On Equilibrium:  Six Qualities of the New Humanism

On Equilibrium: Six Qualities of the New Humanism

Non-fiction , 2001

Penguin Canada

John Ralston Saul explains how our different qualities give us the intelligence, self-confidence and practical ability to think and act as responsible individuals. He argues, however, that when certain human qualities are worshipped in isolation they become weaknesses, even forces of destruction or self-destruction. In short, they become ideologies.

 How then can we use our qualities as positive forces in our own lives – and the life of our society? How can we use them so that each builds upon the other in order to reinforce us as humans?

Saul’s answer is Balance.

On Equilibrium is an intelligent, persuasive and controversial exploration of the essential qualities of humanity and how they can be used to achieve equilibrium for the self and to foster an ethical society. It is at once an attack on our weakness for ideologies and a manual for humanist action. It is the logical, compelling and humane successor to his philosophical trilogy Voltaire’s Bastards, The Doubter’s Companion, and The Unconscious Civilization.