“THE GREATEST OF ALL THE ACCOMPLISHMENTS OF 20TH-CENTURY SCIENCE has been the discovery of human ignorance.” Lewis Thomas, Lives of a Cell. “OUR IGNORANCE, OF COURSE, HAS ALWAYS BEEN WITH US, AND ALWAYS WILL BE. What is new is our awareness of it, our awakening to its fathomless dimensions, and it is this, more than anything else, that marks the coming of age of our species.” Timothy Ferris, Coming of Age in the Milky Way.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

The Great Silence

Buddha famously said, “I teach only two things: suffering and liberation from suffering.” Accordingly, he was uninterested in metaphysical speculations. There is a moment recorded in Buddhist literature in which a student asked Buddha (Siddhartha Guatama) about survival or non-survival of death. Buddha simply sat quietly and did not answer the question. This has come to be called “The Great Silence.”