link: morality

                            

                    BIOLOGICAL BASIS OF MORAL CONSCIOUSNESS OR 'CONSCIENCE':

                                                  MORALITY AS 'FREE MORALITY'

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theme: Morality as 'moral sense' or 'ethics' is 'moral rationality' or 'moral intelligence' - an emergent property of the human brain. The human brain is a social brain specialized for adaptation to the complexities of changing social conditions i.e. 'socialisation'. Human socialisation depends on the capacity for making accurate evaluations of the environment i.e. 'morality'. Morality is a function of moral intelligence or 'freedom' as 'freedom of conscience'... freedom of self-actualisation at the higher spiritual level of consciousness beyond the 'ego level' i.e. 'self-transcendance'.

 "The criteria for morality depend on the needs for individual growth. Attitudes which are conducive to a person's growth are 'moral' and those which are obstructive to a persons growth are 'immoral.' Growth and self-realization are not possible without truthfulness to oneself." (Karen Horney. Neurosis and Human Growth)

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True morality is not the authoritarian morality of 'moralism'...    

morality as function of intelligence...

morality as function of moral consciousness or rational conscience'...

morality and inner freedom...

human organism and instinctive motivation for socialisation...

morality of intuition is required for adaptability...

morality as empathic awareness...  morality as function of spirituality...

evolutionary significance...

implications for education...

 Morality as 'humanistic morality' or 'free morality' is not the same as authoritarian morality or 'moralism'. Moralism is morality based on external authority... the 'authoritarian conscience'.

Moral development is development of the human conscience. . Development of humanistic conscience depends on natural development... normal 'healthy' psychological development.... 'free morality'.  Free morality is based on inner freedom.

The function of morality for the human organism as a social organism: A rational analysis of the issues of morality is based on the recognition of the human species as a social species which depends for survival on development of a social brain.... 'homo sapiens'.  The human brain evolved through a process of natural selection for the capacities of intelligent social behaviour or social cooperation necessary for work and for defence i.e. 'socialisation'. Motivation for socialisation is intrinsic to the nature of the human personality or 'human nature'. Human nature is defined in terms of the instinctive motives for human behaviour i.e. 'human needs'. Human needs are 'value choices' rooted in the instinct for self-preservation and the organismic striving for wholeness' or 'health' i.e. mature growth' or 'self-actualisation'. Self-actualisation depends on the 'basic psychological needs' for self-respect and self-esteem - the 'ego needs' - and the 'higher psychological needs' for 'ego-transcendance' - the 'growth needs' or 'spiritual needs' i.e. 'metaneeds'. The metaneeds are instinctive components of the biological life. They function as 'social values' which are required for socialisation and successful adaptation to changing social conditions ('adaptability'). Since human needs are functional or 'operative' in the unfolding of human powers in the achievement of human potential... inherent striving and for self-actualisation... they are known as 'operative values'.  Human operative values are behaviour preferences related to the organism's inherent capacities and talents... guiding principles for the resolution of social problems... the social or 'moral values' of truth, beauty, logic, knowledge, compassion, justice i.e. 'human values'. Denial and frustration of human values leads to 'immature growth' i.e. 'neurotic development' or 'neurosis' which produces pathological behaviour of human wickedness or 'evil'. 

Evil represents failure of social adaptability. Human adaptability as social adaptability depends on normal personality development as 'mature growth' or 'self-actualisation'.

 Survival value of social needs or 'values': human adaptability depends on accurate evaluation of  complex situations which arise in a changing social reality i.e. 'moral situations' The human organism depends for survival on the ability to make accurate evaluations of changing social realities... social situations or 'moral situations'. The practical meaning of a moral situation - apppropriate decisions and actions for problem resolution - is not immediately apparent... not self-evident. The situation must first be evaluated and assessed before decisions can be made from a choice of various options. Deciding on the right course of action depends on intelligent inquiry based on intense interest in the environment - 'curiosity'. Curiosity combined with accurate evaluation depends on the moral sense or 'ethical sense'... 'ethics' of moral intelligence or 'morality'.

Morality is living by virtues as social values required for human survival... 'living in truth'. 

 Morality is a function of intelligence: 'moral intelligence' or 'spiritual intelligence'  Living in truth is living according to the organism's real interests for self-preservation... preservation of personal integrity... while adapting to changes in the social environment. Integrity is preserved by intelligent value choices and the productive use of human powers and potentialities or 'virtues'. Virtues are social values which allow for social cooperation i.e. 'socialisation'. Morality as 'virtuous living' is 'spiritual morality' or 'spiritual intelligence'. As a function of spirituality morality is a function of highly awakened intelligence or 'intuition'.

 "A moral situation is one i which judgement and choice are required antecedently to overt action. The practical meaning of the situation - that is to say the action needed to satisfy it - is not self-evident. It has to be searched for. There are conflicting desires and alternative apparent goods. What is needed is to find the right course of action, the right good. Hence inquiry is exacted... This inquiry is intelligence." (Dewey The Quest for Certainty. 255)

Morality of intuition or 'intuitive process' required for creative or 'adaptive' evaluation of the changing social conditions i.e. 'adaptability'. Human adaptability depends on the capacity for rapid and creative evaluation of changing social conditions...followed by effective decision making and adaptive behaviour. Intuition is a function of the immediate processing by the whole brain without conscious awareness of all the facts... 'complete cognition'. Complete cognition is a function of the integration of the ego-self with the spiritual self... 'holiness'... 'health' or 'wholeness'. The human potential for wholeness incorporates not only the basic psychological needs but the higher spiritual, ethical and moral values of the value-life i.e. 'spiritual needs' or 'metaneeds'. Gratification of the metaneeds engages development of morality i.e. 'moral development'. Moral development is development of spiritual intelligence. A value choice which is moral is socially intelligent. A value choice which is immoral is socially unintelligent. Human behaviour, whether moral or immoral, involves a decision making process which precedes a given course of action.

Morality is empathic awareness...'empathy'... of the other's need for growth i.e. 'justice' The biological concept of survival value of the moral sense is equivalent to the philosophical concept of morality. The development of morality depends on inner freedom translated into 'free morality'. Morality as 'free morality' is not the same as the instruction of moral behaviour i.e. 'moralism'. Free morality is equivalent to the responsibility of freedom or 'ethics'. The term 'morality comes from the Latin word 'moralitat, moralitas' derived from moralis for meaning both 'custom' and 'ethic'. The concept of morality as free morality can be defined in terms of its various different aspects: living in truth, living by virtues, spiritual intelligence, moral rationality, empathy, holistic perception.

"In the cognitive-developmental view, morality is a natural product of a universal tendency toward empathy or role-taking... toward putting oneself in the shoes of other conscious beings. It is also a product of a universal human concern for justice, for reciprocity or equality in the relation of one person to another." (Lawrence Kohlberg)

 As a social organism, the human organism depends for survival on socially intelligent behaviour or moral intelligence. Morality as moral rationality is the natural human concern for reciprocity or equality in the relation of one person to another... the understanding of the humanity of the other... i.e. 'social consciousness' or 'sense of justice'... the universal human tendency to put oneself in the place of another and to understand  them as in some way like oneself i.e.  'empathic awareness' or 'empathy'. Empathy is a natural process which occurs in all social interactions and communication situations.

Morality is a function of spirituality  Morality is the instinctive sense of responsibility for living in the 'truth' i.e. 'free morality'. Morality as 'free morality' is a function of the development of moral rationality or 'moral intelligence' - an 'emergent property' of the human brain. The human brain is a social brain which depends on ''moral consciousness' or 'conscience' for accurate evaluation of the social environment. The development of conscience is a function of spiritual development... attainment of the highest consciousness state... 'conscience - the human 'soul'. The conscience is the guardian of personal integrity, the source of human values i.e. moral intelligence or 'ethical reasoning' i.e. 'social intelligence'. Social intelligence produces moral or ethical behaviour or 'ethical living'. Ethical living engages the individual's instinctive awareness of its psychological needs. Value choices are made on the basis of the inherent tendency toward full humaness of 'mature growth' i.e. 'self-actualisation'.

Morality is perception of the whole or 'holistic perception' Morality as spiritual intelligence perception which results from nondistorted perception of reality health or wholeness and which does not perceive dichotomies i.e.  'holistic perception'. Holistic perception involves both intellect and emotion related to moral development.  Morality is a function of holistic perception and  'complete cognition'.

Morality is moral rationality of moral consciousness or 'conscience' Morality is a function of normal human development... development of  conscience in the context of conditions of freedom as inner freedom... involves both intellectual and moral development.

 Morality as spiritual intelligence is a function of ethical reasoning or 'moral rationality' of moral consciousness... 'rational conscience' or 'mature conscience'. The normal growth and development of the human conscience i.e. 'moral development' is a function of cognitive development. A necessary precondition for rational thought, moral development involves the alignment and harmony of powerful emotional forces impacting the individual at certain critical stages during which the individual selectis and arranges their emotional experiences through the power of thinking or 'cognition'. The harmonizing process is achieved through social interactions which are emotionally significant and harmonious.

Morality is a function of development of conscience in conditions of freedom as 'inner freedom'...  'autonomous nature of ethics'   Morality is a function of normal human development in the context of inner freedom.

"The free man acts morally because he has a moral idea; he does not act in order that morality may come into being. Human individuals, with the moral ideas belonging to their nature, are the prerequisites of a moral world order. The human individual is the source of all morality. State and society exist only because they have arisen as a necessary consequence of the life of the individuals. ...the social order arises so that it in turn may react favorably upon the individual." {(Steiner, R. Philosophy of Freedom: Philosophy of Spiritual Activity:. The Basis for a Modern World Conception: (Some Results of Introspective Observation Following the Methods of Natural Science). London: Rudolf Steiner Press, 1970, p.144)}

"Acting out of freedom does not exclude the moral laws; it includes them, but shows itself to be on a higher level than those actions which are merely dictated by such laws".(Rudolph Steiner)

 "We all have an 'intrinsic conscience' which is based on the unconscious and preconscious perception of our own nature, of our own destiny, of our own capacities, of our own 'call' in life." (Maslow, A. Toward a Psychology of Being, Van Nostrand Reinhold Co. New York: 1962, 7) "Acting out of freedom does not exclude the moral laws; it includes them, but shows itself to be on a higher level than those actions which are merely dictated by such laws." (Steiner, R. Philosophy of Freedom)

 "...the 'free spirit' - the moral being - is the purest expression of human nature." "We are men (human) in the true sense only in so far as we are free. Knowledge of oneself - self-knowledge - overcomes the division between the subjective self and the objective world. During normal growth and development - with self-knowledge- the individual "brings the concept of himself to expression in his outer existence." (Steiner, R. Philosophy of Freedom: Philosophy of Spiritual Activity. The Basis for a Modern World Conception: Some Results of Introspective Observation Following the Methods of Natural Science. London: Rudolf Steiner Press, 1970, 141)

 "Man's value judgements - his criteria for good and evil - are derived from the meaningfulness of his own existence.

 Free morality is based on inner freedom

 Normal human development in the context of inner freedom involves both intellectual and moral development. (Steiner, R. Philosophy of Freedom) "Real freedom is a consequence of development; it is the consequence of latent guides, aided by education. It is the construction of the personality, reached by effort and one's own experiences; it is the long road which every child must take to reach maturity... Development cannot be taught." (Montessori Absorbent Mind)

Human adaptability depends on normal personality development as 'mature growth' or 'self-actualisation'.  

 "There is only one problem, and it is human development in its totality; once this is achieved in any unit - child or nation - everything else follows spontaneously and harmoniously."(Maria Montessori. To Educate the Human Potential.Adyar, Madras, India: Kalakshetra Publications, 1961. p.13)

Evolutionary significance of morality... favours equilibrium between the organism and its social environment i.e. 'socialisation'  Human survival depends on productive social behaviour... social harmony and cooperation i.e. 'social intelligence'. Social harmony depends on free morality as adaptive thought and behaviour which favours greater equilibrium, reciprocity, balance or 'adaptation' in the interaction between organism and social environment i.e. natural ethics'. Morality as social intelligence provides security for the human organism in a social context... Free morality favours the adaptation of the self to perception of others toward the self i.e. 'socialisation'. Socialisation in its generalized form results from the human tendency towards equilibrium in the 'organism-environment interaction'... favours the adaptation of the human organism as a social organism i.e. social adaptation to a changing social environment or 'adaptability'. Human adaptability as social adaptability depends on intelligent evaluation and intelligent value choices... acts of 'social cognition' motivated by wisdom of compassion of social intelligence.

Implications for education: education for morality is focused on human development (in its totality) 'self-actualisation' ... 'holistic education'...  The evolution of the human species as a social species is based on the natural selection of the capacity for kindness of compassion and understanding of reason i.e. social intelligence or 'creative intelligence'. The human capacity for creative intelligence is a function of the 'moral faculty' or moral sense of the human brain or 'mind' i.e. moral rationality' or 'moral intelligence'. Moral intelligence or required for successful adaptation to changing social conditions... a function of socio-cognitive development ... 'sociocognitive stages'. The natural development of morality as moral intelligence is directly related to the process of natural learning in the context spiritual freedom.

  Education for freedom is natural education for both cognitive and moral development or 'holistic education'. Holistic education is based on the natural wholistic functioning of the human brain and its  instinctive tendency to search for meaning  or 'learn' from the complexities of the social reality. Meaningful learning involves emotional as well as intellectual stimulation of the brain... 'brain-based learning'. Brain-based learning is natural learning which engages the psychological value of creativity and productivity... the productive use of human powers and potentialities or 'work'. Meaningful work in the context of inner freedom is the basis for moral development or 'personal development' ... a function of 'holistic education'. Holistic education is education for free morality as the a function of the answer to the search for guiding values in the resolution of human problems... the so-called 'problem of ethics'.

Human adaptability depends on normal personality development as 'mature growth' or 'self-actualisation'.  

"With the recognition of the potential universality of the organismic valuing process of the human organism the perplexing issues of 'values' and ethics could be resolved." (Rogers)

 "The criteria for morality depend on the needs for individual growth. Attitudes which are conducive to a person's growth are 'moral' and those which are obstructive to a persons growth are 'immoral.' Growth and self-realization are not possible without truthfulness to oneself." (Karen Horney. Neurosis and Human Growth)

 "There is only one problem, and it is human development in its totality; once this is achieved in any unit - child or nation - everything else follows spontaneously and harmoniously."(Maria Montessori. To Educate the Human Potential.Adyar, Madras, India: Kalakshetra Publications, 1961. p.13)

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notes:

 Man finds fulfillment and happiness through love - the power by which he relates to the world through his fellow man. 'Living' as an art is the process of developing into that which one is potentially.

 The 'values' expressed by the infant are 'operative' values. The 'operative values' are the values chosen on the basis of the organism's inherent tendency toward self-actualization. ...the valuing process in the developing human being.... reacting as a biological organism operating within an environment in which it must satisfy its ultimate need for self-actualization. 'responsibility for one's health' in the context of brain-based wholistic education. An individual who has been educated according to the principles of brain-based wholistic education is naturally 'responsible' for his/her own health and wants to take charge of their own life. Interference in this desire to take charge of one's own life and be responsible for one's own life and health constitutes deprivation of freedom even violence.

Wholistic 'health' comes from the joyful participation in the challenges of life and the challenges of living.

behavioural characteristics which emerge as persons become more mature... number of value directions which appear to be common to all human beings, regardless of cultural influences. They all have in common the tendency to favor their own self- development... of others in the community and the tendency to contribute to the survival and evolution of the human species.

 With complete freedom to choose their own value directions, mature human beings tend to live by a valuing process with characteristic tendencies... Negatively valued are pretense, defensiveness, imperative behaviour ("I ought"), and concern with expectations of others. Positively valued are an individual's authenticity, self-direction in decision making, sense of worthiness of oneself and one's feelings, excitement in the process of growth and of potentialites in the process of unfolding, openness to one's own feelings, sensitivity to and acceptance of others, deep relationships, openness to all their inner and outer experience and to the realities of the objective world.

These and others constitute an underlying thread of commonality observed in human beings who grow to maturity within an environment of respect for their inner freedom and prizing of their individuality. Those objects and experiences which contribute to the individual's own growth and development, and the growth and development of others are naturally valued. In a growth promoting climate, regardless of culture, the human organism seems to prefer goals which contribute to his own self-actualization and socialization. Given the opportunity to grow to maturity... making choices and decisions according to his own organismic valuing processin a climate of freedom and respect, the individual would be devoid of conceived values... the individual lives by values which facilitate his own survival, adaptation, self-enhancement and the enhancement of the human race. Like other species of the animal kingdom, Homo Sapiens, the social human animal, naturally behaves in accordance with an organismic valuing process which enables him to adapt to his changing social environment -the nature of man. The natural valuing process is a part of normal human development.

  Evolutionary Origins of Morality (ed) Leonard D. Katz