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Do You Think You Can Think?

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Posted by Richard D. Stafford, Ph.D. on April 15, 2002 00:57:31 UTC

Mike,

You said you were not interested in my opinions so I apologize for responding to your post; however, I think your comments deserve a response! What follows are just the opinions of an opinionated old man!

***** Mike:
Don't assume people today are smarter than
in the past.
*****

I would like to at least believe some exist who are as smart as those of the past! If not we are certainly in bad shape with little hope for the future.

***** Mike:
How many on this forum could calculate the circumference of the Earth
by measurements? It was done 2000 years ago.
*****

I can! In fact, I can show you how to measure the circumference of the earth with a pocket ruler from the deck of a rolling ship. I did it myself two years ago! Paul, keep the trick to yourself; let them see if they can even find someone who can come up with a way to do it. Iíll give them one year from today (US income tax day 2003)!

***** Mike:
How many on this forum are advanced in the ways
Isaac Newton was advanced 400 years ago?
*****

I am! And I would hope that there are others, even on this forum as a matter of fact. What Newton did was think about what he was told. I agree that most educated people do not think; but, if you believe there are none then that is a very sad picture of mankind indeed.

***** Mike:
Imagine doing so without the benefit of their work!
*****

Do you mean to tell me that you think no one on earth today could possibly have the ability to see beyond the common opinions of mankind as could those of the past? I think you have a very low opinion of your fellow man. It seems much more reasonable to me to believe that, if it could be done once, it could certainly be done again. I personally believe that, if I knew what they knew and was confronted with the problem which confronted them, I would have figured it out too. If you donít, you apparently have no confidence in your own ability to think! I have always presumed my problem was lack of knowledge, not inability to think rationally.

***** Mike:
Religious texts rarely, if ever, have led the way
in science.
*****

The problem here is that the science of one age becomes the religion of the next!

***** Mike:
Sorry if the thought offends you but it is way, way true.
*****

You should understand that I am not offended by it; but I am disappointed by it. I have a rather good education. In obtaining that education, I discovered that most educated people simply fail to think; at least all those I have met had closed their minds long ago. You hold forth that no modern humans think! I had hoped that impression was false. I think authorities like to break peoples confidence in their ability to think. Itís a power thing; knowledge is power and authorities donít enjoy the loss of power which goes with admitting they might be wrong!

Have fun -- Dick

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