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jerryking : tolerance   27

Da Vinci code: what the tech age can learn from Leonardo
April 26, 2019 | Financial Times | by Ian Goldin.

While Leonardo is recognised principally for his artistic genius, barely a dozen paintings can be unequivocally attributed to him. In life, he defined himself not as an artist but as an engineer and architect......History does not repeat itself, but it rhymes. The Renaissance catapulted Italy from the Medieval age to become the most advanced place on Earth. Then, as now, change brought immense riches to some and growing anxiety and disillusionment to others. We too live in an age of accelerating change, one that has provoked its own fierce backlash. What lessons can we draw from Leonardo and his time to ensure that we not only benefit from a new flourishing, but that progress will be sustained? When we think of the Renaissance, we think of Florence. Leonardo arrived in the city in the mid 1460s, and as a teenager was apprenticed to the painter Verrocchio. The city was already an incubator for ideas. At the centre of the European wool trade, by the late 14th century Florence had become the home of wealthy merchants including the Medicis, who were bankers to the Papal Court. The city’s rapid advances were associated with the information and ideas revolution that defines the Renaissance. Johann Gutenberg had used moveable type to publish his Bible in the early 1450s, and between the time of Leonardo’s birth in 1452 and his 20th birthday, some 15m books were printed, more than all the European scribes had produced over the previous 1,500 years.

..as Leonardo knew, and the Silicon Valley techno-evangelists too often neglect, information revolutions don’t only allow good ideas to flourish. They also provide a platform for dangerous ideas. The Zuckerberg information revolution can pose a similar threat to that of Gutenberg.

In the battle of ideas, populists are able to mobilise the disaffected more effectively than cerebral scientists, decently disciplined innovators and the moderate and often silent majority. For progress to prevail, evidence-based, innovative and reasoned thinking must triumph.
.....Genius thrived in the Renaissance because of the supportive ecosystem that aided the creation and dissemination of knowledge — which then was crushed by the fearful inquisitions. Today, tolerance and evidence-based argument are again under threat.
accelerated_lifecycles  architecture  broad-based_scientific_enquiry  capitalization  cross-disciplinary  cross-pollination  curiosity  dangerous_ideas  digital_economy  diversity  engineering  evidence_based  Florence  genius  globalization  human_potential  ideas  immigrants  Italy  industry_expertise  Johan_Gutenberg  lessons_learned  Leonardo_da_Vinci  Medicis  medieval  physical_place  polymaths  observations  Renaissance  Renaissance_Man  Silicon_Valley  silo_mentality  tolerance  unevenly_distributed  visionaries 
april 2019 by jerryking
How Covenants Make Us - The New York Times
David Brooks APRIL 5, 2016

there are four big forces coursing through modern societies. Global migration is leading to demographic diversity. Economic globalization is creating wider opportunity but also inequality. The Internet is giving people more choices over what to buy and pay attention to. A culture of autonomy valorizes individual choice and self-determination.

All of these forces have liberated the individual, or at least well-educated individuals, but they have been bad for national cohesion and the social fabric. Income inequality challenges economic cohesion as the classes divide. Demographic diversity challenges cultural cohesion as different ethnic groups rub against one another. The emphasis on individual choice challenges community cohesion and settled social bonds.....Strong identities can come only when people are embedded in a rich social fabric. They can come only when we have defined social roles...You take away a rich social fabric and what you are left with is people who are uncertain about who they really are....how do we preserve individual freedom while strengthening social solidarity?

In her new book “Commonwealth and Covenant,” Marcia Pally of N.Y.U. and Fordham offers a clarifying concept. What we want, she suggests, is “separability amid situatedness.” We want to go off and create and explore and experiment with new ways of thinking and living. But we also want to be situated — embedded in loving families and enveloping communities, thriving within a healthy cultural infrastructure that provides us with values and goals.

Creating situatedness requires a different way of thinking. When we go out and do a deal, we make a contract. When we are situated within something it is because we have made a covenant. A contract protects interests, Pally notes, but a covenant protects relationships. A covenant exists between people who understand they are part of one another. It involves a vow to serve the relationship that is sealed by love: Where you go, I will go. Where you stay, I will stay. Your people shall be my people....Tolerance, he said, means, “I’m going to stomach your right to be different, but if you disappear off the face of the earth I’m no worse off.” Patriotism, on the other hand, means “love of country, which necessitates love of each other, that we have to be a nation that aspires for love, which recognizes that you have worth and dignity and I need you. You are part of my whole, part of the promise of this country.”
David_Brooks  community  social_collaboration  social_integration  covenants  patriotism  books  Commonwealth  values  social_fabric  social_cohesion  social_contract  tolerance  autonomy  individual_choice  self-determination  college-educated  pay_attention 
april 2016 by jerryking
Confederation: Canada’s early lesson in tolerance - The Globe and Mail
MOIRA DANN
Special to The Globe and Mail
Published Monday, Oct. 12, 2015

It wasn’t dissimilar in 1864 Quebec. Many of those top-hatted, suit-coated fellows could do little more than tolerate each other because of political differences and ancient slights. But they had gathered in Quebec a little more than a month after an initial meeting in Charlottetown that had sketched an outline of what a new Canada might look like. They were following up to colour it in.

John A. Macdonald and George Brown of Canada West (Ontario) and George-Étienne Cartier of Canada East (Quebec) were the primary instigators of the Confederation discussions; now they had to make sure all the goodwill flowing from September’s conference in Charlottetown would be shaped into a document. They had never been anything like friends but they had shelved their partisan, political and personal rancour when they took part in what’s known as the Great Coalition and then approached Maritime leaders about uniting British North America.
anniversaries  Canadian  Confederation  George_Brown  George-Étienne_Cartier  history  leaders  nation_builders  politicians  Sir_John_A._Macdonald  tolerance 
october 2015 by jerryking
The Source of New York’s Greatness - NYTimes.com
By RUSSELL SHORTO SEPT. 7, 2014 | NYT |

In founding New Amsterdam in the 1620s, the Dutch planted the seeds for the city’s remarkable flowering. Specifically, the Dutch brought two concepts that became part of New York’s foundation: tolerance of religious differences and an entrepreneurial, free-trading culture.

In the 17th century, when it was universally held elsewhere in Europe that a strong society required intolerance as official policy, the Dutch Republic was a melting pot. The Dutch codified the concept of tolerance of religious differences, built a vast commercial empire and spawned a golden age of science and art in part by turning the “problem” of their mixed society into an advantage. Dutch tolerance was transplanted to Manhattan: They were so welcoming that a reported 18 languages were spoken in New Amsterdam at a time when its population was only about 500....This new economic mind-set likewise got transferred to New Amsterdam, where everyone was a trader, an entrepreneur. The port became so efficient that even archrivals in the English colony of Virginia sent their goods to Europe via what would become the New York harbor. .... The nonaristocratic, egalitarian bent of the Dutch also gave society on Manhattan a uniquely upwardly mobile character, distinct from that of, say, Boston. Who you were mattered less than what you could do....The concepts of tolerance and free trade both related to a new appreciation of the individual. New York was born alongside the world-historic force of liberalism, a philosophy that prized individual freedom above all else. What is little appreciated, though, is the grounding of individualism in collectivism. It was the Dutch agreement to work together for the common good of holding back the sea that allowed for the rise of prosperity and a society based on singular achievement.
history  New_York_City  anniversaries  Dutch  Holland  foundational  tolerance  religious_freedom  liberal_pluralism  melting_pot  golden_age 
september 2014 by jerryking
Gee on Western governments' response to the cartoons | Bill Doskoch: Media, BPS*, Film, Minutiae
Comments on Marcus Gee's commentary, "Oh how the west is grovelling", in the G&M February 15, 2006.
cartoons  Denmark  tolerance  Danish  free_speech  Marcus_Gee 
march 2013 by jerryking
My friend Tahir and the battle for the soul of Islam
October 27, 2001 | The Globe and Mail |By MARCUS GEE

Are you one of those people who believe the Islamic world is a seething nest of extremists? Or are you one of those who believe few Muslims symp...
Marcus_Gee  Islam  tolerance 
march 2013 by jerryking
Ancient Bones That Tell a Story of Compassion - NYTimes.com
By JAMES GORMAN
Published: December 17, 2012

some archaeologists are suggesting a closer, more systematic look at how prehistoric people — who may have left only their bones — treated illness, injury and incapacitation. Call it the archaeology of health care....Cases of case extreme examples of illness and disability, have prompted Ms. Lorna Tilley and Dr. Oxenham to ask what the dimensions of such a story are, what care for the sick and injured says about the culture that provided it....the “bioarchaeology of care,” “has the potential to provide important — and possibly unique — insights into the lives of those under study.” In the case of Burial 9, Tilley says, not only does his care indicate tolerance and cooperation in his culture, but suggests that he himself had a sense of his own worth and a strong will to live. Without that, she says, he could not have stayed alive...Ms. Tilley wrote “The Bioarchaeology of Care” for a special report on new directions in bioarchaeology published this year in the Archaeological Record, the magazine of the Society for American Archaeology.
archeological  disabilities  disease  compassion  research_methods  illness  injuries  incapacitation  prehistoric  bones  tolerance  cooperation  sickness  insights 
december 2012 by jerryking
Nicholas Berg.
May 18, 2004 | WSJ |By Judea Pearl
tolerance  inspiration 
september 2012 by jerryking
Muslims and the West: The need to speak up | The Economist
Oct 11th 2001

The truth is, America is despised mainly for its success; for the appealing and, critics would say, corrupting alternative it presents to a traditional Islamic way of life; and for the humiliation which many Muslims feel when they consider the comparative failure, in material terms, of their once-mighty civilisation.
tolerance  Islam  anti-Americanism  humiliation 
july 2012 by jerryking
What we stand for
September 17, 2001 | Globe and Mail | editorial

What hatreds fuel extremists such as Osama bin Laden? He opposes the West's secularism, its focus on individualism, its commitment to personal freedoms and its embracing of diversity. He feels the United States is polluting the rest of the world with its cultural output of movies and music and books. He opposes the equal role of women in society. He resents America's wealth and its military might, and the way its political values -- democracy, open and accountable government, equality before the law, protection of minority rights -- spread elsewhere in the world like an unstoppable cancer....Personal freedom and a philosophy of individualism rely at their core on a shared understanding of tolerance. Without tolerance of difference, the rest of the system cannot work. We cannot be nations of immigrants. We cannot be nations where people are free to choose their religion, their politics or how they live their private lives.
9/11  editorials  Western_values  OBL  terrorism  tolerance 
july 2012 by jerryking
Take a leaf from the Prophet
February 5, 2002 | Globe & Mail | Irshad Manji.

Well, in the Arab tradition of mediation, please allow a Muslim sister from North America to help. Laugh if you must, but I think I've got the key to a new way of thinking this puzzle through. It starts with a piece of Arab history that most Muslims were never taught at the madrassa: namely, that Jews cultivated the climate in which Prophet Mohammed could survive and spread the word about Islam.

Mecca's pagan Arab population did not exactly welcome the Prophet in the early seventh century. They oppressed him to the point of threatening his life, obliging him to flee north to Medina. As Albert Hourani observed in A History of the Arab Peoples, his escape was helped by traders who needed an arbiter in tribal disputes. "Having lived side by side with Jewish inhabitants of the oasis, they were prepared to accept a teaching expressed in terms of a prophet and a holy book."

Don't you see, Yasser? The groundwork for Mohammed's safety was laid by that gang who embraced earlier prophets and scripture. Say it with me: J-e-w-s.
Irshad_Manji  Palestinian  Yasser_Arafat  Jewish  scriptures  religious_tolerance  tolerance 
june 2012 by jerryking
Friedman: Spiritual missile shield a better defense - Houston Chronicle
THOMAS l. FRIEDMAN
Published 06:30 a.m., Wednesday, December 19, 2001

That is a task that must begin with Muslims themselves, which some are eager to do. They are eager for a language and a leadership that can reform Islam in a way that will make it more compatible with modern education, pluralism and religious tolerance. An e-mail message arrived the other day from a young Pakistani-American woman about a column I wrote decrying religious totalitarianism. She said: "You basically articulate the views of myself and many American Muslims that I know. I am only saddened that more Muslims do not come forward and articulate the same truth publicly -- that an Islamic enlightenment (I prefer `enlightenment' to your choice of `reform') is long overdue and this enlightenment should nurture a dynamic, progressive Islamic thought that embraces plurality and modernity. ... These ideas would be most persuasive to the masses of Muslims if conveyed by other Muslims."

On Al Jazeera TV the other night there was a debate on this subject in which the Arab journalist Ahmad al-Sarraf asked: "Why don't we have tolerance? This rhetoric of hatred is in all sermons, in all schoolbooks. ... We don't need America to interfere and teach us how to worship, but we need a certain element to force us to change our curriculum that calls for extremism."

The question is: Will any Arab-Muslim leaders rise to address these feelings, or will they all duck and hope that the storm blows over? Will the United States raise these issues of pluralism and tolerance with our Muslim allies, or will we duck as long as the oil keeps flowing?
tolerance  Tom_Friedman  Muslim  silence 
january 2012 by jerryking
They Took Manhattan - NYTimes.com
By Kevin Baker
April 4, 2004

The Epic Story of Dutch Manhattan

and the Forgotten Colony

That Shaped America.

By Russell Shorto.

Illustrated. 384 pp. New York:

Doubleday. $27.50.

''If what made America great was its ingenious openness to different cultures,'' he writes, ''the small triangle of land at the southern tip of Manhattan Island is the birthplace of that idea: This island city would become the first multiethnic, upwardly mobile society on America's shores, a prototype of the kind of society that would be duplicated throughout the country and around the world.''
New_York_City  books  history  Dutch  book_reviews  liberal_pluralism  tolerance 
november 2011 by jerryking
Irshad Manji: A Muslim Reformer on the Mosque - WSJ.com
AUGUST 26, 2010 | Wall Street Journal | By IRSHAD MANJI. "
Debates across America over Islamic centers and mosques won't soon be
resolved. But this summer's hysteria is giving the upper hand to one
nefarious force: the culture of offense.

Election-year politics, ratings-hungry media and deep personal fear
foment raw emotion. In such an environment, "I'm offended" takes on the
stature of a substantive argument. Too many Americans are mistaking
feeling for thinking. "
tolerance  critical_thinking  Park51  Irshad_Manji  political_correctness  feelings  mistakes 
august 2010 by jerryking
A Canadian model for the Gulf - The Globe and Mail
Aug. 31, 2009 | Globe & Mail | Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi.
Canada's most important export to the Middle East is hope in the form of
substantial number of Canadians of Arab heritage who have chosen to
return to the region. Canada's secular and modern education system,
coupled with tolerance and respect for people of diverse cultures,
continues to produce moderate Arabs, Muslim and Christian alike, who
despite their relatively small numbers are leaving a lasting positive
impression on the Arab world.
Middle_East  Arab  expatriates  Diaspora  exporting  Canada  Canadian  tolerance 
september 2009 by jerryking

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