Rules are default

Rules are flawed, but still our default approach.

In most societies, the default way to talk about what is right or wrong is through rules and regulations. We have tremendously detailed descriptions about what we think is allowed or not, written down in countless volumes of regulations. While this often proves to be very valuable in supporting us how to act or what decisions to make, it also provides a few problems.

First of all, the number of rules and regulations can be overwhelming to the extent that they are ineffective. Regular people will not be able to access the regulation when it’s needed because it is too much and written in difficult language.

Secondly, in cases where people do know the applicable rules, you can wonder if people see the rule as a representation of good. Generally speaking, rules are not written in a way that they speak to the heart. Rather, they speak to reason, triggering a different part of our brain.

It would be interesting to investigate if there are ways in which rules can be better at speaking our natural language and maybe even trigger our moral senses.

In the next post, by means of a metaphor, I will start to explore different ways of looking at good so we can see in what ways good can be better activated.





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