QUESTION OF QUESTIONS
Microsoft, Intel, HP, Dell, Apple, Google, Infosys, Wipro, Accenture, MindTree …….All big companies.. making whole lot of money. All are in the business of technology. Inventing new ways.Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by the speed of change. But what I am writing right now is not about change, its not even about technology or business. The question has been looming around in my head for almost a decade now.
Every human can relate to that question, It is in the very existence of human species. The question which many gr8 philosophers have been thinking and quoting about. Questions about success, life, god, happiness, satisfaction all have there own place in human mind, but they are all derived from this basic question.
Human evolution has seen many phases. From early humans and homo-sapiens to modern day information savy man. All related to different aspects of human development. It is the ability to think and ask questions and then find answers to them is the very fact which makes us evolve from one stage to other.
A person asked question about Lightning and he discovered Electricity.
A person asked question about apple falling and he discovered and defined the gravitation energy.
A person asked question about Life and he invented buddhism.
Every person in life has many questions to find an answer for. The ability to define this question and the journey of finding its answer is what makes everyone move.
Lets talk for a while about early humans. when there was no language. no civilization no rules, no regulations. All living equally in same conditions. How would they have been living. A human without words. A human without language. What sort of questions they are facing. To evolve these questions must have been defined and answered by someone.
Like the question of fire. The Human rubbing 2 stones against each other leading to friction and heat generation. Some questions are defined accidentally and some are defined by a conscious effort. The question in case of fire would have been:-
What will happen if I rub these 2 stones? Of course there was some element of curiosity in it. This question must have lead to huge rewards. The early human who generated fire must have been thought like a god or a daemon. Depending upon the overall outlook of the group they were living in and the way they exercised there power.The power of fire.. achieved through with an ability to define questions and then finding answer to it.
It is there in humans. The curiosity, the mindset of an explorer. The ability to take risks and go beyond the traditional means. The history has seen it many times. It is only the explorer, The Question asker, The curious who has always led to some innovation and revolution.
Not all questions answered were good for human evolution. Lets take an example of the question of dividing limited resources. How should the limited resources be divided? It was this question when answered gave birth ownership.
An early human group hunted a large elephant. Now they were faced with a challenge of how to divide it among a group of 10. Those who hunted that large animal. The question was Who should be given what size of the dead meat. All of them came up with different ways to divide it.
One said Divide it using the effort put in by everyone.One said divide it in equal proportions.
One said I should get the bigger piece because it was my idea to hunt it
One said I took the biggest risk so I should get a bigger piece
Similarly everyone came with his own answer to the very question of how to divide. What could have happened next-They all fought with each other and one person became victorious. Now it was up-to him to decide how to divide it. He took biggest for himself. and divided rest with some justified reason among others. or divided using his own personal choice just or unjust.They all voted and choose a decision taker. Now decision taker became the leader and he was forced to divide among the group using some justified reasons. But was difficult because one group had voted for him and other had not. So he gave bigger share to those who elected him as the leader.
Now since division was achieved by some means (Good or bad is out of scope for this article). came the sense of ownership. This is mine and this is not mine.
In essence it all started with one fact scarcity of resources. and the answer was to divide it and give everybody ownership for his piece.
Can you see it. Question leading to not only one answer but multiple answers and each answer creating its own by-discoveries like ownership, monarchy, democracy, politics, just, unjust, measures of size etc.
So to solve one question. A person had to solve a series of questions each leading to multiple inventions.
No-one knew what they were discovering or what they would discover in the process of answering a simple question.
We all know there are people who are great at making inventions and discoveries. While others are just following there routine lives. Not being able to invent and not being able to utilize this great human power of asking questions.
Coming back to the point of The gr8 question in my mind. The question is …. Where is the ability to ask questions, being an explorer , a curious person coming from. Is it the way in which we are built or there are more things to it. I may find an answer someday. How can we cultivate this ability of asking questions. This is the greatest human ability which is only responsible for separating us from the others. Ability to have a thought process. And can this ability be generated in machines or computers?
The Great ability is to ask questions and then undertake a journey to answer that question.
Every evolution was lead by some invention or discovery which was an answer to some question
Develop and cultivate the ability to ask questions.
All companies small or big are looking for explorers, question asker and people who are curious enough to figure things out and lead the next wave of revolution
(Thanks – spare my faulty langugae… )