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Page 11 text:
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Page 10 text:
"Perhaps the most ominous aspect at present is that we seem to lose
control over our own system. We execute the decisions which our com-
puter calculations make for us. We as human beings have no aims except
producing and consuming more and more. We will nothing, nor do we
not-will anything. We are threatened with extinction by nuclear weapons
and with inner deadness by the passiveness which our exclusion from res-
ponsible decision making engenders.
"How did it happen? How did man, at the very height of his victory
over nature, become the prisoner of his own creation and in serious danger
of destroying himself?
"In the search for scientific truth, man came across knowledge that he
could use for the domination of nature. He had tremendous success. But
in the one-sided emphasis on technique and material consumption, man
lost touch with himself, with life. Having lost religious faith and the
humanistic values bound up with it, he concentrated on technical and ma-
terial values and lost the capacity for deep emotional experiences, for the
joy and sadness that accompany them. The machine he build became so
powerful that it developed its own program, which now determines man's
"At the moment, one of the gravest sympyoms of our system is the
fact that our economy rests upon arms production Cplus maintenance
of the whole defense establishmentj and on the principle of maximal
consumption. We have a well-functioning economic system under the con-
dition that we are producing goods which threaten us with physical destruc-
tion, that we tranform the individual into a total passive consumer and
thus deaden him, and that we have created a bureaucracy which makes the
individual feel impotent.
"Are we confronted with a tragic, insolvable dilemma? Must we pro-
duce sick people in order to have a healthy economy, or can we use our
material resources, our inventions, our computers to serve the ends of man?
Must individuals be passive and dependent in order to have strong and
- Erich Fromm
Page 12 text:
Mankind is nothing without individual
men. We do not seem to be on the way to
greater individuality, but rather we seem
to be becoming an increasingly manipulat-
ed mass civilization, a completely mechan-
ized society, in which man is transformed
into nothing more than a part of the total
machine, well fed and entertained, yet pas-
sive, unalive, and with little feeling. But
such a "system" need not continue if we
can preceive its inherent dangers. Instead,
through self-realization and a kind of re-
birth, we can achieve a new awareness
of sensitivity to life, and, through these
things, we can grow to our fullest potential.
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