OBSERVANT & WISDOM (Updated 8/11/15)

There was an interesting discussion that I got to get involved revolving around being observant, and its connection to a person being wise. Is there a connection?

If we were to take Sir Isaac Newton, when there were so many before him who had seen an apple falling from the tree, it was only Newton who was able to not only observe, but also deduce, predict and confirm gravitation force. Similarly, if not for the observing ability along with deep knowledge in physics, Einstein would not have come up with relativistic effects. In the same way, Marie Curie would not have received her Nobel Prize in Physics for her contribution in the area of chemistry and radioactivity, if not for her ability to observe and analyze data.

Taking these examples as well as other examples such as Archimedes, Darwin known in the literature, we can certainly confirm that deep observing ability or being observant plays an important role in enhancing presence of mind, fortitude, and is also an essential part of research. Having this quality, and applying it in the right way appears to certainly increase wisdom in individuals.

Coming to the current times, researchers in different fields are trying to question and answer many of the theories of the past. Does it mean that those prior research work is questionable?

No & Yes. Over time, various fields has gone through significant changes especially, technological advancements, which has given us the opportunity to understand the subject even better. It is also the reason that I wrote in another article that the term, expert generalists (if we were to coin this term to accommodate the current needs - which I have been calling polymath), depends on the time.

During the times of President Benjamin Franklin, calculus and gravity were all relatively new concepts. Further, many other areas were still evolving, and his ideas/concepts/theories/plans were all based on the information that were available then. Similarly, Marie Curie's work was inspired by the earlier findings of another Nobel laureate Henri Becquerel.

Time and Human progression is the essence, which makes human minds to ask more and more questions, and also find solutions. However, the nature of questions should be relevant, and should not be coming out of one's own fixation to an idea/theory without going through rigorous research.

Here is an interesting video on Calculus controversy:

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=axZTv5YJssA

This video shows how egos, personal pride, ineffective communication system and sociological conditions can come in the way of excellence, ingenuity, and can even stunt further progression of an area of profound value.

Useful references:

1. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/the-core-of-truth-behind--sir-isaac-newtons-apple-1870915.html

2. http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/chemistry/laureates/1911/marie-curie-facts.html

3. https://www.mariecurie.org.uk/who/our-history/marie-curie-the-scientist

4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YPRV1h3CGQk - Isaac Newton

5. http://arxiv.org/pdf/1212.2666.pdf - Leibnizian view

6. http://pages.cs.wisc.edu/~sastry/hs323/calculus.pdf

7. http://cudl.lib.cam.ac.uk/view/PR-ADV-B-00039-00001/150

8. http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/newton-principia/

9. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1KrJvpD0nNM

10. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxRfDtaot5U

11. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0NbBjNiw4tk

Convergent vs Divergent Thinking; Consciousness vs Subconsciousness; Relativity vs Quantum Physics; String, Wave, Big bang, Multiverse theory - What is really happening? Interesting questions to answer