Henry Miller

There are, it seems, explicit conclusions in Feynman’s article that allow such a deduction to be made.

Feynman’s suggested that pre-established results from prestigious or well-known scientists may sometimes lie in the way of new discoveries and progression of knowledge; these boundaries cause darkness to be cast over the possible discoveries of the future. Feynman appears to have realised that by modelling the results of our experiments to the results of other scientists we have stopped looking for answers to our questions but have rather started looking for questions to fit our answers.For example if a group of scientists had been funded by a particular company, such as Range Rover to find the effects of carbon emissions on the environment, we know that the results found by these scientists will prove some benefit for Range Rover, and will not be entirely truthful. The reasons for this being that Range Rover would have been depending on the scientists to find an answer that benefits their company. As a result of these bias findings we cannot progress our knowledge any further.

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It is because of this that I feel we have condemned ourselves to lives of ignorance. The halt to intellectual advancement is not solely the fault of the scientists; we are all to blame. The ignorance in our lives is only further perpetuated by the laissez-faire way in which we simply accept information without question. By not asking these questions and aspiring to increase our knowledge we can never hope to reach the equilibrium between understanding and ignorance.An example that may help to clarify this declaration that I am attempting to justify would be the paradigm shift of the Sun’s pattern of orbit. Before Galileo Galilee’s discovery of the heliocentric galaxy people were complacent in accepting that their sun, stars and universe revolved around the Earth. By using their senses, seeing, as a way of knowing this was a concept that seemed acceptable to accept without further consideration.

However, it was not until Galileo questioned this idea of a geocentric universe and rejected it because of his own results, rather than forcing the already acknowledged answer onto his findings, that we were able to move forward in our journey of acquiring knowledge. Consequently, there is a direct opposition to my scientific approach. By considering history’s area of knowledge a case of disagreement presents itself. The horizon of ignorance cannot hope to broaden in historical contexts.

The simplistic viewpoint mentioned earlier, that, the more we know means only that we know more details about the topic, applies when reviewing history. When we collect data and piece together the facts in an attempt to understand what has happened it does not cause us to ask more questions. We do not become further ignorant in what has happened in that same instant, because we already know all that there is to know about it. This therefore disproves Miler’s quote that as we increase our knowledge our ignorance expands.