Values

A collection of references to research and debates on Values
  • Can science be the guiding approach for our values? See this debate with regards Sam Harris's TED talk who presents his views on how science can be objectively applied to values.
    • My own opinion is that type of argument falls into the trap of (in Integral language) collapsing "exteriors" onto "interiors", ignoring that both co-emerge. Ken Wilber in his book "Quantum Questions" recounts how so many the leading scientists in the 20th century were drawn to the wisdom traditions in grappling with just such questions of paradoxes in the persuit of science as the ultimate perspective (science over values). 
Sam Harris - TED and many event speeches/coverage in his views of how science can used to objectively compare societal values.

He tackles how some societies can be compared to others as being inferior in their impact on the wellbeing of their communities, and takes on full frontal how religions denegrate their communities' wellbeing.

He frames his arguments, in terms of values affecting the "well-being" of the society, which by this he refers to the physical wellbeing.

And this for me is the main rub, since beyond measuring physical wellbeing in terms of vital physiological signs (across a potentially agreed list of essential ones from weight, heart-rate, through to life expectancy etc.), his argument falls flat when going any further towards psychological wellbeing.

Ken Wilber warned against efforts to collapse the three perspectives of Arts, Morals and Science (based on the Quadrants, where Science covers both the Top and Bottome RH Quadrants, the Arts as the Top LH Quadrant and Morals and the Bottom LH Quadrant).

This may be an extreme example, but testing Sam Harris' arguments further takes you to consider that the bodies in the Matrix film pods have all perhaps ideal physiological health scores, but can society totally rely on science's measures for our complete wellbeing?


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