System

To the acquisition of the rare quality of politeness, so much of the enlightened understanding is necessary that I cannot but consider every book in every science, which tends to make us wiser, and of course better men, as a treatise on a more enlarged system of politeness.

Religious addiction is using God, the Church, or a belief system as an escape from reality, in an attempt to find or elevate a sense of self-worth or well-being... It is the ultimate form of co-dependency - feeling worthless in and of ourselves and looking outside for something or someone to tell us we are worthwhile... Recovery means discovering divinity in one's own life.

Wherever progress ends, decline in variably begins; but remember that the healthful progress of society is like the natural life of man - it consists in the gradual and harmonious development of all its constitutional powers, all its component parts, and you introduce weakness and disease into the whole system whether you attempt to stint or to force its growth.

The happiness of every man depends on the harmony between the development of his various faculties and the entire system of circumstances which govern his life.

No attack on democracy can hide the fact that it can be replaced only by a system that substitutes coercion for persuasion; one that replaces the individual's choice with the choice of some ruler.

Science is the attempt to make the chaotic diversity of our sense-experience correspond to a logically uniform system of thought.

We have in America the largest public school system on earth, the most expensive college buildings, the most extensive curriculum, but nowhere else is education so blind to its objectives, so indifferent to any specific outcome as in America. One trouble has been at the repression of faults rather than creation of virtues.

Money, after all, is extremely simple. It is a part of our transportation system. It is a simple and direct method of conveying goods from one person to another. Money is in itself most admirable. It is essential. It is not intrinsically evil. It is one of the most useful devices in social life, and when it does what it was intended to do, it is all help and no hindrance.

To regard teachers - in our entire educational system from the primary grades to the university - as priests of our democracy is therefore not to indulge in hyperbole. It is the special task of teachers to foster those habits of open-mindedness and critical inquiry which alone make for responsible citizens, who in turn, make possible an enlightened and effective public opinion.

The idea of life having a purpose stands and falls with the religious system.

What kind of society isn't structured on greed? The problem of social organization is how to set up an arrangement under which greed will do the least harm; capitalism is that kind of a system.

A complex system that works is invariably found to have evolved from a simple system that works.

Every system of knowledge contains meaningful tenets whose truth or falsity cannot be established if one remains completely within that system.

Abortion almost always symbolizes failure - the failure of a contraceptive, of a relationship, of a family, of a dream, even of a social system. Government need not add an extra lash to the whip.

There is no separation between a patient’s neurobiology, spiritual life, life perspectives, and quality of life force. Words, and spiritual/therapeutic interventions can tangibly affect a patient’s neurochemistry and physical health just as assuredly as psycho-pharmacological drugs can tangibly affect a patient’s feelings and thoughts... I have found that working with the meaning of a patient’s illness can profoundly alter not only the prognosis but can influence and give meaning to all other aspects of a patient’s life. Depression, for example, is often a direct communication from the soul that one’s belief system is not working... It is all too easy, and part of the human condition, to be misled by our lower half into believing that the sensory world is all that’s real.

It is undeniable that a man needs to be provided with some sort of philosophical background for his existence. And still more... does he need to be provided with a proper system of transcendental cosmology. But it remains true that the primary concern of the seeker after spiritual fulfillment is not with philosophy, but with wisdom.

Disease is not so much the effect of noxious, external forces - the 'bugs,' both literal and figurative in our lives - as it is the faulty effort of our minds and bodies to deal with them... already reside in our bodies. When our responses to problems in life are excessive or deficient, the central nervous system and hormones act on our immune defenses in such a way that the microbes aid and abet disease. The balance is upset between us and our resident pathogens.

What we have today in the United States is not so much a health-care system as a disease-cure system.

The uprooting of human beings from the land, the concentration in cities, the breakdown of the authority of family, of tradition, and of moral conventions, the complexity and the novelty of modern life, and finally the economic insecurity of our industrial system have called into being the modern social worker. They perform a function in modern society which is not a luxury but an absolute necessity.

You may make everything else out of the passions of men except a political system that will work, and that there is nothing so pitilessly and unconsciously cruel as sincerity formulated into dogma.