Sunday, July 16, 2017

Whole earth morality

Good article on the evolution of morality. It starts with a quote by Simon Blackburn:

"I think at its simplest it’s a system whereby we put pressure on ourselves and others to conform to certain kinds of behavior. That’s the side of morality that is perhaps most obviously associated with rules, with boundaries to conduct, with limiting criminal behavior when the rules are transgressed. On top of that, there’s an element of morality that is concerned more with our sentiments and emotions, for example with sympathy and our capacity to feel sympathy at others’ distress and a corresponding motivation to do something about it. So there are two sides to morality, one more coercive and the second more gentle and humane."

Morality has evolved from self-interest to how we engage each other in groups. And that engagement evolves from caring limited to small groups to larger groups, eventually embracing the whole earth and its inhabitants. Elinor Ostram's  8 core design principles for managing a commons are then listed. See the link for much more.


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