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Voices of Europe Milton Mayer American author and lecturer broadcaster and professor of social research from the University of Frankfurt has been traveling throughout many of the countries of Western Europe recording the voices of ordinary people on a wide variety of subjects. These are voices of Europeans who are alive and sensitive to the tragedy and dilemma of the conditions that surround them. People who can speak directly and candidly of their own feelings and their own aspirations. Today you will hear two voices from Germany. Milton Maier first interviews professor Karl Frederick Van bites occurred at the famous Max Planck Institute for physics at Girton in Germany. The man bites of her name has always been heard in German Scholarship theology and statesmanship. But this Professor Van Dyke Sicher is internationally known as one of Europe's most distinguished theoretical physicist. Here is Milton Mayer professor of fun bytes a career as a layman that is a man who knows how to start an automobile. But who doesn't know what makes it go.
I have the impression that somewhere sometime during the last shall we say 20 years. The European supremacy in science has passed to the United States. Am I right. Well I think we should never exaggerate things but in principle you may be right. I think 30 years ago every young American scientist in any case in my field was supposed to make a trip to Europe in order to complete his study is to day one may say it's just the other way around. Every one of our students in getting him is certainly eager to have a chance of making a trip to the states in order to complete his studies there. But I think we are not so much concerned in science with questions
of supremacy but we are interested in cooperation and I think we may see that cooperation has been re-established all over the world. In any case we have a good cooperation now with our American colleagues. And what exactly is the situation of scientific work in post-war Europe. How badly off is it. Well if you ask how badly off is it I may say there were at least three factors which made it very difficult to go on with science even between the wars and now after the war. There is the fact that so many people were concerned with politics which didn't give them the quiet time the possibility of doing science quietly. Then I think it must be said that some of the most gifted people were
killed in the walls. And the third point is poverty today. We are certainly not able to be build as many big machines as you can do in the States. But this may not even be the most important point. The most important point I think is that our students are so poor. I am spending much of my my time trying to earn money by giving lectures or in some other ways in order to have some money which might be given to poor students in positive terms can you see any advantages to the situation of science in Europe now. Well I mean I don't want to paint in very dark colors that would certainly not be good. Should say that in the theoretical field where our financial questions are not so important we are still going on quite well. And
in the experiment it's a bit more difficult and it becomes very difficult to compete with the United States. If you think about technical applications of science. To what extent is your work an experiment of and applied physics. Restricted by the controls I am speaking now only of Germany to what extent is it restricted by the controls imposed on German scientific work by the victorious allies of the last war. Well I don't want to over emphasize this point. Of course science Five's based in an atmosphere of liberty. And so we are quite happy to see that the controllers are losing now but in many cases I would say that the things which we were forbidden to do were not the things
we could do for financial reasons partly were not the things which we wanted to do for instance in my field of nuclear research. I must say that I am not eager to make bombs and so I am not. I don't feel any difficulty in the fact that I am not allowed to make bombs. Do your fellow office assists in Germany share your view on this point Professor found by Ticker. Well I couldn't easily say that for every single person. But I think in principle this is a very common viewpoint with us no. And is this a new viewpoint among German scientists since the war. Well we all develop I should say there are some advantages in being in a situation in which you don't have the great political responsibilities and
thereby you are just forced to stay in scientific research. It need even be a bit too easy because our responsibilities are there. But if I may I just jump to another point I should like to say that science was a very great help to us after the war in the very difficult problem of reestablishing human personal relations between people who had been separated by the political events. We have seen so many cases in which science helped to a mutual understanding and I think I may say that in that respect science has been the second best thing in the world after this war. And what's the first best. Well in my personal view with the first best is
Christianity. And why do you concern yourself Professor fun VI Ticker with second best things. Well I think I try to concern myself with best things and with second best things too. You have your hands full I would say probably. And if you concern yourself with both the second best and first best things. With scientific truth and with shall we say Christian truth. I wonder if you wouldn't find it. Less costly in a poverty stricken situation. To further the interest of truth as a whole through Christian activity in which you do not need I am told such expensive equipment as cyclotrons and observatories.
You are certainly a riot. On the other hand scientists are children who like to play. But if you want to make their point a bit more serious I should say science is certainly not done in order to further their international relations. This is not the purpose of science but it may be an effect of science. I think the purpose of science has always been and will be the research of truth in order to know truth. Yes but the persecutor of scientific truth did not prevent in the last war or presumably in the next one. If there should be one. Did not prevent the scientists of different countries from serving the national political interests of their particular countries. And. I wonder Professor fun fight sicker if there hasn't
been a growing disillusionment at least among laymen since Hiroshima and Nagasaki about this slogan or doctrine of the free and unfettered persecutor of truth on the part of science. Well I think I understand that. And to that I should just like to repeat that to my mind if you pursue science in order to have some political effect some effect an international understanding. This is not really pursuing science. I think the fact that scientists sometimes were able to understand each other better than some other people were just found was just founded in the fact that scientists were not interested in
effects but they were interested in truth itself. But on the other hand you are quiet riot that science alone has not been able and probably will not be able to solve all of the problems of misunderstandings between people and nations to their head. It is my impression that this is. Has its reason in the fact that science is interested in truth but only in the part of truth. Science If I understand you here is only a part of truth. Years and the whole of truth lies where the world the whole Of course I think is not accessible to human beings. But I should say that there is one fundamental truth about human nature which has been known to Christians and is still known
to Christians which must be understood. If you want to have a mutual understanding between persons of different nations this is sometimes forgotten by the too optimistic view of some scientists of science in general and Professor funn vitae. When I can reflect arises between that part of truth which is science and the whole of truth. Which lies perhaps in Christianity or in the Christian understanding of human nature. Where does the duty as a scientist lie. Well I think the duty of the scientist and of every person all of his lies was lies with tools real tools as he is able to understand it. But I think there cannot be a conflict between two real costs.
There may be a conflict between our interpretations of truth which may be caused by our human needs or human passions. Thank you Professor fund by Ticker in the very little village of Pigs in a northwestern Germany. Milton Maier met Pastor Bill our managing pastor mentoring is retiring this year as pastor of this quiet little parish after 30 years of service to devote all his energies to the work of the frying shops hime the friendship on which he has established in the neighborhood for young people of all nations races and creeds to work together for human brotherhood and peace. As Pastor mentoring rides through the countryside on his bicycle tipping his cap to everyone he knows and that means everyone he presents a picture of peace. But Peyton has not always been so peaceful and neither has passed or mentions life. Today at 65 he was one of the tireless men of his age. A practitioner of the
social gospel of Christianity during his life he's been in prison both in Asia and in Africa. His life his writings and their sermons have given him the name all over the world of Germany's greatest Quaker. He's not a Quaker however but a pastor of the evangelical church the state church of Germany back in the days of Nazi ism in the Second World War the burgomeister of Pigs and made an obscene speech in the marketplace every Saturday night. And Bill how mentioning the pastor of Hades and preached an anti-Nazi sermon in his little church every Sunday morning. It was only after the war the pastor mentoring learned that his life had been saved by this same Burgomeister he had so bravely opposed when the Gestapo came to arrest pastor mentioned in 1943 the burgomeister had halted them with the words. I know that mentioning is a terrible enemy of National Socialism but he's not an enemy of any national socialist. He hates nobody and he loves
everybody. He's a strange kind of Christian. But he is a Christian. I will vouch for him. And because the burgomaster was an algorithm for an old and respected Nazi pastor mentions life was spared. Listen now as Milton Mayer speaks with Bill how mentioning the pastor of Peyton. Pastor mentioning in these last months I have encountered many Europeans who believe that we are witnessing in our time the end of the world or at least of the world that we have known. Sitting here in the nut cracker so to speak between the powers of the East and those of the West. What say you. Our time. Wow man you are my country man and especially your little crims and so-called
religious people think that the aunt thought this world is sneering. They believe that. We are soul had less soul back then saw Rock and that only the lot massed comment was by his miracles and by Paul in Dealy strolling the enemies of the shitty but I myself can't believe that you think this not the end of the work but rather I believe there are many many times people have expect that the end of the world and fade and die. I believe that there is a steady development. Even through all the big catastrophic
snark. And so I believe that it really is so no longer worth going to and then some off the customs and the ways of life. They are at an end that I believe that there is a permanent quiet still development going on. Would you characterize this slow permanent development of the human story as progress. I would say yes and in what direction. I think there are three aims at which the development now is aiming first of all I would say there is a sole fruit of eight development. It is universal. It's not
owning Germany. But you see Marx was a German but he lived also in England and his influence is heard every where now and we here in our nation feel that and you also offer Ormiston that even was with the National Socialism and that appealed to so many many working people among the Germans. The National Socialists but all up an idea of a new sofa or and now again people here are disappointed by National Socialist disappointed him by coming this muscle. But are now looking for a new was so awful for the masses of the working man in Germany are dissatisfied with it all. Economical. That's a first I'd say that's so for development. Beside that
all of the work. I think there's a change in the mastery of the wide race. I lived for years in the attic and in four more years in India that's a longer girl but then I witnessed already how the cult that races are cream themselves and this is a development going on statically step it all over the world. And this took Aphex Germany. We Germans were taught that we were a superior race to have us and we saw the bad results. And now we are fortunate not to have colonies beside this. So for development and for sites are
developed manned in the name. And they're boasting of the mastery of the white race. There is a third development. I think is most important. That's the development of politics where World War is ineffective and is to be abandoned as a means of politics. There too we feel in Germany. We just have. Had to work wars and we saw how useless the way or how who use it of course is says destroy not only our nation is tired ho. But we feel the sane all around. On the other side of the aisle curtain
mainly from our German creation perhaps us there who are known for peace. But also with us a comic the nation's far more east and we see the same development among them in India and anywhere else. So I would say there is now not the end of the word to be brought by miracles. But that is the end of the way of life of the old economic way of the new order. Superiority of one superior race and there is a changing of politics to the point that war is nonsense and what Hastur mentioning. Is the role of the Christian Church in these
three developments which in your view really characterize the whole motion of our time. What is the role of the Christian church. Well the in and not show the Christian Church is Jesus Christ Himself and I think that leads through the apes are apes. You see. Yes. A pastor sat here is no mast on the sleigh and that is the answer to the solve problem. His apostles sat. Here's no true knock the and that is to the problem of this appeal to your deity on one place and dear to the
question of war. Of course this that guised himself is a prince of peace. So I think it's absolutely that aims on the spirit of guys that aims of God up there. These were not his moving cults. And it is the Christian church. Assuming the role which in your view Christ lays upon it. Is it succeeding or failing in fulfilling this role. Well I've heard that the Christian church now or persist processus the Spirit of Christ but it's found out as our bus session which cannot be lost. We have lost much of the Spirit of Christ. But this spirit of Christ is so strong I believe
so affected so many living that it comes back and back. And so of course I see many figures of the church. First of all in Europe or in Germany where stake church and if you wear hat this doctrine of the app's simpleness on man. Where this doctrine of the two are Adams that we are so bad. And so on simple that we never can realize the kingdom of God on Earth and that we never could reach their aims of Christ. Therefore I see many many failed us of the church. And I think Easy's paid us most. They are who they are.
The Spirit of Christ had the opportunity to develop for elite where it was bound by darkness or doctrines by the states and by selling our practice and what is the evidence that you see in the world today. Pastor mentioning that the Christian Church or as a Christian individual ears best zooming the spirit and the burden of Christ. Whoa. Before the reformation of law took place in Germany there was a time when in Wycliffe in England and I asked him what he Meir and Calvin later on in France and so when an international movement
really grew up and I just see the same. There are groups of Christians everywhere in the world also in Germany among whom there is a feeling of the great task of this time that is eternal aims of Christ that we are but have in one part that there is not all one mass start and slay no more clique and do and that we there shall be but have gone under the king of one of peace on another prince of peace the one in and the one shepherd the one and the one ship.
And I'm very glad to have their experiences again and again maybe when meeting people here you see in this little parish the year among the young people this feeling that their new time's coming but a time only on the way to the aims of Christ. I also very often feel disappointed when meeting clergyman and church leaders who are not aware of that what this growing up. But I am happy again gain to find not already Yarber in Germany of course. One of our truck leads. What absolutely
aware of the situation and also young of the students of the all OT who are not of the all time. Who all are studying seriously. What cast lived for and died for. My believe is in the court that is the Spirit of Christ. I think these are individuals of whom I spoke. You see they are the Guinness they are the first of a great army and this army is not to confined to questions. Will you fire them all non-Christians to the spirit of Christ is working everywhere. And I feel this is all own duty especially the first to be Christ and
the spirit of all. Thank you Pastor mention. You have just heard the 8 programme in the series voices of Europe series made possible under a grant from the fund for adult education an independent organization established by the Ford Foundation. These programs are prepared and distributed by the National Association of educational broadcasters in the interests of better international understanding. This program was introduced by Norman McKee and this is the end E.B. tape network.
Voices of Europe
Professor Carl Friedrich von Weizs_cker and Pastor Wilhelm Meusching
Producing Organization
National Association of Educational Broadcasters
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University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
Interviews with physicist Professor Carl Friedrich von Weizs_cker and Pastor Wilhelm Meusching.
Series Description
Interviews with noted Europeans on a variety of subjects, conducted by Milton Mayer, American author and broadcaster, lecturer and professor in the Institute of Social Research at Frankfurt University.
Broadcast Date
Global Affairs
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Interviewee: Weizsa_cker, Carl Friedrich, Freiherr von, 1912-2007
Interviewee: Meusching, Wilhelm
Interviewer: Mayer, Milton, 1908-1986
Producing Organization: National Association of Educational Broadcasters
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 52-37-8 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:29:25?
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Chicago: “Voices of Europe; Professor Carl Friedrich von Weizs_cker and Pastor Wilhelm Meusching,” 1953-01-01, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed April 20, 2024,
MLA: “Voices of Europe; Professor Carl Friedrich von Weizs_cker and Pastor Wilhelm Meusching.” 1953-01-01. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. April 20, 2024. <>.
APA: Voices of Europe; Professor Carl Friedrich von Weizs_cker and Pastor Wilhelm Meusching. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from