Foundation For Ethics And Meaning

Our Mission: We seek to re-awaken and foster the simple yet
transformative belief that people are yearning for meaningful connection to others and to a purpose greater than themselves. We challenge our cultural emphasis on material self-interest by encouraging a spirit of caring and a process of mutual recognition that will nourish inclusive, just and sustainable communities.

Originally founded by Michael Lerner and Mark LeVine, the vision of the Foundation embodies the following principles:

  • Human beings fundamentally stand in relationship to each other, and need each other’s recognition and love. The healthy human being is not the one who can stand alone, but the one who can acknowledge his/her need for others and can recognize in each other the sanctity that makes them worthy of respect and caring.
  • Human beings have a need to transcend the materialism, selfishness, and the manipulative consciousness that sees others primarily in terms of what they can get out of them.
  • The ethical, spiritual and psychological needs of human beings are as central to a decent life as the meeting of economic needs, and the protection of individual rights.
  • It is possible to restructure society in ways that would replace the dominant ethos of selfishness and materialism with an ethos of caring, idealism and spiritual solidarity.
  • The productivity and efficiency of government, business and social institutions ought to be measured by the degree to which the given institution contributes to meeting human needs.
  • The valuing of the wisdom and culture of indigenous peoples,
    spiritual and religious traditions the heightening of our sense of awe and wonder at the natural world, and a commitment to stewardship of the earth and its assets, are all central to the society we wish to foster.

FEM seeks to realize these principles through consciousness-raising events, Task Forces in many specific areas such as Education, Law, Media, The Arts and Work Issues, and through promotion of programs such as the Social Responsibility Initiative for corporations and other institutions.