All inquiries within THEE start from the assumption that what is most distinctive about being human is our capacity to create a reality for ourselves and others. This particular inquiry assumes that goodness is an important and distinctive part of being human.
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Evolutionary biologists and other scientific materialists view individuals as objects with properties. They wonder what human beings are «really» like and what «makes» them act. So they ask questions like: Is a person really self-interested? or really altruistic? What specific conditions can trigger altruistic behaviour? Psychosocial reality is not recognized, free will is regarded as an illusion, and so notions like commitment and existential choice are irrelevant. Goodness cannot be recognized apart from a value given to specific outcomes. THEE inquiries do not deny that there is a biological substratum and accept that much in human life is reflex, unconscious, or determined in some way—but its elements reveal that there is more than that in being a person.
The idea of creating what is good and making oneself and life in general better seems to be innate, at least for many or most, and probably potentially for all. However, no-one would doubt that it is a . As with any challenge requiring a creative response, we may choose to rise to it—or not.
The commitment to produce goodness needs , which has three components. must be taken for granted here, and goodness is its own . So comes into focus. is experienced in various ways as shown in the Table below.
Motivation Correspondences in THEE
Social existence, whatever the society, requires us to have a Producing goodness is an unusual goal and the responsibility for it is also unusual in that it is not necessarily demanded in the social milieu. Responsibility for humanity can also be experienced as directed to: yourself because you are in a union with humanity, or to God or the Cosmos as an imaginative experience.. This responsibility relates to what others can reasonably expect of us and seems to be unique to human beings. Responsibility accompanies the holding of any or .
The Groupings are all responsibilities. (You can see these set out in a table in the next Topic):discovered in the initial 3
Groupings, but it is primarily in the form of an impersonal . using the is both the culmination of the obligation to be and also the source and result of appropriate .applies within all these
In moving onwards and upward,does not disappear, but other more egocentric come to the fore. These provide an appealing human rationale for the lower components.
Originally posted: 7-Jun-2013