The Collective Archives of Mind. An Exploration of Reasons from Metaethics to Social Ontology
The central aim of this book is to explore what it is to be a reason – a consideration of normative weight for a reflective creature. When we understand the reasons supporting our decisions, we become more self-determined in our choices. When we become more self-determined, we usually also become better at explaining and justifying ourselves to others. There seems to be a natural connection between self-determination and communication. Nonetheless, there are moments in which our belief in this natural connection is shattered. We must make concessions we cannot fully support in order to justify ourselves. Or we must face disharmony and instability in order to carry through with our convictions.
This book argues that our capacity to make self-determined decisions depends on communities – communities as the historical source of considerations that can be endorsed as reasons. Self-determined reasoning, so the core thesis of this book, is moving in what we can call the collective archives of mind. However, this does not mean that we cannot overcome or change communal traditions, but in order to do this, we may have to give up the ideal of self-determination – the ideal of understanding our decisions as fully justified by reasons.