Well, the wife is off at a baby shower. God only knows why women involve themselves in such undertakings, but to each
his her own values, I guess.
I’ve been working on a technical paper involving software features for a new project, but such writing is tedious. I’m racking my brain trying to think of something a bit more interesting to write about. Call it taking a break.
What do you suppose is the absolute fundamental issue at the root of all problems relating to the human condition? Have you ever considered that? To ask it in another way, is there one single common denominator that all individual, group, and societal problems can be traced to?
I’m talking about problems such as poverty, slavery, hunger, chronic unhappiness, systemic crime, premature death, death in general, war, taxation, over-politicization, chronic dishonesty and automatic lying.
Can anyone think of a common cause? Yea, I know, the knee-jerk response is always the same: lack of education. But isn’t a prerequisite to problem-solving education some particular subject matter? Thus, education cannot be at the root. What gets taught is more fundamental than whatever the means are for teaching it, presuming that teaching would even be necessary.
Is it possible, rather, that the fundamental problem is more an issue of what we believe we know — but are wrong about — than what we don’t know? Do we need to uneducate, rather than educate?
To put it another way, what could we possibly not know, anymore, that could solve any of those problems? I mean, we know a lot as a society, don’t we? We have all sorts of abilities and intellectual prowess, but fundamental human problems persist, and they don’t appear to be going away or improving in any sort of easily detectable manner.
In pondering this, I think there’s only one way that additional knowledge could solve these problems, and that would be some discovery that renders much of what we "know" completely obsolete. Because, folks, it’s not what we don’t know that’s at the root of all of our problems, but what we think that we know, but is false.
What is this thing we think we know but is false? Ah; that can be any number of things. So, what is the fundamental problem then? The fundamental problem is mysticism or irrationality, which translates in actions to an evasion of reality.
Now let’s tie this up, shall we? Connect the dots. Human beings require values in order to survive. Basic ones, at first, and as those are met, values become more complex, varied, subjective. But gaining the values necessary to survive and prosper requires action. Now, check back to that underlined word, above. When you act, you act in the pursuit of your values, values needed to survive and prosper. What happens when you act on what you think you know but is false? You evade reality, and that is the root cause of all of your preventable problems, and everyone else’s too.
In two subsequent entries, I’ll identify some of the more fundamental things we think we know but are false, thus causing our problems and failures, and how some who are armed with this knowledge are taking advantage of you, parasitically living off of your ignorance.