Sapiens Religion Quotes

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Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group. Would ancient Sapiens have been more tolerant towards an entirely different human species? It may well be that when Sapiens encountered Neanderthals, the result was the first and most significant ethnic-cleansing campaign in history.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The first principle of monotheist religions is ‘God exists. What does He want from me?’ The first principle of Buddhism is ‘Suffering exists. How do I escape it?
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Christians slaughtered Christians by the millions to defend slightly different interpretations of the religion of love and compassion.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Christians and Muslims who could not agree on religious beliefs could nevertheless agree on a monetary belief, because whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
I do not know of any religion that does not declare women to be feeble-minded, unclean, generally inferior creatures to males, although most Humans assume that we are the cream of all species. Women, alas; but thank God, Homo Sapiens! Most of us, I hope, are now aware that a woman should not have to demand Rights. The Rights were there from the beginning; they must be Taken Back Again, including the Mysteries which were ours and which were violated, stolen or destroyed, leaving us with the thankless hope of pleasing a male animal, probably of one’s own species.
Leonora Carrington
Whereas the Agricultural Revolution gave rise to theist religions, the Scientific Revolution gave birth to humanist religions, in which humans replaced gods.
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
We human beings regard ourselves as (or compare ourselves to) animals only when it suits us.
Mokokoma Mokhonoana
Religion can thus be defined as a system of human norms and values that is founded on a belief in a superhuman order.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group. Would ancient Sapiens have been more tolerant towards an entirely different human species?
Yuval Noah Harari (קיצור תולדות האנושות)
Money is the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Durkheim frequently criticized his contemporaries, such as Freud, who tried to explain morality and religion using only the psychology of individuals and their pairwise relationships. (God is just a father figure, said Freud.) Durkheim argued, in contrast, that Homo sapiens was really Homo duplex, a creature who exists at two levels: as an individual and as part of the larger society.
Jonathan Haidt (The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion)
Most previous ethical systems presented people with a pretty tough deal. They were promised paradise, but only if they cultivated compassion and tolerance, overcame craving and anger, and restrained their selfish interests. This was too tough for most. The history of ethics is a sad tale of wonderful ideals that nobody can live up to. Most Christians did not imitate Christ, most Buddhists failed to follow Buddha, and most Confucians would have caused Confucius a temper tantrum. In contrast, most people today successfully live up to the capitalist–consumerist ideal. The new ethic promises paradise on condition that the rich remain greedy and spend their time making more money, and that the masses give free rein to their cravings and passions – and buy more and more. This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do. How, though, do we know that we’ll really get paradise in return? We’ve seen it on television.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Some religions, such as Christianity and Nazism, have killed millions out of burning hatred. Capitalism has killed millions out of cold indifference coupled with greed.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Religion is a system of human norms and values that is founded on belief in a superhuman order.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
scientific research can flourish only in alliance with some religion or ideology. The ideology justifies the costs of the research. In exchange, the ideology influences the scientific agenda and determines what to do with the discoveries.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Most religions and ideologies throughout history stated that there are objective yardsticks for goodness and beauty, and for how things ought to be. They were suspicious of the feelings and preferences of the ordinary person. At the entrance of the temple of Apollo at Delphi, pilgrims were greeted by the inscription: ‘Know thyself!’ The implication was that the average person is ignorant of his true self, and is therefore likely to be ignorant of true happiness. Freud would probably concur.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
For thousands of years, philosophers, thinkers and prophets have besmirched money and called it the root of all evil. Be that as it may, money is also the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Love each and love all.
Abhijit Naskar (Saint of The Sapiens)
Love is the only language known to all humanity.
Abhijit Naskar (Saint of The Sapiens)
Yet my study of the history of religion has revealed that human beings are spiritual animals. Indeed, there is a case for arguing that Homo sapiens is also Homo religiosus
Karen Armstrong (History of God)
Unlike most other world religions, Buddhism has never been too rigid in its structure.
Abhijit Naskar (Rowdy Buddha: The First Sapiens)
there is no God, but don't tell that to my servant, lest he murder me at night
de plume Voltaire
In the 300 years from the crucifixion of Christ to the conversion of Emperor Constantine, polytheistic Roman emperors initiated no more than four general persecutions of Christians. Local administrators and governors incited some anti-Christian violence of their own. Still, if we combine all the victims of all these persecutions, it turns out that in these three centuries, the polytheistic Romans killed no more than a few thousand Christians.1 In contrast, over the course of the next 1,500 years, Christians slaughtered Christians by the millions to defend slightly different interpretations of the religion of love and compassion.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Science can explain what exists in the world, how things work, and what might be in the future. By definition, it has no pretensions to knowing what should be in the future. Only religions and ideologies seek to answer such questions.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Have you thought about the Coming Out Thing? It gets complicated when you bring religion into the equation. Technically, Jews and Episcopalians are supposed to be gay-friendly, but it's hard to really know how that applies to your own parents. Like, you read about these gay kids with really churchy Catholic parents, and the parents end up doing PFLAG and Pride Parades and everything. And then you hear about parents who are totally fine with homosexuality, but can't handle it when their own kid comes out. You just never know.
Becky Albertalli (Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda (Simonverse, #1))
Another possibility is that competition for resources flared up into violence and genocide. Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group. Would
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Moreover, most faiths turned death into the main source of meaning in life. Try to imagine Islam, Christianity or the ancient Egyptian religion in a world without death. These creeds taught people that they must come to terms with death and pin their hopes on the afterlife, rather than seek to overcome death and live forever here on earth.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Sonnet of Sapiens No religion is greater than love, For love is the embodiment of divinity, No church is higher than the self, Cause the self is the manifestation of the Almighty, No worship is greater than help, For helping is the service of God, No prayer is as sacred as kindness, For in kindness lies the real act of the Lord, No scripture is more glorious than the mind, For the mind is the creator of the scriptures, So learn from that scripture within to be of help to your kind, And be the glue to the fabric of humanity healing all ruptures, Heal your kind my friend with your wisdom and warmth transcendent, If not you then who else will unify humanity and rise as sapiens triumphant.
Abhijit Naskar (Fabric of Humanity)
Similarly, the fact that another person believes in cowry shells, or dollars, or electronic data, is enough to strengthen our own belief in them, even if that person is otherwise hated, despised or ridiculed by us. Christians and Muslims who could not agree on religious beliefs could nevertheless agree on a monetary belief, because whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something. For thousands of years, philosophers, thinkers and prophets have besmirched money and called it the root of all evil. Be that as it may, money is also the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively. The
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Sapiens instinctively divide humanity into two parts, ‘we’ and ‘they’. We are people like you and me, who share our language, religion and customs. We are all responsible for each other, but not responsible for them. We were always distinct from them, and owe them nothing. We don’t want to see any of them in our territory, and we don’t care an iota what happens in their territory. They are barely even human.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The modern age has witnessed the rise of a number of new natural-law religions, such as liberalism, Communism, capitalism, nationalism and Nazism. These creeds do not like to be called religions, and refer to themselves as ideologies. But this is just a semantic exercise. If a religion is a system of human norms and values that is founded on belief in a superhuman order, then Soviet Communism was no less a religion than Islam.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Whereas Buddhists believe that the law of nature was discovered by Siddhartha Gautama, Communists believed that the law of nature was discovered by Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels and Vladimir Ilyich Lenin. The similarity does not end there. Like other religions, Communism too has its holy scripts and prophetic books, such as Marx’s Das Kapital, which foretold that history would soon end with the inevitable victory of the proletariat.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Since all social orders and hierarchies are imagined, they are all fragile, and the larger the society, the more fragile it is. The crucial historical role of religion has been to give superhuman legitimacy to these fragile structures. Religions assert that our laws are not the result of human caprice, but are ordained by an absolute and supreme authority. This helps place at least some fundamental laws beyond challenge, thereby ensuring social stability.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
La religión es un sistema de normas y valores humanos que se fundamenta en la creencia en un orden sobrehumano. La teoría de la relatividad no es una religión porque (al menos hasta ahora) no existen normas y valores humanos que se fundamenten en ella. El fútbol no es una religión porque nadie aduce que sus reglas reflejen edictos sobrehumanos. El islamismo, el budismo y el comunismo son religiones porque son sistemas de normas y valores humanos que se fundamentan en la creencia de un orden sobrehumano.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens. De animales a dioses: Una breve historia de la humanidad)
The first millennium BC witnessed the appearance of three potentially universal orders, whose devotees could for the first time imagine the entire world and the entire human race as a single unit governed by a single set of laws. Everyone was ‘us’, at least potentially. There was no longer ‘them’. The first universal order to appear was economic: the monetary order. The second universal order was political: the imperial order. The third universal order was religious: the order of universal religions such as Buddhism, Christianity and Islam.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Our ability to tell, create and believe in stories is Homo sapiens’s most powerful weapon. It’s how we organise ourselves, how we control each other, how we justify our decisions. If we didn’t have them, we’d be like fleas or rabbits or any other member of the animal kingdom, beings just trying to get through the day. Religion is just a story. Waitrose tells a better story than Lidl. Most things you learn at school are irrelevant, but you’ve been assured they’re important. You buy your car from one company over another because a salesman told you a better tale about its gearbox or revolutions per minute.
Hannah Rothschild (House of Trelawney)
scientific research can flourish only in alliance with some religion or ideology. The ideology justifies the costs of the research. In exchange, the ideology influences the scientific agenda and determines what to do with the discoveries. Hence in order to comprehend how humankind has reached Alamogordo and the moon – rather than any number of alternative destinations – it is not enough to survey the achievements of physicists, biologists and sociologists. We have to take into account the ideological, political and economic forces that shaped physics, biology and sociology, pushing them in certain directions while neglecting others.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Amanda Feilding, who was born in 1943, is an eccentric as only the English aristocracy can breed them. (She’s descended from the house of Habsburg and two of Charles II’s illegitimate children.) A student of comparative religion and mysticism, Feilding has had a long-standing interest in altered states of consciousness and, specifically, the role of blood flow to the brain, which in Homo sapiens, she believes, has been compromised ever since our species began standing upright. LSD, Feilding believes, enhances cognitive function and facilitates higher states of consciousness by increasing cerebral circulation. A second way to achieve a similar result is by means of the ancient practice of trepanation. This deserves a brief digression.
Michael Pollan (How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence)
For a moment, we all just stared out the window at the crowds. “I’m reading a good book now,” Obama said. “It reminds you, the ability to tell stories about who we are is what makes us different from animals. We’re just chimps without it.” He described how all civilization, religion, nations were rooted in stories, which could be harnessed for good or bad. Obama’s tendency to take the long view was getting even more pronounced in his last year in office. But in his own way, he was also telling me that everything was okay, that this was now just one more subject in our endless conversation about everything. “What’s the book?” I asked, looking for something to grab on to. “It’s called Sapiens. You should check it out.” Perhaps sensing that this was sensitive terrain, he changed the subject.
Ben Rhodes (The World As It Is: Inside the Obama White House)
In order to change an existing imagined order, we must first believe in an alternative imagined order.” Atheism, while making some great arguments and growing in popularity, hasn’t provided an alternative “myth” or set of ethics. While I do consider myself an Atheist, I acknowledge some of the strong values that come with religions like Christianity. In the absence of a reality to replace the myth, people seem to gravitate to another myth, such as government. In order to eliminate false beliefs in myths - we must replace them - either with another myth (less than ideal) - or a reality. I hope that science and philosophy can fill the void where unhealthy believes have been fostered at present. I hope that one day authoritarian government, violent religions, and other irrational beliefs can be replaced with an objective system of ethics.
Marvinn Land (Summary: Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari: 23 Key Takeaways in Less Than 30 Minutes)
The words witch and witchcraft, in everyday usage for over a thousand years, have undergone several changes of meaning; and today witchcraft, having reverted to its original connotation of magic and sorcery, does not convey the precise and limited definition it once had during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. If witchcraft had never meant anything more than the craft of "an old, weather-beaten crone..." Europe would not have suffered, for three centuries from 1450 to 1750, the shocking nightmare, the foulest crime and the deepest shame of western civilization, the blackout of everything that homo sapiens, the reasoning man, has ever upheld. This book is about that shame...degradation stifled decency, the filthiest passions masqueraded under the cover of religion, and man's intellect was subverted to condone bestialities that even Swift's Yahoos would blush. Never were so many wrong, so long...
Rossell Hope Robbins (The Encyclopedia of Witchcraft & Demonology)
Some scholars do indeed provide deterministic explanations of events such as the rise of Christianity. They attempt to reduce human history to the workings of biological, ecological or economic forces. They argue that there was something about the geography, genetics or economy of the Roman Mediterranean that made the rise of a monotheist religion inevitable. Yet most historians tend to be sceptical of such deterministic theories. This is one of the distinguishing marks of history as an academic discipline – the better you know a particular historical period, the harder it becomes to explain why things happened one way and not another. Those who have only a superficial knowledge of a certain period tend to focus only on the possibility that was eventually realised. They offer a just-so story to explain with hindsight why that outcome was inevitable. Those more deeply informed about the period are much more cognisant of the roads not taken.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The Battle of Good and Evil Polytheism gave birth not merely to monotheist religions, but also to dualistic ones. Dualistic religions espouse the existence of two opposing powers: good and evil. Unlike monotheism, dualism believes that evil is an independent power, neither created by the good God, nor subordinate to it. Dualism explains that the entire universe is a battleground between these two forces, and that everything that happens in the world is part of the struggle. Dualism is a very attractive world view because it has a short and simple answer to the famous Problem of Evil, one of the fundamental concerns of human thought. ‘Why is there evil in the world? Why is there suffering? Why do bad things happen to good people?’ Monotheists have to practise intellectual gymnastics to explain how an all-knowing, all-powerful and perfectly good God allows so much suffering in the world. One well-known explanation is that this is God’s way of allowing for human free will. Were there no evil, humans could not choose between good and evil, and hence there would be no free will. This, however, is a non-intuitive answer that immediately raises a host of new questions. Freedom of will allows humans to choose evil. Many indeed choose evil and, according to the standard monotheist account, this choice must bring divine punishment in its wake. If God knew in advance that a particular person would use her free will to choose evil, and that as a result she would be punished for this by eternal tortures in hell, why did God create her? Theologians have written countless books to answer such questions. Some find the answers convincing. Some don’t. What’s undeniable is that monotheists have a hard time dealing with the Problem of Evil. For dualists, it’s easy to explain evil. Bad things happen even to good people because the world is not governed single-handedly by a good God. There is an independent evil power loose in the world. The evil power does bad things. Dualism has its own drawbacks. While solving the Problem of Evil, it is unnerved by the Problem of Order. If the world was created by a single God, it’s clear why it is such an orderly place, where everything obeys the same laws. But if Good and Evil battle for control of the world, who enforces the laws governing this cosmic war? Two rival states can fight one another because both obey the same laws of physics. A missile launched from Pakistan can hit targets in India because gravity works the same way in both countries. When Good and Evil fight, what common laws do they obey, and who decreed these laws? So, monotheism explains order, but is mystified by evil. Dualism explains evil, but is puzzled by order. There is one logical way of solving the riddle: to argue that there is a single omnipotent God who created the entire universe – and He’s evil. But nobody in history has had the stomach for such a belief. Dualistic
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The presumption to rule the entire world for the benefit of all its inhabitants was startling. Evolution has made Homo sapiens, like other social mammals, a xenophobic creature. Sapiens instinctively divide humanity into two parts, ‘we’ and ‘they’. We are people like you and me, who share our language, religion and customs. We are all responsible for each other, but not responsible for them. We were always distinct from them, and owe them nothing. We don’t want to see any of them in our territory, and we don’t care an iota what happens in their territory. They are barely even human. In the language of the Dinka people of the Sudan, ‘Dinka’ simply means ‘people’. People who are not Dinka are not people. The Dinka’s bitter enemies are the Nuer. What does the word Nuer mean in Nuer language? It means ‘original people’. Thousands of miles from the Sudan deserts, in the frozen ice-lands of Alaska and north-eastern Siberia, live the Yupiks. What does Yupik mean in Yupik language? It means ‘real people’.3
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
If to a person religion means reading books and obeying every single word from it without the slightest bit of reasoning, then such perception would only bring destruction upon the person and the world. Also there are people who use the words from those books to justify their own filthy actions. Let’s take a conservative Muslim, for example. Say, the conservative Muslim male Homo sapiens (I won’t call such creature a human, regardless of the religion, since his action here shows no sign of humanity) is found to be beating his wife. Now, if someone says to him “this is wrong”, he would naturally reply, “this is a divine thing to do, my book says so”. Now, if a Christian says “my book is older, so you should stop obeying your book and start obeying mine”, there will come the Buddhist, and say, “my book is much older still, obey mine”. Then will come the Jew, and say, “my book is even older, so just follow mine”. And in the end will come the Hindu and say “my books are the oldest of all, obey them”. Therefore referring to books will only make a mess of the human race and tear the species into pieces.
Abhijit Naskar (In Search of Divinity: Journey to The Kingdom of Conscience (Neurotheology Series))
Who am I? What should I do in life? What is the meaning of life? Humans have been asking these questions from time immemorial. Every generation needs a new answer, because what we know and don’t know keeps changing. Given everything we know and don’t know about science, about God, about politics and about religion – what is the best answer we can give today? What kind of an answer do people expect? In almost all cases, when people ask about the meaning of life, they expect to be told a story. Homo sapiens is a storytelling animal, that thinks in stories rather than in numbers or graphs, and believes that the universe itself works like a story, replete with heroes and villains, conflicts and resolutions, climaxes and happy endings. When we look for the meaning of life, we want a story that will explain what reality is all about and what is my particular role in the cosmic drama. This role defines who I am, and gives meaning to all my experiences and choices. One popular story, told for thousands of years to billions of anxious humans, explains that we are all part of an eternal cycle that encompasses and connects all beings. Each being has a distinctive function to fulfil in the cycle. To understand the meaning of life means to understand your unique function, and to live a good life means to accomplish that function.
Yuval Noah Harari (21 Lessons for the 21st Century)
here is something that is impossible for anyone to believe. The human species has been in existence as Homo sapiens for (let us not quarrel about the exact total) at least one hundred and fifty thousand years. An instant in evolutionary time, this is nonetheless a vast history when contemplated by primates with brains and imaginations of the dimensions that we can boast. In order to subscribe to monotheistic religion, one must believe that humans were born, struggled, and expired during this time, often dying in childbirth or for want of elementary nurture, and with a life-expectancy of perhaps three decades at most. Add to these factors the turf wars between discrepant groups and tribes, alarming outbreaks of disease, which had no germ theory to explain let alone palliate them, and associated natural disasters and human tragedies. And yet, for all these millennia, heaven watched with indifference and then—and only in the last six thousand years at the very least—decided that it was time to intervene as well as redeem. And heaven would only intervene and redeem in remote areas of the Middle East, thus ensuring that many more generations would expire before the news could begin to spread! Let me send a voice to Sinai and cement a pact with just one tribe of dogged and greedy yokels. Let me lend a son to be torn to pieces because he is misunderstood. . . . Let me tell the angel Gabriel to prompt an illiterate and uncultured merchant into rhetorical flights. At last the darkness that I have imposed will lift! The willingness even to entertain such elaborately mad ideas involves much more than the suspension of disbelief, or the dumb credulity that greets magic tricks. It also involves ignoring or explaining away the many religious beliefs that antedated Moses.
Christopher Hitchens (The Portable Atheist: Essential Readings for the Nonbeliever)
How long will the Gilgamesh Project – the quest for immortality – take to complete? A hundred years? Five hundred years? A thousand years? When we recall how little we knew about the human body in 1900, and how much knowledge we have gained in a single century, there is cause for optimism. Genetic engineers have recently managed to double the average life expectancy of Caenorhabditis elegans worms.12 Could they do the same for Homo sapiens? Nanotechnology experts are developing a bionic immune system composed of millions of nano-robots, who would inhabit our bodies, open blocked blood vessels, fight viruses and bacteria, eliminate cancerous cells and even reverse ageing processes.13 A few serious scholars suggest that by 2050, some humans will become a-mortal (not immortal, because they could still die of some accident, but a-mortal, meaning that in the absence of fatal trauma their lives could be extended indefinitely). Whether or not Project Gilgamesh succeeds, from a historical perspective it is fascinating to see that most late-modern religions and ideologies have already taken death and the afterlife out of the equation. Until the eighteenth century, religions considered death and its aftermath central to the meaning of life. Beginning in the eighteenth century, religions and ideologies such as liberalism, socialism and feminism lost all interest in the afterlife. What, exactly, happens to a Communist after he or she dies? What happens to a capitalist? What happens to a feminist? It is pointless to look for the answer in the writings of Marx, Adam Smith or Simone de Beauvoir. The only modern ideology that still awards death a central role is nationalism. In its more poetic and desperate moments, nationalism promises that whoever dies for the nation will for ever live in its collective memory. Yet this promise is so fuzzy that even most nationalists do not really know what to make of it. The
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Timeline of History Years Before the Present 13.5 billion Matter and energy appear. Beginning of physics. Atoms and molecules appear. Beginning of chemistry. 4.5 billion Formation of planet Earth. 3.8 billion Emergence of organisms. Beginning of biology. 6 million Last common grandmother of humans and chimpanzees. 2.5 million Evolution of the genus Homo in Africa. First stone tools. 2 million Humans spread from Africa to Eurasia. Evolution of different human species. 500,000 Neanderthals evolve in Europe and the Middle East. 300,000 Daily usage of fire. 200,000 Homo sapiens evolves in East Africa. 70,000 The Cognitive Revolution. Emergence of fictive language. Beginning of history. Sapiens spread out of Africa. 45,000 Sapiens settle Australia. Extinction of Australian megafauna. 30,000 Extinction of Neanderthals. 16,000 Sapiens settle America. Extinction of American megafauna. 13,000 Extinction of Homo floresiensis. Homo sapiens the only surviving human species. 12,000 The Agricultural Revolution. Domestication of plants and animals. Permanent settlements. 5,000 First kingdoms, script and money. Polytheistic religions. 4,250 First empire – the Akkadian Empire of Sargon. 2,500 Invention of coinage – a universal money. The Persian Empire – a universal political order ‘for the benefit of all humans’. Buddhism in India – a universal truth ‘to liberate all beings from suffering’. 2,000 Han Empire in China. Roman Empire in the Mediterranean. Christianity. 1,400 Islam. 500 The Scientific Revolution. Humankind admits its ignorance and begins to acquire unprecedented power. Europeans begin to conquer America and the oceans. The entire planet becomes a single historical arena. The rise of capitalism. 200 The Industrial Revolution. Family and community are replaced by state and market. Massive extinction of plants and animals. The Present Humans transcend the boundaries of planet Earth. Nuclear weapons threaten the survival of humankind. Organisms are increasingly shaped by intelligent design rather than natural selection. The Future Intelligent design becomes the basic principle of life? Homo sapiens is replaced by superhumans?
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Political economist and sociologist Max Weber famously spoke of the “disenchantment of the world,” as rationalization and science led Europe and America into modern industrial society, pushing back religion and all “magical” theories about reality. Now we are witnessing the disenchantment of the self. One of the many dangers in this process is that if we remove the magic from our image of ourselves, we may also remove it from our image of others. We could become disenchanted with one another. Our image of Homo sapiens underlies our everyday practice and culture; it shapes the way we treat one another as well as how we subjectively experience ourselves. In Western societies, the Judeo-Christian image of humankind—whether you are a believer or not—has secured a minimal moral consensus in everyday life. It has been a major factor in social cohesion. Now that the neurosciences have irrevocably dissolved the Judeo-Christian image of a human being as containing an immortal spark of the divine, we are beginning to realize that they have not substituted anything that could hold society together and provide a common ground for shared moral intuitions and values. An anthropological and ethical vacuum may well follow on the heels of neuroscientific findings. This is a dangerous situation. One potential scenario is that long before neuroscientists and philosophers have settled any of the perennial issues—for example, the nature of the self, the freedom of the will, the relationship between mind and brain, or what makes a person a person—a vulgar materialism might take hold. More and more people will start telling themselves: “I don’t understand what all these neuroexperts and consciousness philosophers are talking about, but the upshot seems pretty clear to me. The cat is out of the bag: We are gene-copying bio- robots, living out here on a lonely planet in a cold and empty physical universe. We have brains but no immortal souls, and after seventy years or so the curtain drops. There will never be an afterlife, or any kind of reward or punishment for anyone, and ultimately everyone is alone. I get the message, and you had better believe I will adjust my behavior to it. It would probably be smart not to let anybody know I’ve seen through the game.
Thomas Metzinger
No animal spends more of its allotted time on Earth fussing over sex than Homo sapiens—not even the famously libidinous bonobo. Although we and the bonobo both average well into the hundreds, if not thousands, of acts of intercourse per birth—way ahead of any other primate—their “acts” are far briefer than ours. Pair-bonded “monogamous” animals are almost always hyposexual, having sex as the Vatican recommends: infrequently, quietly, and for reproduction only. Human beings, regardless of religion, are at the other end of the libidinal spectrum: hypersexuality personified.
Christopher Ryan (Sex at Dawn: How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What It Means for Modern Relationships)
First, because it’s based on a fantastic illusion. Let’s say that the consensus is that our species, we being the higher primates, Homo sapiens, has been on the planet for at least 100,000 years, maybe more. Francis Collins says it may be 100,000; Richard Dawkins thinks maybe quarter of a million. I’ll take 100,000. In order to be Christian you have to believe that for 98,000 years our species suffered and died, most of its children dying in childbirth, most other people having a life expectancy of about 25, dying of their teeth, famine, struggle, indigenous war, suffering, misery, all of that. For 98,000 heaven watches it with complete indifference and then 2,000 years ago thinks, “That’s enough of that—it’s time to intervene. The best way to do this would be by condemning someone to a human sacrifice somewhere in the less literate parts of the Middle East. Don’t let’s appear to the Chinese, for example, where people can read and study evidence and have a civilization, let’s go the desert and have another revelation there.” This is nonsense. It can’t be believed by a thinking person.”                                  —Christopher Hitchens
Joshua Kelly (Oh, Your god!: The Evil Idea That is Religion)
Leyendas, mitos, dioses y religiones aparecieron por primera vez con la revolución cognitiva.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens. De animales a dioses: Una breve historia de la humanidad)
Religion can thus be defined as a system of human laws that is founded on a belief in superhuman laws.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The new ethic promises paradise on condition that the rich remain greedy and spend their time making more money, and that the masses give free rein to their cravings and passions–and buy more and more. This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
La evolución ha supuesto que nuestros lóbulos prefrontales sean demasiado reducidos, nuestras glándulas suprarrenales demasiado abultadas y nuestros órganos reproductores parezcan diseñados por un equipo de incompetentes; esta receta, por sí sola o combinada con otros ingredientes, tiene muchas probabilidades de traducirse en cierta infelicidad y ocasionar algunos transtornos.
Christopher Hitchens (God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything)
Rediscovering regularity in physical realities is not the end-objective of existence. How we develop as adults from birth as an individual and how and when homo-sapiens as a whole came to exist in this form physically is all beside the point as far as the basic questions of purpose, essence and meaning of life are concerned.
Salman Ahmed Shaikh (Reflections on the Origins in the Post COVID-19 World)
the polytheistic Romans killed no more than a few thousand Christians.1 In contrast, over the course of the next 1,500 years, Christians slaughtered Christians by the millions to defend slightly different interpretations of the religion of love and compassion. The
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Monotheists have tended to be far more fanatical and missionary than polytheists. A religion that recognises the legitimacy of other faiths implies either that its god is not the supreme power of the universe, or that it received from God just part of the universal truth. Since monotheists have usually believed that they are in possession of the entire message of the one and only God, they have been compelled to discredit all other religions. Over the last two millennia, monotheists repeatedly tried to strengthen their hand by violently exterminating all competition. It
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
because whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Only Homo sapiens can discuss things that are not tangible, such as fantasies, legends, myths, deities, and religions. The ability to talk about fiction is unique in Homo sapiens’ language. Fiction has allowed Homo sapiens to imagine things individually and collectively. Telling stories and myths allowed numerous individuals to cooperate in a variety of ways.
Read trepreneur (Summary: Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Religion can thus be defined as a system of human norms and values that is founded on a belief in a superhuman order. This involves two distinct criteria:
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Osama Bin Laden, for all his hatred of American culture, American religion and American politics, was very fond of American dollars.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Liberal politics is based on the idea that the voters know best, and there is no need for Big Brother to tell us what is good for us. Liberal economics is based on the idea that the customer is always right. Liberal art declares that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Students in liberal schools and universities are taught to think for themselves. Commercials urge us to ‘Just do it.’ Action films, stage dramas, soap operas, novels and catchy pop songs indoctrinate us constantly: ‘Be true to yourself’, ‘Listen to yourself’, ‘Follow your heart’. Jean-Jacques Rousseau stated this view most classically: ‘What I feel to be good – is good. What I feel to be bad – is bad.’ People who have been raised from infancy on a diet of such slogans are prone to believe that happiness is a subjective feeling and that each individual best knows whether she is happy or miserable. Yet this view is unique to liberalism. Most religions and ideologies throughout history stated that there are objective yardsticks for goodness and beauty, and for how things ought to be. They were suspicious of the feelings and preferences of the ordinary person. At the entrance of the temple of Apollo at Delphi, pilgrims were greeted by the inscription: ‘Know thyself!’ The implication was that the average person is ignorant of his true self, and is therefore likely to be ignorant of true happiness. Freud would probably concur.fn1 And so would Christian theologians. St Paul and St Augustine knew perfectly well that if you asked people about it, most of them would prefer to have sex than pray to God. Does that prove that having sex is the key to happiness? Not according to Paul and Augustine. It proves only that humankind is sinful by nature, and that people are easily seduced by Satan. From a Christian viewpoint, the vast majority of people are in more or less the same situation as heroin addicts. Imagine that a psychologist embarks on a study of happiness among drug users. He polls them and finds that they declare, every single one of them, that they are only happy when they shoot up. Would the psychologist publish a paper declaring that heroin is the key to happiness? The idea that feelings are not to be trusted is not restricted to Christianity. At least when it comes to the value of feelings, even Darwin and Dawkins might find common ground with St Paul and St Augustine. According to the selfish gene theory, natural selection makes people, like other organisms, choose what is good for the reproduction of their genes, even if it is bad for them as individuals. Most males spend their lives toiling, worrying, competing and fighting, instead of enjoying peaceful bliss, because their DNA manipulates them for its own selfish aims. Like Satan, DNA uses fleeting pleasures to tempt people and place them in its power.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Capitalism began as a theory about how the economy functions. It was both descriptive and prescriptive – it offered an account of how money worked and promoted the idea that reinvesting profits in production leads to fast economic growth. But capitalism gradually became far more than just an economic doctrine. It now encompasses an ethic – a set of teachings about how people should behave, educate their children and even think. Its principal tenet is that economic growth is the supreme good, or at least a proxy for the supreme good, because justice, freedom and even happiness all depend on economic growth. Ask a capitalist how to bring justice and political freedom to a place like Zimbabwe or Afghanistan, and you are likely to get a lecture on how economic affluence and a thriving middle class are essential for stable democratic institutions, and about the need therefore to inculcate Afghan tribesmen in the values of free enterprise, thrift and self-reliance. This new religion has had a decisive influence on the development of modern science, too. Scientific research is usually funded by either governments or private businesses. When capitalist governments and businesses consider investing in a particular scientific project, the first questions are usually ‘Will this project enable us to increase production and profits? Will it produce economic growth?’ A project that can’t clear these hurdles has little chance of finding a sponsor. No history of modern science can leave capitalism out of the picture. Conversely, the history of capitalism is unintelligible without taking science into account. Capitalism’s belief in perpetual economic growth flies in the face of almost everything we know about the universe. A society of wolves would be extremely foolish to believe that the supply of sheep would keep on growing indefinitely. The human economy has nevertheless managed to keep on growing throughout the modern era, thanks only to the fact that scientists come up with another discovery or gadget every few years – such as the continent of America, the internal combustion engine, or genetically engineered sheep. Banks and governments print money, but ultimately, it is the scientists who foot the bill. Over the last few years, banks and governments have been frenziedly printing money. Everybody is terrified that the current economic crisis may stop the growth of the economy. So they are creating trillions of dollars, euros and yen out of thin air, pumping cheap credit into the system, and hoping that the scientists, technicians and engineers will manage to come up with something really big, before the bubble bursts. Everything depends on the people in the labs. New discoveries in fields such as biotechnology and nanotechnology could create entire new industries, whose profits could back the trillions of make-believe money that the banks and governments have created since 2008. If the labs do not fulfil these expectations before the bubble bursts, we are heading towards very rough times.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
El primer milenio a.C. contempló la aparición de tres órdenes universales en potencia, cuyos partidarios podían imaginar por primera vez a todo el mundo y a toda la raza humana como una única unidad gobernada por un único conjunto de leyes. Todos eran «nosotros», al menos en potencia. Ya no había «ellos». El primer orden universal que apareció fue económico: el orden monetario. El segundo orden universal fue político: el orden imperial. El tercer orden universal fue religioso: el orden de las religiones universales, como el budismo, el cristianismo y el islamismo.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens. De animales a dioses: Una breve historia de la humanidad)
Theist religions focus on the worship of gods. Humanist religions worship humanity, or more correctly, Homo sapiens. Humanism is a belief that Homo sapiens has a unique and sacred nature, which is fundamentally different from the nature of all other animals and of all other phenomena. Humanists believe that the unique nature of Homo sapiens is the most important thing in the world, and it determines the meaning of everything that happens in the universe. The supreme good is the good of Homo sapiens. The rest of the world and all other beings exist solely for the benefit of this species.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Soviet Communism was a fanatical and missionary religion. A devout Communist could not be a Christian or a Buddhist, and was expected to spread the gospel of Marx and Lenin even at the price of his or her life.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
It is but the " Wisest " for Homo sapiens to Educate themselves with all Existent Religions, Concluding to the many that makes Best Sense transmuting a Unique Ameliorated Perspective to each said Unique Entity.
Manos Abou-chabke
He encapsulated his teachings in a single law: suffering arises from craving; the only way to be fully liberated from suffering is to be fully liberated from craving; and the only way to be liberated from craving is to train the mind to experience reality as it is.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
just as the gap between religion and science is narrower than we commonly think, so the gap between religion and spirituality is much wider. Religion is a deal, whereas spirituality is a journey.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens and Homo Deus: The E-book Collection: A Brief History of Humankind and A Brief History of Tomorrow)
Which better represents the world of the ancient foragers: the peaceful skeletons from Israel and Portugal, or the abattoirs of Jabl Sahaba and Ofnet? The answer is neither. Just as foragers exhibited a wide array of religions and social structures, so, too, did they probably demonstrate a variety of violence rates.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
For thousands of years, philosophers, thinkers and prophets have besmirched money and called it the root of all evil. Be that as it may, money is also the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don't know each other and don't trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Instead of erecting mountains of theory over a molehill of tomb relics, cave paintings and bone statuettes, it is better to be frank and admit that we have only the haziest notions about the religions of ancient foragers. We assume that they were animists, but that’s not very informative. We don’t know which spirits they prayed to, which festivals they celebrated, or which taboos they observed. Most importantly, we don’t know what stories they told. It’s one of the biggest holes in our understanding of human history.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
El primer orden universal que apareció fue económico: el orden monetario. El segundo orden universal fue político: el orden imperial. El tercer orden universal fue religioso: el orden de las religiones universales, como el budismo, el cristianismo y el islamismo.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens. De animales a dioses: Una breve historia de la humanidad)
Evolution has made Homo sapiens, like other social mammals, a xenophobic creature. Sapiens instinctively divide humanity into two parts, ‘we’ and ‘they’. We are people like you and me, who share our language, religion and customs. We are all responsible for each other, but not responsible for them. We were always distinct from them, and owe them nothing. We don’t want to see any of them in our territory, and we don’t care an iota what happens in their territory. They are barely even human. In the language of the Dinka people of the Sudan, ‘Dinka’ simply means ‘people’. People who are not Dinka are not people. The Dinka’s bitter enemies are the Nuer. What does the word Nuer mean in Nuer language? It means ‘original people’. Thousands of miles from the Sudan deserts, in the frozen ice-lands of Alaska and north-eastern Siberia, live the Yupiks. What does Yupik mean in Yupik language? It means ‘real people’.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The average Christian believes in the monotheist God, but also in the dualist Devil, in polytheist saints, and in animist ghosts. Scholars of religion have a name for this simultaneous avowal of different and even contradictory ideas and the combination of rituals and practices taken from different sources. It’s called syncretism. Syncretism might, in fact, be the single great world religion.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Religion is a system of human norms and values that is founded on belief in a superhuman order. The theory of relativity is not a religion, because (at least so far) there are no human norms and values that are founded on it. Football is not a religion because nobody argues that its rules reflect superhuman edicts. Islam, Buddhism and Communism are all religions, because all are systems of human norms and values that are founded on belief in a superhuman order. (Note the difference between ‘superhuman’ and ‘supernatural’. The Buddhist law of nature and the Marxist laws of history are superhuman, since they were not legislated by humans. Yet they are not supernatural.)
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Another possibility is that competition for resources flared up into violence and genocide. Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group. Would ancient Sapiens have been more tolerant towards an entirely different human species?
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
This is the fly in the ointment of free-market capitalism. It cannot ensure that profits are gained in a fair way, or distributed in a fair manner. On the contrary, the craving to increase profits and production blinds people to anything that might stand in the way. When growth becomes a supreme good, unrestricted by any other ethical considerations, it can easily lead to catastrophe. Some religions, such as Christianity and Nazism, have killed millions out of burning hatred. Capitalism has killed millions out of cold indifference coupled with greed. (p. 370)
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
As far as we know, only Sapiens can talk about entire kinds of entities that they have never seen, touched or smelled. Legends, myths, gods and religions appeared for the first time with the Cognitive Revolution.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
a religion is a system of human norms and values that is founded on belief in a superhuman order, then Soviet Communism was no less a religion than Islam.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
At the point in his evolutionary progress where we first call him `Man' beyond a doubt - Homo sapiens sapiens - and when he came to know, also beyond a doubt, what awe and reverence were, he clearly felt that Soma was conferring on him ntvsterious sensations and powers, which seemed to him more than normal: at that point Religion was horn, Religion pure and simple, free of Theology, free of Dogmatics, expressing itself in awe and reverence and in lowered voices, mostly at night, when people would gather together to consume the Sacred Element. The first entheogenic experience could have been the first, and an authentic, perhaps the only authentic miracle. This was the beginning of the Age of the Entheogens, long, long ago.
R. Gordon Wasson (Persephone's Quest: Entheogens And The Origins Of Religion)
In contrast, most people today successfully live up to the capitalist-consumerist ideal. The new ethic promises paradise on condition that the rich remain greedy and spend their time making more money, and that the masses give free rein to their cravings and passions – and buy more and more. This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do. How, though, do we know that we’ll really get paradise in return? We’ve seen it on television.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Evolution has made Homo sapiens, like other social mammals, a xenophobic creature. Sapiens instinctively divide humanity into two parts, ‘us’ and ‘them’. ‘Us’ is people like you and me, who share our language, religion and customs. We are all responsible for each other, but not responsible for ‘them’. We were always distinct from them, and owe them nothing. We don’t want to see any of them in our territory, and we don’t care an iota what happens in their territory.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Today religion is often considered a source of discrimination, disagreement and disunion. Yet, in fact, religion has been the third great unifier of humankind, alongside money and empires.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Capitalism – the most successful of the modern religions –
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Homo Sapiens Loses Control Can humans go on running the world and giving it meaning? How do biotechnology and artificial intelligence threaten humanism? Who might inherit humankind, and what new religion might replace humanism?
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
Around the time that Homo sapiens was elevated to divine status by humanist religions, farm animals stopped being viewed as living creatures that could feel pain and distress, and instead came to be treated as machines.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The history of ethics is a sad tale of wonderful ideals that nobody can live up to. Most Christians did not imitate Christ, most Buddhists failed to follow Buddha, and most Confucians would have caused Confucius a temper tantrum. In contrast, most people today successfully live up to the capitalist–consumerist ideal. The new ethic promises paradise on condition that the rich remain greedy and spend their time making more money, and that the masses give free rein to their cravings and passions – and buy more and more. This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do. How, though, do we know that we’ll really get paradise in return? We’ve seen it on television.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
La edad moderna ha asistido a la aparición de varias religiones de ley natural nuevas como el liberalismo, el comunismo, el capitalismo, el nacionalismo y el nazismo. A estas creencias no les gusta que se las llame religiones, y se refieren a sí mismas como ideologías. Pero
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens. De animales a dioses: Una breve historia de la humanidad)
Whether or not Project Gilgamesh succeeds, from a historical perspective it is fascinating to see that most late-modern religions and ideologies have already taken death and the afterlife out of the equation. Until the eighteenth century, religions considered death and its aftermath central to the meaning of life. Beginning in the eighteenth century, religions and ideologies such as liberalism, socialism and feminism lost all interest in the afterlife.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
...Money is also the apogee of human tolerance; money is more open-minded than language, state laws, culture codes, religious beliefs, and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age, or sexual orientation.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Still, if we combine all the victims of all these persecutions, it turns out that in these three centuries, the polytheistic Romans killed no more than a few thousand Christians.1 In contrast, over the course of the next 1,500 years, Christians slaughtered Christians by the millions to defend slightly different interpretations of the religion of love and compassion. The religious wars between Catholics and Protestants that swept Europe in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries are particularly notorious. All those involved accepted Christ’s divinity and His gospel of compassion and love. However, they disagreed about the nature of this love. Protestants believed that the divine love is so great that God was incarnated in flesh and allowed Himself to be tortured and crucified, thereby redeeming the original sin and opening the gates of heaven to all those who professed faith in Him. Catholics maintained that faith, while essential, was not enough. To enter heaven, believers had to participate in church rituals and do good deeds. Protestants refused to accept this, arguing that this quid pro quo belittles God’s greatness and love. Whoever thinks that entry to heaven depends upon his or her own good deeds magnifies his own importance, and implies that Christ’s suffering on the cross and God’s love for humankind are not enough. These theological disputes turned so violent that during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, Catholics and Protestants killed each other by the hundreds of thousands. On 23 August 1572, French Catholics who stressed the importance of good deeds attacked communities of French Protestants who highlighted God’s love for humankind. In this attack, the St Bartholomew’s Day Massacre, between 5,000 and 10,000 Protestants were slaughtered in less than twenty-four hours. When the pope in Rome heard the news from France, he was so overcome by joy that he organised festive prayers to celebrate the occasion and commissioned Giorgio Vasari to decorate one of the Vatican’s rooms with a fresco of the massacre (the room is currently off-limits to visitors).2 More Christians were killed by fellow Christians in those twenty-four hours than by the polytheistic Roman Empire throughout its entire existence. God
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small diʃerence in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History Of Humankind)
We do not trust the stranger, or the next-door neighbour – we trust the coin they hold. If they run out of coins, we run out of trust. As money brings down the dams of community, religion and state, the world is in danger of becoming one big and rather heartless marketplace.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The best-known religions of history, such as Islam and Buddhism, are universal and missionary. Consequently
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Once trade connects two areas, the forces of supply and demand tend to equalise the prices of transportable goods. In order to understand why, consider a hypothetical case. Assume that when regular trade opened between India and the Mediterranean, Indians were uninterested in gold, so it was almost worthless. But in the Mediterranean, gold was a coveted status symbol, hence its value was high. What would happen next? Merchants travelling between India and the Mediterranean would notice the difference in the value of gold. In order to make a profit, they would buy gold cheaply in India and sell it dearly in the Mediterranean. Consequently, the demand for gold in India would skyrocket, as would its value. At the same time the Mediterranean would experience an influx of gold, whose value would consequently drop. Within a short time the value of gold in India and the Mediterranean would be quite similar. The mere fact that Mediterranean people believed in gold would cause Indians to start believing in it as well. Even if Indians still had no real use for gold, the fact that Mediterranean people wanted it would be enough to make the Indians value it. Similarly, the fact that another person believes in cowry shells, or dollars, or electronic data, is enough to strengthen our own belief in them, even if that person is otherwise hated, despised or ridiculed by us. Christians and Muslims who could not agree on religious beliefs could nevertheless agree on a monetary belief, because whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something. For thousands of years, philosophers, thinkers and prophets have besmirched money and called it the root of all evil. Be that as it may, money is also the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The new ethic promises paradise on condition that the rich remain greedy and spend their time making more money, and that the masses give free rein to their cravings and passions – and buy more and more. This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
...if a Catholic priest dressed in his sacred garments solemnly said the right words at the right moment, mundane bread and wine turned into God’s flesh and blood. The priest exclaimed ‘Hoc est corpus meum!’ (Latin for ‘This is my body!’) and hocus pocus – the bread turned into Christ’s flesh. Seeing that the priest had properly and assiduously observed all the procedures, millions of devout French Catholics behaved as if God really existed in the consecrated bread and wine.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
of Christ to the conversion of Emperor Constantine, polytheistic Roman emperors initiated no more than four general persecutions of Christians. Local administrators and governors incited some anti-Christian violence of their own. Still, if we combine all the victims of all these persecutions, it turns out that in these three centuries, the polytheistic Romans killed no more than a few thousand Christians.1 In contrast, over the course of the next 1,500 years, Christians slaughtered Christians by the millions to defend slightly different interpretations of the religion of love and compassion.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
We begin with the story of the greatest conqueror in history, a conqueror possessed of extreme tolerance and adaptability, thereby turning people into ardent disciples. This conqueror is money. People who do not believe in the same god or obey the same king are more than willing to use the same money. Osama Bin Laden, for all his hatred of American culture, American religion and American politics, was very fond of American dollars. How did money succeed where gods and kings failed?
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Money has an even darker side. For although money builds universal trust between strangers, this trust is invested not in humans, communities or sacred values, but in money itself and in the impersonal systems that back it. We do not trust the stranger, or the next-door neighbour – we trust the coin they hold. If they run out of coins, we run out of trust. As money brings down the dams of community, religion and state, the world is in danger of becoming one big and rather heartless marketplace.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
As money beings down the fans of community, religion and state, the world is in danger of becoming one big and rather heartless marketplace
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The dominant religion of our age is liberalism. Liberalism sanctifies the subjective feelings of individuals. It views these feelings as the supreme source of authority. What is good and what is bad, what is beautiful and what is ugly, what ought to be and what ought not to be, all are determined by what each one of us feels.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
suferinta se naste din dorinta; singurul mod de a te elibera complet de suferinta este sa te eliberezi complet de dorinta; iar singurul mod de a te elibera de dorinta este sa-ti antrenezi mintea sa experimenteze realitatea asa cum este.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
We normally think that theist religions sanctified the great gods. We tend to forget that they sanctified humans, too. Hitherto Homo sapiens had been just one actor in a cast of thousands. In the new theist drama Sapiens became the central hero around whom the entire universe revolved.
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow)
Osama Bin Laden, for all his hatred of American culture, American religion and American politics, was very fond of American dollars. How did money succeed where gods and kings failed?
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
If the curtain is indeed about to drop on Sapiens history, we members of one of its final generations should devote some time to answering one last question: what do we want to become? This question, sometimes known as the Human Enhancement question, dwarfs the debates that currently preoccupy politicians, philosophers, scholars and ordinary people. After all, today’s debate between today’s religions, ideologies, nations and classes will in all likelihood disappear along with Homo sapiens. If our successors indeed function on a different level of consciousness (or perhaps possess something beyond consciousness that we cannot even conceive), it seems doubtful that Christianity or Islam will be of interest to them, that their social organisation could be Communist or capitalist, or that their genders could be male or female.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The presumption to rule the entire world for the benefit of all its inhabitants was startling. Evolution has made Homo sapiens, like other social mammals, a xenophobic creature. Sapiens instinctively divide humanity into two parts, ‘we’ and ‘they’. We are people like you and me, who share our language, religion and customs. We are all responsible for each other, but not responsible for them. We were always distinct from them, and owe them nothing. We don’t want to see any of them in our territory, and we don’t care an iota what happens in their territory. They are barely even human. In the language of the Dinka people of the Sudan, ‘Dinka’ simply means ‘people’. People who are not Dinka are not people. The Dinka’s bitter enemies are the Nuer. What does the word Nuer mean in Nuer language? It means ‘original people’. Thousands of miles from the Sudan deserts, in the frozen ice-lands of Alaska and north-eastern Siberia, live the Yupiks. What does Yupik mean in Yupik language? It means ‘real people’. 3
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Perhaps people in modern affluent societies suffer greatly from alienation and meaninglessness despite their prosperity. And perhaps our less well-to-do ancestors found much contentment in community, religion and a bond with nature.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
One possibility is that Homo sapiens drove them to extinction. Imagine a Sapiens band reaching a Balkan valley where Neanderthals had lived for hundreds of thousands of years. The newcomers began to hunt the deer and gather the nuts and berries that were the Neanderthals’ traditional staples. Sapiens were more proficient hunters and gatherers – thanks to better technology and superior social skills – so they multiplied and spread. The less resourceful Neanderthals found it increasingly difficult to feed themselves. Their population dwindled and they slowly died out, except perhaps for one or two members who joined their Sapiens neighbours. Another possibility is that competition for resources flared up into violence and genocide. Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group. Would ancient Sapiens have been more tolerant towards an entirely different human species? It may well be that when Sapiens encountered Neanderthals, the result was the first and most significant ethnic-cleansing campaign in history.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Algunas religiones, como el cristianismo y el nazismo, han matado a millones de personas debido a un odio ardiente. El capitalismo ha matado a millones debido a una fría indiferencia ligada a la avaricia.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Yet my study of the history of religion has revealed that human beings are spiritual animals. Indeed, there is a case for arguing that Homo sapiens is also Homo religiosus. Men and women started to worship gods as soon as they became recognizably human; they created religions at the same time as they created works of art. This was not simply because they wanted to propitiate powerful forces; these early faiths expressed the wonder and mystery that seem always to have been an essential component of the human experience of this beautiful yet terrifying world. Like art, religion has been an attempt to find meaning and value in life, despite the suffering that flesh is heir to. Like any other human activity, religion can be abused, but it seems to have been something that we have always done. It was not tacked on to a primordially secular nature by manipulative kings and priests but was natural to humanity. Indeed, our current secularism is an entirely new experiment, unprecedented in human history. We have yet to see how it will work. It is also true to say that our Western liberal humanism is not something that comes naturally to us; like an appreciation of art or poetry, it has to be cultivated. Humanism is itself a religion without God—not all religions, of course, are theistic. Our ethical secular ideal has its own disciplines of mind and heart and gives people the means of finding faith in the ultimate meaning of human life that were once provided by the more conventional religions.
Karen Armstrong (History of God)
Some religions, such as Christianity and Nazism, have killed millions out of burning hatred. Capitalism has killed millions out of cold indifference coupled with greed. The Atlantic slave trade did not stem from racist hatred towards Africans. The individuals who bought the shares, the brokers who sold them, and the managers of the slave-trade companies rarely thought about the Africans. Nor did the owners of the sugar plantations. Many owners lived far from their plantations, and the only information they demanded were neat ledgers of profits and losses.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Monotheists have tended to be far more fanatical and missionary than polytheists. A religion that recognises the legitimacy of other faiths implies either that its god is not the supreme power of the universe, or that it received from God just part of the universal truth. Since monotheists have usually believed that they are in possession of the entire message of the one and only God, they have been compelled to discredit all other religions. Over the last two millennia, monotheists repeatedly tried to strengthen their hand by violently exterminating all competition.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The crucial historical role of religion has been to give superhuman legitimacy to these fragile structures. Religions assert that our laws are not the result of human caprice, but are ordained by an absolute and supreme authority. This helps place at least some fundamental laws beyond challenge, thereby ensuring social stability. Religion can thus be defined as a system of human norms and values that is founded on a belief in a superhuman order.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Even plants and animals were mechanised. Around the time that Homo sapiens was elevated to divine status by humanist religions, farm animals stopped being viewed as living creatures that could feel pain and distress, and instead came to be treated as machines.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The first universal order to appear was economic: the monetary order. The second universal order was political: the imperial order. The third universal order was religious: the order of universal religions such as Buddhism, Christianity and Islam.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
For thousands of years, philosophers, thinkers and prophets have besmirched money and called it the root of all evil. Be that as it may, money is also the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The first monotheist religion known to us appeared in Egypt, c.1350 BC, when Pharaoh Akhenaten declared that one of the minor deities of the Egyptian pantheon, the god Aten, was, in fact, the supreme power ruling the universe.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The modern age has witnessed the rise of a number of new natural-law religions, such as liberalism, Communism, capitalism, nationalism and Nazism. These creeds do not like to be called religions, and refer to themselves as ideologies. But this is just a semantic exercise.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The first monotheist religion known to us appeared in Egypt, c.1350 BC, when Pharaoh Akhenaten declared that one of the minor deities of the Egyptian pantheon, the god Aten, was, in fact, the supreme power ruling the universe. Akhenaten institutionalised the worship of Aten as the state religion and tried to check the worship of all other gods.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Money has an even darker side. For although money builds universal trust between strangers, this trust is invested not in humans, communities or sacred values, but in money itself and in the impersonal systems that back it. We do not trust the stranger, or the next-door neighbour – we trust the coin they hold. If they run out of coins, we run out of trust. As money brings down the dams of community, religion and state, the world is in danger of becoming one big and rather heartless marketplace. Hence the economic history of humankind is a delicate dance. People rely on money to facilitate cooperation with strangers, but they’re afraid it will corrupt human values and intimate relations. With one hand people willingly destroy the communal dams that held at bay the movement of money and commerce for so long. Yet with the other hand they build new dams to protect society, religion and the environment from enslavement to market forces. It is common nowadays to believe that the market always prevails, and that the dams erected by kings, priests and communities cannot long hold back the tides of money. This is naive. Brutal warriors, religious fanatics and concerned citizens have repeatedly managed to trounce calculating merchants, and even to reshape the economy. It is therefore impossible to understand the unification of humankind as a purely economic process. In order to understand how thousands of isolated cultures coalesced over time to form the global village of today, we must take into account the role of gold and silver, but we cannot disregard the equally crucial role of steel.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
For thousands of years, philosophers, thinkers and prophets have besmirched money and called it the root of all evil. Be that as it may, money is also the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively. The
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
rise of a number of new natural-law religions, such as liberalism, Communism, capitalism, nationalism and Nazism. These
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Yet, in fact, religion has been the third great unifier of humankind, alongside money and empires.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
we have only the haziest notions about the religions of ancient foragers. We assume that they were animists, but that’s not very informative. We don’t know which spirits they prayed to, which festivals they celebrated, or which taboos they observed. Most importantly, we don’t know what stories they told. It’s one of the biggest holes in our understanding of human history.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
La edad moderna ha asistido a la aparición de varias religiones de ley natural nuevas como el liberalismo, el comunismo, el capitalismo, el nacionalismo y el nazismo. A estas creencias no les gusta que se las llame religiones, y se refieren a sí mismas como ideologías. Pero esto es solo un ejercicio semántico. Si una religión es un sistema de normas y valores humanos que se fundamenta en la creencia en un orden sobrehumano, entonces el comunismo soviético no era menos religión que el islamismo. Desde
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens. De animales a dioses: Una breve historia de la humanidad)
El comunismo soviético era una religión fanática y misionera. Un comunista devoto no podía ser cristiano ni budista, y se esperaba que difundiera el evangelio de Marx y Lenin incluso al precio de su propia vida.   La religión es un sistema de normas y valores humanos que se fundamenta en la creencia en un orden sobrehumano. La teoría de la relatividad no es una religión porque (al menos hasta ahora) no existen normas y valores humanos que se fundamenten en ella. El fútbol no es una religión porque nadie aduce que sus reglas reflejen edictos sobrehumanos. El islamismo, el budismo y el comunismo son religiones porque son sistemas de normas y valores humanos que se fundamentan en la creencia de un orden sobrehumano. (Adviértase la diferencia entre «sobrehumano» y «sobrenatural». La ley de la naturaleza budista y las leyes de la historia marxista son sobrehumanas, puesto que no fueron legisladas por humanos, pero no son sobrenaturales.)   Algún lector puede sentirse incómodo con esta línea de razonamiento. Si esto hace que se sienta mejor, es libre de seguir llamando al comunismo una ideología y no una religión. Esto no supone ninguna diferencia.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens. De animales a dioses: Una breve historia de la humanidad)
The average Christian believes in the monotheist God, but also in the dualist Devil, in polytheist saints, and in animist ghosts. Scholars of religion have a name for this simultaneous avowal of different and even contradictory ideas and the combination of rituals and practices taken from different sources. It’s called syncretism. Syncretism might, in fact, be the single great world religion. The
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
We believe in a particular order not because it is objectively true, but because believing in it enables us to cooperate effectively and forge a better society. Imagined orders are not evil conspiracies or useless mirages. Rather, they are the only way large numbers of humans can cooperate effectivelyy.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
We normally think that theist religions sanctified the great gods. We tend to forget that they sanctified humans, too. Hitherto Homo sapiens had been just one actor in a cast of thousands. In the new theist drama, Sapiens became the central hero around whom the entire universe revolved.
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
Evolution has made Homo sapiens, like other social mammals, a xenophobic creature. Sapiens instinctively divide humanity into two parts, ‘we’ and ‘they’. We are people like you and me, who share our language, religion and customs. We are all responsible for each other, but not responsible for them. We were always distinct from them, and owe them nothing. We don’t want to see any of them in our territory, and we don’t care an iota what happens in their territory. They are barely even human. In the language of the Dinka people of the Sudan, ‘Dinka’ simply means ‘people’. People
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
With the rise of self- awareness, all separatisms cease to exist - all delusions cease to exist.
Abhijit Naskar (Rowdy Buddha: The First Sapiens)
Evolution has made Homo sapiens, like other social mammals, a xenophobic creature. Sapiens instinctively divide humanity into two parts, ‘us’ and ‘them’. ‘Us’ is people like you and me, who share our language, religion and customs. We are all responsible for each other, but not responsible for ‘them’. We
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The sacred texts of human history from all over the world, can never be perceived by the rational mind as texts of historical accuracy. They can only be a glaring representation of the traditions and ideals of the people. Now, it is up to the rational mind, to analyze those texts and thereafter consume the good elements from them, while discarding the rest.
Abhijit Naskar (Rowdy Buddha: The First Sapiens)
The modern age has witnessed the rise of a number of new natural-law religions, such as liberalism, Communism, capitalism, nationalism and Nazism. These creeds do not like to be called religions, and refer to themselves as ideologies.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Para comprender todo esto debemos retroceder e investigar quién es realmente Homo Sapiens, cómo el humanismo se convirtió en la religión dominante en el mundo y por qué es probable que intentar cumplir el sueño humanista cause su desintegración.
Yuval Noah Harari
Most people today successfully live up to the capitalist–consumerist ideal. The new ethic promises paradise on condition that the rich remain greedy and spend their time making more money, and that the masses give free rein to their cravings and passions – and buy more and more. This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group. Would ancient Sapiens have been more tolerant towards an entirely different human species? It may well be that when Sapiens encountered Neanderthals, the result was the first and most significant ethnic-cleansing campaign in history. Whichever
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
A second theory agrees that our unique language evolved as a means of sharing information about the world. But the most important information that needed to be conveyed was about humans, not about lions and bison. Our language evolved as a way of gossiping. 4. An ivory figurine of a ‘lion-man’ (or ‘lioness-woman’) from the Stadel Cave in Germany (c.32,000 years ago). The body is human, but the head is leonine. This is one of the first indisputable examples of art, and probably of religion, and of the ability of the human mind to imagine things that do not really exist. According to this theory Homo sapiens is primarily a social animal. Social cooperation is our key for survival and reproduction. It is not enough for individual men and women to know the whereabouts of lions and bison. It’s much more important for them to know who in their band hates whom, who is sleeping with whom, who is honest, and who is a cheat. The amount of information that one must obtain and store in order to track the ever-changing relationships of even a few dozen individuals is staggering. (In a band of fifty individuals, there are 1,225 one-on-one relationships, and countless more complex social combinations.) All apes show a keen interest in such social information, but they have trouble gossiping effectively. Neanderthals and archaic Homo sapiens probably also had a hard time talking behind each other’s backs – a much maligned ability which is in fact essential for cooperation in large numbers.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Most likely, both the gossip theory and the there-is-a-lion-near-the-river theory are valid. Yet the truly unique feature of our language is not its ability to transmit information about men and lions. Rather, it’s the ability to transmit information about things that do not exist at all. As far as we know, only Sapiens can talk about entire kinds of entities that they have never seen, touched or smelled. Legends, myths, gods and religions appeared for the first time with the Cognitive Revolution. Many animals and human species could previously say, ‘Careful! A lion!’ Thanks to the Cognitive Revolution, Homo sapiens acquired the ability to say, ‘The lion is the guardian spirit of our tribe.’ This ability to speak about fictions is the most unique feature of Sapiens language. It’s
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
If a religion is a system of human norms and values that is founded on belief in a superhuman order, then Soviet Communism was no less a religion than Islam. Islam
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
We do not trust the stranger, or the next-door neighbour – we trust the coin they hold. If they run out of coins, we run out of trust. As money brings down the dams of community, religion and state, the world is in danger of becoming one big and rather heartless marketplace. Hence
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Christians and Muslims who could not agree on religious beliefs could nevertheless agree on a monetary belief, because whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something. For
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The modern age has witnessed the rise of a number of new natural-law religions, such as liberalism, Communism, capitalism, nationalism and Nazism. These creeds do not like to be called religions, and refer to themselves as ideologies. But this is just a semantic exercise. If
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Each of the sapiens brains generates its own perception of God in uniquely different ways. Ergo, it imposes different qualities of meaning and value on God. You see God the way your brain wants you to see it. There is no right and wrong, or fact and fiction on this matter. It is all personal.
Abhijit Naskar (Autobiography of God: Biopsy of A Cognitive Reality)
We do not trust the stranger, or the next-door neighbour, we trust the coin they hold. If they run out of coins, we run out of trust. As money brings down the dams of community, religion and state, the world is in danger of becoming one big and rather heartless marketplace
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Most religions and philosophies have consequently taken a very different approach to happiness than liberalism does.3 The Buddhist position is particularly interesting. Buddhism has assigned the question of happiness more importance than perhaps any other human creed. For 2,500 years, Buddhists have systematically studied the essence and causes of happiness, which is why there is a growing interest among the scientific community both in their philosophy and their meditation practices. Buddhism shares the basic insight of the biological approach to happiness, namely that happiness results from processes occurring within one’s body, and not from events in the outside world. However, starting from the same insight, Buddhism reaches very different conclusions. According to Buddhism, most people identify happiness with pleasant feelings, while identifying suffering with unpleasant feelings. People consequently ascribe immense importance to what they feel, craving to experience more and more pleasures, while avoiding pain. Whatever we do throughout our lives, whether scratching our leg, fidgeting slightly in the chair, or fighting world wars, we are just trying to get pleasant feelings. The problem, according to Buddhism, is that our feelings are no more than fleeting vibrations, changing every moment, like the ocean waves. If five minutes ago I felt joyful and purposeful, now these feelings are gone, and I might well feel sad and dejected. So if I want to experience pleasant feelings, I have to constantly chase them, while driving away the unpleasant feelings. Even if I succeed, I immediately have to start all over again, without ever getting any lasting reward for my troubles. What is so important about obtaining such ephemeral prizes? Why struggle so hard to achieve something that disappears almost as soon as it arises? According to Buddhism, the root of suffering is neither the feeling of pain nor of sadness nor even of meaninglessness. Rather, the real root of suffering is this never-ending and pointless pursuit of ephemeral feelings, which causes us to be in a constant state of tension, restlessness and dissatisfaction. Due to this pursuit, the mind is never satisfied. Even when experiencing pleasure, it is not content, because it fears this feeling might soon disappear, and craves that this feeling should stay and intensify. People are liberated from suffering not when they experience this or that fleeting pleasure, but rather when they understand the impermanent nature of all their feelings, and stop craving them. This is the aim of Buddhist meditation practices. In meditation, you are supposed to closely observe your mind and body, witness the ceaseless arising and passing of all your feelings, and realise how pointless it is to pursue them. When the pursuit stops, the mind becomes very relaxed, clear and satisfied. All kinds of feelings go on arising and passing – joy, anger, boredom, lust – but once you stop craving particular feelings, you can just accept them for what they are. You live in the present moment instead of fantasising about what might have been.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
In contrast, most people today successfully live up to the capitalist–consumerist ideal. The new ethic promises paradise on condition that the rich remain greedy and spend their time making more money, and that the masses give free rein to their cravings and passions – and buy more and more. This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do. How, though, do we know that we’ll really get paradise in return? We’ve seen it on television.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Money has an even darker side. For although money builds universal trust between strangers, this trust is invested not in humans, communities or sacred values, but in money itself and in the impersonal systems that back it. We do not trust the stranger, or the next-door neighbour – we trust the coin they hold. If they run out of coins, we run out of trust. As money brings down the dams of community, religion and state, the world is in danger of becoming one big and rather heartless marketplace. Hence the economic history of humankind is a delicate dance. People rely on money to facilitate cooperation with strangers, but they’re afraid it will corrupt human values and intimate relations. With one hand people willingly destroy the communal dams that held at bay the movement of money and commerce for so long. Yet with the other hand they build new dams to protect society, religion and the environment from enslavement to market forces.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Around the time that Homo sapiens was elevated to divine status by humanist religions, farm animals stopped being viewed as living creatures that could feel pain and distress, and instead came to be treated as machines. Today these animals are often mass-produced in factory-like facilities, their bodies shaped in accordance with industrial needs. They pass their entire lives as cogs in a giant production line, and the length and quality of their existence is determined by the profits and losses of business corporations. Even when the industry takes care to keep them alive, reasonably healthy and well fed, it has no intrinsic interest in the animals’ social and psychological needs (except when these have a direct impact on production).
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Yet the truly unique feature of our language is not its ability to transmit information about men and lions. Rather, it’s the ability to transmit information about things that do not exist at all. As far as we know, only Sapiens can talk about entire kinds of entities that they have never seen, touched or smelled. Legends, myths, gods and religions appeared for the first time with the Cognitive Revolution. Many animals and human species could previously say, ‘Careful! A lion!’ Thanks to the Cognitive Revolution, Homo sapiens acquired the ability to say, ‘The lion is the guardian spirit of our tribe.’ This ability to speak about fictions is the most unique feature of Sapiens language.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
us. Christians and Muslims who could not agree on religious beliefs could nevertheless agree on a monetary belief, because whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Scholars of religion have a name for this simultaneous avowal of different and even contradictory ideas and the combination of rituals and practices taken from different sources. It’s called syncretism. Syncretism might, in fact, be the single great world religion.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
During the first millennium BC, religions of an altogether new kind began to spread through Afro-Asia. The newcomers, such as Jainism and Buddhism in India, Daoism and Confucianism in China, and Stoicism, Cynicism and Epicureanism in the Mediterranean basin, were characterised by their disregard of gods. These creeds maintained that the superhuman order governing the world is the product of natural laws rather than of divine wills and whims.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
universal and missionary religions began to appear only in the first millennium BC.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
In truth, our concepts 'natural' and 'unnatural' are taken not from biology, but from Christian theology. The theological meaning of 'natural' is 'in accordance with the intentions of the God who created nature […] To use [our body] differently than God intends is 'unnatural.' But evolution has no purpose.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Religion is a system of human norms and values that is founded on belief in a superhuman order. The theory of relativity is not a religion, because (at least so far) there are no human norms and values that are founded on it. Football is not a religion because nobody argues that its rules reflect superhuman edicts. Islam, Buddhism and Communism are all religions, because all are systems of human norms and values that are founded on belief in a superhuman order.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Another possibility is that competition for resources flared up into violence and genocide. Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin color, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group.
Worth Books (Summary and Analysis of Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind: Based on the Book by Yuval Noah Harari (Smart Summaries))
Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don't know each other and don't trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Yet the truly unique feature of our language is not its ability to transmit information about men and lions. Rather, it’s the ability to transmit information about things that do not exist at all. As far as we know, only Sapiens can talk about entire kinds of entities that they have never seen, touched or smelled. Legends, myths, gods and religions
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Still, if we combine all the victims of all these persecutions, it turns out that in these three centuries, the polytheistic Romans killed no more than a few thousand Christians.1 In contrast, over the course of the next 1,500 years, Christians slaughtered Christians by the millions to defend slightly different interpretations of the religion of love and compassion.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The modern age has witnessed the rise of a number of new natural-law religions, such as liberalism, Communism, capitalism, nationalism and Nazism.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
People who do not believe in the same god or obey the same king are more than willing to use the same money. Osama Bin Laden, for all his hatred of American culture, American religion and American politics, was very fond of American dollars. How did money succeed where gods and kings failed?
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The last 300 years are often depicted as an age of growing secularism, in which religions have increasingly lost their importance. If we are talking about theist religions, this is largely correct. But if we take into consideration natural-law religions, then modernity turns out to be an age of intense religious fervour, unparalleled missionary efforts, and the bloodiest wars of religion in history. The modern age has witnessed the rise of a number of new natural-law religions, such as liberalism, Communism, capitalism, nationalism and Nazism. These creeds do not like to be called religions, and refer to themselves as ideologies. But this is just a semantic exercise. If a religion is a system of human norms and values that is founded on belief in a superhuman order, then Soviet Communism was no less a religion than Islam.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Communism had martyrs, holy wars and heresies, such as Trotskyism. Soviet Communism was a fanatical and missionary religion. A devout Communist could not be a Christian or a Buddhist, and was expected to spread the gospel of Marx and Lenin even at the price of his or her life.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Yet why should Chinese, Indians, Muslims and Spaniards – who belonged to very different cultures that failed to agree about much of anything – nevertheless share the belief in gold? Why didn’t it happen that Spaniards believed in gold, while Muslims believed in barley, Indians in cowry shells, and Chinese in rolls of silk? Economists have a ready answer. Once trade connects two areas, the forces of supply and demand tend to equalise the prices of transportable goods. In order to understand why, consider a hypothetical case. Assume that when regular trade opened between India and the Mediterranean, Indians were uninterested in gold, so it was almost worthless. But in the Mediterranean, gold was a coveted status symbol, hence its value was high. What would happen next? Merchants travelling between India and the Mediterranean would notice the difference in the value of gold. In order to make a profit, they would buy gold cheaply in India and sell it dearly in the Mediterranean. Consequently, the demand for gold in India would skyrocket, as would its value. At the same time the Mediterranean would experience an influx of gold, whose value would consequently drop. Within a short time the value of gold in India and the Mediterranean would be quite similar. The mere fact that Mediterranean people believed in gold would cause Indians to start believing in it as well. Even if Indians still had no real use for gold, the fact that Mediterranean people wanted it would be enough to make the Indians value it. Similarly, the fact that another person believes in cowry shells, or dollars, or electronic data, is enough to strengthen our own belief in them, even if that person is otherwise hated, despised or ridiculed by us. Christians and Muslims who could not agree on religious beliefs could nevertheless agree on a monetary belief, because whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something. For thousands of years, philosophers, thinkers and prophets have besmirched money and called it the root of all evil. Be that as it may, money is also the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
the polytheistic Romans killed no more than a few thousand Christians.1 In contrast, over the course of the next 1,500 years, Christians slaughtered Christians by the millions to defend slightly different interpretations of the religion of love and compassion.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
figure, said Freud.) Durkheim argued, in contrast, that Homo sapiens was really Homo duplex, a creature who exists at two levels: as an individual and as part of the larger society. From his studies of religion he
Jonathan Haidt (The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion)
most people today successfully live up to the capitalist–consumerist ideal. The new ethic promises paradise on condition that the rich remain greedy and spend their time making more money, and that the masses give free rein to their cravings and passions – and buy more and more. This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do. How, though, do we know that we’ll really get paradise in return? We’ve seen it on television.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The capitalist–consumerist ethic is revolutionary in another respect. Most previous ethical systems presented people with a pretty tough deal. They were promised paradise, but only if they cultivated compassion and tolerance, overcame craving and anger, and restrained their selfish interests. This was too tough for most. The history of ethics is a sad tale of wonderful ideals that nobody can live up to. Most Christians did not imitate Christ, most Buddhists failed to follow Buddha, and most Confucians would have caused Confucius a temper tantrum. In contrast, most people today successfully live up to the capitalist–consumerist ideal. The new ethic promises paradise on condition that the rich remain greedy and spend their time making more money, and that the masses give free rein to their cravings and passions – and buy more and more. This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do. How, though, do we know that we’ll really get paradise in return? We’ve seen it on television.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Another possibility is that competition for resources flared up into violence and genocide. Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group. Would ancient Sapiens have been more tolerant towards an entirely different human species? It may well be that when Sapiens encountered Neanderthals, the result was the first and most significant ethnic-cleansing campaign in history.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
with this line of reasoning. If it makes you feel better, you are free to go on calling Communism an ideology rather than a religion. It makes no difference. We can divide creeds into god-centred religions and godless ideologies that claim to be based on natural laws. But then, to be consistent, we would need to catalogue at least some Buddhist, Daoist and Stoic sects as ideologies rather than religions. Conversely, we should note that belief in gods persists within many modern ideologies, and that some of them, most notably liberalism, make little sense without this belief. It would be impossible to survey here the history of all the new modern creeds, especially because there are no clear boundaries between them. They are no less syncretic than monotheism and popular Buddhism. Just as a Buddhist could worship Hindu deities, and just as a monotheist could believe in the existence of Satan, so the typical American nowadays is simultaneously a nationalist (she believes in the existence of an American nation with a special role to play in history), a free-market capitalist (she believes that open competition and the pursuit of self-interest are the best ways to create a prosperous society), and a liberal humanist (she believes that humans have been endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights). Nationalism will be discussed in Chapter 18. Capitalism – the most successful of the modern religions – gets a whole chapter, Chapter 16, which expounds its principal beliefs and rituals. In the remaining pages of this chapter I will address the humanist religions. Theist religions focus on the worship of gods. Humanist religions worship humanity, or more correctly, Homo sapiens. Humanism is a belief that Homo sapiens has a unique and sacred nature, which is fundamentally different from the nature of all other animals and of all other phenomena. Humanists believe that the unique nature of Homo sapiens is the most important thing in the world, and it determines the meaning of everything that happens in the universe. The supreme good is the good of Homo sapiens. The rest of the world and all other beings exist solely for the benefit of this species. All humanists worship humanity, but they do not agree on its definition. Humanism has split into three rival sects that fight over the exact definition of ‘humanity’, just as rival Christian sects fought over the exact definition of God. Today, the most important humanist sect is liberal humanism, which believes that ‘humanity’ is a quality of individual humans, and that the liberty of individuals is therefore sacrosanct. According to liberals, the sacred nature of humanity resides within each and every individual Homo sapiens. The inner core of individual humans gives meaning to the world, and is the source for all ethical and political authority. If we encounter an ethical or political dilemma, we should look inside and listen to our inner voice – the voice of humanity. The chief commandments of liberal humanism are meant to protect the liberty of this inner voice against intrusion or harm. These commandments are collectively known as ‘human rights’. This, for example, is why liberals object to torture and the death penalty. In early modern Europe, murderers were thought to violate and destabilise the cosmic order. To bring the cosmos back to balance, it was necessary to torture and publicly execute the criminal, so that everyone could see the order re-established. Attending gruesome executions was a favourite pastime for Londoners and Parisians in the era of Shakespeare and Molière. In today’s Europe, murder is seen as a violation of the sacred nature of humanity. In order to restore order, present-day Europeans do not torture and execute criminals. Instead, they punish a murderer in what they see as the most ‘humane
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
This is the first religion in history whose followers actually do what they are asked to do. How, though, do we know that we’ll really get paradise in return? We’ve seen it on television.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
We have a unique and totally unprecedented ability to innovate and transmit information and ideas from person to person. At first, modern human cultural change accelerated gradually, causing important but incremental shifts in how our ancestors hunted and gathered. Then, starting about 50,000 years ago, a cultural and technological revolution occurred that helped humans colonize the entire planet. Ever since then, cultural evolution has become an increasingly rapid, dominant, and powerful engine of change. Therefore, the best answer to the question of what makes Homo sapiens special and why we are the only human species alive is that we evolved a few slight changes in our hardware that helped ignite a software revolution that is still ongoing at an escalating pace. Who Were the First Homo sapiens? Every religion has a different explanation for when and where our species, H. sapiens, originated. According to the Hebrew Bible, God created Adam from dust in the Garden of Eden and then made Eve from his rib; in other traditions, the first humans were vomited up by gods, fashioned from mud, or birthed by enormous turtles. Science, however, provides a single account of the origin of modern humans. Further, this event has been so well studied and tested using multiple lines of evidence that we can state with a reasonable degree of confidence that modern humans evolved from archaic humans in Africa at least 200,000 years ago.
Daniel E. Lieberman (The Story of the Human Body: Evolution, Health and Disease)
Homo sapiens, discovering God singular and alone, discovered the human being singular and alone. There is no greater dignity than that
Jonathan Sacks (The Great Partnership: Science, Religion, and the Search for Meaning)
If a religion is a system of human norms and values that is founded on belief in a superhuman order, then Soviet Communism was no less a religion than Islam.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
The monotheist religions expelled the gods through the front door with a lot of fanfare, only to take them back in through the side window. Christianity, for example, developed its own pantheon of saints, whose cults differed little from those of the polytheistic gods.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
This new religion has had a decisive influence on the development of modern science, too. Scientific research is usually funded by either governments or private businesses. When capitalist governments and businesses consider investing in a particular scientific project, the first questions are usually, ‘Will this project enable us to increase production and profits? Will it produce economic growth?’ A project that can’t clear these hurdles has little chance of finding a sponsor. No history of modern science can leave capitalism out of the picture. Conversely, the history of capitalism is unintelligible without taking science into account. Capitalism’s belief in perpetual economic growth flies in the face of almost everything we know about the universe. A society of wolves would be extremely foolish to believe that the supply of sheep would keep on growing indefinitely. The human economy has nevertheless managed to keep on growing throughout the modern era, thanks only to the fact that scientists come up with another discovery or gadget every few years – such as the continent of America, the internal combustion engine, or genetically engineered sheep. Banks and governments print money, but ultimately, it is the scientists who foot the bill.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
monotheists have usually believed that they are in possession of the entire message of the one and only God, they have been compelled to discredit all other religions. Over
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Legends, myths, gods and religions appeared for the first time with the Cognitive Revolution.(…) This ability to speak about fictions is the most unique feature of Sapiens language.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
In contrast, over the course of the next 1,500 years, Christians slaughtered Christians by the millions to defend slightly different interpretations of the religion of love and compassion.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
religion has been the third great unifier of humankind, alongside money and empires.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
O My Dear Earthling (A Sonnet) O My Dear Earthling open your doors, For the supreme festival has arrived. The whole wide nature is rejoicing in love, Step outside cultures and celebrate life. The sky is engulfed with billions of smiles, Smiles that know not pettiness of society. Open your soul O Mighty Earthling, The wind of amity is here bearing unity. No more bounds on love, race and religion, Prejudice suits not a species of sapiens. Value we must character over conformity, It’s time we throw away all our allegiance. On guard we stand against differentiation, Hear all peddlers of hate – we are all one.
Abhijit Naskar (Revolution Indomable)
Tolerance is not a Sapiens trademark. In modern times, a small difference in skin colour, dialect or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about exterminating another group. Would ancient Sapiens have been more tolerant towards an entirely different human species? It may well be that when Sapiens encountered Neanderthals, the result was the first and most significant ethnic-cleansing campaign in history.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
We do not trust the stranger, or the next-door neighbor-- we trust the coin they hold. If they run out of coins, we run out of trust. As money brings down the dams of community, religion and state, the world is in danger of becoming one big and rather heartless marketplace.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Teilhard also had glamour to burn, three kinds of it. At the age of thirty-two he had been the French star of the most sensational archaeological find of all time, the Piltdown man, the so-called missing link in the evolution of ape to man, in a dig near Lewes, England, led by the Englishman Charles Dawson. One year later, when World War I broke out, Teilhard refused the chance to serve as a chaplain in favor of going to the front as a stretcher bearer rescuing the wounded in the midst of combat. He was decorated for bravery in that worst-of-allinfantry-wars’ bloodiest battles: Ypres, Artois, Verdun, Villers-Cotterêts, and the Marne. Meantime, in the lulls between battles he had begun writing the treatise with which he hoped to unify all of science and all of religion, all of matter and all of spirit, heralding God’s plan to turn all the world, from inert rock to humankind, into a single sublime Holy Spirit. “With the evolution of Man,” he wrote, “a new law of Nature has come into force—that of convergence.” Biological evolution had created step one, “expansive convergence.” Now, in the twentieth century, by means of technology, God was creating “compressive convergence.” Thanks to technology, “the hitherto scattered” species Homo sapiens was being united by a single “nervous system for humanity,” a “living membrane,” a single “stupendous thinking machine,” a unified consciousness that would cover the earth like “a thinking skin,” a “noösphere,” to use Teilhard’s favorite neologism. And just what technology was going to bring about this convergence, this noosphere? On this point, in later years, Teilhard was quite specific: radio, television, the telephone, and “those astonishing electronic computers, pulsating with signals at the rate of hundreds of thousands a second.
Tom Wolfe (Hooking Up)