I was reading an article on artificial intelligence and came across the following idea:
“ But it’s not just that a chimp can’t do what we do, it’s that his brain is unable to grasp that those worlds even exist—a chimp can become familiar with what a human is and what a skyscraper is, but he’ll never be able to understand that the skyscraper was built by humans. In his world, anything that huge is part of nature, period, and not only is it beyond him to build a skyscraper, it’s beyond him to realize that anyone can build a skyscraper. That’s the result of a small difference in intelligence quality.”
If we take this as true, then doesn’t it stand to reason that there are things in the vastness of the universe that we, as humans, will find to simply be beyond our ability to understand? One of the central tenets of the Enlightenment is that the world is ultimately knowable to science, but perhaps it isn’t.
Does this mean scientific inquiry is wrong? No. But it does say that we should not be so vain as to think we can ever really understand it all. And, just maybe, mystery has a place at the table of human understanding after-all.