Galileo’s ideas challenged the assumptions of his time and culture. The mere suggestion that the earth was not the center of all creation with humans being at the center of the center, was ludicrous, even heretical! The proposition that we lived in a helio-centric system and all that it implied, threatened the stronghold (and vested interests) of the dominant institutions of the time. Suddenly, the fiercely held beliefs about the nature of the universe were displaced by a greater “truth”!
Young minds, the students of 21st century education need to be stridently encouraged to think, to research, to reason and intuit, to challenge assumptions about nearly everything – as a first principle!
- Why do we do things the way we do?
- Why do we think things are the way they are?
Whole paradigms, models of thought, have come and gone based on the assumptions of the age. New ideas, new models, new perceptions always meet resistance from the dogma of the time…always and inevitably. History is loaded with examples…here are just a few:
There was a time when medical hygiene was dismissed as ludicrous!
Early genetic ‘theorists’ faced massive opposition that such things as genes and the DNA that composes them could possibly exist!
Continental drift and plate tectonics was laughed out of the halls of geological science even though the mineral strata of the two continental coastlines facing each other across the Atlantic Ocean were not only similar, but were proven to be identical in every detail!
Principles of human evolution were once thought to be contrary to the design of Creation!
Before the microscope, the idea that countless millions upon millions of micro-organisms inhabit every niche of every niche of life was inconceivable.
We know that nutrition, the quality composition and balances of the food we eat is essential to physical health, and yet nutritional science is not a prerequisite of medical training!
The actual composition of our earth below the crust is unknown and theorized, and yet the textbooks won’t tell you that. The textbooks to do with geo-physics and geology give the impression that what is hypothesis is fact.
There is more ‘known’ about the solar system (thanks to Hubble) than there is about the world beneath the oceans…and investigation of our solar system is in its infancy!
To argue against the possibility of ‘life’ elsewhere in the universe, seems especially arrogant and narrow minded.
Assumptions abound in nearly every branch of science. Some of those assumptions go unquestioned and become fact by default. Some of which come all too close to home – like the pharmacological basis of western medicine or the industrial model of education, agriculture and consumption or the petroleum based energy economy – to name just a few.
There are even greater assumptions still. Big ones! But these we will save for another time.
So here we are! What new shifts in perception are just outside our reach right now? What new ways of feeling, thinking and doing just about everything might be knocking on the doors of our habituated beliefs right this minute?
To those young and highly agile minds (of any age): Challenge the assumptions of our time, diligently, respectfully and passionately… and we shall see what happens!