Knowledge Is Power (and Salvation) – Even in Prison

“I continued to search and devour anthropology, history, biology, philosophy. I’m just going through the different subjects and putting all the different things together and trying to search out all the different areas that I can. It was very quickly that I found a vision of the purpose of life. I started to sense this feeling that we’re here to be a part of an ongoing evolutionary process.”

That’s Gary Shepherd, a prisoner in Arizona, describing a small part of his journey toward finding salvation in knowledge, specifically scientific knowledge. His conversation with David Sloan Wilson, a professor at Binghamton University, is enlightening and inspiring. Not only because of how and where Shepherd found his way, but because he synthesized from various disciplines a purpose in evolution.

Contrast Shepherd’s intellectual outlook, progress, and value to the systematized greed and ignorance of wannabe EPA chief Scott Pruitt. We need more of the former if we’re to survive and thrive.