Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Virtues and Strengths

It has been mentioned in a previous post that the Good life and Meaningful life require the utilization of signature (character) strengths. Virtues and strengths that enable human thriving are described in Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification (CSV).

The CSV identifies six overarching virtues that almost every culture across the world endorses.

Wisdom and Knowledge: Cognitive strengths that entail the acquisition and use of knowledge

Courage: Emotional strengths that involve the exercise of will to accomplish goals in the face of opposition, external or internal

Humanity: Interpersonal strengths that involve tending and befriending others

Justice: Civic strengths that underlie healthy community life

Temperance: Strengths that protect against excess

Transcendence: Strengths that forge connections to the larger universe and provide meaning

The 6 virtues are made up of 24 measurable strengths. Signature strengths are those one most frequently expresses. It is suggested that practice/utilization of these traits lead to increased happiness.

One can find out about his/her signatures strengths from this survey.


Mridula said...

VS if I may ask what is our interest in the topics like virtues etc?

VS said...

To answer the question, I assume when you say 'our' you mean yourself. I shall also assume that you had the time to read the previous posts and maybe ponder over the content. ;o)

Briefly 'Happiness' can be found in the pleasant life, the good life and the meaningful life. For the latter two specifically, a person needs to identify his signature strengths (classified under 'virtues'). Thus the need to understand them.

If I have misunderstood your question, please do repeat it. :o)