The quality of life depends on the quality of who you are. What you actually become. It all boils down to how morally good and ethical a person is. So the question is how do we make everyone become a good moral person? Since ancient times we recognize the importance of teaching moral values. We teach it the same way we teach math and science by providing the knowledge of good and bad. One very important factor that the world of education has still not completely woken up to, in spite of all these thousands of years of research, is that as there are two kinds of intelligence – regular and emotional – both require a different set of rules for education. Emotional intelligence education alters the actual physical infrastructure of the brain. Emotional intelligence education starts from the womb. And continues through hugs and kisses and a nurturing childhood environment. By the time the child is 6 years old, the moral character traits are well set for the rest of the person’s life.
So to really insure moral education we must learn how to educate the individual at the fetus and the child stage. Thus we must put together templates and manuals for future parents, current pregnant ones, and those with little kids.
Please consider the following:
There was a king who was very troubled because his people were very poor. He did not know what to do. He heard of this kingdom where people were very prosperous and lived in mansions and even marble palaces. So he went to the king of this place and asked him how they were able to live like this. The king told him that it was very simple he just passed a building code that everyone in his kingdom had to follow. So our king came back and passed a law that everyone must build a marble palace!
Now in his kingdom, most could afford a straw hut, others could afford a log cabin. Still, others could afford a cement mansion and a few could afford a marble palace. So the king’s law went into effect and nothing changed. Just a few marble palaces came up. Except for the select few the rest were incapable of building marble palaces.
It is the same when it comes to morality. We have moral laws and we expect everyone to follow them. We spend billions of dollars on crime prevention and containment yet nothing changes.
The only way to change and reduce crime is by changing the physical quality of the brain that generates the moral compass of the individual. Thus ethics education means not just telling people what is good and what is bad. It is about creating the right moral infrastructure generating brain.
The brain has four basic levels as follows:
1. Premature brain – (I have quantified it as -2)
Those stuck on this level have the moral values of a snake. In their mind they are everything and everyone else is nothing. They are above the law and everyone else is below the law. No amount of moral education is going to change them. Punishment is the only deterrence and even this they often ignore. Their physical brain is too far morally gone.
2. Immature brain – (I have quantified it as -1)
Those stuck on this level are corrupt. In their mind, they deserve the best, by hook or by crook. Current ethics education will not change them much as their moral values are generated by entrenched selfishness producing brain infrastructure. We have to wake up to the fact that we will have to change this brain infrastructure.
3. Mature brain – (I have quantified it as +1)
Those stuck at this level are driven by a trophy self-image as in ‘I am the best’. This is the group that is the easiest to change. But not by the current way of moral education which practically amounts to pleading with people to do good. The trophy self-image will have to be gotten rid of and replaced with a selfless self.
4) Super mature brain – (I have quantified it as +2)
The brain at this developed level already generates a selfless self so moral education is not required for this group.
Just like a man with the resources of building a log cabin cannot become a marble palace owner; a man with a -2, -1. or even +1 brain can ever become morally +2. No amount of current ethics education can make a -2 brain generate a +2 brainpower. The only way real moral values can take root is by making the brain +2. And this requires brain therapy more than anything else. It requires brain-changing education. The sooner we wake up to this the faster we will create a morally healthy society. Current moral education amounts to like our local pastor telling us to live virtuous lives. We hear it and applaud it and then go back to our old ways.
Notice how without exception all books on self-help talk of ‘7/9 steps. There is just one goal/step as far as self-help is concerned – become wise. Thus ethics education is more like self-transformation education. It is more precisely about making one’s self +2! It is more in line with self-help education. Then again not like the current self-help education. My main field of work is wisdom. And as philosophy is considered the love of wisdom which means one of the main goals of philosophy is to try to find out what is wisdom. Most experts on wisdom are still stuck where they define wisdom by its attributes and are still struggling to define wisdom.
As the wisdom potential is there in every brain just like blood and as the absence of wisdom means the presence of ignorance (where actually there is a mixture of the two) so every life is affected by lack of wisdom, from individual to group to country, so the stakes are very high. In fact, much of the present mess in the world today from the economic crisis to the problems of war can all be traced to a lack of wisdom. So if I can wake up mainstream education/science to the correct path to ethics education, I think my work will be done.
Philosophy, religion, and science in my view are much more connected then we realize! I have found that at the highest stage of the mind/brain development the quality of the character traits (as defined by religion, philosophy, and science) of every person are all one and the same!!! Religion wants you to be altruistic, philosophy wants you to be wise/altruistic and science/education wants you to be emotionally super mature which is the same! So wisdom is the common thread in all of them. Thus we need philosophers, religious leaders, and scientists/educationists all working together to create ethics education that transforms the brain to +2.