Saturday, November 29, 2008

before i go to bed

This is from an essay Albert Einstein wrote in 1949.

"I have now reached the point where I may indicate briefly what to me constitutes the essence of the crisis of our time. It concerns the relationship of the individual to society. The individual has become more conscious than ever of his dependence upon society. But he does not experience this dependence as a positive asset, as an organic tie, as a protective force, but rather as a threat to his natural rights, or even to his economic existence. Moreover, his position in society is such that the egotistical drives of his make-up are constantly being accentuated, while his social drives, which are by nature weaker, progressively deteriorate. All human beings, whatever their position in society, are suffering from this process of deterioration. Unknowingly prisoners of their own egotism, they feel insecure, lonely, and deprived of the naive, simple, and unsophisticated enjoyment of life. Man can find meaning in life, short and perilous as it is, only through devoting himself to society."


Blogger James Robert Smith said...

how appropriate for the times

10:31 PM

Blogger Melanie said...

Wow.. interesting citation and not too far off the mark, either. But could freedom come from devotion to the Creator who in turns directs us to love and contribute? I haven't gotten that down perfectly to be sure. Egotism is near impossible to rid oneself of, and to live while engrossed in solely self-interests is a most miserable of states.

7:10 PM

Blogger David said...

Assuming are referring to Jesus Christ when you mention the "creator", I think that one could find freedom, guilt, love, despair or comfort, or any other emotion or feeling, all of them together perhaps. Although, I think this excerpt is referring to feeling connected and justified in his immediate reality, or society.

9:03 PM

Blogger Melanie said...

It's true, my question was somewhat rhetorical and personalized, and I expanded beyond the scope of the citation. But it is what it made me reflect on.

(And, yes, in my view, Jesus and the Creator are one and inseparable.)

2:18 AM


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