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Pure Science maintains that it is void of values, but it is well known how important the role of science has been in the development of society in recent times, even though this development has been the activity of human beings, imbued as they are with values. When we look closely at history we find that values have been exerting a subtle influence over the birth and development of science, beginning with faith and the aspiration to know the truths of nature, up until the most destructive value. The desire to conquer nature and produce an abundance of material goods.

The solution to the problem of values in science is not to try to get rid of them. It is not necessary for science to try to evade values. It is more a matter of trying to clarify the values that science does, or should, have. Otherwise, science may unknowingly become the victim of other values, values which obstruct the truth, and cause science to become a negative influence, one that could even threaten the complete destruction of the human race.

In the preceding parts of this lecture I have tried to show the connection of science to values on two levels, the highest value and the provisional value. This highest value is one that science must adhere to in order to be able to attain to the highest truth, because the highest cattle is in itself the truth and thus an indispensable factor in the attainment of ultimate truth. However, this highest value, the highest good, or freedom, is an ideal, it is an objective, and as such will not exert a major influence on the quality of science in general.

The value which will have the most immediate influence over science is the secondary value, of which there are two kinds: that which is derived from, and harmonious with, the highest value; and the phony value which has infiltrated into science as a result of a lack of reflection on values.

pic38.jpg (11805 bytes) While scientists have no understanding of values, and fail to see the relationship between them and the truth they are seeking, science will, in addition to limiting the scope of knowledge to which it aspires and rendering the search for highest knowledge fruitless, be taken over by the lesser and more counter-productive values, some inherited from previous generations, and some fed by desire and the search for happiness within the minds of present-day scientists themselves. When these inferior values exert an influence over the mind, not only do they throw the search for true knowledge off course, but they lead to destructive influences, causing problems either in the immediate present, or if not, then at some time in the future.

Conversely, if scientists, or those seeking truth, realize the connection between abstract values and the physical world, they will also realize that to search for and understand natural truth is to understand the nature of man; that for man to understand himself is to understand the nature around him. When there is this kind of realization, the secondary value which is derived from the highest value will arise of itself. It will automatically be fulfilled. When there is right understanding, the result will be two-fold, namely:

1. The search for knowledge will not be limited or misdirected, but will be set straight on the course forthe highest kind of knowledge.
2. The correct kind of secondary value will automatically arise and human development will proceed in conjunction with the search for knowledge.

If research is based on this right understanding, the right kind of value will automatically be present.

The highest kind of value is a condition that will be attained on the realization of truth. It is not necessary to strive to attain this value in itself, simply to bear it in mind. When this is realized, a balanced kind of secondary value, which is congruous with the highest value, will arise.

Even though in the path that is directed toward, and harmonious with, the truth, the assurance of values is not necessary, being already included in the awareness of truth, in practical terms, such as when scientific knowledge is transferred into technology, it may be necessary to emphasize some values in order to clarify the direction of research and to prevent the infiltration of inferior and destructive values. Examples of some of these positive values might be: the search for knowledge in order to attain freedom from human imperfection, or to search for knowledge in order to solve problems and further the evelopment of mankind ... even including lesser values, such as contrive to do everything as circumspectly as possible, with minimal harmful results.

At the very least, the realization of the importance of values will enable scientists to be aware of and to understand the way to relate to the values with which they have to deal in their search for knowledge, such as greed, anger, hurt, jealousy, envy and soon, such as in the case of Newton. More importantly, they will see the benefit of a correct set of values and know how to use them effectively, even in the advancement of the search for knowledge. At the very least, scientists will have a sense of morals and not become the mere servants of industry.

One value which is of prime importance to humanity and its activities is happiness, or the qualities of happiness and stiffening. The value of happiness lies deeply and subconsciously behind all human activities and is thus an essential part of ethics. One's conception of happiness will naturally influence all one's undertakings. For example, the values of the Industrial Age saw that happiness lay in the subjugation of nature, after which nature could be used as humanity wished. This has led to the developments which are presently causing so many problems in the world.

In order to address the problems successfully we must see the truth of happiness and suffering as they really are. Conversely, if we do not correct our values in regard to happiness and suffering, we will have no way of addressing the problems of human development.

To correct our definition of happiness means, in brief, to change our social values, no longer trying to find happiness in the destruction of nature, but instead finding happiness in harmony with nature. In this way we can limit the manipulation of nature to what is necessary to relieve human suffering, rather than to feed pleasure-seeking.

Mankind must realize that if he continues to seek happiness from the destruction of nature, he will not find the happiness he is looking for, even if nature is completely destroyed. Conversely, if mankind is able to live happily with nature, he will experience happiness even while developing the freedom from suffering.

Roughly speaking, there are three main values with which scientists will inevitably have to deal. They are:

    Mundane values, which scientists, as ordinary people, have in common with everybody else. This includes incentives or motivations, both good and bad, occurring in everyday life, and also in the search for and use of knowledge. Such values include selfishness, the desire for wealth, gains, fame or eminence, or, on the other hand, altruistic values, such as kindness and compassion.
    Values which are adhered to as principles, and which guide the direction of learning, such as the idea of subjugating nature, or industrial values, the belief that happiness can be obtained through a wealth of material goods, or conversely, the principle of addressing problems and improving the quality of life.
    The highest value, which scientists should adhere to as members of the human race; that is, the value which is the ideal of the human race as a whole, which, as I have said, has so far been neglected by the world of science. Science is still only half way, with an aspiration to know the truths of nature solely on an outward level. Such an aspiration does not include the matter of ‘being human,' or the highest good. 

Science has still some unfinished business to do in regard to these three values.


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