Wisdom from Wells

Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe.

H.G. Wells, “The Outline of History” (1920)

I think that’s a pretty concise redux of the 20th Century, or even between the bookends of

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3 Comments on “Wisdom from Wells”

  1. Mike Says:

    I’m not sure I agree with him here – so it probably means that I’m not sure what he is saying.
    But it seems like he is offering that education or progress is bad since it inevitably leads to catastrophe. It think that is wrong as it goes against our nature to advance against what God intended by suppressing education or progress.
    Like I said, I probably am not understanding him completely.

  2. Christian Says:

    I would focus more on ‘the race’. As we advance in knowledge and progress of society, our collective nature has a tendency to turn the progress towards sinful ends. Some major examples: Vaccinations- Biological weapons; Internet for communication — spread of the cultural lowest common denominator (porn). You get the idea. Those are examples at a macro, societal level — then there are the millions of examples of how we use our culture and education for personal sin in new ways at the micro level.

  3. Mike Says:

    But that is only one tendency. Another tendency we have displayed is one toward growth in areas such as medicine, ecology, and energy.
    In his encyclical “Caritas et Veritate” Benedict says:

    “Technology, viewed in itself, is ambivalent. If on the one hand, some today would be inclined to entrust the entire process of development to technology, on the other hand we are witnessing an upsurge of ideologies that deny in toto the very value of development, viewing it as radically anti-human and merely a source of degradation. This leads to a rejection, not only of the distorted and unjust way in which progress is sometimes directed, but also of scientific discoveries themselves, which, if well used, could serve as an opportunity of growth for all. The idea of a world without development indicates a lack of trust in man and in God.”

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