I was asked this question today by a theist. If there is no God why is safe sex between brother and sister immoral to an atheist? This guy was smart to add safe sex because it closed off my avenue to argue the health issue. So, I was thinking why is it immoral if it is consensual? I understand we find it gross but is that because of Christian influence?
It depends. Children are definitely off limits. I married my first cousin and his ex-wife would tell his children that we were committing incest. According to North Carolina law, first cousins can marry but the woman has to be 'sterilized'. I had to get my tubes tied before I moved here because we knew we were going to get married. It never bothered me to tell someone we were first cousins but it upset him if I told someone. Kind of hypocritical I think. Our Spanish instructor in college told us that in European countries first cousins often marry and their children are born without any health issues or deformities. He was my second husband and we have since divorced for different reasons.
Well, it's not Christian influence that makes it gross. It's probably more of a cultural/societal influence. After all, there is plenty of incest in the bible.
I find morality to be defined by society. So, societal values would call this immoral.
Non-consent is always a problem... and I'm the sort of person who usually just tries to think about everything logically-- but on this... If we're talking about close family like father, mother, brother, sister, grandparent... my gut just says yuck. It feels wrong.
Well the question should be on the theist really. Why his/her god allowed incest and malfunctions from it and why the female body produces pheromones after birth not to attract the son sexually while the father's body does not produces any sort of thing to repeal the daughter. It is not sounds very godly the whole thing does it? So it is moral as long love exists and not lust or rape or any other thing with babies etc
Ironically, in the Biblical worldview, incest is not only acceptable but is the very way in which our species has survived - twice. Adam and Eve, then Noah and his happy little family. Disregard the fact that such a situation is biologically impossible. Anyway, back to the real world.
Incest itself is neither moral nor immoral. It would be immoral for children to come from such a relationship, because inbred children have a very high chance of being born with a genetic disorder. However, incest itself is no more moral nor immoral than gay, lesbian, anal, oral sex or all the other kinky categories one can find on Pornhub.
I believe that if both parties are consenting and their intention isn't to have children, it is moral. Like other commenters are mentioning, incest can lead to birth defects and gentic mutations that would lower the quality of life for the offspring. If contraceptives or other methods are used, I see no reason why two relatives couldn't have a prosperous relationship.
It is immoral if it is in the context of pedophilia and or rape. If adults choose such a thing, the risk of genetic mutation from an offspring is too high. It is selfish and highly immoral to risk bringing a defective human being into a world that is difficult enough to navigate. If related adults want children there are plenty to choose from via adoption.
Game of Thrones is pure fantasy but it's rife with incest. I lean towards thinking religion swayed everyone towards believing what they chose you to believe. Aside from that apparently incest is relatively common throughout history. The deformity debate is moot because two unrelated people can create deformity as well but not necessarily with a higher degree of chance. Takeaway the religious aspect and the deformity aspect add in consensual agreement and you have two people willingly having sex. There is nothing immoral about it.
we find it gross not because of christian values, but evolutionary protection. We mated long before there was religion, and family is more readily available than not, so if we didn't find it gross.. our genes would be corrupted and wouldn't propagate. I selected moral, because.. with the safe sex aspect there is no moral element to it. the immoral aspect would be to bringing children from the union, as they have a very high chance of genetic disorders.
I do not think in terms of morality. I looked up that word in the dictionary and it said; "regarding good and evil". Evil can not be scientifically defined. It is an illusionial concept. I am more inclined to look at things as wise or foolish. So, I see nothing foolish about protected incestual sex.
I don't think it is a question of morality. It has been in the most part a social prohibition aimed at preventing too much in-breeding. I a number of ruling elites incest was used as a means of keeping a tight hold on power, even though it often led to gross congenital deformities. I think that single generational incest, say between brother and sister, or even inter-generational as between mother and son, or father and daughter, then the odds of deformaties would be relatively low. So if the relationship was completely consentual then I don't see anything that society should fear.
The idea that we end up with people like our parents and are like our parents should clearly demonstrate how much of our attraction to others and everything is caught up in our early relationships. I think that those relationships are important because they help us learn and understand power differentials and security. If your father put his arms around you and that where you felt safest and you want big, strong, manly arms around you, I think that 40 years later, if it is still important to you, there is still a power differential in that relationship and it’s an abuse of that power, inherently coercive, to engage in a relationship. By that same notion, siblings who are close in age are like their parents, but age at different rates, so the power dynamic in the relationship can change which may even enhance those feelings.