Emotive Education (Was: The Inner Path)

Crosby_M (CrosbyM@po1.cpi.bls.gov)
Wed, 12 Mar 1997 12:06:44 -0500

After a carefully crafted and rational argument by Greg Burch to
Gregory Houston about the need for a "new synthesis" between
inward-looking visionaries and outward-looking scientists, I ranted
about Gregory Houston's implied solipsism and false sense of
separation between subjective and objective sciences.

After Gregory Houston's response, I wrote to him privately and said
<I realize it was unfair to accuse you of solipsism when it really
appears that you're primarily interested in emotive education. (To
tell the truth, I was probably using your post more as an opportunity
to rant against Claude de Contrecoeur's anti-materialist philosophy
than anything that you specifically proposed.)>

I also admited to being ignorant as to what "an evolving curriculum of
emotive education" might involve.

I did an AltaVista search on "emotive education" and was surprised at
the two URLs (other than book ads) that popped to the top. Both
seemed to be surprisingly extropian references and might just be
useful for a new sort of basic academic curriculum.

The first URL was http://www.iret.org/essays/teorebta.html
a brief essay called "The Essence of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy
(REBT)" by Albert Ellis, Ph.D., which contained a concise listing of
"12 Irrational Ideas That Cause and Sustain Neurosis" and
corresponding rational ideas to counteract them that could, IMO, be
used as a basis for Extropian psychological principles.

The second URL pointed to the Web site of Peter Small and his
interesting take on the philosophy of object-oriented programming and
the design of software brains along with some unpublished chapters on
"emotive decision making" from his book LINGO SORCERY. See the
following URL for a site map:

Particularly interesting in the context of this thread was Peter
Small's CD-ROM called "How God Makes God" (see
from which I quote:
<"How God Makes God" is a thought provoking CD-ROM which provides an
unique explanation of human life in terms of probability, game theory
and computer concepts. [Snip] The conclusion of "How God Makes God"
is that the human race is now on the verge of creating machines with
virtual brains which might one day provide mankind with a route to
unlimited expansion and evolution in the universe.>

My take on Ellis's REBT principles is that we should basically view
ourselves as intelligent, responsible, self-owned agents who,
nevertheless, have to fit into a ecological / economic environment
over which we shall never have full control. Though I have not
checked it out, it seems to me that Peter Small's "How God Makes God"
CD-ROM, describing the systematic principles underlying the
spontaneous order we have to survive in, along with Ellis's REBT
principles for self-ownership, might indeed be a good foundation for a
basic rational-emotive education curriculum.

Mark Crosby