Thoughts on economics and liberty

The more science advances, the less we know

Now things are starting to get really interesting.

From a state of total confidence (even arrogance) in our "knowledge" about the universe (cf. religious scriptures and their cosmological theories of the universe) we are now entering the zone of great ignorance.

As man progresses, the LESS he knows, or rather, the more he knows about what he doesn't know.

First, we don't know what is "inside" matter – in particular how energy "lives" inside a small atomic 'ball' (as a quark, for instance) in a consistent "shape", with mass. I had speculated that severe bending of space might have occurred  as energy was propelled at speeds potentially faster than the current speed of light in the first few fractional instants of the Big Bang. Of course my knowledge of these things is very limited, having left off the study of physics after my BSc, and if major scientists haven't yet found the answer, I don't claim to have found it at all! The constitution of matter (and mass) remains a major puzzle. 

But second, we now have evidence that even if we understood the physics of all of 'visible' energy and matter, we'd only have understood about 4 per cent of the constituents of the universe. The rest of it comprises dark energy (74 per cent) and dark matter (22 per cent). Of these we know NOTHING.

The most basic PHYSICAL questions about the universe remain unresolved. What chance do metaphysical ones have of getting resolved?

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3 thoughts on “The more science advances, the less we know
  1. ramesh

    Dear Sabhlok,
    Science ends, only to begin with a science. This time it may be called metaphysics. But it is simply science since it cannot exist without pragmatic reasoning consistent with laws of physical world. Such a science (Indian science=ideas of Maharshi Vyas) long ago has solved the basic problem. What remain to be unearthed are discoveries, inventions, technological developments, number of which is approximately equals to infinity and now which has been happening and which you say is just 4% and I say almost 0%. When it reaches 100%, science itself gets nullified. All this may be too abstract for you to understand.
    For simplicity, just answer the following.
    Which is the first "hen or eggs"? Or which is first "energy or matter"?
    When the science tries to find the “ultimate secret of the universe” in terms of proofs (the form in which you want it) its position becomes similar to that of one who tries to answer the above questions.
    Let us see how you answer the above questions.
    I will be giving you clue once you find it worth to comment on the above question.

  2. Sanjeev Sabhlok

    Dear Ramesh

    There are numerous alternative views on the origin of energy (and why it may be without beginning or end, thus eliminating the possibility of God). I’d recommend Stenger’s book as a primer on this issue. But this is an evolving subject. Keep a lookout for latest science magazines.

    I don’t believe in lazy reason that disparages ongoing scientific endeavour as being a minor issue compared with the allegedly “bigger” issue of metaphysics. I suggest that metaphysics is LAZY thinking. It gets many Indians out of the necessity of UNAMBIGUOUS PROOF. They avoid thinking and live a world of delusions.

    Given your referral, I will definitely read Vichar Sagar’s Upanishadic metaphysics – and provide comment.

    My standards of reason are MUCH HIGHER than those used in spiritual thought or metaphysics most of which is mere speculation and therefore delusional.

    Let’s revert to this issue in due course.


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