- Education and Science
The Glory of Imperfection - Why Is Necessary And How It Gives Meaning To Life
A "Better" Perfect World
We often grieve at a lack of perfection. That we could try an activity and fail. That the house must be routinely cleaned from time to time. That electronics waste so much energy in heating up and very little of their energy is actually used to do work. That we must sleep and rest after a long day or after vigorous exercise. That no matter how good we get at something that we can always get better. But I this thinking is fundamentally flawed, not by its noble ideals and desires, but by the outcome if these ideals were actually able to be brought into reality. To understand this we should take a look at the history of humanity.
Our History...and Our Future
As a species we started off not as the "complete masters" of planet Earth that we are now, but little more of a group of animals who managed a somewhat better in the natural environment than the other animals. As a matter of fact, in the very beginning we were no better than any of the other animals in surviving. It is simply that, as some time passed, we learned how to live more safely and more efficiently that other animals, because our big brains allowed us greater learning capacity.
We first learned to use objects in nature such as branches and stones as tools. We then learned to use these these natural objects to craft tools that performed their jobs better as well as acquired the ability to hone fire. For centuries we used tools, making them better and more efficient, in turn making us better, more efficient and stronger as a species. These tools were an extension our human limbs which increased our strength and reach. Further on, we how to create machine. These machines were essentially autonomous human limbs that did not require any human intervention to do work, only requiring direction. Then along came computer which function as a extension of the human mind. It is because of this that the history of humanity is really at a turning point. We now have the ability to mimic every function of the human body, which arguably, is mimicking the human being in itself, to at least some degree but to a significant degree nonetheless. We have no idea what we come next, if it will be to completely mimic the physical, mental and perhaps even emotional abilities of a human being. If so, will that be the end? Or will we be able to create something even greater than a human being?
What Perfection Really Is
This is the progress of the history of humanity. But let us say, what if, directly from our primitive states, we suddenly gained to ability to master the earth with the best of the technology we would ever produce. Technology that is perfect in every way, with no flaws or holes anywhere in its structure. This is what perfection implies. The point of technology is to make our lives easier and more comfortable. Therefore, with perfection, we would have the ability to create something absolutely flawless with no need for improvement, no need to go through the create of tools then to machines, then to computer, then to the pinnacle of human technology. While the very notion of such an occurrence sounds absolutely implausible and is quite confusing, this, indeed, is what perfection implies. It would be like skipping from one point in time to the end of the future. Do we truly understand what this means?
What Perfection Means
This would mean the end, the end of whatever is perfected. There would be nothing to do, nothing to improve upon, nothing to alter. And, then, if one thing were perfect, would their truly be another thing that was imperfect. Can a perfect system produces something imperfect? Would one perfect thing, create a chain effect, causing, every other thing to be perfect? It is possible.
Whatever the answers to these question do not matter,. The main idea is that perfection simply means the end. With nothing to do what would be the point of life. A perfect body would mean no need to eat or sleep, which means no need to plant agriculture and no need for beds. No need to breathe means no need for air and since the body is perfect there is no need for heat and so no need for the oxygen in the air as well. It would definitely seem that perfection in any one realm would have some amount of a ripple effect in other realms. But with perfection, with the need for nothing, there would be no need to do anything. With perfection, life becomes meaningless.
Why Imperfection Is Necessary
We see now that imperfection is necessary for life. Any perfection would destroy the purpose(s) for life. In life, we must continuously work toward an ideal that, ironically, we must never achieve. We must forever push toward a goal that we must never accomplish. We must fight for a victory we must never gain. We can only get better but must never reach our best. What is left for the scientist that creates the perfect invention. What will this scientist become when there is no scientific work left to do? There would be a loss of life's purpose. To always work and find value in this work, such is the meaning of life.