Every new idea we have affects every understanding we had that went before and therefore it requires a total reanalysis of everything we know. Whew. Well as obvious as that generalization is, it is also impossible to implement, because we simply don’t have the mental, physical or emotional resources to do such reanalysis. Instead, what we as humans must do, is to direct our energies to those things which will bring us what we need to live well and prosper. That isn’t nearly so challenging a task, and most of the time it is the best strategy for nearly everyone. But, not for me – and probably not for you or you wouldn’t still be reading this – there is more. Some of us want to explore to the limits of the knowable, and perhaps to peer into the unknowable. We are able to set boundaries on what is knowable only by attempting to reach over into the unknown occasionally, even if that hits a solid wall of pain.
To reach beyond the known requires that we be able to recover from our failures, because if we don’t recover we can not report to others what limitations we encountered. If others, and these others include ourselves at a future time, can not learn from the mistakes we make then nothing is learned and we are all as ignorant as ever. Thus, some other person must take the risks of overextending themselves, to reach into the void, and suffer the consequences again, and if they didn’t do their search in such a way that others can follow, or avoid following then, once again, nothing is gained. If nothing is to be gained, or at least hoped to be gained, by the dangerous search then it is better not to go there.
The modern world, and civilization, and intercommunication is still in its infancy, and if humanity survives for another century, certainly wonderful things beyond our wildest expectations will come into being. Perhaps, not. Perhaps everything that can be discovered has already been discovered and the future will only be filling in the gaps and smoothing them over. Some realms of human endeavor might just be like that, – just how many reruns of old TV themes can one endure? even if they are upgraded to high def and then on to 3D and then to multi-definitional, multidimensional and who knows what all, but still with the same old story lines and laugh tracks. Upgraded and refined of course, but the same old stuff all the same.
We need to embark on a new adventure, one beyond mechanical, and electronic technology, which delves deeper into what it means to be human, and what can be pried from there being. We can explore new ideas and new twists on old ideas and almost certainly find new worlds, as yet unimagined. It astonishes me that most of the great men of history, before the creation of modern numerical systems, would have difficulty in doing easy long division. And yet a child can now do complex operations by typing them into the Google search box. Also, before Google Search, Wikipedia and Google Earth most educated modern people would have little concept of what Timbuctu meant, other than a word for a remote place. But, now any child can go there almost instantly, look around, look at a few YouTube videos, and get a real feel for that place, or almost any other. It is easy to forget just how amazing all this is, but what is going to happen when all of these things are run through the minds of seven billion people? What new thoughts will appear, and what will my opening question come to when we realize that every one of these thoughts will ultimately effect all humanity, and that we will be forced to make adjustments to everyone of these thoughts.
Oh hum, it will be the same old, same old! – NOT!