On shoulders & Giants, or Independent Discoveries

On Shoulders of giants


EOn Indaependaent Discoveries

For thousands of years, for aeons, people across the world could independently discover some great truths about philosophy, mathematics, science, or spirituality, and we in the present could verify these forebears were truly independent discoverers. We could prove it by tracing the history of that person’s life, and knowing they never came into contact with any other human being who also made that discovery. The world was sufficiently disconnected, so that contact between these intellectual giants was uncommon for millennia.

Now we don’t have as many independent discoveries anymore, it seems. We only have dependent discoveries. Except for isolated tribes here and there (who may still prove to have independent discoverers), every human being is somehow connected to another. And they’re connected to all these past intellectual giants. But is that really true? Even if a child were to independently discover a theorem of Gauss, or a lesson or Buddha, or a theory of Avicenna, the child would not be counted amongst these intellectual giants. It’s not the case that such discoverers are no longer being brought into the world. However, the issue is of verification. It would be really difficult for one to prove that a child really did independently discover some (already discovered) incredible truth about the Universe, instead of just having read and learned about this truth through a textbook or two.

For thousands of years, giants stood upon giants stood upon giants… Now we in the present day stand upon colossal towers of giants so tall, that at our height we cannot recognize a small giant standing on the ground below us, the children of the present who are unverified independent discoverers. But just because we cannot see how tall they are, that does not mean their height isn’t impressive. Thus, I believe that independent discoveries continue to be made and will continue to be made. Just as I believe independent discoverers have always been born and will always be born. In fact, I think even more are born in the present and future than in the past, as the population has only increased. These giants who are the children of the present are so common amongst us, we don’t even see it as something special anymore.

Now, all this assumes that those that made discoveries in the past truly did make them independently. Perhaps our present verification methods aren’t good enough. Maybe Leibniz did steal from Newton, or vice versa, and maybe we just don’t have any record of it. Maybe Buddha had a teacher that we cannot know about. Maybe information could be communicated in incredible ways even in the past. Maybe a covenant from ancient alien civilizations, or maybe with Spirits of the Other-World(s). TheWho knows?

Author: umersnotablog

Aspiring Writer, I am NOT a Blog (title stolen from GRRM)

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