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Effortless AttentionA New Perspective in the Cognitive Science of Attention and Action$
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Brian Bruya

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780262013840

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262013840.001.0001

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Toward an Empirically Responsible Ethics: Cognitive Science, Virtue Ethics, and Effortless Attention in Early Chinese Thought

Toward an Empirically Responsible Ethics: Cognitive Science, Virtue Ethics, and Effortless Attention in Early Chinese Thought

Chapter:
(p.247) 12 Toward an Empirically Responsible Ethics: Cognitive Science, Virtue Ethics, and Effortless Attention in Early Chinese Thought
Source:
Effortless Attention
Author(s):

Edward Slingerland

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262013840.003.0013

This chapter reviews how human reasoning and decision making evolves from the cognitive sciences, challenging basic assumptions of objectivism-rationalism along with ethical models based on reason. It emphasizes the significance of effortless attention in human reasoning and suggests that virtue ethics is preferable to authoritative thinking. By examining an early text from China, entitled “Analects of Confucius,” the chapter demonstrates how effortless attention and action can be developed and incorporated into moral behavior. This text is an important source of evidence regarding the earliest examples of virtue ethic in world literature. These findings also reveal the presence of different human thinking systems that work on implicit and explicit levels, with knowledge operating at the implicit level.

Keywords:   human reasoning, cognitive sciences, virtue ethics, effortless attention, implicit level

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