Jonathan Haidt: Religion, evolution, and the ecstasy of self-transcendence
Jonathan Haidt - Social psychologist
Jonathan Haidt studies how -- and why -- we evolved to be moral. By understanding more about our moral roots, his hope is that we can learn to be civil and open-minded. Full bio
About the speaker:Jonathan Haidt - Social psychologist
Jonathan Haidt studies how -- and why -- we evolved to be moral. By understanding more about our moral roots, his hope is that we can learn to be civil and open-minded.
Why you should listen
Haidt is a social psychologist whose research on morality across cultures led up to his much-quoted 2008 TEDTalk on the psychological roots of the American culture war. He asks, "Can't we all disagree more constructively?" In September 2009, Jonathan Haidt spoke to the TED Blog about the moral psychology behind the healthcare debate in the United States. He's also active in the study of positive psychology and human flourishing.
At TED2012 he explored the intersection of his work on morality with his work on happiness to talk about “hive psychology” – the ability that humans have to lose themselves in groups pursuing larger projects, almost like bees in a hive. This hivish ability Is crucial, he argues, for understanding the origins of morality, politics, and religion. These are ideas that Haidt develops at greater length in his new book, The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion. Learn more about his drive for a more productive and civil politics on his website CivilPolitics.org. And take an eye-opening quiz about your own morals at YourMorals.org.
During the bruising 2012 political season, Haidt was invited to speak at TEDxMidAtlantic on the topic of civility. He developed the metaphor of The Asteroids Club to embody how we can reach. common groun. Learn how to start your own Asteroids Club at www.AsteroidsClub.org.
Watch Haidt talk about the Asteroids Club on MSNBC's The Cycle >>
Jonathan Haidt | Speaker | TED.com