My Philosophy About People, Purpose and Psychology

Mark Hurst

Publishing a philosophy about life feels really arrogant. After all, "Who am I to have a philosophy?" But all of us have a philosophy, published or not. Throughout life we build our own view of the Truth (with a capital T), as seen from our own perspective. These individual ideas of "truth" come out of thousands of influences: parents, friends, teachers, books, television, little events and large ones, all register an influence that is unique. It is inevitable that we create an overall philosophy about self, others, and the world. The ideas we form--and believe--may serve us well, or create challenges, and suffering in life.

Having a philosophy of life is about making sense of the world, and for me, it is about relying upon good science. It's not always comfortable however, because taking a scientific perspective is like living on shifting sands. I'm aware that new discoveries may require me to accept changes in what I previously thought was true. I take the stance, "This is what we know right now, but I remain open to the influence of new research”.

However, some positions seem pretty solid to me right now. They are:

Two quotes that I have carried with me, and have deliberately attempted to practice over time and circumstance sum up my philosophy:

"To do good one must do it in the Minute Particulars. General Good is the plea of the hypocrite, the scoundrel, and the flatterer." -- Paraphrased from William Blake

"I am kind to those who are kind. I am also kind to those who are unkind, thus increasing kindness in the world." -- The Tao te Ching

The philosophy of these quotes is easier said than done.