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Download a PDF of the latest version of the Human Givens Charter. The Charter, along with explanatory commentary and references, is also available to order online
“A pessimist sees the
difficulty in every opportunity;
an optimist sees the
opportunity in every difficulty.”
Human Givens Institute
The Human Givens Charter
In the light of new knowledge about our innate psychological and emotional needs (the human givens), we all have a duty to help our health, educational, economic and social organisations implement concrete plans for:
- Maintaining an environment where people can feel secure and go safely about their lives
- Ensuring basic physical needs – for food, unpolluted water, pure air, space to exercise etc. – are reliably available
- Creating a social climate that takes account of each person’s need for autonomy and volition, where they can take individual responsibility for as many aspects of their lives as possible.
- Encouraging and protecting environments and activities to enable children and adults to feel emotionally connected to others, experience and enjoy friendship and intimacy, in the family and beyond, and feel valued by the wider community.
- Providing the conditions (but not prescribing the method) for the cultivation of a culture where all children and adults can easily be stretched mentally and physically in healthy ways – which is how people find meaning and purpose in life.
Notes to the above
- It follows that the various departments of government and public services should ensure that their activities do not prevent the people they serve from getting their innate emotional needs met. A clear distinction between ‘needs’, which are either physically or psychologically necessary, and ‘wants’, which arise from greed and conditioning, should always be held in mind.
- The leaders of organisations, whether in the public or private domain, only enjoy their powers and rights in order to help people more fully meet human needs. To the extent that any such person or organisation fails in this remit they are contributing to the generation of mental and physical illness, the rate of increase of which is placing the survival of our species in jeopardy. (Mental illness primarily arises when the innate psychological needs of an individual are not being met in balance.
- Members of the Human Givens Institute have, for fourteen years, been researching methods and developing evidence based models for how these goals can be achieved. Considerable progress is being made, especially in the areas of mental health and education.
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