The Rabbi and The Shrink

Episode #2: A Good Apology?

April 07, 2021 Yonason Goldson and Margarita Gurri Episode 2
The Rabbi and The Shrink
Episode #2: A Good Apology?
Show Notes

2:00 Assertiveness training doesn’t always teach that the rest of the world isn’t always assertive.

Choose your battles; don’t engage in conflict over little things, but save your conflict for substantive issues.

What we choose to say and do is the foundation of ethics.

3:30  Word of the day: Zeitgeber -- an environment cue that helps an organism regulate its metabolism.

We need to take cues from our environment so we can regulate our ethical metabolism.

5:00 Isn’t it unethical to never speak up?

Compliance can be the enemy of ethics if it becomes an excuse not to grapple with ethical decision making.

Constructive disagreement enables us to see an issue from all sides.

7:30  What makes us act unethically?

We human beings are in conflict with ourselves.  The amygdala wants immediate gratification and the frontal lobe looks ahead for long term consequences.

11:30  How do we respond ethically to others’ misbehavior?

Situational ethics?  The principles of ethics don’t change, but situations do.

14:30 Most people want to do the right thing.  So what gets in the way?

We combat the Freudian id by asking what serves the greater good.

Kamikaze pilots believed they were serving the greater good.  Did that make it so?

17:30  Is there a difference between morality and ethics?

Morality descends from a higher authority which is cultural.

Ethics emerges from a collective sensitivity for what’s right.

20:30 Golden rule vs. the platinum rule.  Is it all about me?

24:00 Character traits are neither good nor bad; they all have good and bad applications.

Conflict is not bad if it is constructive, but  enabling us to see both sides of an issue more clearly so we can better understand the whole picture and thereby make better decisions.

26:30 Anger turned inward produces violence. Anger is a gift when it invites you to pay attention.

If we’re so angry that we can’t take a sip of water without spilling it, we shouldn’t be having an argument.

We should ask ourselves with empathy: Why is this person angry? Did I contribute to their anger?

31:45 The sages compare anger to idolatry; they also teach the importance of timing.

If we can recognize the irony in the moment and laugh at ourselves, we can defuse the ange.

Hillel: Don’t do to others what is hateful in your eyes.  Consider with empathy.  36:00 It’s an art to interpret words and circumstances in a way that brings us together.

39:00 What’s the difference between anger and aggression?  This is the kind of question we need to ask ourselves.

Anger is an emotion; aggression is a behavior.  Aggression can be good or bad; anger is always bad.

43:00 If your neighbor is using a leaf blower at 7:00 Sunday morning, is it acceptable to respond by blasting your stereo at 3:00 the next morning?

46:00 Responding to immorality from a loved one is very different from responding to a stranger or casual acquaintance.

48:00  Don't let the devil in the door.  Protect yourself by protecting your own environment.

50:30  “I don’t understand” vs. “That makes no sense.”  First look inside myself.

52:00 Fix yourself first.  Set limits.  Lay down ground rules.  Ask “why are you mad?”

3-yes technique.

The more clearly we see our own perspective, the more passionate and single minded we become.  It takes an act of will to look from a different perspective.

1:02:00 The steps to a good apology