionary.com
Action: an act that one consciously wills and that may be characterized by physical or mental activity

What physical or mental activity does the soldier perform in order to infect the village? Nothing. He stands there. That is not an action. He is inactive. The virus is spreading from him without his performing any action. He is just infected, something he couldn't control in the first place.

But, I can work with your answer anyway.

You used the word "knowingly". That means he knows that he is infecting others. That means he is trying to kill with the virus.

That means the intent to kill is also required in order to make the act of killing potentially evil. Without the intent to kill, he's not doing evil.

So, have you retracted your previous statement that Intent is not part of the determination of whether an act is good or evil?


morals are judged by actions, not by intent.

Or would you like to retain your previous statement about intent and morality?

Pocket lint
2007-04-08, 05:30 AM
Riding my horse at full canter: neutral.
Riding my horse at full canter through a crowd of children: evil.

I didn't kill the kids. All I did was ride. But that they would die from my action was a directly forseeable consequence.

The same holds with lancing a dummy with or without knowing that someone had stashed a kid inside (hmm, those kids do get around). And the exact same holds with walking into a village while knowingly infected by a virus. You can foresee what consequences your action will have, and that defines what kind of action it is - good, evil or in between.

For the kid on the altar, you can foresee that killing it will directly result in a dead, innocent kid. Hence evil. That the alternative was worse isn't a factor - that still doesn't change the fact that the world is short one child as a direct, foreseeable consequence of your action.

EvilElitest
2007-04-08, 02:55 PM
At that point, why bother playing the game? The entire point is for the players to overcome problems. Counting on the DM to give you a Divine out to every problem you object to doesn't work.

Watch yourself, your backsliding. On the same note, why bother play the game when i only have two choices with not good option? Because there always will be a good option short of railroading, and no body likes being railroaded


Now that is an interesting question, and a rather personal one, which means my reply to it will be entirely opinion. Nonetheless I think it a fair one. Kore, (and I assume you mean the dwarven paladin from the Goblins comic) suffers from the same view of total evil that Miko seems to suffer from. He even executes a small dwarven child simply because the boy had the misfortune to be adopted by an ogre of unknown alignment. (As far as I know Kore never actually uses Detect Evil on either of them.)
You right, Kore never uses Detect Evil on his victiom, he does not care
"All evil, even potientail evil must be eleminated"
But because morals are not relative in D&D, that idea does not work. I would point out, that while the moral in question may belieave the ends justify the means, that does not make it so. Good and evil are very real powers in D&D and they care about the means and the ends. Or at least good does.


Myself, I draw the line quite bit far back. In my view a Paladin should do the right thing when balancing the line between good and law. As i stated earlier, my ideal would be some one like Bahzell Bahnahkson, from David Weber's Sword Gods books. I would have no problem stabbing an enemy in the back, if I knew or believed that such an enemy posed too great a threat for me to deal with 'honorably', especially when my goal is to protect those who would be endangered by his survival. If a BBEG took a small child hostage I would seek to delay until the child could be rescued by one of my party members, but if that same child was destined to destroy the world in hellish apocalypse I would not hesitate to destroy it. For me, the ideals are ranked Right, Good, Honor, Law in that order. My honor should be above the law (though that has more of a military aspect to it, as it has more to do with obeying orders then the law), but my honor does not come before the greater good. Most importantly I shoudl always try to do the right thing by the greatest number of people. But remember, that is all opinion.

Ok, you have fun with that, but you forget something.
This view does not fit the paladin class following the concept that good and evil are very real forces
If you don't use the D&D aligment system, this would be far more suited to you, or if you just made a LN paladin. If in your games, there are not aligments then sure you are good. By all means have fun. but that does not work by the idea of "Morals are not relative". Maybe you can make your own aligment system that differns or follow a LN ideal. Maybe LG fighter

Infecting the population is not an action. It is something that occurs, but not something he does.

dictionary.com
Action: an act that one consciously wills and that may be characterized by physical or mental activity

What physical or mental activity does the soldier perform in order to infect the village? Nothing. He stands there. That is not an action. He is inactive. The virus is spreading from him without his performing any action. He is just infected, something he couldn't control in the first place.
That is like saying my shooting a gun in your direction is just me shooting a gun, nothing inheritly evil about that. Then the bullet hitting you and killing you is not murder, but an acidient. Just no.

But, I can work with your answer anyway.

You used the word "knowingly". That means he knows that he is infecting others. That means he is trying to kill with the virus.

That means the intent to kill is also required in order to make the act of killing potentially evil. Without the intent to kill, he's not doing evil.
Wrong because he is activly infecting the poplutation. It is like Pocket Lint's example.

Or would you like to retain your previous statement about intent and morality?
I've always said action count for more. Take an example made by somebody else
If a hermit sits in a cave and thinks about killing people, does that make him evil?
No, because he is not doing anything
If he gets a chance to kill somebody and gets away with it but does not, then no he is not evil. Not good but not very evil
Neutral only needs ether intent or action
The hermit only has intent, so i'd say he is neutral
A LN person who kills the kid has only the action, but has the intent as well could stay neutral because it is a greater good thing, but not keep up that ideal for long
A evil person needs intent or action
A CE person who saves the life of a kid for a selfish reason is still evil, evil intent
A LE person who murders a political rival for the "Good of the country" is still evil, evil action
A good person need good intent AND good action, but action makes the decision
Action is more important, because a CE person who does nothing but act like a LG person will eventually need to do something to keep him CE. Eventually he would ether become LE, LN or even LG
from,
EE

from
EE

Felius
2007-04-08, 03:06 PM
Not in GreyHawk, default champain, not in FR, nor most of the more normal champains. Ebberon maybe, but the gods still exist and would be willing to pervent the lose of the universe. Also even if the gods can't do anything directly, why aren't their more people sent. Like a celestrail.


That goes both ways. Maybe Torm can't just appear because Bane is trying to prevent it.

EvilElitest
2007-04-08, 03:51 PM
That goes both ways. Maybe Torm can't just appear because Bane is trying to prevent it.

But if this demon woule want to destroy all the gods, then they would work toegeher to stop the threat
from,
EE

Jayabalard
2007-04-09, 02:11 PM
This is what I was originally referring to.



"Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit." was the helpful quote you presented. Though it's not a quote from PHB, as far as I can tell...

In any case, the logical statement form of this sentence {evil -> (debase or destroy innocent life for fun or profit)} cannot possibly be used to prove that someone must be evil. If it's actually in the rules, it can only prove that someone isn't evil.
This is what I was originally referring to.



"Evil characters and creatures debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit." was the helpful quote you presented. Though it's not a quote from PHB, as far as I can tell...

In any case, the logical statement form of this sentence {evil -> (debase or destroy innocent life for fun or profit)} cannot possibly be used to prove that someone must be evil. If it's actually in the rules, it can only prove that someone isn't evil.the quote is from the SRD (http://www.rpgoracle.com/srd/description.html); under the Good and Evil heading: first line, second sentence.

assumption: if the SRD says that an evil character does something, then it's giving an example of an evil act. I didn't state this but thought it was obvious enough to not state explicitly.

"debasing or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit is an evil act" by that assumption

"killing innocent for fun and profitable is an evil act." is the contrapositive of the above statement.

"killing innocent for the greater good is therefore an evil act." substitution of the "he greater good" for "fun and profitable" in the contrapositive. I think I listed that as an assumption in that first post.

No converse was used in that series of statements.

Jayabalard
2007-04-09, 02:16 PM
I do, however, believe that there are times when the ends do justify the means, and that this is one of them.Well, then there's not all that much more to discuss, since we've identified the fundamental disagreement; there should probably be more discussion specifically on that rather than getting off on tangential cases.

Theodoxus
2007-04-09, 03:15 PM
For the kid on the altar, you can foresee that killing it will directly result in a dead, innocent kid. Hence evil. That the alternative was worse isn't a factor - that still doesn't change the fact that the world is short one child as a direct, foreseeable consequence of your action.

And that is my problem with the original premise... A Paladin, especially one faced with the possibility of squaring off with a demon powerful enough to challenge the entirety of the planet - has the resources to atone for the action of slaying a child - and starting that atonement with resurrecting the child. Heck, said paladin would most likely be able to True Resurrect the child, so the youngling won't face a life of suffering by being depleted of Constitution.


This is also a really good reason to include something like Fax's paladin - where the Code of Conduct is built around the abilities the paladin wants to espouse (or vice versa). With his build, even a LG paladin could be able to play morally ambiguant in regards to loss of innocent life in this exact scenario.

At any rate - it is ultimately up to the DM to determine if any action or inaction, willful or coerced is sufficient to make a Paladin fall. Every DM is different, every Paladin player is different. Debating to absolutes is an extreme waste of time. Each situation needs to be looked at in whole - from each players perspective - and judged on it's own merit. To do otherwise, results in what we've seen on these boards. 34095890093489209094 opinions and 0 concensus.

Theo

EvilElitest
2007-04-10, 09:08 PM
And that is my problem with the original premise... A Paladin, especially one faced with the possibility of squaring off with a demon powerful enough to challenge the entirety of the planet - has the resources to atone for the action of slaying a child - and starting that atonement with resurrecting the child. Heck, said paladin would most likely be able to True Resurrect the child, so the youngling won't face a life of suffering by being depleted of Constitution.


This is also a really good reason to include something like Fax's paladin - where the Code of Conduct is built around the abilities the paladin wants to espouse (or vice versa). With his build, even a LG paladin could be able to play morally ambiguant in regards to loss of innocent life in this exact scenario.

At any rate - it is ultimately up to the DM to determine if any action or inaction, willful or coerced is sufficient to make a Paladin fall. Every DM is different, every Paladin player is different. Debating to absolutes is an extreme waste of time. Each situation needs to be looked at in whole - from each players perspective - and judged on it's own merit. To do otherwise, results in what we've seen on these boards. 34095890093489209094 opinions and 0 concensus.

Theo

Well, if we are following the D&D standards, then yes the paladin falls
If somebody like the DM has a homebrew or is following their own rules, different story.
from,
EE

Theodoxus
2007-04-10, 09:51 PM
see... I don't see it that way:


"Code of Conduct:

A paladin must be of lawful good alignment


and loses all class abilities if she ever willingly commits an evil act."



Being forced to commit an evil act is not being willing. The Paladin didn't wake up one morning and say 'gee, I think I'll go slaughter an innocent child for fun today'. No, they woke up to an evil sorcerer who has summoned a demon who will possess the child, and it (the demon) is basically taunting the paladin to kill the child or kill the world. That isn't a willing choice - either way. The Paladin certainly doesn't want to do either, but inaction will create the greater ill. So, the Paladin unwillingly slays the child, retains their Paladinhood and saves the world from unending torment and destruction.

Pretty clear to me.

EvilElitest
2007-04-12, 09:04 AM
see... I don't see it that way:


"Code of Conduct:

A paladin must be of lawful good alignment


and loses all class abilities if she ever willingly commits an evil act."



Being forced to commit an evil act is not being willing. The Paladin didn't wake up one morning and say 'gee, I think I'll go slaughter an innocent child for fun today'. No, they woke up to an evil sorcerer who has summoned a demon who will possess the child, and it (the demon) is basically taunting the paladin to kill the child or kill the world. That isn't a willing choice - either way. The Paladin certainly doesn't want to do either, but inaction will create the greater ill. So, the Paladin unwillingly slays the child, retains their Paladinhood and saves the world from unending torment and destruction.

Pretty clear to me.



Except killing a baby who has done nothing wrong is an evil act. Sure if this guy is willling to fall then fine, but you can't justify it with greater good
from,
EE

Darkxarth
2007-04-12, 10:03 AM
see... I don't see it that way:


"Code of Conduct:

A paladin must be of lawful good alignment


and loses all class abilities if she ever willingly commits an evil act."



Being forced to commit an evil act is not being willing. The Paladin didn't wake up one morning and say 'gee, I think I'll go slaughter an innocent child for fun today'. No, they woke up to an evil sorcerer who has summoned a demon who will possess the child, and it (the demon) is basically taunting the paladin to kill the child or kill the world. That isn't a willing choice - either way. The Paladin certainly doesn't want to do either, but inaction will create the greater ill. So, the Paladin unwillingly slays the child, retains their Paladinhood and saves the world from unending torment and destruction.

Pretty clear to me.



I'm pretty sure the 'unwilling' part refers to whether it was on accident or on purpose. The Paladin, by his own free will, killed a baby. Maybe he felt like he was 'forced' to, but he wasn't actually physically (or magically) forced to kill said innocent baby.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-12, 10:22 AM
see... I don't see it that way:


"Code of Conduct:

A paladin must be of lawful good alignment


and loses all class abilities if she ever willingly commits an evil act."



Being forced to commit an evil act is not being willing. The Paladin didn't wake up one morning and say 'gee, I think I'll go slaughter an innocent child for fun today'. No, they woke up to an evil sorcerer who has summoned a demon who will possess the child, and it (the demon) is basically taunting the paladin to kill the child or kill the world. That isn't a willing choice - either way. The Paladin certainly doesn't want to do either, but inaction will create the greater ill. So, the Paladin unwillingly slays the child, retains their Paladinhood and saves the world from unending torment and destruction.

Pretty clear to me.



Then the Paladin is failing in their obligation to look at the larger picture of "least harm." For one, Demons do sometimes lie. What if killing the child actually destroys the world: Should the Paladin fall then, for being dumb and believing what the demon said?

No matter how you word it if the paladin is in control of themselves and they intentionally inflict harm on an innocent (not by accident, by choice) then it's a willing evil act and they fall. The "willing" part is only supposed to protect a Paladin in cases where they are magically compelled or manipulated in some way, not from choices they feel "forced" to make of their own volition. Miko felt that she had no choice but to kill Lord Shojo, an evil traitor to Azure city and the Sapphire Guard. She fell because she slaughtered an innocent old man, even though she thought she was saving her world.

Peregrine
2007-04-12, 11:26 AM
Here's how I see it: This kind of no-win situation should not arise. If it does, it is purely by the will of the DM. Whether you believe such a thing happens in the real world or not, in the game world, it is utterly up to the control of the DM. If the DM has not intended a no-win, but 'that's just what the story dictated', either the player or the DM (or both) has failed of imagination, at least briefly.

The game world has paladins. They are granted special powers, by a god or gods, in order to uphold Good in a Lawful way. A paladin is expected to do this, even if they believe that a less Lawful way is more expedient. They are required to have faith that the gods know what they're doing when they lay down these laws. This requires that, in this game world, the good gods do know what they're doing and the laws they lay down really do lead to the best solution. (That is, this is necessary, unless you are deliberately playing a 'dark' style of game. Making your good gods do dumb things will lead to a dark game -- you've made it so that the greatest-by-definition of Good is not enough, so sooner or later your players will have to be un-Good to be 'right'.)

This does not mean that the gods will always show up in a blaze of deus ex machina to save the day. This does mean that there is always a way out. Start with this basic assumption that the paladin's god will have a way, and let your imagination run loose for a bit. Like this:

So the child is the gateway through which Ultimate Evil will be unleashed upon the world, but killing him will prevent that. What does the paladin do? Stab the child with his sword? No. The paladin puts his sword down, takes the child into his arms, kneels, and prays. He prays for his god to protect the child and save him from this evil. He prays that, if the child simply must die, that his god will reach down and gently take the child's life, without pain or fear or violence (after all, all lives are in the hands of the gods, to take when their time is up).

Is this deus ex machina? Is this not a good story? Is this not good roleplaying?

What obstacles to such a solution can be thrown up? Dark cultists fighting back? Well, if you're forcing the paladin to be the one to do the killing, he's probably at arm's reach from the child anyway. He can get the child away, or he can kill the cultists first, or he can just take an even bigger leap of faith, trust his friends to protect him and the child, and kneel in prayer right there in the midst of battle.

Evil gods keeping the paladin's god from interfering? Now you're risking going over the line into 'dark game'. But let's look at it. The paladin has his divinely granted powers, even there in that place, so his god is not completely unable to act. Maybe his god can't act that directly, whisking the child's soul away, but the paladin should be able to suddenly find himself the conduit for just the right power to do the trick. Imagine something suitable. Maybe the child falls asleep in his arms and gently stops breathing, a smile on his face.

This is a game. If you make the paladin stab the child, everybody loses.

Theodoxus
2007-04-12, 01:26 PM
WTFPWN'd by a true Paladin. Peregrine, that is by far the best description of what a Paladin should endeavor to do... it's too bad that most people (myself included) tend to see them as Jedi, forever fighting first, asking questions later - instead of simply being a vessel of a higher power and knowing without seeing that all will be ok.

Of course, the demon will still slaughter the praying Paladin and take the child anyway - because we all know the gods don't exist... but the Paladin would never be in fear of falling, and would get to spend eternity dancing in Vahalla, or somesuch.

EvilElitest
2007-04-12, 10:04 PM
WTFPWN'd by a true Paladin. Peregrine, that is by far the best description of what a Paladin should endeavor to do... it's too bad that most people (myself included) tend to see them as Jedi, forever fighting first, asking questions later - instead of simply being a vessel of a higher power and knowing without seeing that all will be ok.

Of course, the demon will still slaughter the praying Paladin and take the child anyway - because we all know the gods don't exist... but the Paladin would never be in fear of falling, and would get to spend eternity dancing in Vahalla, or somesuch.

Dude, you deserve some credit for manners here
You admited that you see paladin's as jedi and went along with peregrine's disrciption.
I think you deserve a round of appulse (clap)
Thank you very much
from,
EE
p.s. The gods could answer the paladin.

Gitman00
2007-04-19, 09:59 AM
@Peregrine:

Fantastic. *applauds* Haven't looked at this thread for a while and skipped to the last page, but I think this is the best post I've seen on the subject.

EvilElitest
2007-04-19, 04:33 PM
So it a wrap then?
from,
EE

psychoticbarber
2007-04-20, 02:56 AM
This may have been covered, but I didn't have time to read the whole thread.

My Paladin would kill the child, fall, and become a bitter atheistic fighter. The point of RPG is to create a story, and sometimes in stories bad things happen to good people. It's quite possible (even likely, if I were DMing this hypothetical) that the character may slowly return to the path of good, drawn by the screams of the innocents, or the ghost of a child, to once again pick up his sword to save the day.

The dualistic nature of the decision is crappy. Personally, I'd hate it, but sometimes it's interesting to see how a character will react to the situation. Sometimes it's interesting to see how a good character will react to being "forced" (let's face it, the "DM"'s choice was probably presented by the Demon, used as a front to cause the Paladin to fall.) to do evil.

My Paladins would probably have a hard time believing in God or the Gods after being forced to make a choice like that, but that doesn't mean the character would cease to exist, or that the character wouldn't ever do anything meaningful again.

This is *extremely* hard for most players (and in all likelihood I am included) to accept. If the player doesn't like what the character becomes, the player has the choice to try a new character (I would introduce the atheistic fighter into a new campaign, giving him the chance to atone and rise again).

Forgive me for rambling, but my point is this: D&D is a game about choices. Sometimes the choices are hard, and none of the answers seem sufficient. But D&D is also a game about roleplaying, and difficult choices bring out emotional responses which make the roleplaying all the more heartfelt. The Paladin isn't real: The roleplaying is what matters.

[Note: It was 4am (local) when I wrote this. Please forgive the rambling nature of the comment]

Edit: I'm leaving this up because I see it as another possible interesting alternative, but I must point out the wonderful post by Peregrine. This is what Paladins should be made of (and this is why I don't normally play them). "Knowing without seeing that all will be well" (Or something like that, it's late).

You have my respect and admiration.

Starbuck_II
2007-04-20, 08:18 AM
This may have been covered, but I didn't have time to read the whole thread.

My Paladin would kill the child, fall, and become a bitter atheistic fighter. The point of RPG is to create a story, and sometimes in stories bad things happen to good people. It's quite possible (even likely, if I were DMing this hypothetical) that the character may slowly return to the path of good, drawn by the screams of the innocents, or the ghost of a child, to once again pick up his sword to save the day.
\
Sorry, not gonna happen. If you make him fall he does'nt unfall till atonemrnt spell.
If you make him not fall, but feel horrible and become a bitter "atheistic fighter" (well paladin). Now you have your story.

The only way to get the story you want is not fall the Paladin. Just have become a bitter atheist.


This is *extremely* hard for most players (and in all likelihood I am included) to accept. If the player doesn't like what the character becomes, the player has the choice to try a new character (I would introduce the atheistic fighter into a new campaign, giving him the chance to atone and rise again).

You can't atone without atonement...

AllisterH
2007-04-20, 02:15 PM
You know, in this entire "paladin" debate on the various threads, I still would like a clear answer as to why paladins have their code yet priests pretty much can do as they please.

How is that Durkon, a LG priest of Thor (a god not known for being chummy with rogues/thieves and scoundrels) can get away with being in the OotS' party yet most paladins are seriously screwed.

WTF?

psychoticbarber
2007-04-20, 08:21 PM
\
Sorry, not gonna happen. If you make him fall he does'nt unfall till atonemrnt spell.
If you make him not fall, but feel horrible and become a bitter "atheistic fighter" (well paladin). Now you have your story.

The only way to get the story you want is not fall the Paladin. Just have become a bitter atheist.

You can't atone without atonement...

Can I make something very clear? When I spoke about how the Paladin might atone, I was speaking in plot terms. The spell "Atonement" would obviously be included in atoning, as you said, it's a necessary component.

And if the Paladin falls, and becomes an atheist, he's basically a fighter, because he doesn't get any of his Paladin goodies.

Just because I didn't say anything about the spell doesn't mean I didn't know it was there.

Matthew
2007-04-20, 09:34 PM
An Atheist?

Demented
2007-04-20, 10:00 PM
It's not a Base Class, if that's what you're asking.

Or maybe it is.

Dun-dun-DUNNNNN!

Matthew
2007-04-20, 10:03 PM
That would be cool. Such a Base Class should get the power to deny the effects of Divine Magic through sheer none belief.

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-20, 10:24 PM
You know, in this entire "paladin" debate on the various threads, I still would like a clear answer as to why paladins have their code yet priests pretty much can do as they please.

How is that Durkon, a LG priest of Thor (a god not known for being chummy with rogues/thieves and scoundrels) can get away with being in the OotS' party yet most paladins are seriously screwed.

WTF?

IMO?

Because the idea of Paladinhood is rooted in the ideals of chivarious knighthood first and foremost?

Clerics are servants of their Gods first and foremost: Whatever their god commands they *do* and no Code constrains them from that. Paladins are servants of their Code of Conduct and Lawful Goodness first, and obey their respective Gods secondly. You don't even need a God to be a Paladin in most settings.

Thor doesn't mind baudy companions (which is good because that's the entire Norse pantheon more or less), so Durkon is fine with the sometimes shady friends he makes. Clerics who displease their respective God(s) lose their powers. Paladins who defy their Code face similar penalties.

It's why I kinda disagreed with OotS's portrayal of the Twelve Gods stripping Miko of her powers. She lost her powers for defying her Code, not for defying her Gods and the way it's shown confuses the two. But it's Rich's world and I still love to read it! :smallsmile:

Demented
2007-04-20, 11:17 PM
That would be cool. Such a Base Class should get the power to deny the effects of Divine Magic through sheer none belief.

___________

:durkon: Cure serious wounds!

:belkar: What the? Get your hands off me you creepy-perv-dwarf!

:durkon: Wha? I'm tryin' tae heal ya, ye daft fool!

:belkar: Suuure you are. Creep. Stay away from me!
___________

Maybe it'd be better as an NPC class.

Snooder
2007-04-21, 02:30 AM
You know, in this entire "paladin" debate on the various threads, I still would like a clear answer as to why paladins have their code yet priests pretty much can do as they please.

How is that Durkon, a LG priest of Thor (a god not known for being chummy with rogues/thieves and scoundrels) can get away with being in the OotS' party yet most paladins are seriously screwed.

WTF?

Honestly I see 3 possible reasons for this.
1. WOTC hates Paladins. Lets face it, the Paladin class as a whole is built to suck. The class gets very few really useful class abilities, loses the fighter bonus feats, and on top of that, has that damn Code straightjacket. (smite evil is such a ripoff, wee i get to add a few points of damage to ONE attack once a day, or THREE times) It's funny that it's such a popular class, and yet mechanically its by far the weakest melee class. Seriously, a Fighter/Cleric of equal ECL to the Paladin is much stronger. Better spellcasting, more feats, divine power to even out the BAB.

2. WOTC loves Clerics. This is fairly possible since WOTC tries hard to make the cleric class tempting so that every people will play what used to be derided as a "healbot".

3. Paladins, even of the same god, are supposed to be more morally rigid than Clerics. A Cleric is like the local priest, if he drinks every now and then, likes to gamble, or engages in other petty vices, he's really only human. The Paladin on the other hand is like an even better version of Sir Galahad, so pure and righteous he practically has a halo.

EvilElitest
2007-04-21, 02:07 PM
Isn't this thread dead?

Anyways


Paladins, even of the same god, are supposed to be more morally rigid than Clerics. A Cleric is like the local priest, if he drinks every now and then, likes to gamble, or engages in other petty vices, he's really only human. The Paladin on the other hand is like an even better version of Sir Galahad, so pure and righteous he practically has a halo.

A Cleric is simple following his/her god

If my god tells me to dance like crazy, i say yes if i want to keep my powers
Paladins draw their power from raw good, slightly different
from,
EE

Matthew
2007-04-21, 02:58 PM
Kind of. Somebody started yet another Alignment/Paladin Thread which is pretty much retreading the same old ground.

Hey, Demented, are you going to make an Atheist Class? I wonder whether it ought to be a Base Class or Prestige Class? Is there a Philosopher Class already?

Demented
2007-04-21, 04:37 PM
Turns out, there's already an Athiest PrC (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10933) in the Homebrew forum.

There is, however, no Philosopher class. Not in homebrew, anyways.

Matthew
2007-04-21, 04:42 PM
Whoah. That Prestige Class should be renamed Militant Atheist. Look at the Prerequisite...


Special: -Must not worship any deity.
-Must kill at least one cleric whose deity is up to one step away from your alignment.