Moral Progress Quotes

Quotes tagged as "moral-progress" Showing 1-8 of 8
Bertrand Russell
“That is the idea -- that we should all be wicked if we did not hold to the Christian religion. It seems to me that the people who have held to it have been for the most part extremely wicked. You find this curious fact, that the more intense has been the religion of any period and the more profound has been the dogmatic belief, the greater has been the cruelty and the worse has been the state of affairs. In the so-called ages of faith, when men really did believe the Christian religion in all its completeness, there was the Inquisition, with all its tortures; there were millions of unfortunate women burned as witches; and there was every kind of cruelty practiced upon all sorts of people in the name of religion.

You find as you look around the world that every single bit of progress in humane feeling, every improvement in the criminal law, every step toward the diminution of war, every step toward better treatment of the colored races, or every mitigation of slavery, every moral progress that there has been in the world, has been consistently opposed by the organized churches of the world. I say quite deliberately that the Christian religion, as organized in its churches, has been and still is the principal enemy of moral progress in the world.

You may think that I am going too far when I say that that is still so. I do not think that I am. Take one fact. You will bear with me if I mention it. It is not a pleasant fact, but the churches compel one to mention facts that are not pleasant. Supposing that in this world that we live in today an inexperienced girl is married to a syphilitic man; in that case the Catholic Church says, 'This is an indissoluble sacrament. You must endure celibacy or stay together. And if you stay together, you must not use birth control to prevent the birth of syphilitic children.' Nobody whose natural sympathies have not been warped by dogma, or whose moral nature was not absolutely dead to all sense of suffering, could maintain that it is right and proper that that state of things should continue.

That is only an example. There are a great many ways in which, at the present moment, the church, by its insistence upon what it chooses to call morality, inflicts upon all sorts of people undeserved and unnecessary suffering. And of course, as we know, it is in its major part an opponent still of progress and improvement in all the ways that diminish suffering in the world, because it has chosen to label as morality a certain narrow set of rules of conduct which have nothing to do with human happiness; and when you say that this or that ought to be done because it would make for human happiness, they think that has nothing to do with the matter at all. 'What has human happiness to do with morals? The object of morals is not to make people happy.”
Bertrand Russell, Why I Am Not a Christian and Other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects

Martin Luther King Jr.
“But today our very survival depends on our ability to stay awake, to adjust to new ideas, to remain vigilant and to face the challenge of change. The large house in which we live demands that we transform this world-wide neighborhood into a world – wide brotherhood. Together we must learn to live as brothers or together we will be forced to perish as fools.

We must work passionately and indefatigably to bridge the gulf between our scientific progress and our moral progress. One of the great problems of mankind is that we suffer from a poverty of the spirit which stands in glaring contrast to our scientific and technological abundance. The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually.”
Martin Luther King Jr.

“Modern civilization depends on science … James Smithson was well aware that knowledge should not be viewed as existing in isolated parts, but as a whole, each portion of which throws light on all the other, and that the tendency of all is to improve the human mind, and give it new sources of power and enjoyment … narrow minds think nothing of importance but their own favorite pursuit, but liberal views exclude no branch of science or literature, for they all contribute to sweeten, to adorn, and to embellish life … science is the pursuit above all which impresses us with the capacity of man for intellectual and moral progress and awakens the human intellect to aspiration for a higher condition of humanity.

[Joseph Henry was the first Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, named after its benefactor, James Smithson.]”
Joseph Henry

Steven Pinker
“A great principle of moral advancement, on par with "Love thy neighbor" and "All men are created equal," is the one on the bumper sticker: "Shit happens.”
Steven Pinker, The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

Abhijit Naskar
“Forget all labels and simply live as a human, and you'll have all the morality in you - this morality is text-less - it is law-less - it is boundless - it's simply your whole being, beyond conditioning, beyond norms, beyond stereotypes, beyond definitions, beyond theories, beyond intellectualism, beyond ideologies, beyond sects and beyond images. That morality has no Naskar in it - it has no Nietzsche in it - it has no Schopenhauer in it - it has no bible, no quran, no vedas in it - nor has it any messiah or prophet whatsoever.”
Abhijit Naskar, Morality Absolute

Abhijit Naskar
“When the spirit shines with the flames of morality, there remains no question, confusion or compliance - all that there persists, is you being the manifestation of morality absolute.”
Abhijit Naskar, Morality Absolute

Abhijit Naskar
“Morality is like defecation. When you have the urge to defecate, do you ask an intellectual, what it is like to feel like defecating and how to perform the act of defecation, before you actually go to defecate! You simply feel it and go defecating. The same is with morality. You don't ask a scientist, a philosopher or a priest what morality really is, and how to perform it. You simply feel it and act on it.”
Abhijit Naskar, Morality Absolute

Abhijit Naskar
“When the mind rises punned in the flames of self-realization, distance between human and human disappears as if it never existed in the first place. And this original incarnation of the human mind upon the death of the second hand existence, delivers the world the ultimate bodily manifestation of morality absolute and the liberty it encompasses.”
Abhijit Naskar, Morality Absolute