The scientific observer of the realm of nature is in a sense naturally and inevitably disinterested. At least, nothing in the natural scene can arouse his bias. Furthermore, he stands completely outside of the natural so that his mind, whatever his limitations, approximates pure mind. The observer of the realm of history cannot be disinterested in the same way, for two reasons: first, he must look at history from some locus in history; secondly, he is to a certain degree engaged in its ideological conflicts.
A church has the right to set its own standards within its community. I don't think it has a right to prohibit birth control or to enforce upon a secular society its conception of divorce and the indissolubility of the marriage tie.
My personal attitude toward atheists is the same attitude that I have toward Christians, and would be governed by a very orthodox text: "By their fruits shall ye know them." I wouldn't judge a man by the presuppositions of his life, but only by the fruits of his life. And the fruits - the relevant fruits - are, I'd say, a sense of charity, a sense of proportion, a sense of justice. And whether the man is an atheist or a Christian, I would judge him by his fruits, and I have therefore many agnostic friends.
There are evidently limits to the achievements of science; and there are irresolvable contradictions both between prosperity and virtue, and between happiness and ``the good life,'' which had not been anticipated in our philosophy.
We have, on the whole, more liberty and less equality than Russia has. Russia has less liberty and more equality. Whether democracy should be defined primarily in terms of liberty or equality is a source of unending debate.
A wise architect observed that you could break the laws of architec75tural art provided you had mastered them first. That would apply to religion as well as to art. Ignorance of the past does not guarantee freedom from its imperfections.