Monday, May 10, 2010

In Defense of Empathy

My next book to read is Jeremy Rifkin's The Empathetic Civilization. I'm very excited to get started on it, as everything I've been reading about it seems to confirms some things I've been thinking for a while. I also think there's a lot in it that could be applied to theology. Anyways here's a quote from Rifkin writing about real freedom in his latest piece on Huffington Post.

"Freedom requires that one is treated by others as an end not as a means. One can't really be free in a society where everyone treats each other in an exploitative or instrumental manner. True freedom, therefore, is only possible in a society that lives by the "golden rule." "By doing onto others as we would have others do unto us" we express our support for the optimizing of each other's life. This is the embodiment of what freedom means. A society that lives by the golden rule and embeds it in its laws and public policy is a free society. The golden rule is rarely exercised in authoritarian regimes."

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