MISSION

Our mis­sion is peace on Earth. We are con­vinced that peace depends not only on polit­i­cal deci­sions and eco­nom­ic cir­cum­stances. Today sci­en­tists and engi­neers hold a key posi­tion, not only in the devel­op­ment of knowl­edge and tech­nol­o­gy, but also regard­ing the pos­si­bil­i­ty of war.

Any dis­cov­ery can be a con­tri­bu­tion to the hap­pi­ness and evo­lu­tion of human­i­ty or to its self-destruc­tion, but the point is not the research, nei­ther the dis­cov­ery. Cru­cial is the eth­i­cal posi­tion which is the moti­va­tion of sci­en­tif­ic research and its tech­ni­cal application.

How­ev­er, it is not enough to say “We want to be eth­i­cal.” We must under­stand the deep­er mean­ing of ethics.

What does “ethics” mean?

Every­one knows that “ethics” sig­ni­fies a respon­si­ble and cor­rect rela­tion­ship. But what are the cri­te­ria for such a rela­tion­ship? Today it is indis­pens­able to define it in a sci­en­tif­ic vision.

Think of the per­son­al­i­ty of the Hiroshi­ma B29-Com­man­der: A high­ly edu­cat­ed engi­neer with pro­found knowl­edge of the nat­ur­al sci­ences. He has a fam­i­ly and he loves his chil­dren. Nat­u­ral­ly he knows, that the Chris­t­ian reli­gion teach­es to respect and to love your fel­low man. Nev­er­the­less, he obeys the inhu­man mil­i­tary order and bombs a city, know­ing full well that he cre­mates thou­sands of harm­less peo­ple, also chil­dren and infants. In his con­scious­ness he did his job as a sol­dier, and he was award­ed and became a nation­al hero. This fact is absurd, but it is very impor­tant to under­stand, why it could hap­pen, oth­er­wise this dark side of human­i­ty’s civ­i­liza­tion will nev­er end.

The main ques­tion is, why are high­ly edu­cat­ed indi­vid­u­als, sci­en­tists and engi­neers able to vio­late basic human­is­tic prin­ci­ples? Sure­ly, the patri­ot­ic Amer­i­can pilot would not be able to bomb his own house, killing his own fam­i­ly. Why, then, was he able to drop the bomb to kill thou­sands of Japan­ese children?

The cause of this ter­ri­ble abil­i­ty is a pro­found lim­i­ta­tion in the scale of one’s eth­i­cal con­scious­ness. The cur­rent vision of the human being sees every­body as an indi­vid­ual and does not go beyond the sys­tem of moral rules that have been cre­at­ed to con­trol peo­ple. Pow­er nei­ther knows ethics nor morality.

Begin­ning in the spring of 1945, John von Neu­mann, math­e­mati­cian and physi­cist, inven­tor and poly­glot, was includ­ed in the Tar­get Selec­tion Com­mit­tee respon­si­ble for choos­ing the Japan­ese cities of Hiroshi­ma, Koku­ra and Nagasa­ki as the first tar­gets of the atom­ic bomb. Von Neu­mann and oth­er sci­en­tists and engi­neers over­saw com­pu­ta­tions relat­ed to the expect­ed size of the bomb blasts, esti­mat­ed death tolls, and the dis­tance above the ground at which the bombs should be det­o­nat­ed for opti­mum shock wave prop­a­ga­tion and thus max­i­mum effect of destruc­tion and mortality.

Indeed, Hiroshi­ma and Nagasa­ki became mil­i­tary sci­en­tif­ic research objects in the inter­est of polit­i­cal and eco­nom­ic pow­er. On August 6, 1945, an Amer­i­can B‑29 air­craft car­ry­ing a nuclear bomb was accom­pa­nied by two oth­er B‑29s. One of them car­ried instru­men­ta­tion for mea­sure­ments of the effects of the explo­sion, and the oth­er was the pho­tog­ra­pher’s aircraft.

The his­to­ry of the war did not end in 1945, but it con­tin­ued in Korea, Viet­nam, Afghanistan, Iraq, Yugoslavia and today in Syr­ia where the inter­na­tion­al pow­er play­ers test mod­ern weapon sys­tems killing thou­sands of inno­cent men, women and chil­dren. This prac­tice is an out­ra­geous vio­la­tion of the Unit­ed Nations Char­ter that pro­hibits the use of force in inter­na­tion­al relations.

How can we main­tain peace on Earth and devel­op rela­tion­ships of respon­si­bil­i­ty and respect? What can we do? What is the solution?

First of all, we must become con­scious of the fact that humankind can only sur­vive if it is able to live eth­i­cal­ly. Only then will our human­i­ty reach cos­mic con­scious­ness and become an inte­gral mem­ber of the galac­tic life space. For this rea­son, we must devel­op a sci­en­tif­ic vision of ethics which is based on the laws of the universe.

What is miss­ing in cur­rent ethics?

There is no inter­scalar vision. As a mat­ter of fact, all notable sys­tems of moral rules only speak of rela­tion­ships between humans. But we can­not devel­op a gen­uine ethics if we con­sid­er human­i­ty alone.

Not too long ago, it was cus­tom­ary to mas­sacre native Amer­i­can Indi­ans because they were clas­si­fied not as human beings but as wild animals.

Dur­ing the Sec­ond World War, “anni­hi­la­tion and exter­mi­na­tion rhetoric” was tol­er­at­ed at all lev­els of the U.S. soci­ety. Accord­ing to the British embassy in Wash­ing­ton, Amer­i­cans regard­ed the Japan­ese as “a name­less mass of ver­min”. Car­i­ca­tures por­tray­ing Japan­ese as less than human, for exam­ple as mon­keys, were com­mon. A 1944 opin­ion poll, that asked what should be done with Japan, found that 13% of the U.S. pub­lic were in favour of “killing off” all Japan­ese men, women, and chil­dren. Is this not rem­i­nis­cent of Nazi pro­pa­gan­da? What is the root of mega­lo­ma­nia, nation­al hatred, extreme col­lec­tive aggres­sion, dehu­man­iza­tion and mass murdering?

Any true ethics must be uni­ver­sal and plan­e­tary, it must include all life forms, it must be interscalar.

An inter­scalar vision does not only con­sid­er the exis­tence of dif­fer­ent scales, but learns to rec­og­nize and respect life in all scales because life is inter­scalar com­mu­ni­ca­tion and cooperation.

The inter­scalar vision of life allows us to rec­og­nize our plan­et as a life form — not just the bio­log­i­cal organ­isms that inhab­it the bios­phere, but also those of the atmos­phere, the hydros­phere and the lithos­phere are inte­gral parts of a larg­er life form. Accord­ing to the inter­scalar par­a­digm, the solar sys­tem is alive, even the galaxy and the uni­verse are life forms.

The inter­scalar view of life and the inter­scalar con­cept of ethics are essen­tial for the sur­vival of human­i­ty. This change of the par­a­digm in sci­ence is there­fore very impor­tant for our future. We need to change our vision of the world, to reach a new under­stand­ing of life in order to real­ize the impor­tance of life in the universe.

Only when our chil­dren can devel­op an inter­scalar con­scious­ness and learn to respect life in all scales, and only when this view is sup­port­ed at home, at school, in the cin­e­ma, the super­mar­ket and the inter­net, can our eth­i­cal con­scious­ness increase and will war cease to be an option for human relationships.

New sci­ence for life in peace – that is our commitment.

 

Imag­ine all the peo­ple liv­ing life in peace
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some­day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one

John Lennon

 

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