“If the human brain were so simple that we could understand it, then we would be so simple that we wouldn’t have been able to understand it ” – Emerson
Where do we draw the line about the complexity of an issue and the human ability to understand/resolve it?
Are we limited by our thinking ability?
What is our thinking ability? It is based on two things.
One is the information we have gathered ever since our childhood, which is commonly referred to as common sense. Common sense is our first limitation. For instance, Common sense tells us that time always flows at the same rate, but Einstein proved it otherwise. Common sense tells us that changing something here, cant affect something else somewhere there, but quantum mechanics proved otherwise.
The second is our sense organs. Our thinking ability is also limited by the limitations of our sense organs. For instance, our eyes cant see light beyond the 400 nm to 800 nm spectrum of electromagnetic radiation. Our ears cant hear outside the range of 20 Hz to 20 KHz of sound. Now who knows what other medium of information is available out there in the universe for which we dont have a sense organ!! Suppose we didnt have eyes, then we would have never known about the existence of light, about rest of the universe outside earth, about stars, planets, galaxies etc! Atleast not so easily! So a lot of science known to us like the motion of sun, planets, earth, the occurence of seasons etc is directly from our sense organ eye. Now, isnt there a possibility of other type of information existing in the universe for which we lack an appropriate sense organ? For instance there might be some medium through which people can talk to each other via telepathy, but we dont have a sense organ to do that. Or probably we might have lost the knowledge about how to use our existing sensory perception (called the sixth sense) to look into future!
Einstein said that ” The most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible.”
The science that we know today is just a partial subset of the real science that exists in the universe. Why partial? A lot of what we call ” science ” today might be wrong in terms of real science . For instance, few centuries back in the west, science said Earth was flat and that Earth was the center of the universe! Today its not science, its nonsense! :)
Will our human knowledge ever be able to know the real science ? Or are we being mislead by the modern science where we look for external proofs and data which might as well be limited by our human limitations and by the instruments we use? Isnt it possible that this was the reason why ancient Vedic seers preferred the method of internal research where in thought experiments and deep analysis within the mind was preferred to do research than to open the eyes and be limited by the senses and common sense?
What would happen the day humans would declare that they know everything about the functioning about this universe? Or will that day ever come? Not because humans are not intelligent enough to learn everything about the universe, but that they are stupid enough to make a lot of wars long before reaching that epoch and will destroy themselves.
Is human civilization itself a suicide bomber that has been ticking on this planet? Countries are more interested in acquiring weapons of mass destruction than to increase the standard of living of their people! World has become a mess with this ‘holier than thou’ attitude.
Does the human civilization have an internal wisdom which will save it from self -destruction? Will the human civilization evolve successfully into becoming an intergalactic civilization and grow beyond earth? Earth is the cradle of Humans, but one doesnt always stay in the cradle :) As population and energy needs begin to rise, provided we havent had any further nuclear wars, humans would have to look beyond earth and create new homes around other stars.
Let us be optimistic and hope that humans will overcome the attitude of self destruction and apply science and technology for the betterment of life on earth and beyond. Even then, will the humans be able to understand the functioning of the entire universe?
Or does the answer lie in this wonderful quote which I had read somewhere earlier.
There is a theory which states that if ever anybody discovers exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another theory which states that this has already happened :)