Ideas of Yuval Noah Harari, by Theme

[Israeli, fl. 2014, Lecturer World History, Hebrew University of Jerusalem.]

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1. Philosophy / B. History of Ideas / 5. Later European Thought
The Scientific Revolution was the discovery of our own ignorance
For millenia people didn't know how to convert one type of energy into another
23. Ethics / C. Virtue Theory / 4. External Goods / c. Wealth
Money does produce happiness, but only up to a point
25. Society / A. State of Nature / 1. A People / c. A unified people
If a group is bound by gossip, the natural size is 150 people
25. Society / B. The State / 1. Purpose of a State
The Nazi aim was to encourage progressive evolution, and avoid degeneration
25. Society / B. The State / 8. Culture
We stabilise societies with dogmas, either of dubious science, or of non-scientific values
25. Society / B. The State / 9. Population / b. Human population
People 300m tons; domesticated animals 700m tons; larger wild animals 100m tons
Since 1500 human population has increased fourteenfold, and consumption far more
25. Society / C. Social Justice / 2. Social Freedom / d. Free market
No market is free of political bias, and markets need protection of their freedoms
25. Society / C. Social Justice / 2. Social Freedom / e. Freedom of lifestyle
Freedom may work against us, as individuals can choose to leave, and make fewer commitments
25. Society / D. Political Doctrines / 6. Liberalism
The state fostered individualism, to break the power of family and community
25. Society / D. Political Doctrines / 7. Communitarianism
In 1750 losing your family and community meant death
25. Society / D. Political Doctrines / 12. Capitalism
The main rule of capitalism is that all other goods depend on economic growth
In capitalism the rich invest, and the rest of us go shopping
The sacred command of capitalism is that profits must be used to increase production
The progress of capitalism depends entirely on the new discoveries and gadgets of science
25. Society / E. State Functions / 2. Taxation
Financing is increasingly through credit rather than taxes; people prefer investing to taxation
25. Society / E. State Functions / 4. Education / d. History study
The more you know about history, the harder it becomes to explain
History teaches us that the present was not inevitable, and shows us the possibilities
25. Society / E. State Functions / 5. War
Real peace is the implausibility of war (and not just its absence)
29. Religion / A. Polytheistic Religion / 1. Animism
Animism is belief that every part of nature is aware and feeling, and can communicate
29. Religion / A. Polytheistic Religion / 2. Greek Polytheism
Most polytheist recognise one supreme power or law, behind the various gods
Polytheism is open-minded, and rarely persecutes opponents
Mythologies are usual contracts with the gods, exchanging devotion for control of nature
29. Religion / A. Polytheistic Religion / 4. Dualist Religion
Dualist religions see everything as a battleground of good and evil forces
Manichaeans and Gnostics: good made spirit, evil made flesh
Dualist religions say the cosmos is a battleground, so canít explain its order
29. Religion / B. Monotheistic Religion / 1. Monotheism
In order to explain both order and evil, a single evil creator is best, but no one favours that
Monotheism appeared in Egypt in 1350 BCE, when the god Aten was declared supreme