Do you remember the name Buckminster Fuller? He was an inventor, mathematician and futurist who wrote a book shortly before his death 30 years ago titled Critical Path (St. Martin’s Press, 1981). In the book, Fuller introduced the idea of a “Knowledge Doubling Curve.” Using all of the knowledge that the human race had accumulated and transmitted by 1 AD as a starting point, Fuller believed knowledge would have doubled by about 1500 AD. The next doubling of knowledge would have been about 1750 AD. Doubling increased exponentially during the next two centuries and had grown to about every 25 years by the end of World War 2. Today, because of the computer and other information systems, the doubling time of knowledge is close to every 12 months and experts say it may one day double every 12 hours!
I touched on some of these futurist views in the section about “The Science of Immortality” in my book A History of Man’s Quest for Immortality (Fifth Estate, 2007, pp. 391-470). Though “knowledge doubling” is certainly a big challenge to our society, there is a bigger problem. Knowledge is increasing, but wisdom is decreasing. Our children will “know” more in their lifetime than we will ever know in ours, but they will have little “wisdom” to use that knowledge.
We must teach wisdom to our children now!
Continue reading “Teaching Wisdom to Our Children – Part 1”