Aims of education and well-being as absence of disorder
This thesis offers an original account of what personal well-being can be. Any account of education, it is believed, has to do with and aims at personal well-being. I approach this view on well-being not in a positive but in a negative way. I put forward some items that in certain circumstances can be taken by and called sources or forms of disorder. In the absence of such forms or sources of disorder, I assume that a certain order, prudential or moral, takes place and that constitutes the wellbeing of the person. The concept of 'absence of disorder' is introduced and argued as an educationally appropriate view of personal well-being which is the central educational aim. Therefore, 'absence of disorder' is positioned as the central aim of education. This concept is illuminated, for practical reasoning, by a list of seven possible forms of disorder: Comparison, Corruption, Dependency, Division, Fear, Self-disintegration and Violence. As a view of personal well-being, 'absence of disorder' is initially rooted in informed desire satisfaction, via the introduction of the concept of entropy. Prudentially, the agent's informed desire is satisfied by living a life with low build up of entropy or disorder. But, in a second move such a base is also provided by the Levinasinian concept of 'disinterest' as a root for 'what is to be a human'. Such 'disinterest' is related to the concepts of love and of 'action for its own sake'. It is at this final approach that an attempt is made towards the approximation of the ethical and the prudential aspects of social practices. Even if only to some extent successful, the argument is directed to the following conclusion: an education aiming at 'absence of disorder' may promote prudential well-being and give us some confidence in simultaneously favouring moral education.