Rooted in Decency, Book on common decency and shared values

Rooted in Decency

Finding inner peace in a world gone sideways.

What happened to common decency? ... And how do we get to more cooperation and kindness?

Take a quick scan of the headlines and… wow. From disrespect to deceptions, it’s easy to question whether indecency has taken root in our society. Some people are doing what they think is “right” while others think it’s terribly, morally “wrong.” It can make you wonder, Do we even share common values anymore?

Rooted in Decency is a book that reveals some surprising reasons behind why people are acting so wrongly toward each other and why that can make life feel so off-balance. While it’s based on intriguing research from modern science to ancient moral philosophy, Rooted in Decency is written in straightforward language for a busy audience. Each book chapter is a short conversation that presents brilliant insights—from neuroscience to happiness science, from Aristotle to Buddha—that bring new light to today’s moral dilemmas.

Find intriguing discussions like:

  • Why people are so willing to believe lies
  • How happiness is tied to self-respect
  • Which core values the world’s major religions have in common
  • Why you can’t shame someone into agreeing with you

Taken alone, each chapter offers an “a-ha” insight that can change the tone of how we relate to each other. Or, journey through all the chapters to develop a modern moral compass that can guide society to a place that’s rooted in decency.

Explore the Table of Contents

Part One- Looking Inward

1. Finding Lasting Happiness

Why happiness comes and goes, and how that’s a good thing.

2. Mindless Thinking

How extreme thinking is knocking us off-balance

3. The Body's Language

How there’s a positive side to “negative” emotions

4. Spirited Connection

How feeding your spirit includes a side dish of happiness and meaning

5. Self-Respect vs. Self-Esteem

Why it’s good to feel bad sometimes

Part Two- Looking Outward

6. You be You—Unless You’re a Jerk

Why we voluntarily give up some freedoms to be part of society

7. Competing Moral Priorities

Why people think they’re “right” when others think they’re “wrong”

8. Us Versus Them

How group identity isn’t the real problem - Read a sample

9. The Contagion of Cruelty and Kindness

In a world with so much negativity, why bother trying?

10. The Myth of Perfection

Why life is a series of moments for practicing who you want to be

Part Three- Setting a Course

11. Right and Wrong

Where do moral values come from?

12. Shared Values

Which values do the world's belief systems have in common?

13. Defining a Moral Compass

What are your guiding principles?

14. What is Truth?

Why we paint the truth in shades of gray - Read a sample

15. Trust Me

Why the truth still matters

16. The Post-Truth Con

Why people lie and why we’re willing to believe them

17. What is Respect?

How too little and too much respect are destabilizing society

18. Working Against Ourselves

Why you can't disrespect (or shame) someone into agreeing with you

19. What is Responsibility?

Why responsibility is a blend of empowerment and justice

20. Life After Victimhood

How to move society past a grievance state

21. What is Compassion?

Why compassion is not about eliminating suffering

22. The Bright Side

How a little perspective changes everything

Brief Chapters with Journaling

Rooted in Decency Book Interior

Each short chapter in Rooted in Decency offers surprising nuggets of wisdom that can help shed new light on today’s moral issues.

Plus, optional journaling pages throughout the book help you explore your own experiences, if you choose.

Printable Journaling Pages

Bringing nuance back into moral decisions

With all the extremes in how people approach life today, we often look at big issues with an over-simplified view of our options. But moral decisions are rarely all-or-nothing choices. Life is full of nuance so the way we think through what’s right and wrong should be also.

Take truth telling for example. Sometimes, a polite lie is the right thing to do. But where’s the line between white lies and deception? Or looking at responsibility—often it’s a matter of when we should intervene, how much, and in what way.

With all the divisiveness in our culture today, we need to reset our common understanding of right, wrong, and all the shades of gray in between if we’re going to find reasonable solutions to complex moral dilemmas.

Part Three of the book, Rooted in Decency, walks through how to create a modern moral compass that we can use to talk about issues more productively with each other. We’ll view contentious issues through a new lens that can bridge our divides and help us find a shared set of values that can guide our society back to being rooted in decency.

Rooted in Decency Moral Compass and Value Continuums

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