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What Would A Discipline of Altruism Look Like?

by Prof.Weird1 min read3rd Sep 2019No comments


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Would it be broad and philosophical like Psychology? Would it be more narrow or more rigorous?

What would research look like? Should it be a subject of its own similar to Positive Psychology or should it be utilised as a skill like meditation (and thusly studied through other disciplines as opposed to one of its own)?

Those are my two questions: what discipline structure? How should altruism be researched?

Some background of different discipline structures: Psychology is a broad discipline spanning many perspectives, areas of life and different focuses. It has four primary goals: describe, predict, explain or control physical or mental phenomena. Seeing as psychology basses it’s logical parameters on philosophy backed by research, it seeks to answer questions through altering its logical parameters via research. It is a discipline of change which commonalities lie in its goals and not practical use or application.

We can look to sociology as an example of a discipline which has the same philosophy but narrows its field to phenomena found in ecosystems. With fewer perspectives and arguably one focus, there is less research but of it, most people are in agreement of the means of perceiving the research question and how to reach an answer (comparably, Psychology has eight drastic perspectives for any given question and at least four adequate methods of testing for an answer). While more narrow, the discipline of sociology is tied to philosophy and that produces less rigour.

A third example of a discipline structure is language. It is rigorous as it is tied to exact rules which govern the logical parameters of the discipline. Subsequently, research questions have correct answers found within its own logic. Research seeks to answer questions with that logic as opposed to answering questions by altering the logic. Language, like meditation, is a practice which use and application may change but it’s logical parameters do not.

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