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Posts Tagged ‘ethics’

Albert Einstein, theoretical physicist and author of the theory of relativity, and his thoughts:

On Critical Thinking:

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.

On Ethics:

A man’s ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeeded be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.

On Religion:

Science without religion is lame. Religion without science is blind.

My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind.

The further the spiritual evolution of mankind advances, the more certain it seems to me that the path to genuine religiosity does not lie through the fear of life, and the fear of death, and blind faith, but through striving after rational knowledge.

On Education:

The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education.

Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.

On Science:

Science is a wonderful thing if one does not have to earn one’s living at it.

The whole of science is nothing more than a refinement of everyday thinking.

…one of the strongest motives that lead men to art and science is escape from everyday life with its painful crudity and hopeless dreariness, from the fetters of one’s own ever-shifting desires. A finely tempered nature longs to escape from the personal life into the world of objective perception and thought.

On Mystery:

The eternal mystery of the world is its comprehensibility.

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.

On War:

I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.

He who joyfully marches to music rank and file, has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away with at once. Heroism at command, how violently I hate all this, how despicable and ignoble war is; I would rather be torn to shreds than be a part of so base an action. It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder.

On Love:

No, this trick won’t work…How on earth are you ever going to explain in terms of chemistry and physics so important a biological phenomenon as first love?

Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love.

On Sheep:

In order to form an immaculate member of a flock of sheep one must, above all, be a sheep.

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Satish Kumar’s article on the guardian “Worshipping The Wrong God” is an interesting take on the present financial crisis, with a refreshing ethical and spiritual approach:

It amazes me to see that the great economists, industrialists, business leaders and politicians have even forgotten the true meaning of economy. They only think in terms of profit maximisation, whereas the true economy means good housekeeping; proper management of all aspects of the home. The criterion of good house management is to ensure that all the members of the household are living in harmony with each other and the place. Money is only a means to a good economy, not the economy itself.

Banks and business leaders, politicians and economists are looking for economic recovery, hoping to go back to business as usual: the good old days of growth without limit, consumption without restraint and profit without principles. From a spiritual perspective economy is good economy only when it is in harmony with ecology, ethics and equity. Day and night we chant the mantra of economy while our ecology is in ruins, our ethics shelved and our principles of justice are put on the back-burner.

Kumar statements highlight first the obvious issue:

There are two roads to economic recovery: the first option is to bail out the banks and fuel consumerism,

the second option is to think holistically, to invest in land and agriculture, in renewable energy and practical skills

But at the same time, he poses the deeper, neglected question to us:

But how do we choose the right answer without some guiding values? Such values can be none other than moral, ethical and spiritual.

Ah that word: “moral”–notice how it scares people into not thinking. But very brave and inspiring words Satish. We definitely agree.

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