How Do We Develop a Respectful or Ethical Mind?

In Howard Gardner’s book Five Minds for the Future, (HBSP, 2007), he writes that some of the mindsets we have always valued may not be as highly valued in the future, as our world evolves.

I’ve just written an article based on his ideas. It’s left me thinking about these five minds, a lot. Here’s what I want to emphasize from Gardner’s book:

The first three kinds of minds deal primarily with cognitive abilities:

  • Mastering a discipline
  • Synthesizing across disciplines
  • Being creative

The last two deal with our relations to other human beings:

  • Being respectful
  • Being ethical

Unless we increasingly place value on diversity and common good, we risk our survival.

In our interconnected world , it’s not enough to state what each group needs for survival on its own turf. In the long run, it is not possible for parts of the world to thrive while others remain desperately poor and frustrated.

I think we can all agree about that, yet the question is: what are we doing to develop our respectful mindsets? Our capacities to be ethical? To my knowledge there isn’t much emphasis in either schools or organizations to develop or reward these capacities. So how are we going to meet the future adequately?

Comments are closed.