Human Striving for Psychological Wholeness or 'Health': Mature Growth

                                                          as Self-Realization or 'Self-Actualisation'.

theme: In accordance with biological theory and the evolutionary process, human growth and development results in the person's autonomy and independence of the environment which defines full individuality and 'true' freedom of the full-grown way of growing i.e. 'maturity' as mature growth or 'self-actualisation'.  Self-actualisation is not the end of growth... not the path to maturity but the path of maturity. The mature self-actualised individual is mature because they are growth motivated and self-actualising through meaningful work. Self-actualisation is expanded awareness which seeks harmony with nature... both inner and outer... a function of self-initiated development of personal integrity... the driving force of intrinsic motivation for meaningful experiential learning. In accordance with biological theory and the evolutionary process, self-actualization increases the person's autonomy and independence of the environment, defining full individuality and 'true freedom'. They make personal decisions on the basis of the intrinsic human needs. Living in the realm of the metaneeds self-actualising individuals lead ethical lives and have a genuine desire to help others.

  "We can certainly now assert that at least a reasonable, theoretical and empirical case has been made for the presence within the human being of a tendency toward, or need for growing in a direction that can be summarized in general as self-actualization, or psychological health, i.e. he has within him a pressure toward unity of personality, toward spontaneous expressiveness, toward full individuality and identity, toward seeing the truth rather than being blind, toward being creative, toward being good and a lot else. That is the human being is so constructed that he presses toward fuller and fuller being and this means pressing toward what most people would call good values, toward serenity, kindness, courage, honesty, love, unselfishness, and goodness." (The Science of Value by  Robert Hartman in Maslow A.H. ed. New Knowledge in Human Values Harper, 1959, 155) 

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human organism as a social organism... 

what is self-actualisation? ..  

characteristics of the self-actualising individual ... 

the self-actualising individual is representative of human nature... 

the self-actualised individual is motivated by the growth needs...

implications for education...

  The human organism is a social organism with social needs  The human organism is a social organism which is instinctively motivated to relate to others - to 'socialise' and to 'assimilate' - in order to acquire the things which it needs for work and for defence. Motivations for socialisation and assimilation are intrinsic to the nature of the human personality i.e. 'human nature'. Human nature is defined in terms of instinctive motives for human thought and behaviour i.e. 'human needs'. Human needs are biologically based instinctive motives for behaviour or 'value choices' rooted in the instinct for self-preservation and the organismic striving for self-actualisation i.e. 'operative values'. The human operative values or 'human values' are intrinsic to the organism and define the nature of the human personality i.e. 'human nature'. Human nature is defined in terms of instinctive needs which are involved in the unfolding of human powers and the achievement of the human potential for 'wholeness' or 'health' i.e. 'wellness'. Human needs include not only the obvious physiological needs for survival of the organism and the species but also basic and higher psychological needs. The basic psychological needs are the needs for self-respect and self-esteem - the 'ego needs'. Gratification of the ego needs depends on significant others. Once the basic psychological needs have been met then the individual becomes less dependent on others for the gratification of the needs for growth or 'growth needs' for 'normal growth' or 'spiritual growth'. Spiritual growth depends on independence and reliance on inner resources for gratification of the 'higher psychological needs' - the 'Being needs' or 'B-needs' for 'ego-transcendance' i.e.  spiritual needs' or 'metaneeds'. The metaneeds function as 'social values' required for social cooperation ('socialisation') and successful adaptation ('adaptability') to changing social conditions. Human adaptability depends on normal personality development as 'mature growth' or 'self-actualisation'.

"There has been a special tendency in Western culture , historically determined, to assume that these instinctoid needs of the human being, his so-called animal nature, are bad or evil. As a consequence , many cultural institutions are set up for the express pdsurpose of controlling , inhibiting, suppressing and repressing this original nature of man." (Abraham Maslow Towards a Psychology of Being. l64)

Carl Rogers describes  "...man's tendency to actualize himself, to become his potentialities, ...(to manifest) the directional trend which is evident in all organic and human life - the urge to expand, extend, develop, mature - the tendency to express and activate all the capacities of the organism." (Carl Rogers, Toward a Theory of Creativity, in Creativity and its Cultivation, New York: Harper, l959 p.72) 

Denial and frustration of human needs leads to 'immature growth' i.e. 'neurotic development' or 'neurosis'. Neurosis produces pathological behaviour which is socially inadaptive i.e. human wickedness or 'evil'.

The term ''self-actualization' implies a bringing into actuality of something that had been a latent potentiality. The term 'self-realization' suggests a making real, or a seeing as real, something that had, until then, been  only a dream or a vague intuition.

What is self-actualisation? The growth motivated individual becomes independent of other people for the gratification of his growth needs to spiritual maturity and independence or 'self-actualisation'. The self-actualised individual is characteristically autonomous and self-sufficient, enjoying the pleasure of insight and productivity or 'work' i.e. true 'freedom'.In the process of successfully adapting to changing social environment, the truly free person makes decisions in his 'true' self interest. At the same time, those same decisions are in the interest of others and the society at large.  perceives others in terms of their intrinsic qualities, has a non-judgmental, non-interfering attitude towards others, perceive reality holistically. His comprehensive understanding of other human beings which forms the basis for meaningful interpersonal relations constitutes successful adaptation to a changing social environment. The self-actualized individual lives in accordance with natural biological laws and the evolutionary process.

A 'science of ethics' can be formulated on the basis of the 'higher' human values by which the self-actualised individual lives. In this way the so called 'science of ethics' becomes a natural value system which is formulated on the basis of the natural laws based on the existence of the human organism as a social organism

 "It looks as though there were a single ultimate value for mankind, a far goal toward which all men strive. This is called variously, self-actualization, self-realization, integration, psychological health...but they all agree that this amounts to realizing the potentialities of the person, that is to say, becoming fully human, everything that the person can become" (Abraham Maslow "Toward a Psychology of Being" 2nd. ed., New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold Co., l968, p. 153)

Referring to natural principles implied in the affirmation of human existence, ethical 'norms' for excellent living are discovered according to the laws of nature and the ideal human potentialities unfold and become actualized. Referring to the affirmation of the individual's particular talents and disposition, actualization also represents the affirmation of a core of human qualities common to all members of the human species. 'Self-actualization' refers to the development of the individual with all his potentialities.  Self-actualisation involves the harmonisation of psychic forces such as the 'digestion of memory' as 'storytelling' which frees the individual from the limitations of the 'ego-life' and allows them to live in the spiritual realm of human existence or 'being' i.e. the realm of 'ego-transcendence' or 'self-transcendance'.  Transcendent self-actualisation is a function of the unfolding of human...  'values for living'...  the 'social values' or 'morals' of 'morality' ... the moral faculty for accurate evaluation of the social environment and leads to effective decision-making and successful adaptation i.e. 'social intelligence'.  Social intelligence depends on motivation by the metaneeds i.e. 'metamotivation'. Metamotivation is functional in the process of self-actualisation as mature growth and development of 'moral consciousness' or 'conscience'. Development of conscience or 'character' - the human 'soul' - depends on creativity and productivity or 'work'.

 Man has within him "a pressure ...toward unity of personality, toward spontaneous expressiveness, toward full individuality and identity, toward seeing the truth rather than being blind, toward being creative, toward being good, and a lot else... Man demonstrates this "pressure toward fuller and fuller Being, more and more perfect actualization of his humanness in exactly the same naturalistic, scientific sense that an acorn may be said to be 'pressing toward' being an oak tree, or that a tiger can be observed to 'push toward' being tigerish." (Mazlow p.l60)

Working for one's personal growth is a law of nature. "Like any other living organism, the human individuum needs favorable conditions for his growth 'from acorn to oak tree'; he needs an atmosphere of warmth to give him both a feeling of inner security and the inner freedom enabling him to have his own feelings and thoughts and to express himself. He needs the good will of others, not only to help him in his many needs but to guide and encourage him to become a mature and fulfilled individual. He also needs healthy friction with the wishes and wills of others. If he can thus grow with others, in love and in friction, he will also grow in accordance with his real self. .. that central inner force, common to all human beings and yet unique to each, which is the deep source of growth." (Horney, Karen, M.D. Neurosis and Human Growth: The Struggle Toward Self-Realization p. 18)

Characteristics of the self-actualising individual 'Self-actualizing' human beings are people who enjoy life to the full. They are adapted to life within a culture but are unspoiled in the process of acculturation. They place no unrealistic or neurotic demands on reality, perceiving it clearly and accepting it for what it is. They do not feel threatened by the unknown and are free from superstitions. Without shame, guilt or anxiety, they accept their own nature and that of others. They accept human nature, seeing it for what it is and not as they would prefer it to be. They feel uncomfortable when they see discrepancies in people's natures. They have a distinct quality of detachment and strong sense of privacy. Resisting cultural influences, they are autonomous and independent. With a genuine desire to help others, they identify with humanity and are democratic in their thinking. They prefer a few profound friendships to many superficial ones. They have a philosophical and unhostile sense of humour. They will intentionally hurt another only when it is good for that person. They are in short altogether. The self-actualized human being has "the wonderful capacity to appreciate again and again, freshly and naively, the basic goods of life, with awe, pleasure, wonder, and even ecstasy, however stale these experiences may have become to others. Thus for such a person, any sunset may be as beautiful as the first one, any flower may be of breath-taking loveliness, even after he has seen a million flowers. They frequently experience such ecstatic moments of clear perception of reality, for which Maslow coined the term 'peak-experience.' They are deeply and essentially spontaneous and non-conforming. "...they have impulses. They work, they try, and they are ambitious, even though in an unusual sense,. For them motivation is just character growth, character expression, maturation, and development; in a word, self actualization." He called this type of motivation 'Being-motivation' and 'meta-motivation' in contrast to the control of so-called 'deficiency motivation' of 'ordinary mankind.' As a result of meta-motivation and the clear perception of reality, self-actualizing people show "in one way or another a special kind of creativeness or originality or inventiveness...(similar to that of)..unspoiled children...(which seems to be) ...a fundamental characteristic of common human nature - a potentiality given to all human beings at birth" and lost by many people during the process of enculturation. "Problem centered" rather than "means centered," self-actualizing people are not confused by means and ends, by problems and methods in scientific investigation. "Problem centered" rather than "ego centered" they see the problem and solutions as they are rather than as they would like them to be. Significantly, they perceive many so-called "problems" as merely pseudoproblems resulting from an ego-centered mental process which dichotomizes and distorts reality. For the self-actualizing person, false dichotomies are resolved, "the polarities disappear, and many oppositions thought to be intrinsic merge and coalesce with each other to form unities." The list of false dichotomies includes 'reason-emotion,' 'mystic-realistic,' and 'self-society.' (Richard Lowry Abraham Maslow: An Intellectual Portrait.)

 The fully realised or 'self-actualised' individual is the totally integrated 'self-actualising' personality whose basic psychological needs have been met. The self-actualising individual is growth motivated and psychologically independent. They identify with the human species and accept human nature seeing it for what it is and not as they think it should be. They accept themselves and their own nature without shame, guilt or anxiety. In accepting their own nature, they accept the humanity of others and feel uncomfortable when they see discrepancies in their behaviour. They have a 'democratic character structure' and so are democratic in their thinking. They have a non-judgmental and non-interfering attitude towards others and are able to perceive them objectively  as unique individuals with their own intrinsic qualities rather than in terms of their usefulness to gratify the ego-needs. They experience meaningful interpersonal relations and prefer a few profound friendships to many superficial ones.They are autonomous, self-contained and self-sufficient. They have a strong sense of privacy and a distinct quality of detachment for observation and contemplation or 'meditation' required for spontaneus living. Spontaneity depends on development and maturity of developed conscience or 'free conscience' which is required for accurate perception of the realities of the social environment. They are able to adapt to life within a culture without conforming. They maintain their freedom from cultural myth and resist cultural influences and acculturation. They make decisions in their 'true' self-interest and do not feel threatened by the unknown. They have a philosophical and unhostile sense of humour to deal with the ignorance when they see it. They place no unrealistic or neurotic demands on reality. They are 'problem centered' rather than 'means centered' and 'ego centered'. With increased problem centering, their reasoning transcends the opposites, the dichotomies, the polarities, the contradictions and incompatibles. They see these as interpenetrating facets of a whole. They perceive problems and solutions as they are rather than as they would like them to be. In scientific inquiry, they are not confused by means and ends by... problems and methods. With their mature minds and wholistic perspective, they perceive many so-called 'problems' as 'problematical dichotomies' or 'pseudoproblems' resulting from the distortions of egocentric perception... ego-centered mental processes which dichotomize and distort reality. They can recognize the fallaciousness of so-called 'dichotomies' such as reason-emotion, good-evil, mystic-realistic, self-society etc. False dichotomies are resolved when they are perceived as interpenetrating facets of a whole. In their resolution, supposedly intrinsic oppositions can merge together and coalesce with each other to form unified wholes and polarities can be made to disappear. They have a superior perception of reality... 'perceptual sensitivity' or 'clarity of perception' which is based on their ability to perceive the whole i.e. 'holistic perception'. They benefit from comprehensive understanding and are able to see things as they are, to see the reality of 'what is' accepting it for what it is - free from the distorting influences of personal drama, personal desires and wishes, fear and suspicion, hatred and prejudice, confusion and conflict all of which originate in restricted  freedom and restricted understanding of 'immaturity' i.e. 'ignorance'.

The ignorant mind is enslaved by its own limitations... and does not function to its full potential... is unable to use all its faculties.

The restricted mind of the non-actualising individual  The limitations of the restricted mind produce an inaccurate perception of reality in terms of opposites or 'polarities', contradictions and incompatibles or 'dichotomies' ... such as individual versus 'society', good versus evil  and so on. These so-called dichotomies can be reconciled with education based on knowledge of the human personality or 'human nature' i.e. 'self-knowledge'. Self-knowledge is the knowledge of one's connectedness or unity with the world - the 'paradise' of the Old Testament.

 "If the various extant religions may be taken as expressions of human aspirations, i.e. what people would like to become if only they could, then we can see here too a validation of the affirmation that all people yearn toward self-actualization or tend toward it. This is so because our description of the actual characteristics of self-actualizing people parallels at many points the ideals urged by the religions."   (Maslow Toward a Psychology of Being p. 128)

 "The various extant religions may be taken as expressions of human aspiration providing further evidence for the fact that all people yearn toward self-actualization or tend toward it. The actual characteristics of self-actualizing people are the same as the ideals urged by the various religions. Some of these are the "transcendence of self, the fusion of the true, the good and the beautiful, contribution to others, wisdom, honesty and naturalness, the transcendence of selfish and personal motivations, the giving up of "lower' desires in favor of 'higher' ones., increased friendliness and kindness, the easy differentition between ends (tranquility, serenity, peace) and means (money, power, status), the decrease of hostility, cruelty and destructiveness (although decisiveness, justified anger and indignation, self-affirmation, etc. may very well increase.)" (Maslow. Toward a Psychology of Being l58)

  "Hinduism's specific directions for actualizing man's fullest nature come under the heading of 'yoga.'" (Carl G. Jung  Psyche and Symbol, Garden City, New York: Doubleday and Co. 1958. 33)

The characteristics of the self-actualised individual provides a basis for the resolution of the so-called 'problem of ethics' and the formulation of a natural 'science of ethics'.

The self-actualised individual is motivated by the growth needs and lives in the realm of 'being-values' i.e. 'ethics' Motivated by the growth needs, their motivation is synonymous with self-actualisation. Their whole being is motivated. Their productivity results from the effects of profound 'being-motivation' or 'metamotivation' so named because it contrasts with the control of motivation by deficiency of the basic psychological needs i.e. deficiency or 'deficit motivation'. (The deficiency motivated individual who depends on others as sources of supply for their gratification needs must constantly change to fit a non-reliable environment and this contributes to their general anxiety, hostility and lack of freedom). Their communion with what transcends them makes it easily possible for them to live in the realm of the Being-needs of growth. They naturally make choices within the framework of the intrinsic system of human values which are equivalent to the B-needs i.e. the 'Being-values' or B-values ...the 'higher' spiritual values or metaneeds which satisfy the human longing fo freedom, love, certainty wholeness, perfection, truth, justice, aliveness, richness, simplicity, beauty, goodness, uniqueness, self-sufficiency and so on. Living in the realm of the metaneeds self-actualising individuals lead ethical lives. They live by a rational ethical value system - 'rational ethics'. Rational ethics is a function of responsibility  to oneself... making decisions in one's own true interest becomes a matter of responsibility to others as   decisions made are in the interest of society.

The genuine desire for responsibility to others is 'altruism'. 

The result of the spontaneous process of self-realization is the 'productive' character orientation as a mode of relatedness to the world. The 'productive' individual recognizes his powers, identifies with them and puts them to productive use. Every human being is born with the biologically innate potential of a productive character. With intense interest in reality, the individual is affected emotionally and stimulated intellectually. The aim of human development is the individual's self-realization of his productive character, experiencing the world both mentally through reason and emotionally through love. 'Love' implies respect, knowledge, care and responsibilty.'Reason' implies an understanding of all dimensions. Knowledge of the productive character orientation is simultaneously knowledge of human nature. (Based on Fromm Man For Himself) .

"Positive freedom ...is identical with the full realization of the individual's potentialities, together with his ability to live actively and spontaneously." (Man For Himself 270)

 "." ('The Science of Being and Art of Living' 234-235)

Spontaneous enjoyment of life as source of personal ambition Self-actualisation which defines a person's full individuality and true freedom increases their autonomy... their independence of the environment enables them to enjoy life and to fulfill their potential. They generally enjoy life in all of its aspects. They tend to live on impulse and are deeply and essentially spontaneous, enjoying freshness of appreciation and richness of emotion. They have the capacity to appreciate life freshly and naively, with awe, pleasure, wonder, and even ecstasy. They frequently experience ecstatic moments of clear perception of reality or 'peak-experiences' - mystic experiences of self-transcendance involving the total acceptance of human nature and its part in human evolution. As a result of their almost mystical capacity they are ambitious in an unusual sense and are persistent in their efforts. Motivation for them is the same as character growth, expression of character, maturation and development. They make personal decisions on the basis of the intrinsic human needs and enjoy the pleasure of insight and production - a fundamental characteristic of human nature which is often lost in a process of acculturation or so-called 'education'. They show a special kind of creativity, originality and inventiveness. Their greatly increased creativeness is a product of the combined effects of metamotivation and a clear perception of reality.

 "The actually mature person.... mature in personality development, is not afraid of his humanness...his own nature... able to accept human nature... characteristically open to experience... postambivalent - able to love wholly, able to give himself over to emotion of love and anger, fascination and total surrender to a scientific problem."(Maslow Psychology of Science p. 38)

The self-actualising individual is representative of human nature The objective study of self-actualising individuals reveals information about normal human growth... the original nature of the human personality or 'human nature'. The innate characteristics of human nature are the same as the psychological and emotional characteristics of self-actualising individuals.The self-actualising individual is the 'normal' human being who remains psychologically integrated with nothing removed in the process of adapting to social and cultural conditions. They remain unspoiled... their personal nature is true to the nature of the human personality or 'human nature'.

SELF-ACTUALISATION AND FREEDOM

 "In accordance with biological theory and the evolutionary process, self-actualization increases the person's autonomy and independence of the environment, defining full individuality and 'true' freedom". (Allport "Becoming" Yale Univ Press 1955)

"...it should be possible to design an educational curriculum around the instinctive needs of 'subjective biology' - the metaneeds as well as the basic physiological and psychological needs." (Walsh) The curriculum would be based on children's instinctive motivation to satisfy the basic needs for self-respect and self-esteem in the process of development to self-actualization. The curriculum would include opportunities for experiential enrichment through metamotivation to satisfy metaneeds. (Walsh, Beyond Ego: Transpersonal Dimensions in Psychology)

Implications for education: education for self-actualisation is 'holistic education' Experiential learning is learning for adaptability to a life of freedom and depends on 'self-empowerment'. Self-empowerment is the attainment of inner freedom of conscience which translates into outer freedom of morality. Morality of true freedom is the basis for social intelligence for 'adaptability' . Education for freedom - 'holistic education' - is based on trust and respect for human nature. The methods of holistic education are effective because they depend on the responsible use of freedom - learner initiative and responsibility for learning. It is mistaken to assume that the term 'freedom in education' implies that teacher direction and supervision be abandoned. Freedom in education is education for growth through learning. The teacher's role is an actve one involving the preparation of  rich supportive learning environments for effective facilitation of growth through learning. Teacher direction and supervision are required in order to put the dynamics of freedom to proper use. The correct use of freedom is the most significant aspect of the 'new education' as 'holistic education' i.e. 'libratory pedagogy'. Libratory pedagogy involves the direct involvement of the educator in the organization and expansion of curricula and the design of learning experiences or 'lessons' planned with a view to facilitating learning and accomplishing goals which learners set for themselves in problem-solving activities i.e. 'lesson plans'. The teacher's role is defined as 'facilitator of learning'. The facilitative teacher provides a growth-promoting learning environment... provides conditions for the facilitation of growth through learning...conditions for the 'freedom to learn'  as 'freedom to work'. Meaningful work depends on freedom of expression, freedom of common sense inquiry or 'scientific activity' i.e. 'science'. The scientific basis for holistic education - the nature of 'human nature' - makes it a 'natural education'.... biological model of Decroly.

Self-actualisation is the basis for 'freedom' - 'true freedom' as 'inner freedom' which translates into 'outer freedom' as 'responsible action' required for social adaptability. As long as the mind does not function with its full potential and is not in position to use all the faculties it has, its freedom is restricted. Therefore the first important step in making the mind really free is the full unfoldment of its potentialites

Man can become free by being himself. In this context 'freedom' means self-realization. "The realizaion of the self is accomplished not only by an act of thinking, but also by the realization of man's total personality, by the active expression of his emotional and intellectual potentialities. These potentialities are present in everybody; they become real only to the extent which they are expressed. In other words, positive freedom consists in the spontaneous activity of the total, integrated personality."(Erich Fromm Man For Himself 258)

     Individuation  (term coined by Jung) the search for wholeness ...Jung called the search for wholeness, for integration of the personality, 'individuation' - defined as "the psychological process that makes a human being a individual - a unique indivisible unit or whole person. In his view all symbolic expression or activity has the inner purpose of 'individuation' as the birth and growth of the indivisible inner 'whole man.' It is the process of becoming the independent personality free from parental domination and support of social environment.

 "The basic demand imposed on every individual is the urge as well as the necessity to become conscious of himself, to develop that human awareness which distinguishes the mature personality from the infantile one. The path towards this awareness is the same as the process of individuation... consists of a profound reorientation from an ego-centered subjective attitude to an objective awareness of the limitations of the ego and an awareness of the existence of that greater psyche which is the whole 'Self' (the Atman of Sanskrit literature). "Hinduism's specific directions for actualizing man's fullest nature come under the heading of 'yoga.'"

Self-discipline and self-actualization: Maslow observed that self-actualized people tend to be self-disciplined. He poses the question "How did they get that way?" This question is significant for problems in education. What educational methods foster self-discipline? It is logical to argue that if self-actualization appears to be accompanied by self-discipline, then the same methods which foster self-actualization should foster self-discipline. Self-discipline should foster self-discipline. Self-discipline would be a part of self-actualization. Selfactualization is not possible without self-discipline. The two go together. It would not be possible for a person to work at his own talents and capabilities without self-discipline. (Psychology of Being l63-l64)

 The old philosophical question "what is the nature of man?" cannot be answered unless man's conscious mind is expanded to its full capacity. Then the answer can be found scientifically.

In accordance with biological theory and the evolutionary process, self-actualization increases the person's autonomy and independence of the environment, defining full individuality and 'true' freedom. 

They identify with humanity and accept human nature, seeing it for what it is and not as they think it should be. They make personal decisions on the basis of the intrinsic human needs.

     In accordance with biological theory and the evolutionary process, self-actualization increases the person's autonomy and independence of the environment, defining full individuality and 'true' freedom.

Living in the realm of the metaneeds self-actualizing individuals lead ethical lives and have a genuine desire to help others.

The human capacity for learning is a result of thousands of years of evolutionary process. As a product of evolution, the learning process is based on the need to acquire information and knowledge of reality or 'truth'.

  TEXTS

                                    Human Need for Self-Actualization

    "We can certainly now assert that at least a reasonable, theoretical and empirical case has been made for the presence within the human being of a tendency toward, or need for growing in a direction that can be summarized in general as self-actualization, or psychological health, i.e. he has within him a pressure toward unity of personality, toward spontaneous expressiveness, toward full individuality and identity, toward seeing the truth rather than being blind, toward being creative, toward being good and a lot else. That is the human being is so constructed that he presses toward fuller and fuller being and this means pressing toward what most people would call good values, toward serenity, kindness, courage, honesty, love, unselfishness, and goodness." ("The Science of Value' Robert Hartman in Maslow A.H. ed. 'New Knowledge in Human Values'. Harper, 1959. page 155)

During the normal growth process, the individual depends on significant adults for gratification of the basic psychological needs. If these are gratified, the individual becomes less dependent on others for the gratification of the needs of growth, creation and production - also known as the 'Being needs' or 'B-needs' of growth or the 'growth needs' or 'metaneeds'. For gratification of the growth needs, the individual becomes independent of other people and relies on his own inner resources. The individual who is motivated by the growth needs has the capacity for 'self-actualization' i.e. to make decisions in his 'true' self interest. The growth motivated individual is described as 'self-actualized' or 'self-actualizing'. The objective study of self-actualizing individuals reveals information about the end result of normal human growth... the original nature of the human species ...the innate characteristics of human nature... can be revealed by analysing the psychological and emotional characteristics of 'self-actualizing' individuals... the fully grown members of the human species. As representative of human nature in general, the 'self-actualizing' person is the 'ordinary' human being with nothing taken away through acculturation.     

    Compared with individuals who are not motivated by the growth needs, self-actualizing individuals share a number of characteristics. They have an increased identification with the human species and identify with humanity. They have an increased acceptance of human nature seeing it for what it is and not as they think it should be. They have an increased acceptance of self and their own nature without shame, guilt or anxiety. Acceptance of their own nature leads to acceptance of other peoples' natures They have a non-judgmental and non-interfering attitude towards other people and are able to perceive them objectively as unique individuals with their own intrinsic qualities. They feel uncomfortable when they see discrepancies in their behaviour and have a philosophical and unhostile sense of humour. They have a more democratic 'character structure' and are democratic in their thinking. They have a distinct quality of detachment and a strong sense of privacy. They are autonomous, self-sufficient and independent of other people. , They are resistant to cultural influences and acculturation. As non-conforming individuals, they are able to adapt to life within a culture but in the process they remain unspoiled. As they are able to maintain their autonomy, they do not feel threatened by the unknown and are free from superstitions. They place no unrealistic or neurotic demands on reality perceiving it clearly and accepting it for what it is. Their superior perception of reality is based on their ability for perception which is holistic. With their wholistic perception, they benefit from comprehensive understanding. They become 'problem centered' rather than 'means centered' and 'ego centered'. With increased problem centering, their reasoning transcends the opposites, the dichotomies, the polarities, the contradictions and incompatibles. They see problems and solutions as they are rather than as they would like them to be. In scientific inquiry, they are not confused by means and ends i.e. by problems and methods. With their mature minds and holistic perspective, they perceive or 'see' many so-called 'problems' as pseudoproblems resulting from distorted perceptions. They recognize that pseudoproblems are products of ego-centered mental processes which dichotomize and distort reality giving rise to problematical dichotomies. They can recognize the fallaciousness of dichotomies such as reason-emotion, good-evil, mystic-realistic, self-society etc. False dichotomies can be resolved when they are perceived as interpenetrating facets of a whole. In their resolution, supposedly intrinsic oppositions can merge together and coalesce with each other to form unified wholes and polarities can be made to disappear.  

      Self-actualizing individuals enjoy a high frequency of mystic or 'peak' experiences of self-transcendence involving the total acceptance of their biological nature and their part in human evolution.Their capacity for 'peak-experiences' does not have to resort to the 'supernatural' or 'God'. Their communion with what transcends them makes it easily possible for them to live in the realm of the Being-needs of growth. They make personal decisions on the basis of the intrinsic human needs. They naturally make choices within the framework of the intrinsic system of human values which are equivalent to the B-needs i.e. the 'Being-values' or B-values ...the 'higher' spiritual values or metaneeds which satisfy the human longing for certainty wholeness, perfection, truth, justice, aliveness, richness, simplicity, beauty, goodness, uniqueness, self-sufficiency and so on. Living in the realm of the metaneeds self-actualizing individuals lead ethical lives and have a genuine desire to help others. They experience meaningful interpersonal relations preferring a few profound friendships to many superficial ones. They are able to fulfill their potential. They are able to enjoy life to the full and generally enjoy life in all of its aspects. They experience increased spontaneity and tend to live on impulse. They are deeply and essentially spontaneous, enjoying greater freshness of appreciation and richness of emotional reaction. They have the wonderful capacity to appreciate over and over again, freshly and naively, the basic goods of life, with awe, pleasure, wonder, and even ecstasy. They frequently experience ecstatic moments of clear perception of reality... known as 'peak-experiences'.

 

      Their almost mystical capacity is the source of their personal ambitions. They are ambitious in an unusual sense and persist in their efforts. They work and they continue to try. Motivation for them is the same as character growth, expression of character, maturation and development. Motivated by the growth needs, their motivation is synonymous with self-actualization. Their whole being is motivated. Their productivity results from the effects of profound 'being-motivation' or 'metamotivation' so named because it contrasts with the control of motivation by deficiency of the basic pschological needs i.e. 'deficiency motivation'. Their greatly increased creativeness is a product of the combined effects of metamotivation and a clear perception of reality. Self-actualizing individuals show a special kind of creativity, originality and inventiveness. They experience 'true' freedom and enjoy the pleasure of insight and production - a fundamental characteristic of human nature which is often lost in a process of acculturation and so-called 'education'.

    For gratification of the growth needs, the individual becomes independent of other people and relies on his own inner resources. The individual who is motivated by the growth needs has the capacity for 'self-actualization' i.e. to make decisions in his 'true' self interest. The growth motivated individual is described as 'self-actualized' or 'self-actualizing'. The objective study of self-actualizing individuals reveals information about the end result of normal human growth... the original nature of the human species ...the innate characteristics of human nature... can be revealed by analysing the psychological and emotional characteristics of 'self-actualizing' individuals... the fully grown members of the human species. As representative of human nature in general, the 'self-actualizing' person is the 'ordinary' human being with nothing taken away through acculturation. Compared with individuals who are not motivated by the growth needs, self-actualizing individuals share a number of characteristics. They have an increased identification with the human species and an increased acceptance of human nature. They identify with humanity and accept human nature, seeing it for what it is and not as they think it should be. They have an increased acceptance of self and their own nature without shame, guilt or anxiety. Accepting their own nature, they accept other peoples' natures. They feel uncomfortable when they see discrepancies in their behaviour and have a philosophical and unhostile sense of humour. They have a more democratic 'character structure' and are democratic in their thinking. They have a non-judgmental and non-interfering attitude towards other people. They are able to perceive them objectively i.e. in terms of their intrinsic qualities and as unique individuals. They have a distinct quality of detachment and a strong sense of privacy. They are autonomous and self-sufficient. Independent of other people, they are resistant to cultural influences and acculturation. As non-conforming individuals, they are able to adapt to life within a culture but in the process they remain unspoiled. Able to maintain their autonomy, they do not feel threatened by the unknown and are free from superstitions. They place no unrealistic or neurotic demands on reality perceiving it clearly and accepting it for what it is. Their superior perception of reality is based on their ability for perception which is wholistic. With their wholistic perception, self-actualizing individuals benefit from comprehensive understanding. They become 'problem centered' rather than 'means centered' and 'ego centered'. With increased problem centering, their reasoning transcends the opposites, the dichotomies, the polarities, the contradictions and incompatibles. They see problems and solutions as they are rather than as they would like them to be. In scientific inquiry, they are not confused by means and ends i.e. by problems and methods. With their mature minds and wholistic perspective, they perceive or 'see' many so-called 'problems' as pseudoproblems resulting from distorted perceptions. They recognize that pseudoproblems are products of ego-centered mental processes which dichotomize and distort reality giving rise to problematical dichotomies. They can recognize the fallaciousness of dichotomies such as reason-emotion, good-evil, mystic-realistic, self-society etc. False dichotomies can be resolved when they are perceived as interpenetrating facets of a whole. In their resolution, supposedly intrinsic oppositions can merge together and coalesce with each other to form unified wholes and polarities can be made to disappear.

With their wholistic perspective, self-actualizing individuals frequently experience ecstatic moments of clear perception of reality... of self-transcendance involving the total acceptance of their biological nature and their part in human evolution …known as of mystic or 'peak-experiences'. With this capacity for 'peak-experiences' they do not have to resort to the 'supernatural' or 'God'. Their communion with what transcends them makes it easily possible for them to live in the realm of the Being-needs of growth. They make personal decisions on the basis of the intrinsic human needs. They naturally make choices within the framework of the intrinsic system of human values which are equivalent to the B-needs i.e. the 'Being-values' or B-values ...the 'higher' spiritual values or metaneeds which satisfy the human longing for certainty wholeness, perfection, truth, justice, aliveness, richness, simplicity, beauty, goodness, uniqueness, self-sufficiency and so on. Living in the realm of the metaneeds self-actualizing individuals lead ethical lives and have a genuine desire to help others. They experience meaningful interpersonal relations preferring a few profound friendships to many superficial ones. Self-actualizing individuals are able to fulfill their potential. They are able to enjoy life to the full and generally enjoy life in all of its aspects. They experience increased spontaneity and tend to live on impulse. They are deeply and essentially spontaneous, enjoying greater freshness of appreciation and richness of emotional reaction. They have the wonderful capacity to appreciate over and over again, freshly and naively, the basic goods of life, with awe, pleasure, wonder, and even ecstasy.

 

 As representative of human nature in general, the 'self-actualizing' person is the 'ordinary' human being with nothing taken away through acculturation. Compared with individuals who are not motivated by the growth needs, self-actualizing individuals share a number of characteristics. They have an increased identification with the human species and an increased acceptance of human nature. They identify with humanity and accept human nature for what it is and not as they think it should be. They have an increased acceptance of self and their own nature without shame, guilt or anxiety. Accepting their own nature, they accept other peoples' natures. They feel uncomfortable when they see discrepancies in the behaviour of others and have a philosophical and unhostile sense of humour. They have a more democratic 'character structure' and are democratic in their thinking. They have a non-judgmental and non-interfering attitude towards other people. They are able to perceive them objectively i.e. in terms of their intrinsic qualities and as unique individuals. They have a distinct quality of detachment and a strong sense of privacy. They are autonomous, self-sufficient, independent of other people. They are resistant to cultural influences and acculturation and as non-conforming individuals, they are able to adapt to life within a culture but in the process they remain unspoiled. Able to maintain their autonomy, they do not feel threatened by the unknown and are free from superstitions. They place no unrealistic or neurotic demands on reality perceiving it clearly and accepting it for what it is. Their superior perception of reality is based on their ability for perception which is wholistic.

 With their wholistic perception, self-actualizing individuals benefit from comprehensive understanding. They become 'problem centered' rather than 'means centered' and 'ego centered'. With increased problem centering, their reasoning transcends the opposites, the dichotomies, the polarities, the contradictions and incompatibles. They see problems and solutions as they are rather than as they would like them to be. In scientific inquiry, they are not confused by means and ends i.e. by problems and methods. With their mature minds and wholistic perspective, they perceive or 'see' many so-called 'problems' as pseudoproblems resulting from distorted perceptions. They recognize that pseudoproblems are products of ego-centered mental processes which dichotomize and distort reality giving rise to problematical dichotomies. They can recognize the fallaciousness of dichotomies such as reason-emotion, good-evil, mystic-realistic, self-society etc. False dichotomies can be resolved when they are perceived as interpenetrating facets of a whole. In their resolution, supposedly intrinsic oppositions can merge together and coalesce with each other to form unified wholes and polarities can be made to disappear. With their wholistic perspective, self-actualizing individuals enjoy a high frequency of mystic or 'peak' experiences of self-transcendance involving the total acceptance of their biological nature and their part in human evolution. They have a capacity for 'peak-experiences' without having to resort to the 'supernatural' or 'God'. Their communion with what transcends them makes it easily possible for them to live in the realm of the Being-needs of growth. They make personal decisions on the basis of the intrinsic human needs. They naturally make choices within the framework of the intrinsic system of human values which are equivalent to the B-needs i.e. the 'Being-values' or B-values ...the 'higher' spiritual values or metaneeds which satisfy the human longing for certainty wholeness, perfection, truth, justice, aliveness, richness, simplicity, beauty, goodness, uniqueness, self-sufficiency and so on. Living in the realm of the metaneeds self-actualizing individuals lead ethical lives and have a genuine desire to help others. They experience meaningful interpersonal relations preferring a few profound friendships to many superficial ones. Self-actualizing individuals are able to fulfill their potential. They are able to enjoy life to the full and generally enjoy life in all of its aspects. They experience increased spontaneity and tend to live on impulse. They are deeply and essentially spontaneous, enjoying greater freshness of appreciation and richness of emotional reaction. They have the wonderful capacity to appreciate over and over again, freshly and naively, the basic goods of life, with awe, pleasure, wonder, and even ecstasy. They frequently experience ecstatic moments of clear perception of reality... known as 'peak-experiences'. Their almost mystical capacity is the source for their personal ambitions. They are ambitious in an unusual sense and persist in their efforts. They work and they continue to try. Motivation for them is the same as character growth, expression of character, maturation and development. Motivated by the growth needs, their motivation is synonymous with self-actualization. Their whole being is motivated. Their productivity results from the effects of profound 'being-motivation' or 'metamotivation' so named because it contrasts with the control of motivation by deficiency of the basic pschological needs i.e. 'deficiency motivation'. Their greatly increased creativeness is a product of the combined effects of metamotivation and a clear perception of reality. Self-actualizing individuals show a special kind of creativity, originality and inventiveness. They experience 'true' freedom and enjoy the pleasure of insight and production - a fundamental characteristic of human nature which is often lost in a process of acculturation and so-called 'education'.

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