He thinks he knows the prescription to salvation

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farhad_persona

Banned
Farsi
Hello to all,

Does this make sense to you? :

He is a genuinely self-righteous man. He thinks he knows the prescription to human salvation.

I want to suggest that this man thinks he knows the answers to all problems and he thinks he knows how a man can achieve salvation.

Can someone 'know' the prescription to something? Or should I put it like this:

He is a genuinely self-righteous man. He thinks he has the prescription to human salvation.
 
  • dreamlike

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I'd expect 'He thinks he knows a prescription for salvation.' ('Human' seems unnecessary to me).

    Other than that, it's okay, 'prescription' is being used figuratively here.

    [countable] prescription (for something) (formal)
    a plan or a suggestion for making something happen or for improving it
    a prescription for happiness
    Both parties will be outlining their prescription for economic recovery.
    http://oald8.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/dictionary/prescription
     

    farhad_persona

    Banned
    Farsi
    I'd expect 'He thinks he knows a prescription for salvation.' ('Human' seems unnecessary to me).

    Other than that, it's okay, 'prescription' is being used figuratively here.

    [countable] prescription (for something) (formal)
    a plan or a suggestion for making something happen or for improving it
    a prescription for happiness
    Both parties will be outlining their prescription for economic recovery.
    http://oald8.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/dictionary/prescription
    Thanks. Don't you think without adding 'human' before 'salvation' the sentence would be vague?
    I want to underscore that he thinks he knows the solution to all the problems 'humans' face.
    For instance, he believes that living in a specific way would be good for all human beings.
     

    dreamlike

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I don't think the sentence would be vague, Farhad, because salvation is by definition something that can only be achieved by human beings, not plants or animals. Therefore, 'human' seems redundant to me, but you may of course keep if you like it -- it's your sentence. :)
     

    farhad_persona

    Banned
    Farsi
    What do native speakers think?
    Please let us know what's your opinion of this sentence:


    He thinks he knows a prescription for human salvation.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    I'd be more inclined to use "he thinks he has a prescription for salvation" (I agree with dreamlike's points.) "Salvation" though has religious overtones you may not have intended.
     

    farhad_persona

    Banned
    Farsi
    Maybe I need to provide more context:

    Let's say you know an old man who is very moralistic and egotistical. He thinks he has all the answers to all the problems of all humans. He thinks if people listen to him and live the way he tells them to, they are going to be happy. Would you say this about him? :

    He thinks he has a prescription for the happiness of all humankind.
     

    farhad_persona

    Banned
    Farsi
    Maybe I should ask it like this. Would you say that someone has a prescription for happiness? Or does prescription only go with 'problem'.

    He thinks he has a prescription for the happiness of all humankind.


     

    Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    Maybe I should ask it like this. Would you say that someone has a prescription for happiness? Or does prescription only go with 'problem'.

    He thinks he has a prescription for the happiness of all humankind.
    I think you got an answer to this question in the second post, and I agree with that answer.

    [....]

    Other than that, it's okay, 'prescription' is being used figuratively here.

    [countable] prescription (for something) (formal)
    a plan or a suggestion for making something happen or for improving it
    a prescription for happiness
    Both parties will be outlining their prescription for economic recovery.
    http://oald8.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/dictionary/prescription
    You have an acceptable sentence, as people have said at several points, and this thread is beginning to wander. I think it's time to draw it to a close.
     
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