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Jacob Bronowski
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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.
-Jacob Bronowski, The Ascent of Man, (passage spoken at Auschwitz) Tell a Friend


 


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