E. O. Wilson, fully Edward Osborne "E.O." Wilson

E. O.
Wilson, fully Edward Osborne "E.O." Wilson
1929

American Biologist (myrmecology), Researcher (sociobiology, biodiversity), Theorist (consilience, biophilia), Naturalist (conservationist) and Author, two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction, known for his career as a scientist, advocacy for environmentalism, and his secular-humanist and deist ideas pertaining to religious and ethical matters

Author Quotes

Epigenesis, originally a biological concept, means the development of an organism under the joint influence of heredity and environment. Epigenetic rules? are innate operations in the sensory system and brain. They are rules of thumb that allow organisms to find rapid solutions to problems encountered in the environment. They predispose individuals to view the world in a particular innate way and automatically to make certain choices as opposed to others

Nature holds the key to our aesthetic, intellectual, cognitive and even spiritual satisfaction.

True character arises from a deeper well than religion. It is the internalization of moral principles of a society, augmented by those tenets personally chosen by the individual, strong enough to endure through trials of solitude and adversity. The principles are fitted together into what we call integrity, literally the integrated self, wherein personal decisions feel good and true. Character is in turn the enduring source of virtue. It stands by itself and excites admiration in others

Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?

In the end ... success or failure will come down to an ethical decision, one on which those now living will be judged for generations to come.

It's obvious that the key problem facing humanity in the coming century is how to bring a better quality of life -- for 8 billion or more people -- without wrecking the environment entirely in the attempt.

The essence of humanity's spiritual dilemma is that we evolved genetically to accept one truth and discovered another. Is there a way to erase the dilemma, to resolve the contradictions between the transcendentalist and the empiricist world views?

If all mankind were to disappear, the world would regenerate back to the rich state of equilibrium that existed ten thousand years ago. If insects were to vanish, the environment would collapse into chaos.

A very Faustian choice is upon us: whether to accept our corrosive and risky behavior as the unavoidable price of population and economic growth, or to take stock of ourselves and search for a new environmental ethic.

We are drowning in information, while starving for wisdom. The world henceforth will be run by synthesizers, people able to put together the right information at the right time, think critically about it, and make important choices wisely.

You are capable of more than you know. Choose a goal that seems right for you and strive to be the best, however hard the path. Aim high. Behave honorably. Prepare to be alone at times, and to endure failure. Persist! The world needs all you can give.

When you have seen one ant, one bird, one tree, you have not seen them all.

Human beings live - literally live, as if life is equated with the mind - by symbols, particularly words, because the brain is constructed to process information almost exclusively in their terms.

Important science is not just any similarity glimpsed for the first time. It offers analogues that map the gateways of unexplored terrain.

Nothing comes harder than original thought. Even the most gifted scientist spends only a tiny fraction of his waking hours doing it, probably less than one tenth of one percent. the rest of the time his mind hugs the coast of the known, reworking old information, adding lesser data, giving reluctant attention to the ideas of others (what use can I make of them?), warming lazily to the memory of successful experiments, and looking for a problem - always looking for a problem, something that can be accomplished, that will lead somewhere, anywhere.

Author Picture
First Name
E. O.
Last Name
Wilson, fully Edward Osborne "E.O." Wilson
Birth Date
1929
Bio

American Biologist (myrmecology), Researcher (sociobiology, biodiversity), Theorist (consilience, biophilia), Naturalist (conservationist) and Author, two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction, known for his career as a scientist, advocacy for environmentalism, and his secular-humanist and deist ideas pertaining to religious and ethical matters