„In my eyes, concepts of theology have only as much value as they are able to interpret experience. It seems to me that we have long reached the point where we theologians only talk to ourselves and debate with our own history of concepts.“

—  Eugen Drewermann, Wort des Heils, Wort der Heilung. p 149 (1989)
Eugen Drewermann Foto
Eugen Drewermann6
katholischer Theologe und Psychotherapeut 1940

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„For you a hundred years is a very long time; for us it does not amount to much. I knew men who had seen Napoleon with their own eyes. We have our conception of history and it cannot be the same as yours.“

—  Georges Clemenceau French politician 1841 - 1929
Prime Minister, Remarks to Woodrow Wilson (28 March 1919), quoted in Anthony Adamthwaite, Grandeur and Misery: France's Bid for Power in Europe 1914-1940 (London: Arnold, 1995), p. 49.

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„It seems as though we have arrived at a point in history, closest to the instincts and remotest from ideals, where the self stands like a wall between God and man.“

—  Abraham Joshua Heschel Polish-American Conservative Judaism Rabbi 1907 - 1972
Moral Grandeur and Spiritual Audacity: Essays (1997), Context: It seems as though we have arrived at a point in history, closest to the instincts and remotest from ideals, where the self stands like a wall between God and man. It is the period of a divine eclipse. We sail the seas, we count the stars, we split the atom, but never ask: Is there nothing but a dead universe and our reckless curiosity? Primitive man's humble ear was alert to the inwardness of the world, while the modern man is presumptuous enough to claim that he has the sole monopoly over soul and spirit, that he is the only thing alive in the universe. … But there is a dawn of wonder and surprise in our souls, when the things that surround us suddenly slip off the triteness with which we have endowed them, and their strangeness opens like a gap between them and our mind, a gap that no words can fill. … What is the incense of self-esteem to him who tastes in all things the flavor of the utterly unknown, the fragrance of what is beyond our senses? There are neither skies nor oceans, neither birds nor trees — there are only signs of what can never be perceived. And all power and beauty are mere straws in the fire of a pure man's vision. "The Holy Dimension", p. 329

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„If we once — and for so long — lived in balance with nature and each other, we should be able to do so again. The catastrophe that’s overtaking us has deep roots, but our previous state of natural anarchy reaches much further into our shared history.“

—  John Zerzan American anarchist and primitivist philosopher and author 1943
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„All these things have happened in our history, and we need to talk about them. What kind of country are we that our history is so tragic?“

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„When we estrange ourselves from history we do not enlarge, we diminish ourselves, even as individuals. We subtract from our lives one meaning which they do in fact possess, whether we recognize it or not. We cannot help living in history. We can only fail to be aware of it.“

—  Robert L. Heilbroner American historian and economist 1919 - 2005
The Future As History (1960), Context: In an age which no longer waits patiently through this life for the rewards of the next, it is a crushing spiritual blow to lose one's sense of participation in mankind's journey, and to see only a huge milling-around, a collective living-out of lives with no larger purpose than the days which each accumulates. When we estrange ourselves from history we do not enlarge, we diminish ourselves, even as individuals. We subtract from our lives one meaning which they do in fact possess, whether we recognize it or not. We cannot help living in history. We can only fail to be aware of it. If we are to meet, endure, and transcend the trials and defeats of the future — for trials and defeats there are certain to be — it can only be from a point of view which, seeing the future as part of the sweep of history, enables us to establish our place in that immense procession in which is incorporated whatever hope humankind may have. Chapter IV, Part 9, The Grand Dynamic of History, p. 209

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„We need to move forward and beyond the point where we endlessly pursue the demons bequeathed us by our history.“

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„The friends of peace in bourgeois circles believe that world peace and disarmament can be realised within the frame-work of the present social order, whereas we, who base ourselves on the materialistic conception of history and on scientific socialism, are convinced that militarism can only be abolished from the world with the destruction of the capitalist class state.“

—  Rosa Luxemburg Polish Marxist theorist, socialist philosopher, and revolutionary 1871 - 1919
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„We are at a turning point in our history.“

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Presidency (1977–1981), The Crisis of Confidence (1979), Context: We know the strength of America. We are strong. We can regain our unity. We can regain our confidence. We are the heirs of generations who survived threats much more powerful and awesome than those that challenge us now. Our fathers and mothers were strong men and women who shaped a new society during the Great Depression, who fought world wars, and who carved out a new charter of peace for the world. We ourselves are the same Americans who just 10 years ago put a man on the Moon. We are the generation that dedicated our society to the pursuit of human rights and equality. And we are the generation that will win the war on the energy problem and in that process rebuild the unity and confidence of America. We are at a turning point in our history. There are two paths to choose. One is a path I've warned about tonight, the path that leads to fragmentation and self- interest. Down that road lies a mistaken idea of freedom, the right to grasp for ourselves some advantage over others. That path would be one of constant conflict between narrow interests ending in chaos and immobility. It is a certain route to failure. All the traditions of our past, all the lessons of our heritage, all the promises of our future point to another path, the path of common purpose and the restoration of American values. That path leads to true freedom for our Nation and ourselves. We can take the first steps down that path as we begin to solve our energy problem. Energy will be the immediate test of our ability to unite this Nation, and it can also be the standard around which we rally. On the battlefield of energy we can win for our Nation a new confidence, and we can seize control again of our common destiny.

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„There is no history of mankind, there is only an indefinite number of histories of all kinds of aspects of human life. And one of these is the history of political power. This is elevated into the history of the world. But this, I hold, is an offence against every decent conception of mankind.“

—  Karl Popper, buch Die offene Gesellschaft und ihre Feinde
The Open Society and Its Enemies (1945), Context: There is no history of mankind, there is only an indefinite number of histories of all kinds of aspects of human life. And one of these is the history of political power. This is elevated into the history of the world. But this, I hold, is an offence against every decent conception of mankind. It is hardly better than to treat the history of embezzlement or of robbery or of poisoning as the history of mankind. For the history of power politics is nothing but the history of international crime and mass murder (including it is true, some of the attempts to suppress them). This history is taught in schools, and some of the greatest criminals are extolled as heroes. Vol 2, Ch. 25 "Has History any Meaning?" Variant: There is no history of mankind, there are only many histories of all kinds of aspects of human life. And one of these is the history of political power. This is elevated into the history of the world.

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„We Americans write our own history. And the chapters of which we're proudest are the ones where we had the courage to change.“

—  Al Gore 45th Vice President of the United States 1948
Context: We Americans write our own history. And the chapters of which we're proudest are the ones where we had the courage to change. Time and again, Americans have seen the need for change, and have taken the initiative to bring that change to life. Speech at the Democratic National Convention (28 August 1996) http://www.pbs.org/newshour/convention96/floor_speeches/gore_8-28.html.

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