Personal Authenticity and Belief

Theme of the following quotations: What is the relation of being authentic to belief and believing? Belief is not inherently inauthentic. Yet why and how we believe may be. Is one’s belief self-chosen, based upon one’s own experience or assessment of evidence? Is believing mistaken for knowing from personal experience? More importantly is the belief (a mental construct) mistaken for the reality to which it may point?

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Personal Authenticity Expressing as the Individual's Uniqueness

Theme of the following quotations: Each person is a unique expression of Being. As children, we are socialized to become members of our culture. Without further psychological maturation, each person’s unique potential may succumb to conformity. Living authentically instead asks that we honor and express that unique potential.

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Dangers Inherent to Autonomy

Theme of the following quotations: The danger of moral autonomy is not that we will be lead astray by a nature that is presumed to be corrupt. Rather it is the misunderstanding of autonomy as license to do what one will. The social context in which we autonomously live is one inextricable interdependence with fellow beings. Autonomy is ever exercised within the context of relationship and interdependence.

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Personal Authenticity Expressing as Autonomy

Theme of the following quotations: Autonomy is the moral freedom of the person who chooses to act according to her own self-direction, not the given values and beliefs of her society. In the context of personal authenticity, this self-direction is not arbitrary. Rather it is a freedom whose direction is sourced consistently by the values and inclinations of her own unique nature as it is experienced in the moment.

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Self-Actualization vs. Self-Image Actualization

Theme of the following quotations: We distort our inborn natures when we mistakenly assume that the path to personal development and virtue is a path of fitting oneself into molds suggested by conventional society, teachings, or the examples of luminaries. To do so is to actualize an image of how one should be, rather than one’s authentic self.

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