It is a fundamental principle that no person can entirely free himself from taking the people in his environment into consideration. When doing something in the presence of others, it is impossible not to think about how other people will view what you are doing... Any good act you do will be much purer if others are not aware of you.
The search for truth is, as it always has been, the noblest expression of the human spirit. Man's insatiable desire for knowledge about himself, about his environment and the forces by which he is surrounded, gives life its meaning and purpose, and clothes it with final dignity... And yet we know, deep in our hearts, that knowledge is not enough... Unless we can anchor our knowledge to moral purposes, the ultimate result will be dust and ashes - dust and ashes that will bury the hopes and monuments of men beyond recovery.
There can be no conquest to the man who dwells in the narrow and small environment of a groveling life, and there can be no vision to the man the horizon of whose vision is limited by the bounds of self. But the great things of the world, the great accomplishments of the world, have been achieved by men who had high ideals and who have received great visions. The path is not easy, the climbing is rugged and hard, but the glory at the end is worthwhile.
The purpose of my existence as I climb is to adapt my personal dimensions to the environment around me at each moment. I become an active player sharing some of the responsibility for my own destiny, achieving a heightened sense of awareness and seeing the direct result of my efforts; either I fall or I reach the top. But the meaning does not come from conquering the rock. Purpose comes from moving in harmony with nature, rather than destroying it or altering it for my immediate satisfaction. What gives life meaning is the fulfillment of directing energy in a way that brings a higher order to, and harmony with, the environment I live in... The ultimate meaning of our lives is relative to how much we have given to others. The ultimate meaning of our lives is connected with death... I would like to know that I have inspired people to go beyond self-limiting stereotypes to experience and nurture the true richness of their passions.
Science offers us complete mastery over our environment and our own destiny, yet instead of rejoicing we feel deeply afraid. Why should this be?
Whether happiness or unhappiness, freedom or slavery, in short whether good or evil results from an improved environment depends largely upon how the change has been brought about, upon the methods by which the physical results have been reached, and in what spirit and for what purpose the fruits of that change are used. Because a higher standard of living, a greater productiveness and a command over nature are not good in and of themselves do not mean that we cannot make good of them, that they cannot be a source of inner strength.
We live in an environment whose principal product is garbage. The shined shoe in such a society is a hypocritical statement because it promotes the lie that we can thrive on garbage without being dirtied by it.
Any living thing which triumphs in the struggle against its environment destroys itself.
The tools of the mind become burdens when the environment which made them necessary no longer exists.
The first step toward success is taken when you refuse to be captive of the environment in which you first find yourself.
Peace is not the elimination of the causes of war. Rather it is a mastery of great human forces and the creation of an environment in which human aims may be pursued constructively.
The environment is everything that isn't me.
Life consists not simply in what heredity and environment do to us but in what we make out of what they do to us.
We do not know, in most cases, how far social failure and success are due to heredity, and how far to environment. But environment is the easier of the two to improve.
I found that a hospital is probably the most difficult environment in which to afford a really good death. Hospitals are meant to preserve life; death is an enemy there. Death is not treated with much respect, with much compassion. There’s a lot of fear surrounding death. Death is a failure in a hospital.
In dealing with the environment we must learn now how to master nature but how to master ourselves, our institutions, and our technology.
Perception is based, to a very large extent, on conceptual models - which are always inadequate, often incomplete and sometimes profoundly wrong. This complex situation arose because signals from the environment itself can be inadequate. The sort of information we need is not always available. And so, knowledge from the past, mixed up with assumptions about that knowledge which may be more or less appropriate, are used to augment information provided by the senses. Which means that our perception of any situation depends only partly on sensory signals being received at that time. And it is only a very short step from there, to perception which occurs in the absence of all immediate signals and has to be labeled “extrasensory”.
Most people accept life scripts from the environment (family, society) into which they have grown. However, there is always the opportunity to write a new script.
When we come to now that our whole environment and everything that happens is God’s hand upon us… Every detail of life is a means arranged by Him to lead us to Himself; then we find that our great trouble is self.
Technology has wiped out the frontiers that formerly separated men, countries and peoples. Man has become a citizen of the world. Thus, modern man finds himself in an environment without spiritual unity or religious homogeneity.