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What is maturity? One might say it is the result of having grown or developed to what you might describe as a defined functional level.

In that sense, many animals seem to mature very quickly in their physical capacities with no help from anyone. Insects, rabbits, even newborn horses, while not mature, are walking around on their spindly legs minutes after birth.

Human beings, on the other hand, mature rather gradually in their physical capacities, with lots of help from Mom and Dad. But emotional maturity is quite a different matter.

In terms of human emotional maturity, I have met teenagers who think and act like experienced and wise adults, and I have met seniors who think and act like spoiled kids. I’m sure you have also seen everything in between. Some high IQ, intellectually advanced individuals seem to be somewhat backward on the emotional level, and vice versa.

Do you have a way of defining, assessing, or measuring emotional/spiritual maturity?

Can you name a person you regard as having attained an exceptional level of emotional maturity? What would you say are the primary differences between that person and the rest of us?

Generally speaking, from a ‘bird’s eye’ perspective, how do you think we humans are doing on the emotional maturity question?

How has this been affecting society? History?

Can the average perceived level of adult maturity be what God was aiming for?

What, if anything, might be done about it?

Please share your thoughts below.

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Craig Smith
Craig Smith
2 years ago

To me, maturity comes when one takes responsibility for everything that happens to them, whether caused by them or not. Bad childhood? A mature person recognizes, forgives, and takes the steps to overcome their own shortcoming.

The NEXT step, and one that takes a parental heart, is to take responsibility not only for yourself, but for those around you.

Jeremiah Tobin
Jeremiah Tobin
2 years ago

I don’t appreciate being told that I act like a spoiled brat.

Chris Noble
Chris Noble
2 years ago

You have to separate maturity from likeability and goodness (unfortunately!). But I would say: (1) Self-awareness; (2) Self-control; (3) Ability to perceive what others are thinking from their behavior.

Chris Noble
Chris Noble
Reply to  Dr. D. Michael Hentrich
2 years ago

Answering your question #1. I agree with Carol (below) that we need to answer question #1 before tackling the others.

3 years ago

I don’t think we can answer the last 5 questions until first giving an answer to the first question. Without a standard to measure emotional maturity against, we can’t really determine a “perceived level” of attainment, who has come close to attaining it or how to improve it.

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