I Agree with the Pagan

I admit that this is a strange title for a blog entry, but it is not my title after all.  This week we tune in to NPR’s This I Believe as they share an essay from Arnold Toynbee.  Toynbee was a historian and adviser to the British government.  He studied history and then applied it to contemporary life questioning how it affected the different aspects of life today.

Toynbee was heavily involved in the peace talks that ended WWI and particularly interested in how societies rise and fall.  His essay reflects on epistemology (the study of how we know something) and what matters most (which is not knowledge, but other people).

‘I believe that no one can ever know for certain what is right and wrong, but in the end, we have to bet on what is right and we do so by acting on it.’

Needless to say, Toynbee’s essay is a bit provocative, but it is very down to earth and speaks well to the messy-ness of human history.


Credits:  “I Agree with a PaganThis I Believe. Audio Essay from Arnold Toynbee.  Stanford, California, June 19, 2010.


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