Parce que la moralité a été acquise au cours de l'évolution, elle existe dans toutes les sociétés et cultures.

Parce qu'ils se manifestent dans toutes les cultures, de manière universelle et sans exception connue, les universaux moraux semblables à ceux présentés ici sont très probablement des phénomènes psychologiques sélectionnés par l'évolution (Brown, 1991).

L'anthropologue Donald E. Brown ne s'attendait pas à découvrir l'unité morale de l'humanité. Mais c'est ce qu'il lui est arrivé.

Le scientifique cherchait des traits cognitifs ou comportementaux communs à tous les humains normaux d'un point de vue neurologique, qu'importe leur culture d'origine. Son idée était de lister les «universaux humains» partagés par toutes les sociétés.

Son projet a permis de découvrir un grand nombre de constantes éthiques présentes dans toutes les cultures.

Sur tous les continents, les fois et les systèmes de croyance étaient divers et variés. Pour autant, tous prohibaient certains comportements. Le viol? Interdit. Le meurtre? Interdit partout.

D'autres points communs ont été identifiés. L'empathie, par exemple. La coopération. La honte. Le concept d'équité. Et ainsi de suite. Des sociétés développées et démocratiques occidentales aux sociétés indigènes isolées – des «universaux moraux».

Des décennies de recherches inter-culturelles ont démontré qu'aucune société ne possède le monopole de la bonne conduite. La conduite morale humaine ne dépend pas d'une religion ou d'une divinité, mais remonte aux racines évolutionnaires.

Il existe désormais une abondante littérature sur la moralité à travers les cultures, et certaines recherches reprennent les universaux moraux découverts par Brown. Comme le résume la psychologue Ara Norenzayan «La connexion entre la religion et la moralité est culturellement variable; un tel lien est faible ou absent des petits groupes et se solidifie à mesure que les groupes gagnent en envergure et en complexité sociale au cours du temps et à travers les sociétés».

Enoncé n°2
Enoncé n°4

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