The most striking fact of evolution

What I regard as the most important point is not the sheer autonomy and anonymity of the third world, or the admittely very important point that was always owe almost everything to our predecessors and to the tradtion which they created: that we thus owe to the third world especially our rationality — that is, our subjective mind, the practice of critical and self-critical ways of thinking and the corresponding dispositions. More important than all this, I suggest, is the relation between ourselves and our work, and what can be gained for us from this relation.

[…] I suggest that everything depends upon the give-and-take between ourselves and our work; upon the product which we contribute to the third world, and upon that constant feed-back that can be amplified by conscious self-criticism. The incredible thing about life, evolution, and mental growth, is just this method of give-and-take, this inter­action between our actions and their results by which we constantly transcend ourselves, our talents, our gifts.

This self-transcendence is the most striking and important fact of all life and all evolution, and especially of human evolution. [147]

1 comment

  1. This is, I suppose, exactly what Deutsch means by “the beginning of infinity”.

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