June 22, 2013

Ultimate Knowledge

Philosopher in Meditation by Rembrandt

by Stephen Wolfram

The importance of this article is its accurate description of the great promise of applying the natural sciences and mathematics to human behavior, AND their limitations. Wolfram's comment toward the end on taking a certain comfort that there will most likely never be an ultimate, totally predictive knowledge of human behavior and the processes of the universe should not cause discouragement. Nor should the unlikely attainment of such a perfect knowledge cause us to abandon the focusing of the natural sciences on Humankind. Acceptance of the unlikely emergence of a complete, deterministic natural science of man is an acceptance of the reality of the complexity of the universe and in turn the complexities of the affairs of Humankind. I am comforted by the provisional scientific knowledge we continue to build, not by a desire or need for an absolute knowledge. The former seems a better fit for the provisional, evolving universe we are in.

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