Showing posts with label instinct. Show all posts
Showing posts with label instinct. Show all posts

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Genetic Shadows?

Owning Your Own Shadow - Beliefnet

Each time we become impulsive, display exaggerated feelings about others, feel humiliated, find excessive fault, display unreasonable anger, or behave 'as if we are not ourselves', we are seeing the genetic shadow in action.

"Genetic behaviors are shadow only when someone normally a shaman tells us they are bad, or evil, or sin and we must suppress them. If we see them as natural, powerful drivers of achievement, that must be controlled, not suppressed, we can use them efficiently to achieve desired ends.

If they control us, as they will if suppressed, then they normally will be expressed dysfunctionally as you note above. The terms you use above are shadow terms for natural genetic behaviors. Displaying feelings about others is the way we create social bonds with those we wish to include in our social group. But controlled expression is necessary for social survival, which in many cases means physical survival. Take lust as an example. It is a powerful mammalian drive to reproduce the species. It is absolutely necessary to be able to indicate to a member of the opposite sex that you find them sexually attractive. If you suppress it as sin you end up with the young adult party where all get drunk to lose their suppressions and many end up in bed, or on the couch or on the floor. If one is aware of the power of lust one can take appropriate control measures to make sure it serves one's needs, rather than the mammalian need to reproduce.

It is like a powerful engine in a car. No less of a safety maven than Ralph Nader said 'Power is safety.' But put that power in the hands of a kid whose competitive drive is a suppressed sin, and you have an accident looking for a spot marked X.

This is not to say that control of powerful instincts is easy, or that it is always successful but awareness is critical to control. Knowing the capabilities of the double-bitted ax is a key to using it safely and effectively."

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Reason and Moral Dilemmas.

Intuitive vs. Rational thinking - Beliefnet Forums: "To take Hauser's example, the decision to sacrifice the one on the siding to save the 5 on the main track, is not amenable to reason. If the five on the main track are fighting a gang war, and the one on the siding is a police officer trying to call in assistance or use his authority to end the fighting, reason cannot override the decision to divert the trolley to kill the officer."

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Moral judgments vs morality

A moral action is a snapshot of the moral state of the actor at the time. It is unreasoned. The underlying morality of the actor is malleable by reason.
David Brooks on 'Neural Buddhists' - Beliefnet Forums