Camden — On Sept. 5, 2012, Norman Hirst’s journey through this world came to a peaceful end. It was a journey that began 80 years ago on March 8, 1932, taking his first steps in Providence, R.I., and his last in Camden.
Norman’s journey carried him to service in the Korean War from 1949 to 1952, then on to study at MIT, graduating in 1957 with a degree in mathematics. It was here Norman found the expression of his life’s work in the lectures of Robert S Hartman, then a visiting professor. Soon, Norman began an inquiry into the nature of life itself and the organizing principles of living systems; working towards the creation of a science of value theory, which he came to believe would be the fundamental tool for righting the ills of our time.
From his youth during the Depression and coming of age in a time of war, Norman saw first hand some of the true horrors of our time, yet never stopped loving this world and trying to understand it; always believing it could be a better place.
He lived a life of inquiry, searching always for understanding. It was a life that brought him to study with men such as Robert S. Hartman and Charles Hartshorne, partnering with Eugene Pendergraft, Jon Ray Hamann, and his wife Skye to found the Autognomics Institute and further pursue inquiry into the science of human value.
He is survived by his wife Skye, his siblings Cheryl and Robert, his children Kari, David, Jeffrey, Stephen, and George, his five grandchildren Brian, Amanda, Kevin, Chelsea and Chris, and the mothers of his children, Gladys Carlson and Caroline Perkins.
For anyone so inclined, the family asks for a moment of reflection: pick some process in your life - something which you can or have used to brighten someone's day, to make this world a better place, and spend some time with it today. Look for some new insight, some understanding you didn't previously possess, something that gives new depth to your relationship with this experience, or adds wisdom or richness to the experience for you and anyone you choose to share it with.
A memorial can be found at autognomics.org/memorial for anyone wishing to contribute a thought or memory. If you would like to learn more about Norman's work, please visit the Autognomics Institute online at autognomics.org