May 21, 2013

Knowledge Analysis | Why too much knowledge is bad

In a country like India, education is considered important- very important. Every child is taught to put education over anything else. They say there is no limit to knowledge, but it just struck me that there just might be something. I present before you "Shaumik's curve of Knowledge-Sanity"!

Shaumik's Curve of Knowledge-Sanity

Let me explain the curve.

Learning Phase:
As a kid, you gather knowledge. Knowledge is not just education, but everything else that you learn. As you become knowledgeable, you perceive your surroundings in a better way and react to situations in a way which suits you better. I think of myself as being somewhere on point A in the curve.

There comes a point when there is nothing left for you to learn. You have gathered enough knowledge from existing books and research papers, and that is what point B on the curve signifies. An example of someone on point B would be Professor Walter Lewin!

Discovery Phase:
Something beyond point B is what I would call the discovery phase. You tend to do things that have not been done before- in short, you are doing something new (even though it may be something as destructive as creating a nuclear bomb!)

Someone I would consider on point C in the curve would be world renowned astrophysicist Stephen Hawking.

Ignorance Phase:
If you continue to gather knowledge beyond that, you lose the consciousness of your surroundings; you lose materialistic desires. In short, you get cut off from the world.

Somewhere between points D and E lies the Nobel Prize winner, John Nash, whose life has been beautifully documented in the movie 'A Beautiful Mind'.

Point of no return:
If you ignore the signs of the ignorance phase, you reach a point where the curve does a free fall! Note that a negative sanity doesn't necessarily mean insanity. An example of a person at this level would be psychopathic serial killer Hannibal "the cannibal" Lecter. Did you know that Lecter was a great cook, and he would probably feed you organs of his victims, cooked as exotic dishes? That would be negative sanity.

Note: I have had a bad day. My laptop just committed suicide (or attempted to do so) after bearing my torture for almost three long years. Technically, I am yet to figure out why exactly the power button refuses to work right now. With that not working, there was nothing else for me to do but blog (considering this particular laptop has an Intel Atom processor), and blog I did. Maybe these events have shaped my thought process for the blog!

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