The Least Important Question In The World

“The Most Important Question In The World”

There are so many things wrong with the article linked, where to begin.

The most important thing for determining the quality of your life is your relationships, not your work.

Particularly, one’s spouse.  Finding somebody you belong with and making the effort to make it work is 50% of everything.

We also need to get rid of the idea of a calling, for most people.  It’s cruel and deceptive and gets people to not think clearly about their interests.

We need people to work in the fields, we need people to work in the mills, and we need to stop thinking of those who do the most essential jobs in society as lesser people.  There’s no dishonor in honest work.

Somebody wrote an amusing book titled “You are not special”, from a graduation address he made about how it is wrong to have a value system where anybody that leads an ordinary life is considered a failure. Most of us are not special and will not become elite in any way and that’s ok.  There’s no sense in beating people up over something that can’t happen.

But for those that do have the capacity to be elite, the advice in the article isn’t that great either.

For instance, tunnel vision is rarely a hallmark of greatness.  A lot of the greatest minds cross pollinate ideas from different fields.

That’s trite, but I’d add my own observation that in any related area, to the extent that you aren’t educated enough to form your own opinion, you become a prisoner of other people’s slop.

Also, different disciplines can overlap in hazardous ways if that is not recognized.  Some of the greatest “scientific” puzzles for instance aren’t scientific issues at all, which is why they escape solution.  Bad philosophy holds back science more than bad science.

Another example is science and law, a lot of terrible legal precedents involve judges crossing over into the domain of science and coming up with pop psychology that is without any empirical foundation and that is in fact wrong.

It’s also wrong that people can’t contribute in multiple areas, Wittgenstein, the greatest philosopher by a very wide margin, also made contributions to first aid, including a blood transfusion process I think, and helped with designs for the first helicopters.

Probably the philosophy helped be a better problem solver for practical problems and practically applying himself probably helped him become the most empirical philosopher.
The problem of knowledge gaps can be seen often in politics, where for example lawyers may not have enough background in economics and economists may not have enough background in law.

When people focus on their strong areas without shoring up the weak areas there can be gaping holes.


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