Does mankind have an overarching purpose?
Daniel Quinn Mills is the Albert J. Weatherhead, Jr. Professor of Business Administration, Emeritus. His tenure at Harvard lasted from 1976 to 2007. He consults with major corporations and governments and lectures about management, leadership, strategy, economics and geopolitics. He is an expert on the differences between Asian and Western leadership styles. An American, Mills is also a member of the Innovation Council of Malaysia, a ministry level council chaired by the Prime Minister.
Mills has been interested in early stage businesses and as a director and investor has helped develop several firms. He has been a director of a publicly listed company, chairing its audit committee for several years. A thought leader, Mills has written books on leadership, geo-politics, investments, capital markets, business strategy, network organizations, demographics, marketing, empowerment, and union relations. His most recent book is Master of Illusions: Presidential Leadership, Strategic Independence and America’s Public Culture, published in 2007 by Cambridge University Press. The book explores America’s role in the world in the aftermath of the second Iraqi War.
Widely and often quoted as well as seen in the national media, Mills has appeared on NBC’s Today Show, and been quoted in articles in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, and Business Week. He is a fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources.
Question: Does mankind have an overarching purpose?
D. Quinn Mills: The only over arching purpose or direction that I can think of the man kind as a whole is very well expressed in the definition of humanity that Pierre Teilhard de Chardin provided. Now, he was a Jesuit priest who lived in China for a long time and was a kind of an anthropologist. His definition of humanity was evolution become conscious of itself, and it is very powerful point of view if you think about it. My sense of humanity is a whole is that’s what it is. We are life become conscious and therefore it becomes able to understand what we are doing, to set goals and that I think is possibly unique in the universe.
Recorded on: 9/27/07
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