plonkee money an english-er's thoughts on personal finance

September 12, 2007

richard dawkins and doing what you love

Filed under: education and career — plonkee @ 12:00 pm

A friend of mine continuously recommends books to me, predominantly ones that deal with the interface between religion and science, most of which so far have been rubbish. They’ve finally recommeded one that I like, ‘The God Delusion’ by Richard Dawkins. The main reason that I like this book, is that it doesn’t get any science obviously wrong and I can both agree and disagree with many parts of it (I like books that force me to think for myself).

The strongest parts of the book are the sections where Dawkins writes about both the wonder of science and about scientific explanations of how things are. I think that the biggest reason why these are the strongest parts of the book is that Dawkins, who is the Professor for the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University, is passionate about his job. He has developed a career specialising in explaining the modern science of evolutionary biology in much the same way that Stephen Hawking has developed a career specialising in explaining the modern science of cosmology. Dawkins wants us to understand the scientific method and how it applies to biology and you get the distinct impression that he would want us to understand it even if he wasn’t paid to do so. He is an excellent example of a person who is in exactly the right career for himself at this moment in time.

Being happy, is I think more important than being wealthy. Being in a job that you would want to do, even if it didn’t pay you is an extremely good way of being happy and one that is open to everyone. I don’t think that I could take as much flak as Dawkins in the line of duty so to speak, but I find my own job deeply satisfying. Getting your job right, really taking the time to find something that you are passionate about is highly recommended.

PS The next book I plan to read is ‘The Dawkins Delusion’ by Alastair McGrath, lest anyone accuse me of not being open minded.

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