Are there universal human ethics? Are we moving toward a more ethical future? Mark Matousek has interviewed and researched the subject of ethical wisdom with social scientists, spiritual leaders, ex-cons, altruists and philosophers. He’s examined morality from all angles and suggests that ethics just may be a minefield of opposing ideologies, special interests, and temperamental proclivities. The good news is that humans are hardwired to care for one another, we have a sense of justice and fairness, we share a sense of group loyalty, we have a natural tendency to respect authority, and we are programmed for sacredness and purity. “We’re hard wired to care for one another and to respond negatively when harm is done especially to innocence. We have evolved to have a sense of justice and fairness in order to get along in groups with each other, in order to cooperate… Very, very young, pre-educated children, have a sense of fairness.” (hosted by Justine Willis Toms)
Mark Matousek is a featured blogger for PsychologyToday and The Huffington Post. He’s a popular lecturer and writing teacher and the Creative Director of V-Men (with Eve Ensler), an organization devoted to ending violence against women and girls. He’s is the author of two award-winning memoirs, Sex Death Enlightenment: A True Story (Riverhead 2000) and The Boy He Left Behind: A Man’s Search For His Lost Father (Riverhead 1997) as well as When You’re Falling, Dive: Lessons in the Art of Living (Bloomsbury 2009) and Ethical Wisdom: The Search for a Moral Life (Anchor Books 2011). To learn more about the work of Mark Matousek and his blog go to www.MarkMatousek.com.
Topics explored in this dialogue include:
- What are the five innate moral and ethical categories hardwired into humans
- How our emotional impulses effect our ethical behavior
- What is the major ideological difference between the two political groups of conservatives and liberals
- How is the moral and ethical approach different between men and women