Wednesday, June 23, 2004

MJ, Einstein, and The Sports Guy: Archetypes

I'm really into the concept of archetypes these days. I'm sure you all know what archetypes are, but just bear with me.

Humans think relatively. Simply, we understand an ideas and values relative to other things. For example, what is the number "2" if there was no number "1" or number "3"? Or, would we even have have the word "happiness" if we didn't know unhappiness? Our sensory perception of the world is in a constant state of change, which makes it quite easy to think relatively, and our thoughts flow very smoothly, almost as if along a continuum. In fact, it is this obvious state of constant change (time?), that prompted mathematicians to start studying rates of change--which led to the birth of Calculus.

Archetypes are the far right limits of our continuum(s) of thought. We can have percieved nothing better than our personal archetypes. As perception is essential for comprehension (this is simply how our brains work, and one of the basic aspects of the "human condition"), I'm going to go so far as to saw we can't even comprehend anything beyond an archetype, we can only imagine it. Therefore, we can only imagine the qualities of something or someone that could potentially replace our archetypes. Not many would disagree that Michael Jordan is an archetype.

Will anyone ever be better than Michael Jordan? Will Lebron, or Carmelo, or maybe even someone that nobody has even heard of yet one day replace Michael Jordan and become the new archetype? Who knows. Its difficult for me to even imagine how somebody could be a better basketball player than MJ.

While Jordan seemed to defy the laws of physics, Albert Einstein actually did defy them.
Einstein was not only an archetype himself, but he also succeeded in radically replacing the archetype of the way in which people think about and and percieve the physical world, with his theories of special and general relativity. According to Craig Gonsul, the physics world is in need of another Einstein-like figure. Another Einstein? Thats almost scary to think about. Have you ever suddenly realized that something you had thought all your life to be correct was actually blatantly incorrect? An archetype was replaced, and you weren't prepared for its replacement. Thats one of the scariest things that could ever happen to someone, in my opinion. The world is our perception of it, and if we are suddenly told that one of our perceptions is incorrect, suddenly all of our perceptions will be brought into question. People like me, who think too much, begin to freak out, and may ask, "Do I really know anything at all? But thats another topic for another post.

On a lighter note, I have just decided that Bill Simmons, aka The Sports Guy, is the archetype of sports columnists. He is a sports and real world genius, as far as I'm concerned, and I encourage you all sports fans, of all interest and knowledge levels, to read his columns. If anything, check out his occasional "Ramblings" pieces and laugh your asses off. And he now has is own website! Check it out: Sports Guy's World


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