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Quote: Maslow's hierarchy of needs was an alternative to the depressing determinism of Freud and Skinner.
He felt that people are basically trustworthy, self-protecting, and self-governing. Humans tend toward growth and love. Although there is a continuous cycle of human wars, murder, deceit, etc., he believed that violence is not what human nature is meant to be like.
Violence and other evils occur when human needs are thwarted. In other words, people who are deprived of lower needs such as safety may defend themselves by violent means. He did not believe that humans are violent because they enjoy violence. Or that they lie, cheat, and steal because they enjoy doing it.
According to Maslow, there are general types of needs (physiological, safety, love, and esteem) that must be satisfied before a person can act unselfishly. He called these needs "deficiency needs."
As long as we are motivated to satisfy these cravings, we are moving towards growth, toward self-actualization. Satisfying needs is healthy, blocking gratification makes us sick or evil.
In other words, we are all "needs junkies" with cravings that must be satisfied and should be satisfied. Else, we become sick.