Through the Prism

After passing through the prism, each refraction contains some pure essence of the light, but only an incomplete part. We will always experience some aspect of reality, of the Truth, but only from our perspectives as they are colored by who and where we are. Others will know a different color and none will see the whole, complete light. These are my musings from my particular refraction.

7.20.2016

World Peace


From the introduction to The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion by Jonathan Haidt, which I started recently.

Also:
I want to show you that an obsession with righteousness (leading inevitably to self-righteousness) is the normal human condition. It is a feature of our evolutionary design, not a bug or error that crept into minds that would otherwise be objective and rational. . . .

If you think that moral reasoning is something we do to figure out the truth, you'll be constantly frustrated by how foolish, biased, and illogical people become when they disagree with you. But if you think about moral reasoning as a skill we humans evolved to futher our social agendas--to justify our own actions and to defend the teams we belong to--then things will make a lot more sense. . . . They're mostly post hoc constructions made up on the fly, crafted to advance one or more strategic objectives. . . .

We are indeed selfish hypocrites so skilled at putting on a show of virtue that we fool even ourselves. . . .

We're not always selfish hypocrites. We also have the ability, under special circumstances, to shut down our petty selves and become like cells in a larger body, or like bees in a hive, working for the good of the group. . . Our bee-like nature facilitates altruism, heroism, war, and genocide.

Once you see our righteous minds as primate minds with a hivish overlay, you get a whole new perspective on morality, politics, and religion. I'll show that our "higher nature" allows us to be profoundly altruistic, but that altruism is mostly aimed at members of our own groups. . . . People bind themselves into political teams that share moral narratives. Once they accept a particular narrative, they become blind to alternative moral worlds.

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