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Action(s)
Engrave this Quote We have to understand the world can only be grasped by action, not by comtemplation. The hand is more important than the eye....The hand is the cutting edge of the mind.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Astronomy
Engrave this Quote Astronomy is not the apex of science or of invention. But it is a test of the cast of temperament and mind that underlies a culture.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Conflict
Engrave this Quote We gain our ends only with the laws of nature; we control her only by understanding her laws.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Conformity & Nonconformity
Engrave this Quote Has there ever been a society which has died of dissent? Several have died of conformity in our lifetime.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Creativity
Engrave this Quote I set out to show that there exists single creative activity,which is displayed alike in the arts and in the sciences.It is wrong to think of science as a mechanical record of facts, and it is wrong to think of the arts as remote and private fancies. What makes each human, what makes them universal, is the stamp of the creative mind.
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-Jacob Bronowski, Science and Human Values (Ch.2 - The Habit of Truth)
Intelligence
Engrave this Quote To me, being an intellectual doesn't mean knowing about intellectual issues; it means taking pleasure in them.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Knowledge
Engrave this Quote Knowledge is an unending adventure at the edge of uncertainty.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Mind, the
Engrave this Quote Man is unique not because he does science, and he is unique not because he does art, but because science and art equally are expressions of his marvelous plasticity of mind.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Nature
Engrave this Quote Man masters nature not by force but by understanding. This is why science has succeeded where magic failed: because it has looked for no spell to cast over nature.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Power
Engrave this Quote Power is the by-product of understanding.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Questions
Engrave this Quote It is important that students bring a certain ragamuffin, barefoot, irreverence to their studies; they are not here to worship what is known, but to question it.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Rules
Engrave this Quote The values by which we are to survive are not rules for just and unjust conduct, but are those deeper illuminations in whose light justice and injustice, good and evil, means and ends are seen in fearful sharpness of outline.
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-Jacob Bronowski, The Sense of Human Dignity, lecture, "In Science and Human Values, pt. 3, sct. 5, 1961", March 19, 1953
Scholars, Scholarship
Engrave this Quote By the worldly standards of public life, all scholars in their work are of course oddly virtuous. They do not make wild claims, they do not cheat, they do not try to persuade at any cost, they appeal neither to prejudice nor to authority, they are often frank about their ignorance, their disputes are fairly decorous, they do not confuse what is being argued with race, politics, sex or age, they listen patiently to the young and to the old who both know everything. These are the general virtues of scholarship, and they are peculiarly the virtues of science.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Science
Engrave this Quote That is the essence of science: ask an impertinent question, and you are on the way to a pertinent answer.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Engrave this Quote Dissent is the native activity of the scientist, and it has got him into a good deal of trouble in the last years. But if that is cut off, what is left will not be a scientist. And I doubt whether it will be a man.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Engrave this Quote It doesn't matter whether you're talking about bombs or the intelligence quotients of one race as against another if a man is a scientist, like me, he'll always say Publish and be damned.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Engrave this Quote No science is immune to the infection of politics and the corruption of power.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Engrave this Quote Science has nothing to be ashamed of even in the ruins of Nagasaki. The shame is theirs who appeal to other values than the human imaginative values which science has evolved.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Engrave this Quote The most remarkable discovery ever made by scientists was science itself.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Engrave this Quote It is said that science will dehumanize people and turn them into numbers. That is false, tragically false. Look for yourself. This is the concentration camp and crematorium at Auschwitz, this is where people were turned into numbers. Into this pond were flushed the ashes of four million people. And that was not done by gas. It was done by arrogance. It was done by dogma. It was done by ignorance. When people believe that they have absolute knowledge, with no test in reality, this is how they behave. This is what men do when they aspire to the knowledge of gods.
Science is a very human form of knowledge. We are always at the brink of the known, we always feel forward for what is to be hoped. Every judgment in science stands on the edge or error, and is personal. Science is a tribute to what we can know although we are fallible. In the end the words were said by Oliver Cromwell: I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken.
... We have to cure ourselves of the itch for absolute knowledge and power. We have to close the distance between the push-button order and the human act. We have to touch people.
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-Jacob Bronowski, The Ascent of Man, (passage spoken at Auschwitz)
Torture
Engrave this Quote The wish to hurt, the momentary intoxication with pain, is the loophole through which the pervert climbs into the minds of ordinary men.
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-Jacob Bronowski
Violence
Engrave this Quote Who has not hoped
To outrage an enemy's dignity?
Who has not been swept
By the wish to hurt?
And who has not thought that the impersonal world
Deserves no better than to be destroyed
By one fabulous sign of his displeasure?
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-Jacob Bronowski, The Face of Violence
Winning, Winners
Engrave this Quote The world is full of people who never quite get into the first team and who just miss the prizes at the flower show.
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-Jacob Bronowski

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