Arrogance, The Denial Of One’s Own Limitations

This document URL: by Bruce Camber   

Arrogance holds us back. A lack of openness to new ideas impedes progress.  It is OK to be very confident of one’s positions without being arrogant or condescending. In August 2015, lecturing in Stockholm, Stephen Hawking said, “The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge.” He was quoting historian, Daniel Boorstin (Chicago, and twelfth Librarian of the United States Congress). Boorstin appears to have coined the expression for his book, The Discoverers (1983).

It is arrogance that gives us the illusion of knowledge. It is Hawking’s own arrogance and ignorance of the Planck base units and a base-2 unfolding to encompass the universe in 202 notations that held him back. The answer to the question — What holds us back more, ignorance, arrogance or the illusion of knowledge? — the best answer is, “All of the above.”

Our culture needs heroes. As a result, we so elevate our leading scholars, I am sure it is difficult for them to keep a level head.  Since 2012, only one scholar in our many years of working on the Big Board – little universe project had the confidence to tell us that our concepts were idiosyncratic. Yet, he was also arrogant enough to not want to be tainted by us. He did not want to engage any further and did not want to be quoted.

There is a tradition of arrogance among our scholars. Just think about how difficult it is to accept the fact that Aristotle was wrong and that scholars didn’t question that error for about 1800+ years or 90+ generations (averaging 20 years per generation) is a fact needing more study than what Lagarias and Zong have done.

Introducing a new concept is not easy. Most of the scholars to whom we have written have spent precious little time engaging the first 67 notations of the 202 notations defined by applying base-2 to the Planck scale and going to the approximate age and size of the universe. It is just a simple bit of mathematics. It has a special logical, perhaps extralogic. But, it also has a bit of common sense.

We know how idiosyncratic this model is. Yet, too, this simple mathematical model just might be on the right path. It just may be cracking open the right door.  If our most cherished scientific theories need to be re-written, let us get working and re-write them.

Intellectual integrity must move forward. If Newton’s definitions of absolute space-and-time need to be re-written, so be it.  Let’s re-write them. The Big Board-little universe project is raising real questions about these 202 notations, about space/time and about the finite-infinite relation. Leibniz just may have given us a starting point back over 300 years ago.

Space, time and infinity need to be redefined: The call of three scholars

Here are two shots at redefining the finite-infinite relation.

More: Leibniz, Newton, Lagarias and Zong, Numbers

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