circle-of-virtues.png

There is an old-fashioned word for the body of skills. Character, writes Amitai Etzioni, the George Washington University, social theorist, is the

Psychological muscle that moral conduct requires.”

The bedrock of character is self-discipline, the virtuous life, since Aristotel have observed, is based on self-control. A related keystone of character is being able to motivate and guide ourselves, whether in doing homework, finishing a job, or getting up in the morning. As we have seen the ability to channel one’s urges to act is a basic emotional skill, one that in a former day was called will.

We need to be in control of ourselves – our appetites, our passions to do right by others”,

notes Tomas Lickona, writing about character education.

It takes will to keep emotion under the control of reason.”

Being able to put aside one’s self-centered focus and impulses has social benefits, opens the way to empathy, to real listening. to another person’s perspective. Empathy as we have seen, leads to caring, altruism and compassion.

Seeing things from another’s perspective breaks down biases stereotypes, and so breads tolerance and acceptance of differences.

These capacities are ever more called on in our increasingly pluralistic society, allowing people to live together in mutual respect and creating the possibility of productive public discourse. Theses are basic arts of democracy.


Default

Latest News for Strategy Business Developments