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ACT and the Kyoto School of Philosophy:Interdisciplinary dialogues on personhood, ethics, and becoming (Pages 173-180)

Journal of Contextual Behavioral Science (JCBS)

Volume 26, October 2022, Pages 173-180


Anton Sevilla-Liu


This paper examines the connections between Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Kyoto School Philosopher Mori Akira (1915–1976), in order to see how ACT and functional contextualism can engage other subfields in academic philosophy like philosophy of the human person, ethics, and philosophy of human becoming, and other areas such as eastern and continental philosophy. It first examines Mori's model of the layers of human existence (organic, conscious, reflective, and self-aware) and how it connects to ACT's views of the human person (workability, languaging, self-processes), presenting how these potentially critique modern ideas of the human being as a merely rational animal. It then proceeds to ACT and Mori's ethics of freely-chosen values and how these can critique utilitarian and deontological ethics. Finally, it proceeds to the philosophy of human becoming and how ACT and Mori can contribute to a contextual-existential view of the path of human development.

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