Moral Complexity, The Fatal Attraction of Truthiness and the Importance of Mature Moral Functioning

Perspectives on Psychological Science, Vol.5, pp.182-184.

By Darcia Narvaez

Recently, intuitionist theories have been effective in capturing the academic discourse about morality. Intuitionist theories, like rationalist theories, offer important but only partial understanding of moral functioning. Both can be fallacious and succumb to truthiness: the attachment to one’s opinions because they “feel right,” potentially leading to harmful action or inaction. Both intuition and reasoning are involved in deliberation and expertise. Both are malleable from environmental and educational influence, making questions of normativity—which intuitions and reasoning skills to foster—of utmost importance. Good intuition and reasoning inform mature moral functioning, which needs to include capacities that promote sustainable human well-being. Individual capacities for habituated empathic concern and moral metacognition—moral locus of control, moral self-regulation, and moral self-reflection—comprise mature moral functioning, which also requires collective capacities for moral dialogue and moral institutions. These capacities underlie moral innovation and are necessary for solving the complex challenges humanity faces.

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(Something interesting I found)Posted: Tuesday, June 8, 2010 by cait
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