Tuesday, January 12, 2010

On an emerging narrative of clarity and honesty 

Watching Nick Clegg trying to set out a clear and consistent approach to this coming election while at the same time that I am reading a book on Quantum Theory (and trying to understand the narrative of how that theory evolved), a couple of concepts crossed over in my mind.

One is Albert Einstein’s guideline for explaining science to the world

“Make it as simple as possible, but no simpler”

The other is a phrase Einstein drew on for solace, from the works of the philosopher and playwright Gotthold Lessing that the aspiration to truth is more precious than believing one has possession of a fixed truth.

“It is not the truth that a man possesses, or believes that he possesses, but the earnest effort which he puts forward to reach the truth, which constitutes the worth of a man”

Nick may just be managing to make our narrative simply expressed without losing sight of the complexities and also keeping in mind the fact that we don’t actually have all the answers ourselves.

(For the Quantum part of this experience see Manjit Kumar “Quantum: Einstein, Bohr and the great debate about the nature of reality’)

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