Ideal / Real

Ideal                  -                    Real
Abstract             -                   Concrete
Principles          -                    Care
Separation         -                    Connection
Masculine          -                    Feminine  

The blind willingness to sacrifice people to truth, however, has always been the danger of an ethics abstracted from life. This willingness links Gandhi to the biblical Abraham, who prepared to sacrifice the life of his son in order to demonstrate the integrity and supremacy of his faith.

Both men, in the limitations of their fatherhood, stand in implicit contrast to the woman who comes before Solomon and verifies her motherhood by relinquishing truth in order to save the life of her child. 

It is the ethics of an adulthood that has become principled at the expense of care that Erikson comes to criticize in his assessment of Gandhi's life.

[Carol Gilligan]
‘In a Different Voice', Harvard Educational Review, Vol. 47, No. 4, p.515