CAVE Approach© for Human Development

The CAVE (Classical Aristotelian Virtues of Ethics) Approach© for Human Development refers to a systematic and structured methodology for the development of 14 Aristotelian virtues as a means to consistently promote success and happiness in our professional and personal life.

Specifically, the CAVE Approach© for HD aims to help people develop the following Intellectual and Moral virtues:

Intellectual Virtues: Judgment, Prudence, Insightfulness

Moral Virtues: Calmness, Courage, Fairness, Friendliness, Honesty about oneself, Honor, Humor, Liberality, Magnanimity, Magnificence, Temperance.

Why to develop the Aristotelian virtues?

Aristotelian virtues refer to fundamental human qualities that are imperative for the development and application of any knowledge and skill, and our overall efficient functioning in any context. We might continually enrich our knowledge and skills on various subjects, but our success and happiness does not rely on them per se but rather on whether and how we use them in our everyday life. The virtues aim to assure that we consistently apply and use our knowledge and skills, as well as any other available capability, in an efficient way in every context to set goals, make decisions, behave and act in ways that promote our best interests and wellbeing while promoting the common good.

So, Aristotelian virtues can provide us with a unified platform for personal development and excellence in every context, and for the sustainable development of any kind of social structure such as businesses, organizations, educational and academic institutions etc.

Are Aristotelian Virtues Applicable in any context?

Yes, as long as the cultural values of the context follow the rules of logic, and promote the common good.

Although it is commonly accepted that rules of logic are the same in every context, this is not true for moral values that might be different or might be expressed differently across cultures. Aristotelian Virtues are rational concepts that aim to help people reconcile logic with moral criteria in their everyday functioning. So, firstly, rules of logic and logical virtues are the common denominators of moral virtues as well. Secondly, Aristotle did not define moral virtues in terms of specific behaviors and actions which might reflect different things in different cultural contexts. Rather, he set specific criteria for every moral virtue based on which we can logically assess which behaviors and attitudes in every context reflect the virtue, and which do not. Consequently, a behavior that is considered fair in one context or under specific conditions might not be fair in another context or under different conditions. However, the concept of fairness is specific and the same everywhere, and based on what fairness is, we apply our logic to assess what is fair in the specific context. Finally, while values are ideas (ideal concepts) that people value or respect, virtues are human qualities that people need to develop in order to serve these ideas in practice.  It is true to say that Aristotelian virtues refer to the corresponding values as well (e.g. Fairness, Courage etc.), requiring an individual to appreciate the corresponding value but they are more than that; virtues enable people to consistently act according the value while gaining satisfaction by doing so. Also, it goes without saying that virtues serve their corresponding values but they might also serve other values as well, as long as they are logical and promote the common good.

How can I develop Aristotelian Virtues?

The CAVE Approach© for HD follows a structured and systematic methodology that is comprised of 3 phases:

  1. Assessment: The CAVE© Questionnaire & Individual/ Group Reports
  2. Training: Educational Programs & Interactive Workshops
  3. Dialogues of Development: One-to-one/Group Mentoring

These phases aim to serve the CAVE© Approach’s goals by:

  • Assessing people’s needs of virtues’ development
  • Providing a framework for virtues’ development (cognitive understanding of the virtues and their practical value)
  • Supporting and enhancing people’s effort for virtues’ application in everyday life
  • Monitoring and evaluating the progress of virtues’ development and expected results.

The overall approach is conducted according the CAVE Approach© Standards and Code of Ethics.