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The Collective Self

 

(THIS IS THE FOURTH IN A SERIES OF IN-DEPTH DISCUSSIONS ABOUT COLLECTIVE SELF-ACTUALIZATION, AND THE THEORIES AND THOUGHTS BEHIND IT. IF YOU HAVEN’T ALREADY, WE RECOMMEND READING THE FIRST, SECOND, AND THIRD PARTS BEFORE CONTINUING.)

So, here is the real question – How can I, through Self-Actualization, help anybody other than myself? How does fulfilling my personal Hierarchy of Needs translate from my own life into the lives of others?

This is the whole idea behind the Global CSA Initiative. In his original development of the Theory of Human Motivation, understanding what drives the Individual Self to achieve its full potential was the primary subject in Dr. Maslow‘s work. But, in his later years, he criticized himself for limiting his concept to individualized needs. He realized that there were still greater heights to be reached through continuing to work toward the common good of humanity – in fact, he pointed out that, in many cases, Self-Actualization was the ability to do just that. Continue reading “The Collective Self”

A Working Definition of “Self-Actualization”

(THIS IS THE THIRD IN A SERIES OF IN-DEPTH DISCUSSIONS ABOUT COLLECTIVE SELF-ACTUALIZATION, AND THE THEORIES AND THOUGHTS BEHIND IT. IF YOU HAVEN’T ALREADY, WE RECOMMEND READING THE FIRST AND SECOND PARTS BEFORE CONTINUING.)

When Dr. Abraham Maslow initially developed his Theory of Human Motivation, the concept of Self-Actualization didn’t actually have a working definition; instead, he looked for common characteristics in some of the intellectual figures throughout history that he felt had reached their full potential as human beings – Abraham Lincoln, Leonardo DaVinci, Frederick Douglass, Eleanor Roosevelt, and others.

Maslow looked at the positive characteristics that these people had in common with each other, such as creativity, overall happiness, intuitiveness or empathy, etc. These characteristics are what he used to describe Self-Actualization, but Maslow never actually defined Self-Actualization. He relied on these common general characteristics in place of an actual definition. Continue reading “A Working Definition of “Self-Actualization””

Needs vs. Wants – Which is More Important?

(THIS IS THE SECOND IN A SERIES OF IN-DEPTH DISCUSSIONS ABOUT COLLECTIVE SELF-ACTUALIZATION, AND THE THEORIES AND THOUGHTS BEHIND IT. IF YOU HAVEN’T ALREADY, WE RECOMMEND READING THE FIRST PART BEFORE CONTINUING.)

When he developed his visual representation of the Hierarchy of Needs as outlined in his Theory of Human Motivation, 20th Century American psychologist Dr. Abraham Maslow called the topmost portion of his pyramid “Self-Actualization”. He intended this to be representative of the state of true fulfillment, where fears and anxiety about satisfying our basic needs have been calmed and we are free to pursue that which will make us most fulfilled. Reaching the full potential of our existence is what “Self-Actualization” is all about. Continue reading “Needs vs. Wants – Which is More Important?”

Self-Actualization – CSA’s Foundation

(This is the first in a series of in-depth discussions about Collective Self-Actualization, and the theories and thoughts behind it.)

In the middle of the 20th Century, an American psychologist named Abraham Maslow took a risk when he decided to take a different direction than that of the majority of his colleagues. The generally accepted purpose of psychology was to figure out what was wrong with people – why they acted out, why they felt angry or depressed, what causes negative emotions or behaviors. Maslow decided to take a path less travelled, and instead focused his study on what was right with people. Continue reading “Self-Actualization – CSA’s Foundation”