From a Non-Formal Ethics of Values in Scheler to the Thresholds Zones in Waldenfels: Ethical Implications of the Understanding of Personality


This research intends to develop the ethical implications of the concept of personality through the phenomenological approaches of Scheler and Waldenfels. For both philosophers, an ethics based on a moral formalism would be very pernicious to the concept of personality and even for ethics itself. For ethics, it would bring a kind of arbitrariness and for the person a sort of depersonalization. In order to advance a concept of ethics grounded on the values of a person, Scheler introduces the idea of God’s love for us as intuitively given athwart the values of holiness itself. From this given intuition, Scheler will build up the idea of good in itself as a model, so that a person could form a good personality through an accurate rank of values. Waldenfels would say that even the personality grounded on such mystical experiences would have the consequence of a depersonalization of the person in his relation with the other, the world, and with himself. Waldenfels will find, through a genealogy of the constitution of order thresholds zones that will prevent a borrowed concept of personality only from an inside, or an outside. As an open process of what happen with us, the personality cannot be static, but latent as it is done responsively.

Keywords: Scheler, Waldenfels, personality, ethics, threshold and responsivity

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