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A Lucilius Parable: A Day's Work - Part II
April 27th, 2019
If all you have is a hammer, than everything starts to look like a nail.
This captures domain skew simply in a single sentence, but at the same time, it phrases domain skew in a way that does not promote healthy introspection. It’s a bit like a cartoon version of domain skew that hyperbolizes the concept, and this hyperbole perhaps goes too far in the sense that it leaves the realm of what we honestly and truly think might apply to ourselves. It’s somewhat easy to see other people making this mistake, but what about ourselves?
The stereotypical used car salesman fails to see the disingenuousness of his approach because he is too busy seeing every person as a potential source of money.
Likewise perhaps with the Realtor who is primed to pick up on people who are looking for a house, no matter what the social situation.
The lawyer might see the world through a matrix of restraints
While the entrepreneur may see the world as a malleable ball of clay.
The priest most likely sees everything as an unfolding of some deity’s plan,
while the scientist may see everything as a curious puzzle that can be fruitfully observed and studied.
Regardless of profession, each person is imbued with a similar skew, as per the experiences we’ve had.
And while common stories like religion and nationalism may form some glue for groups of people, there is one common thread that unites all people whether they like it or not: facts.
Axiomatic principles about reality that are non-negotiable form the stage upon which all is possible and within which all such group-glue stories like religion and nationalism exist. No religion, nor nation can argue with the ever present fact of gravity. It is not a choice, just as breathing and sleeping are not choices if we wish to see tomorrow.
The domain that we have to confront, regardless of what we think about it is the one that science seeks to describe and explore, one that certainly has constraints, but which is easily focused on the infinite possibilities that can take place because of these constraints. It’s a simple fact that more is possible within the realms of science than can be described by religion and nationalism simply because these are two possibilities that have arisen within the circumstances of physical reality.
Anyone who is more concerned with some story rather than the mechanics of physical reality is bound to be surprised if that story is not in line with what is physically possible.
This is why it is good not to dive head and foot into a domain, but to have a few domains lightly within reach.
Unlike the individual who only has a hammer and sees everything as a nail,
A Jack of All Trades is equipped with all sorts of perspectives, and can therefore see the world through a variety of skews, balancing them against one another and in so doing, gaining a clearer idea of what is going on.