Human beings will be happier - not when they cure cancer or get to Mars or eliminate racial prejudice or flush Lake Erie but when they find ways to inhabit primitive communities again. That's my utopia.
I have come to an inescapable conclusion: the United States of America has gone around the bend. Not take a Valium agitated, or take a Prozac depressed, but load the syringe with Thorazine, call the attendants, and get the strait-jacket insane.
...) Wealth became the primary basis for a person's prestige among the American people. This in turn led to a preoccupation with acquiring wealth, because it was the societal measure of ones success
...) This reverence for material wealth is, to me, especially surprising among Amercan Christians of every stripe. Jesus had only disdain for material wealth and little respect for its possessors. In fact, I can find only one passage in the New Testament where Jesus spoke well of a rich man
...) I feel that we are headed for a time of economic hardship such as this nation has not seen since the Great Depression. I hope, whether this economic catastrophe occurs or not, we will then rediscover the truth of the Greek phiosopher Epicurus' observation that "Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants."
...) To doggedly adhere to any system of belief or knowledge without regular, critical examination of its underlying assumptions - to winnow out those things which are demonstrably wrong - is the essence of madness.
The four classic virtues of the ancient Greeks (Justice, Temperance, Prudence, and Fortitude), together with the three ecclesiastical virtues of the Apostle Paul (Faith, Hope, and Charity), are the seven ideas I believe lead to the most solid and consistent values by which one should try to live. Included in (but not limited to) these values are compassion, responsibility, mercy, fairness, equality, freedom, openness, community, cooperation, trust, honesty, and the opportunity to pursue personal fulfillment . We must realize that we all share the same world, and that we share a responsibility to that world and all of its inhabitants. Our world is Marshall McLuhan's global village, inhabited by individuals, families, communities and states, related by the metaphorical equivalent of blood and marriage, responsible for both ourselves and one another, especially in regards to our children.