Humans as Social Being and Part of Nature

  • Regine Kather

Abstract

Humans are, as Cassirer has demonstrated, an animal symbolicum that interprets the world by means of signs. Since the second half of the 20 th century the relation of cultures is influenced strongly by modern technology: On the one hand, nearly every culture is longing for modern technology to achieve a more comfortable life; and, on the other, modern technology changes the way of life deeply. At first sight technology seems to be a neutral instrument, a mere tool that is compatible with every way of life and does not interfere into religious and ethical orientation. But it is definitely an expression of cultural values; it produces completely new wishes and hopes and undermines inevitably traditional forms of life – a process, which implies great dangers and opportunities. First, humans must reflect on their way of life consciously and decide autonomously between alternatives; secondly the growing social standard leads to the destruction of nature which is the basis of human life. Though living in different cultures, humans have the ethical obligation to preserve nature – for their own and nature‟s sake.

Published
2013-07-26