Moral knowledge and the problems of psychotherapy

Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 20 (1):25-35 (2000)
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The distinction between objective and subjective knowledge has a long philosophical history, but the modem version has ties to Hume's separation of reason and belief. The extraction of reason from mere habits of the mind raises its own problems concerning the possibility of knowledge . These problems are especially acute within the therapeutic context. Indeed, the inclusion of morals in psychotherapy is considered unethical. This arises from the assumption that morality is idiosyncratic and subjective whereas scientific knowledge is objective and thus closer to truth. The argument developed here is that the therapeutic endeavor is implicitly philosophical and civic in its assumptions. As such it requires the resources of moral and political philosophy as well as a standard by which to assess its achievements. 2012 APA, all rights reserved)



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