Psychology Dictionary of Arguments

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Self, philosophy: the concept of the self cannot be exactly separated from the concept of the I. Over the past few years, more and more traditional terms of both concepts have been relativized. In particular, a constant nature of the self or the I is no longer assumed today. See also brain/brain state, mind, state of mind, I, subjects, perception, person.
Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

John Rawls on Self - Dictionary of Arguments

I 560
Self/Rawls: the question of the unity of the self arises in connection with the problem of rational decision in relation to a final goal of human action. We saw that hedonism and teleology could not provide an answer. (See Teleology/Rawls
, Hedonism/Rawls.)
I 561
Moral Person/Personality/Rawls: Characterized by two abilities:
a) The ability to form a concept of goodness. This is expressed by a rational plan (see Planning/Rawls).
b) The formation of a sense of justice, expressed by the need to act according to certain principles of law.
Unity of the person: manifests itself in the coherence of his or her life plan, which in turn is based on a need of higher order to follow the principles of rational choice, in a way compatible with the sense of justice.
I 563
Justice as Fairness/Rawls: in the initial situation of a society to be established, in which people do not know what position they themselves will hold later on, it is about the nature of the principles they will choose instead of a property that is somehow presented as an object of aspiration. Participants value moral personality rather than the ability to enjoy as the fundamental aspect of the self. They value themselves as beings who set their own purposes and choose their life plan in the light of complete information.
Choosing the good that is to be aspired: here we still have a problem of uncertainty. The principles of justice define the limits within which our reflections can move. The essential unity of the self is founded on the concept of right. In a well-ordered society, this unit is the same for all members.
I 564
Life plan: That is why we do not set up our life plan anew every time. It is not a question of choosing from countless possibilities.
I 565
Community/Rawls: In society as a community of communities, people take part in each other's nature: we welcome what others do as something we could have done, too, but what they do in our place and vice versa.
The nature of each individual is best grasped by the fact that the self is realized in the actions of many selves, in relation to principles that everyone can agree to.
Goal: however, it would be a misunderstanding to think that there is a dominant goal for all of us, that the principles of justice are given. A dominant goal would in any case belong to a teleological theory that I rejected. However, it is understood correctly that the principles of justice do not exercise any control over content.
I 566
Rather, we strive to achieve our individual goals within a framework that is dictated by the principles.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Rawl I
J. Rawls
A Theory of Justice: Original Edition Oxford 2005

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