I have weird thoughts sometimes, and one of the weird thoughts I have is that there really isn’t any point for me to try to get smarter, when there will always be someone else smarter than me. Now, of course, that sentence is false, but this is a frequently recurring thought that haunts me every time I hear about the latest prodigy or savant. It makes me wonder if there even is a point to my learning.
Now, of course there is, because if said prodigy or savant is going to create some multi-million dollar business, it’s not going to be uneducated blokes off the street that get hired. That being said, how can I really contribute when any ideas I come up with have already been thought of by someone smarter than me.
I should be clear here. When I say contribute, I mean to come up with something new. Sure, I can sit in front of a computer all day and do what someone else tells me to do, but to me, that’s just being a robot (or a computer). That’s not contributing. What I mean by contributing is to have my own bright ideas, my own little gems that turn out to actually be good.
I know that somebody is going to say, “Maybe it just hasn’t been your day yet. You’re young, you have your whole life ahead of you to come up with a great idea.” And while I cannot dispute the validity of that statement, this thought feels quite vacant when I consider what everybody else has done. It’s just virtually impossible for me to come up with an original idea. Somebody else has already thought of it.
Maybe this is because of the surplus of knowledge in the world, but I would think that back when Newton (and the other guy, can’t remember his name. Leibniz I think) developed Calculus, they must’ve thought the world quite full of ideas. My guess is that I’m probably just not smart enough. Now, I’m not saying that I want to do something as crazy as invent Calculus, but I would like to feel like I’ve done something original, something that nobody else has done.
Now, other people might look at what I’ve said and tell me, “You just need to go to school more. You can’t come up with something original if you haven’t already learned what others have developed.” And, I would say, true, but then we run into the same problem again, where what I’m doing is not completely original, since it is based off of somebody else’s work. An example of this would be if I were to learn all that we knew about Math, and then create some obscure theorem to prove Goldbach’s conjecture. Firstly, that’s recreational math, with no benefit to the world whatsoever, and secondly, it’s based on Goldbach’s work in the first place.
This post probably isn’t making a lot of sense, and I know you guys must all be thinking, “What has Michael been up to with all these weird posts lately?” Maybe it’s because I’m writing them at night. I’ll try to write Thursday’s post in the morning and see what happens.
All that aside, I guess it’s food for thought. What do you guys think? Do you feel the same desire to contribute/create and come up with something of your own? Do you think my points are fair, or valid? Or are there arguments against what I’ve said? I’m honestly curious about your opinions, if you have any.
Strife is used to cover sorrow, and anger to conceal hurt. Such is the nature of people. However, few realize that our world does the same. What then is the sorrow of our world? Why is it hurt? I fear that without answers to these questions, humankind might be no more.