Jacob Bronowski Quotes

The world can only be grasped by action, not by contemplation.

Jacob Bronowski

Fifty years from now, if an understanding of man's origins, his evolution, his history, his progress is not in the common place of the school books, we shall not exist.

Jacob Bronowski

Man is not the most majestic of the creatures; long before the mammals even, the dinosaurs were far more splendid. But he has what no other animal possesses: a jigsaw of faculties, which alone, over three thousand million years of life, made him creative. Every animal leaves traces of what he was. Man alone leaves traces of what he created.

Jacob Bronowski

Dissent is the mark of freedom.

Jacob Bronowski

The force that makes the winter grow Its feathered hexagons of snow, and drives the bee to match at home Their calculated honeycomb, Is abacus and rose combined. An icy sweetness fills my mind, A sense that under thing and wing Lies, taut yet living, coiled, the spring.

Jacob Bronowski

Nature is more subtle, more deeply intertwined and more strangely integrated than any of our pictures of her than any of our errors. It is not merely that our pictures are not full enough; each of our pictures in the end turns out to be so basically mistaken that the marvel is that it worked at all.

Jacob Bronowski

Has there ever been a society which has died of dissent? Several have died of conformity in our lifetime.

Jacob Bronowski

There is a social injunction implied in the positivist and analyst methods. This social axiom is that

Jacob Bronowski

The symbol and the metaphor are as necessary to science as to poetry.

Jacob Bronowski

Mass, time, magnetic moment, the unconscious: we have grown up with these symbolic concepts, so that we are startled to be told that man had once to create them for himself. He had indeed, and he has: for mass is not an intuition in the muscle, and time is not bought ready-made at the watchmaker's.

Jacob Bronowski

The discoveries of science, the works of art are explorations more, are explosions, of a hidden likeness. The discoverer or the artist presents in them two aspects of nature and fuses them into one. This is the act of creation, in which an original thought is born, and it is the same act in original science and original art.

Jacob Bronowski

The most remarkable discovery ever made by scientists, was science itself.

Jacob Bronowski

I grew up to be indifferent to the distinction between literature and science, which in my teens were simply two languages for experience that I learned together.

Jacob Bronowski

The air in a man's lungs 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 atoms, so that sooner or later every one of us breathes an atom that has been breathed before by anyone you can think of who has ever lived Michelangelo or George Washington or Moses.

Jacob Bronowski

These are the moments when the powerful mind or the forceful character feels the ferment of the times, when his thoughts quicken, and when he can inject into the uncertainties of others the creative ideas which will strengthen them with purpose. At such a moment the man who can direct others, in thought or in action, can remake the world.

Jacob Bronowski
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