Is mankind becoming too sophisticated to think?


I cannot but help but sometimes wonder if mankind is becoming too sophisticated in his knowledge to actually think through answers to the apparently unanswerable. Placing too greater a reliance on sophisticated knowledge that seems to dull minds into a lazy mode rather than going back to basic thinking to solve problems.

With the advance of technology ever pushing back the frontiers of science, discoveries often give rise to as yet unanswerable questions. Unanswerable questions that in turn give way to numerous theories that sometimes are no better than wild guesses. Some theories can gain greater prominence as more people satisfy their minds with that which sounds plausible irrelevant of whether there is any evidence to support the theory.

One such theory is that of Dark Matter. Physicists say they are able to measure the mass and energy of the observable universe and the mass of the visible universe does not equate with their calculations.  In simple terms it as if the visible universe could be placed in a set of balance weighing scales with the visible universe set in one of the scales and the theoretical weight of the universe placed in the opposite scale. The scales should balance but assuming the physicists are correct in their calculations, the observable universe and known energy only account for about 20% of the mass and the remaining 80% cannot be seen or as yet detected.

This undetectable mass has given rise to the theory of dark matter although invisible matter might be a better description. I have no idea whether the calculations for the mass of the universe are correct or not. While my own personal knowledge of mathematics is reasonable, I would not even begin to profess at understanding the esoteric levels of mathematics need to undertake such a calculation.

Simple but powerful logic however would dictate that either the calculations are incorrect and there is no missing universal mass or, the calculations are correct and the missing 80% of universal mass is as yet unexplained. I cannot help but think that the concept of dark matter is a form of convenient method for not allowing sufficient time for the mind to think through this apparent anomaly in universal mass to eventually find an answer. If this mysterious dark matter, (if it exists), is spread roughly evenly though the universe,  (no one knows as no one can see it), it would mean the room you are now sitting in contains four times as much mass as you can actually see or feel. Nor does this missing 80% of the universe appear to impede your movement as you walk about. Our body weight is determined by the pull of gravity of the celestial body we are standing on. The same person would weigh less standing on the surface of the moon than on the surface of the earth due to the difference size and mass of the two. If dark, (invisible), matter is all around us, should we not weigh four times as much as we do now unless to course, this dark matter is somehow gravity free too? It does seem to me that Dark Matter theory is a convenient way of providing a quick answer to the problem. It’s not surprising I am so sceptical about the dark matter concept. Einstein however when he encountered problems he could not immediately solve simply continued thinking, sometimes for years until he thought through the solution.

Physicists are aware the universe is expanding. However, the universe is not only growing bigger like an ever-expanding balloon but the rate expansion is also accelerating. Unknown Dark energy is attributed to this accelerating expansion rate of the universe working in an as yet unexplained way. I wonder why all these physicists assume the universe is being pushed outwards by unexplained internal universal forces? I wonder if they ever paused to think of the possibility of multiverses outside our own universe? Perhaps the universe is not being expanded, (pushed), by unexplained internal universal forces but rather being drawn, (pulled) outwards by external universal forces? I for one do not think such external forces, (possibly gravity), can be discounted as we simply cannot see outside our universe due to the distance and time it takes light to reach us. It was mankind’s own arrogance that initially assumed the world was the center of the universe with everything revolving around us. Perhaps it is that same inborn arrogance that is preventing mankind from thinking outside our own universe. Literally a case of thinking outside the box.

It is not just modern problems that seem to baffle modern mind in a modern world, ancient engineering and construction wonders like Stonehenge and the Pyramids have equally baffled modern man. Many theories abound on how these structures were built, but to the Egyptians of the day with only basic construction knowledge and tools, they would have used simple pragmatic philosophy. The Egyptians would have said to themselves, this is the task we have been given, this is the structure we have to build, what is the easiest way of building this structure within the limits of our knowledge? They would then have worked out simple, practicable solutions and then undertaken the task.

One hears of stories of great external ramps built to haul huge blocks of stone up the ever-growing pyramid but again this is another untested theory of which I am deeply sceptical. Unfortunately there is not much demand today for pyramid building using only ancient skills to test these theories, but I strongly suspect if modern man did attempt such an undertaking, the external ramp theory would rapidly prove unworkable. The major problem with the external ramp is to keep the gradient sufficiently shallow to  allow stone blocks between 2.5 – 15 tons to be physically hauled to the required height, the structure of an external ramp would require constant and considerable lengthening and raising as the pyramid grew in height to maintain the correct gradient. Such an external ramp would have formed a structure as imposing as the pyramid itself yet as far as I am aware, no trace of it remains today.

I have thought for a long time, (another theory proposed by a Frenchman Jean Pierre-Houdin
),  it would be easier to build a more gentle slope winding around the inside of the pyramid rather like a helter-skelter enclosed in a tunnel. Such an internal tunnel ramp would eliminate the need for a constantly enlarged external ramp nearly as big a structure as the pyramid itself and would grow in height in tandem with the pyramid as it would be part of the internal pyramid structure. There is suggestive evidence to support this from photographs of the pyramids taken as the sun is setting where the contrast of light reveal lighter bands in the stone spiralling around the pyramid and at an angle just where such internal ramp tunnels should be. However this visual evidence coupled with the application a common sense philosophy of the practicable problems, and equally practicable solutions that faced the ancient  pyramid building Egyptians, never appears to have been considered in the past. Because someone came up with the impracticable massive external ramp theory, it was more easy for the modern sophisticated mind to accept this theory as gospel truth rather than say, this appears to be wrong, let’s think this problem through a bit more. The evidence of such a tunnel ramp, if it existed, would still be sealed inside the internal walls of the pyramids. My own personal guess is than one day modern history books on pyramid building methods will need to be drastically rewritten.

It is known that the Bluestones that form part of Stonehenge come from the Preseli Hills in Wales, a distance of about 240 miles. Again many theories propose all sorts of weird, wonderful and sometimes impracticable methods on how they were transported. Rafts and rollers are just some of the proposed methods transportation. Debates raged for years on the pros and cons of each method until finally geologists from the Open University looked at the problem and took a more practicable and simplistic view. They believe that no one other than Mother Nature transported the stones. Glaciers that covered most of Britain during the last Ice Age were more than capable of moving stones this size suspended within the frozen glacier. It may have taken hundreds of years for the glacier to cover this distance. As the Ice Age came to an end, the glacier gradually melted leaving the stones deposited on Salisbury Plain.

I suppose in a way theories are often excuses to fill in gaps in human knowledge. While I do accept that theories are frequently necessary, It should always be remembered that theories no matter how grandiose or plausible they may seem, are still just theories, not fact. However there is a danger that theories which appear to comfortably bridge a gap in human knowledge, can with the passage of time become regarded as fact.

The next time you hear someone propose a theory, what this really means is they cannot prove the answer.

“It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” Albert Einstein

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