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Teodros Kiros and Africana Moral Philosophy: A Review Essay

By Paget Henry
Tigrai Online, October 28, 2015

Teodros Kiros is one of Africa’s leading philosophers. He is also a major Africana philosopher in the sense that significance of his work has reached beyond the shores and academic halls of Africa to engage the hearts and minds of diasporic Africans in the Caribbean and North America. Kiros is first and foremost a moral philosopher. He is a strong voice for the religiously inscribed moral subject in our modern world, which has been increasingly reducing its spheres of moral action and influence. Thinking against this current, Kiros’ major question is: how can we increase rather than decrease existing spheres of moral action? As a moral philosopher, he writes from the heart, and maintains a very special place for it in his philosophy. Very close to Kiros’ heart is his native country of Ethiopia. His moral philosophy has been continuously fed by the challenges and achievements of Ethiopia, its joys and its sorrows.


Philosophical Essays and Ethiopian Discourse is a very impressive two-volume collection of essays that make very clear the author’s efforts at establishing the place of ethics and moral philosophy in Ethiopian, and more broadly, African development. These engaging and well-written essays also make clear the major changes that have been taking place in Kiros’ ethical thinking. The immediate audience for the essays in the two volumes is the people and political leaders of Ethiopia, as they were originally written for newspapers in that country over a period of several years. The reflections in Philosophical Essays are on the major Western political philosophers – from Socrates and Plato to John Rawls – and the significance of their theories Ethiopian political life. The essays collected in Ethiopian Discourse are on Ethiopia and address themes such as national identity, famine, the moral economy, the developmental state, counter-hegemonic discourses, and a new political culture of radical democracy.

Kiros’ Moral Logicism

Because Kiros has been involved with these issues for some time, it should not come as a surprise that his philosophy has gone through some significant changes. Indeed we can see the roots of the essays in these two volumes in his 1992 work, Moral Philosophy and Development. But important as these roots are, it is the departures from them that are reflected in these volumes that tell us just how much our author has changed his moral thinking. The former work is informed by a moral logicism that is displaced by an existential turn in the later works.

Moral Philosophy and Development was an attempt “to synthesize morality and political economy, …  to examine systematically the themes of famine, hunger, unhappiness and political injustice” (1992:105). In making this attempt at synthesis, Kiros made use of Adam Smith’s, The Theory of Moral Sentiments – in particular the concept of the social passions – generosity, compassion, empathy, and kindness, which stood in contrast to the unsocial and selfish passions. In Moral Philosophy and Development, Kiros argues that the operating of these social passions has had and continues to have an independent and demonstrable effect on economic development in Africa. In support of this claim, he quotes Smith as follows: “no society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater parts of the members are poor and miserable” (1992:110). In relation to justice, Kiros notes that “for Smith, no society can subsist where injustices are tolerated” (1992:111). On the basis of assertive statements like these, Kiros fashioned a Smithian oriented synthesis between political economy and morality. Further, on the basis of this synthesis, he would go on to argue that underdevelopment, hunger and injustice was in part the result of the specific moral values of Africans.

This Smithian type synthesis was very important for Kiros as it was the basis on which he rejected the claims of other Africana political economists such as Walter Rodney and Samir Amin that the current states of underdevelopment and poverty in Africa were the results of the destructive impact of Western economic and political imperialism. For our author, this was only a part of the story. The major part was the weakness of the moral vision and how its construction of morality inhibited and continues to inhibit African development. In this treatment of African moralism, Kiros abstracts and separates it from the broader the broader set of spiritual dynamics through which the African moral subject understood itself. The principles of African morality are thus conceived as formal prescriptions that, unlike those of the West, inhibit behavior conducive to development. It was from this particular perspective of moral asymmetry, that Kiros developed his central notion that the effective grip of Western power was and still is secured by “colonialism through hegemonic ideas”. Consequently, his distinctive approach to African development is that of a counter-hegemonic discourse in which there is a foundational place for ethical ideas. But even in his counter-hegemonic discourse, the ethical factors remain rather formal. As a result, they do not take sufficient account of the inner experiential changes that enable significant ethical changes, such as the ones that enabled the West to go from Catholic prohibitions on usury to the embracing of banking.

Although the above turn to Adam Smith and John Rawls enabled Kiros to articulate the moral approach he wanted to take to African development, the striking changes in the moral foundations of the essays of this two-volume work under review here clearly suggest that the Smithian solution did not work or turned out to be inadequate. This solution did not work for at least two reasons. First, it rested on very weak empirical foundations. Statements like “no society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater parts of the members are poor and miserable” are assertive claims and thus cannot provide empirical grounding for the kinds of claims Kiros wants to make regarding the impact of the social passions on political economy.

Second, the social passions are not consistent and hence predictable responses to famines or poverty that can be reliably incorporated policies and plans for collective action. This is because their separation from the unsocial and selfish passions is equally unpredictable. But in spite of this uncertainty, Kiros’ overall approach to moral action in Moral Philosophy and Development is one of moral logicism. That is, a strong commitment to the social passions is combined with practices of self-reflective reasoning and even more so the formal reasoning of propositional logic. Because of the stronger influence of the latter on this text, the ethical principles of the social passions are quite often treated and examined as logical propositions. This logical transformation is problematic as it obscures the distinct nature of the difference between what is and what ought to be in the case of ethical claims. Closing this gap between what is and what ought to be is not a logical or a technical procedure in the case of moral claims. Rather, it is a self-formative or self-transformative procedure. In Moral Philosophy and Development, Kiros often reduces these self-formative processes to the more logically graspable concept of “habituating”. Even in the later works he tells us: “the Self when it is seriously habituated can abide by internally generated principles that could simultaneously guide action and control behavior” (----).

This rather formal conception of ethics and how human subjects become progressively more ethical also reflects the influence of Kiros’ deep engagement with the political philosophy of John Rawls – in particular, the latter’s ethical conditions for realizing social justice. Rawls’ theory of social justice required of ordinary citizens the transcending or outgrowing of their strong attachments to their gender, race, ethnicity and other group-related identifications. But exactly how we are to go from this original position to the ethical subjects required for his theory social justice, Rawls does not really tell us. His suggestion that we must wear a “veil of ignorance”, which will conceal our real condition, assumes the ethical transformation that in fact has to achieved. To solve this major ethical challenge that his theory has called up, the veil of ignorance must be more than a formal expression. Unless it brings with it subjective details about the suggested processes of self-transformation, it will not meet the ethical goals require for Rawls’ theory of social justice.

There is a parallel here between Kiros’ notion of ethical transformation through habituation and Rawls’ notion of ethical transformation through wearing a veil of ignorance. Both make their desired ethical transformations the results of accessible acts of will. Both too often lose sight of the fact that in spite of being formulated logically, ethical “propositions” are usually summaries or oblique representations of experiences of much greater complexity. As such, these summaries cannot separated or abstracted too far from their experiential referents. It is this more immediate relationship to their experiential referents that qualitatively distinguish transformative ethical “propositions” from formal logical ones. Thus Kiros’ overly logicist framing of the problem of raising the moral levels of social and political action was one of the reasons why his Smithian solution did not work, and will be significantly revised in the two works under review.

Kiros’ Moral Existentialism   

The important change in the ethical foundations of this two-volume work is the very clear turn that Kiros has made away from his earlier moral logicism and toward a more fully developed moral existentialism. First, this existentialism foregrounds the inner dynamics of human self-formation and moral maturation much more explicitly than the earlier logicism. Second, it is much more meditative even though it still relies on the practice of habituation as a path to moral excellence. Third and finally, the foundational reference for Kiros’ existentialism is not Smith but classical Egyptian moral philosophy and its concept of Maat, the work of the Ethiopian moral philosopher, Zara Yacob, the great psalmist, David, and the Africana existential philosopher, Lewis Gordon. This is the new moral philosophy that Kiros will bring to his earlier project of examining the ethical foundations of African development.

The engagement with Zara Yacob is clearly detailed in his book, Zara Yacob: The Rationality of the Human Heart. Yacob was a 17th century Ethiopian philosopher, who stands at the dawn of philosophy’s modernity in Ethiopia. Yacob’s existential orientation can be gleaned from two crucial sources: The first is his life-long attraction to the psalms of David. He read them as a youth and so impressed his teacher that the latter suggested to the boy’s father a career in education for his son. Further during a very crucial time in his life when he isolated himself in a cave, Kiros lets us know that the psalms of David were his companion for those two years. David’s psalms are powerful statements of religious existentialism, moving constantly between anguish and praise to God for being rescued. In Ethiopian Discourse, Kiros writes: “the Psalms are indeed one long cry of despair, of joy, of love, of hope, of faith and of suffering” (2011b: 83).

The second source of Yacob’s existential orientation is clear in his account of his return to a belief in God: “because of my sins I fell into a trap from which man cannot free himself. I began to be despondent and the terror of death came over me” (2005: 53). It was out of this anguish that Yacob turned to God in search of a rescuer. This sense of human frailty and finitude will remain important avenues to God, and crucial marks of his religious existentialism. This strong existential orientation in Yacob has left deep imprints on Kiros’ ethical thinking.

The influence of Yacob on Kiros’ thinking is evident in two additional areas. The first is the greater emphasis that Kiros now places on meditation in the process of moral growth and maturation. For Yacob, human reason was not an autonomous faculty. On the contrary, it was on the one hand bounded by God and on the other by the senses and emotions. Because of its inherent limitations reason functions best when it is in touch with and guided by God. To keep our reason aligned and in touch with God, Yacob thought that meditation and prayer were vitally necessary. Kiros adopts this position on meditation and it becomes a much stronger presence in his post-Smithian ethical thinking.

The fourth important influence of Yacob on Kiros is the former’s conception of the heart. Kiros tells us that “intelligence for Zara Yacob is centered in the heart. The heart as opposed to the brain is expected to enable us to choose correctly. This relocation of intelligence in the human heart is a measured redefinition of reason according to Zara Yacob” (2005: 57). This conception of the heart as the seat of intelligence becomes a major factor in Kiros’ later conception of his ethical discourses.

Finally in this brief account the influences on Kiros’ existential turn, we must note those coming from Lewis Gordon. Along with Frantz Fanon, Gordon is one of the founding figures of black existentialism. He has brought the language of this tradition of thought to the problems of ant-black racism and its persistence in the post-civil rights period. In particular, he has taken concepts such as bad faith, inauthenticity, anguish, existential seriousness, and teleological suspensions, and has redirected them to the racialized conditions of colonized Africans, both continental and diasporic. Kiros has been profoundly influenced by these developments in the field of Africana existentialism as will be seen in his use of the concept of existential seriousness.

The New Ethical Discourses

The shift in the ethical discourses of the two books by Kiros that I am reviewing can be seen in the more existentially serious view of the human being that informs them. In Ethiopian Discourse, Kiros tells us that “existential seriousness is the view that human lives are sacrosanct and that no regime has the right to violate the dignity of the human being who is fated to die” (2011b: 101). They are sacrosanct because we are all “children of the transcendent”.  Further, Kiros argues that this “inevitability of death itself imposes an imperative on regimes to feed, clothe and shelter all those citizens who find themselves in states who starve, kill and impoverish them” (2011b: 101). In other words, the human being is a precious but frail creature, who comes into the world expecting recognition, affirmation and material support in spite of being fated to die. Yet this creature, already burdened with the inevitability of death, often meets non-recognition, negation and the denial of his/her material needs by both human and natural forces such as states and famines. It is the moral contours of this existentially serious view of human beings that grounds Kiros’ later ethical discourses and their connections with culture, politics and economics.

This sharper existential focus is also there in Kiros’ approach to his readings of the major Western political theorists that fill the first of these two volumes, Philosophical Essays. Thus in his analysis of Plato, Kiros emphasizes the constitutive role of the three parts of the soul –reason, desire and the appetites – in the shaping of the nature of political regimes. Our author notes that for Plato, aristocratic regimes are governed by knowledge, timocratic regimes by the desire for honor, oligarchic ones by the desire for wealth, and democratic regimes by the objects of popular appetites. In short , the nature and orientation of the ego imprints its stamp on the nature of political regimes. In this existential spirit Kiros also takes careful note of Plato’s suggestion that “the goal of the well-governed regime ought to be the cultivation of the harmonious regimes and well-balanced souls” (2011a: 2). Applying some of these Platonic insights to governing regimes in Ethiopia, Kiros suggests that they are “being swallowed up by the excessive appetites” of democratic leaders and political elites (2011a: 7).

It was in response to crises such as these that Kiros made his challenge to “both the existing (2005) regime and the aspiring political parties of the future to develop genuine developmental programs guided by existential seriousness and moral intelligence” (2011b: 101).  The higher moral intelligence of such programs should echo the ethical principles found in the ancient Egyptian concept of Maat. In other words, there must be a profound change in the ethical foundations of Ethiopian political culture, which would mean a change away from the politics of the appetites to politics that is guided by principles of moral existentialism. The members of this morally grounded political culture should “radiate with the presence of the transcendent, who shows them the way by putting them on the right moral/political path, lovingly and patiently” (2011b: 107). As such children of the transcendent, every Ethiopian must have the right to determine their individual existence. Further, the moral logic of this existentially serious argument categorically denies the Ethiopian state the right to kill these individuals of the transcendent, who are already fated to die. Going beyond the standard Platonic types of regimes, Kiros calls for a “radical democracy”, the type of regime that would result from the social passions of these kinds of morally awakened citizens.

Closely related to this new morality of existential seriousness and Maat is Kiros’ practice of meditative thinking. This practice marks a significant though not a complete break with the logicist thinking of the Smithian synthesis. Our author tells us that “meditative thinking organizes the self’s interior constitution by providing the desiring self the necessary pillars of moral organization” (2011b: 97). Such achievements make meditation a much more powerful agent of self-transformation and moral growth than habituation. Further Kiros sees meditation as “the media of communication of the self with the self” (2011b: 97). In these interior conversations, we learn how to free “ourselves from the hold of the ego, the self-obsessed ego” (2011b: 97). In other words, meditative thinking is a practice that is capable of transforming the self and thus enabling it to grow in moral intelligence and capability. Only such morally transformed citizens, their desires and appetites morally re-organized, can give birth to radical democratic regimes.

Radical democracy for Kiros means not only the embedding of state politics in this new moral framework, but the economy of the nation. The concept of a moral economy developed in Ethiopian Discourse is inseparable from the concepts of Maat, meditative thinking and existential seriousness. The practice of meditative thinking requires silence and quiet time. It is only in such states that we can welcome the transcendent. Hence we must know how to stop being the busybodies demanded by modern economic life. Kiros insists that “the new moral economy must free these busybodies from the burdens of excessive work, from the self-imposed tutelage to the power of material things. …  Through paid holidays and shortened workdays, the citizens of the new moral economy must learn the ways of thought, the stylistics of engaged citizenship. The engaged citizens of the future moral economy think and act morally. They are existentially serious, they think for others” (2011b: 99). In this particular ethical location, we are a long way from Adam Smith.

This is the moral world of the “radical democratic” alternative that emerges from the existential turn in Kiros’ ethical discourses. The moral economy of this radical democracy, he sees as an alternative to both capitalism and socialism. It is also a response to the images of famine, poverty, and disease that Kiros thinks have come to define the image of Africa, and particularly his Ethiopia. This radical democratic alternative with its distinct existential and meditative foundations is also the basis for Kiros’ assessments and appreciation of the works of Ethiopian writers, musicians and other artists that also fill the pages of Ethiopian Discourse. These cultural essays are indeed gems.

A Short Critique

I must begin these critical remarks by saying that we in the Africana philosophical community owe Kiros a great debt for his consistent and impassioned reminders of the moral foundations that are necessary for successful postcolonial transformations. His defense of the moral dimension in general as well as his articulation of its nature and importance is both courageous and brilliant. It is courageous in that this defense is being undertaken in social contexts that have become progressively more secular and instrumental. It is brilliant for all of the reasons that I took you on the above journey through the major contours of his thought.

With that acknowledged and said, there are a number aporias or un-bridged cleavages in Kiros’ ethical discourse that must be examined, particularly with regard to its practical aspects. First, there are still definite traces of the earlier moral logicism that are in an oppositional tension with our author’s existentially revised ethics. These traces from the Smithian phase can be seen in Kiros’ persisting tendency to treat moral insight and principles as propositions, and thus as cognitions that can be easily learned, internalized or habituated and then acted upon by both citizens and political leaders. Thus in his discussion of the 2005 protest in Ethiopia, Kiros writes: “protest are propelled by a profound understanding of political duty and one learns how to be dutiful by doing dutiful things” (2011b: 104). 

Here we see two things of importance. First, we can observe a return to the habituated view of moral development associated with the learning or internalizing of moral “propositions”. Second, we see how easily this view of moral development can lead to a premature assuming of the possibility or actuality of desired levels moral maturity. In his characterization of the protesters, Kiros assumes or projects onto them the desired level of moral maturity that has in fact to be achieved. It is not clear that the protester are indeed acting out of a “profound understanding of political duty” and not desires and appetites that had not yet been morally re-constituted. The ease with which Kiros makes the assumption of the move from the latter to the former state of moral maturity is not consistent with the difficulties of the existential and meditative journey to moral excellence. The latter journey suggest a much more steep ascent than that involved in habituating the self to a moral “proposition”.

Similarly, in his suggestions for changing the moral behavior of political leaders, Kiros again makes the assumption that the needed growth and transformation is within the reach of efforts at habituation. Thus to get future leaders to govern more compassionately, Kiros insists that it is the vision of existential seriousness that they must internalize. In other words, rather that an existential state that one grows into after a series of self-transformations realized through meditative thinking, existential seriousness is here being treated as a proposition that one can learn or internalize through habituation. Reinforcing the latter view, Kiros suggest that “existentially serious leaders of the masses should themselves radiate with the rapturous sense of political responsibility blended with the political imagination of autonomous reason” (2011b: 107). This image suggests leaders with a level of moral maturity on the order of a Gandhi or a King. But those levels of moral excellence were the results of extended meditative practices that we have no reason to believe the leaders in this case will have gone through. This is the aporia between the still logicist framing of ethical principles and the existential transformations needed for the subjective realization of these principles in the inner lives of ordinary human beings.

As moral ideals for both citizens and leaders, I am very much in agreement with the ethics of existential seriousness and meditative thinking. The difficult challenge that is still unclear in the above instances and in Kiros’ broader ethical discourse is the transformative process by which citizens and leaders are going to move from their present appetite and desire dominated moral states to the more mature ones required for his radical democracy. The distance between these two moral states can be measured in hundreds of egocentric miles. This distance has to be travelled by each individual if there is to be real moral change. Just as we cannot say that we have arrived in Addis from Boston until we have travelled the physical distance between these two cities, in much the same way we cannot say that we have arrived on the higher moral ground of Buddha’s compassion from egoland until we have travelled the egocentric miles between the two. Is habituation a capable enough vehicle by which we can make the journey from everyday ego existence to states in which we radiate the presence of the transcendent? I am suggesting that it is not and that Kiros needs to be clearer on this point.

This is the juncture at which it becomes necessary to look at the experiences of other major attempts at morally based social transformation. The efforts of the major religions come immediately to mind. Their projected kingdoms of love, peace, and solidarity have not been realized in significant part because neither leaders nor led have been able after centuries of practices of habituation to rise to the required moral standards of these projected communities. Indeed it was the growing dissatisfaction with the repressive elements in the habituation practices of Western churches that produced the essays by Bernard Mandeville and others in praise of releasing the selfishness inherent in our egos, which influenced the Adam Smith of The Wealth of Nations and helped to usher in the modern capitalist world. The new idea was to express this inherent selfishness and to find organized outlets for it, rather than subjecting it to a regime of Christian habituation. It is the pursuit of this alternative that is largely responsible for the crisis of the Christian project of moral transformation. Further, the crisis of this project has been made visible by periodic eruptions of scandals, such as the recent one about sexual abuse by priests, which have revealed the lack of real moral transformation among the church leaders themselves. These failures of the moral projects of the major religions point to just how high these further moral heights are for us mortal and ego-embedded human beings. In turning to these examples of morally based social transformation, I am suggesting that Kiros will have to be more consistent in acknowledging the real difficulties and egocentric distances involved in the moral ascent that he is calling for. With this more clearly in mind, he will be less inclined to fall back when needed on the ease of the propositional view of ethics and the habituated view of ethically transforming existing human beings.

The second critical point that I want to make is related to this exploration of the above aporia in Kiros’ ethical discourse. In making this point, I hope to show that for Kiros to be more consistent in acknowledging the real difficulties in the ascent to an ethics of compassion and caring, he will have to be more consistent in his existential turn and to explore its transformative possibilities even more deeply. Earlier when we examined the notion of meditative thinking, we saw that Kiros established a relationship between freeing ourselves from the hold of the ego and advances in moral growth. The self-centered, narcissistic, violent and othering practices that often separate us from our moral ideals have definite roots in the self-preserving and world-constituting powers of our egos. Without these powers we would have neither private nor socio-historical worlds. However, egos operate at varying levels of development and moral capability, which often leave them internally divided, caught in inner and outer conflicts, and hence far below their full human potential. To the extent that they are not further transformed beyond conventional regime of religious habituation and cultural socialization, our underdeveloped egos will continue to inscribe their logics and conflicts on our actions, moral and non-moral. In other words, to the extent that our subjectivities are still inscribed and constituted by underdeveloped egos, we will continue to egoize and self-centeredly re-inscribe our highest moral ideals. When internalized in this egocentric manner, moral principles are to much greater degrees digested and transformed into reinforcements – legitimating or inflating props – for our existing egos rather than these moral principles transforming the nature and world-constituting activities of our egos. This egoizing of our moral ideals reduces them to our current level of ego development, producing the compromises and moral ambiguities that are the stuff of our everyday lives.

We have already encountered a good example of this phenomenon of the ego inscribing its logics on our ideals, when we discussed the different types of Platonic regimes. They were clear examples of different types and levels of ego organization imposing their sense of order on outer political structures and behavior. Hence Plato’s call for well-balanced souls to be the authors of a harmonious regime. Even more dramatic examples of this phenomenon of human egos re-inscribing and lowering higher moral ideals rather than being transformed and ascending to these ideals can be seen in programs of moral or aesthetic transformation that have instead resulted in elitist social orders and practices on the part of the leaders. Perhaps the most dramatic example of this is the emergence of the caste system in India out of Brahmanic notions of moral/spiritual purity and pollution. One can observe here an egoizing of the ideals of Brahmanic spiritualism on the part of the Brahmin classes that is greater than the transformation of their egos by the moral ideals of this religious and philosophical tradition. The logic of caste pollution is clearly such a self-serving distortion of the moral and meditative ideals of Brahmanic spiritualism on the part of the religious elites. The crisis of the Christian project of moral transformation can also be seen through this lens. So also can the programs of aesthetic transformation outlined in the works of authors such as Jose Rodo and Matthew Arnold. In both, aesthetic ideals were egoized and devoured producing forms of elitism with strong anti-democratic overtones. Silencing these strong tendencies to egoize the highest of moral principles is in my view the major transformative difficulty on the route to moral excellence that normal practices of habituation and socialization have been unable to overcome. Kiros has to confront this specific egocentric difficulty more directly.   

If confronted more directly, Kiros would have to ask himself the following question: do we, as humans, at the moment possess the resources or practices necessary for sufficiently free ourselves from the hold of the ego so that we can achieve the level of moral excellence needed for his radical democracy? In addition to practices of socialization and habituation, I think we have those of meditation, yoga and prayer. The effectiveness of the last three in getting us to travel the egocentric miles between our normal ego-inscribed states and states of ego transcendence have been well established. Sufficient individuals have achieved ego transcendence using one or more of these practices. We need only think of individuals such as Gandhi, Aurobindo or Thomas Merton. Thus in cases where leaders and led are expected to radiate the transcendent, this expectation only becomes realistic if we can be sure that these people are in fact using these practices in the right way. If they are not practiced in the right way, even these methods will be egoized and distorted.  

However, a problem arises here. The number of people who have been able to achieve ego transcendence using these practices have to this day remained quite small. These have not been practices that the masses have been able to use effectively in their search for moral excellence. They take large amounts of time, require keen self-observation, and the capacity to listen not with the ear but with the quieting of one’s entire being. In other words, learning to align one’s self with the larger surrounding world in a way that is different from the patterns of ego alignment or non-alignment. The core of meditating is being able to respond to the pushes and pulls of the world in this newly aligned state. This is not an easy route to the transcendent and we should not be surprised that only a few continue to be able to use it successfully in achieving high levels of moral excellence.

In short, this limited record of success with the practices of meditation, yoga and prayer point to the need for a path to moral excellence, a practice of ego transcendence that is more accessible to the masses. The absence of such a more accessible practice is one of the reasons why the moral programs of the major religions are in crisis. To avoid a similar outcome for his radical democracy, Kiros will have to address this problem much more directly. Even more specifically, he will also have to address the related problem of incorporating the moral excellence and energy released by this more accessible method of ego transcendence into a broad based social movement that could get us from where we are now to the shores of his radical democratic community.

Works Cited

Kiros, Teodros, 1992. Moral Philosophy and Development, Athens, Ohio: Ohio University Center for International Studies

-------------, 2005. Zara Yacob: The Rationality of the Human Heart, Lawrenceville: Red Sea Press

-------------, 2011a. Philosophical Essays, Trenton, N.J.: Red Sea Press

-------------, 2011b. Ethiopian Discourse, Trenton, N.J.: Red Sea Press

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