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Thread: Evolution Says: Truth is Success

  1. #1 Evolution Says: Truth is Success 
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    Evolution Says: Truth is Success

    It appears to me that Darwin’s theory of Natural Selection informs us that success is truth. Extinction follows specie’s failure to adapt to its environment. Adapting successfully to the environment leads to a long life.

    I graduated with an engineering degree in 1959. The first ten years of my career was directed at being a designer of electronic systems. One thing the design experience impressed upon me is that truth was all.

    In other words when an engineer thinks that truth is X and X turns out to be non-truth the results invariable, sooner or later, jumps up and bites the engineer in the fanny. The minute that the engineer discovers the error in conceiving the truth that engineer begins the redesign. For the engineer truth is all.

    Later in my career I moved into the selling end of the business. I sold stuff to other engineers and I discovered that the selling business has a different metric for success.

    When dealing strictly with the world of objects wherein truth equals success I discovered that there are no shortcuts to success. When the sales person discovers that the sale is not being made the sales person looks for another selling approach. In the selling business the sale is all and success equals truth.

    When dealing with objects truth is success and when dealing with people success is truth.


    But I also discovered that success as truth is often only when the time parameter is short; in the long term truth is really success. I quickly learned that in the short run one can ignore truth but in the long run truth will out.

    One great weakness of a democratic form of government is that in the short haul it works well but in the long haul it can and often does lead to disaster. The reason for this is that the culture trains people for the short view while ignoring the long view.

    I conclude that it is worth while to think of reality, i.e. truth in this situation, as being like an onion. The linguistic metaphor might be ‘reality is onion’.

    One can peel away layers of reality much like that of an onion. All of us live most of our life with our thoughts focused upon the skin of reality. “Seeing is believing”. From our animal nature visual perception is reality; most of us seldom go beyond that view of reality.

    Most of us live most of our life much as primitive humans lived their lives. To primitive humans each thing that they face tells them what they, the thing, means and what is to be done with that thing. The apple says “eat me”, the babbling brook says “drink me”, The lightening and thunder says “fear me”.

    Education is an attempt to peel away the layers of reality so that we may focus on deeper and more complicated reality. However our culture is primarily focused on making us all better producers and consumers. Production and consumption is king in a culture of consumers.

    Darwin teaches us that sooner or later truth jumps up and bites a species in the fanny. That species that cannot adapt to a changing environment will become extinct. We had better start peeling that onion as fast as possible. The peeling process is, in my judgment, self-actualizing self-learning.

    Do you think that ‘reality is onion’ is a useful linguistic metaphor?


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  3. #2 Re: Evolution Says: Truth is Success 
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coberst
    Evolution Says: Truth is Success

    It appears to me that Darwin’s theory of Natural Selection informs us that success is truth. Extinction follows specie’s failure to adapt to its environment. Adapting successfully to the environment leads to a long life.

    ...

    Darwin teaches us that sooner or later truth jumps up and bites a species in the fanny. That species that cannot adapt to a changing environment will become extinct. We had better start peeling that onion as fast as possible. The peeling process is, in my judgment, self-actualizing self-learning.
    This philosophy of knowledge is well known and it is called pragmatism. But the connection to evolution is a very worthwhile one because it makes a very important suggestion and that is that because success and evolution is NOT a one way street but instead a neverending source of diversity, truth may be no different. Please take note however, that this is not the same as relativism or saying that everything is truth, for as the process of evolution is selective so is truth. What it suggests however is that instead of being a single point of light surrounded everywhere by darkness, truth is instead on the horizon all around us in an infinity of directions, representing infinite possibilities, and it is the darkness, the untruths, which are ultimately finite holes, no matter how big these obstacles may seem to us from where we stand.


    Quote Originally Posted by coberst
    Do you think that ‘reality is onion’ is a useful linguistic metaphor?
    Not particularly. Ogres may be like onions. Reality may even have points of similarity. But I would not say that reality is an onion.

    Mostly likely what you are thinking is that the effort to apprehend reality is like peeling away the layers of an onion, but these layers that are peeled away are not reality but our own delusions. So the onion is not reality but ourselves, and as we peel away each layer of delusion the onion gets smaller because our expanding awareness of reality has given us the perspective to see just how little we know compared to what there is to know.


    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
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  4. #3  
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    Mitch

    'Reality is onion' is a metaphor that I think is useful for comprehending that there are many layers to reality beyond that which we see, and in most cases never go beyond, on the surface.
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