William Irwin Thompson

William Irwin Thompson
William Irwin Thompson
  • Born: July 16, 1938
  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: Philosopher









Quote Topics Cited
For him nature is basically a golf course or a ranch--or a national park turned into a country club where folks can burn off stress by speeding over the snow while polluting the air of Yellowstone with gas-guzzling skidoos. Compliments, Insults & Rebukes
There are only two choices open to those who have discovered that society is a madhouse. In the tradition of Plato's cave, they can withdraw and seek light elsewhere to discover the larger landscape in which the madhouse is located. Or, if that Platonic tradition of the Good seems merely an infantile fantasy, they can deny self-determination to the insane majority and burn the madhouse to the ground to force people out into the open. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
This Time, Let's Build a New Venice and Not Another New Orleans Miscellaneous
A World is not an ideology nor a scientific institution, nor is it even a system of ideologies; rather, it is a structure of unconscious relations and symbiotic processes.
Catastrophes are often stimulated by the failure to feel the emergence of a domain, and so what cannot be felt in the imagination is experienced as embodied sensation in the catastrophe. Failure
For the first time in human evolution, the individual life is long enough, and the cultural transformation swift enough, that the individual mind is now a constituent player in the global transformation of human culture. Life ;Time
Hominid and human evolution took place over millions and not billions of years, but with the emergence of language there was a further acceleration of time and the rate of change. Time
Idealistic reformers are dangerous because their idealism has no roots in love, but is simply a hysterical and unbalanced rage for order amidst their own chaos. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex
Ideologies do not map the complete living processes of a World.
If you do not create your destiny, you will have your fate inflicted upon you.
In the domain of cops and robbers, an interdiction serves to structure a black market and a shadow economy.
Not all intelligence can be artificial now, so if we make a mistake, the consequences are no longer simply located within an institution or a national culture.
One way to find food for thought is to use the fork in the road, the bifurcation that marks the place of emergence in which a new line of development begins to branch off. Nutrition, Food, Starvation, Farming & Agriculture
The conscious process is reflected in the imagination; the unconscious process is expressed as karma, the generation of actions divorced from thinking and alienated from feeling.
The conscious purpose of science is control of Nature; its unconscious effect is disruption and chaos. Nature ;Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
The more chaos there is, the more science holds on to abstract systems of control, and the more chaos is engendered. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
The teacher of history's work should be, ideally, not simply a description of past cultures, but a performance of the culture in which we live and are increasingly taking our being. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training ;History ;Work, Workers & The Labor Force
Unconscious Polities emerge independent of conscious purpose.
With the emergence of civilization, the rate of change shifted from hundreds of thousands of years to millennia. With the emergence of science as a way of knowing the universe, the rate of change shifted to centuries. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology

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