genres: philosophy, realism
I was born in Melbourne Australia in 1922.
During my school days we were taught about many notable advances of human reasoning and enlightenment down the ages, particularly those relating to Nature and her ways. We were also taught about the ongoing opposition to such teachings by the unenlightened, however well-educated they may have been in other respects.
I was left with the impression that this state of affairs was a thing of the past, and that well-educated people everywhere had learnt the lessons of history and become fully committed to the furtherance of enlightenment.
I then went on to complete a course in the field of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Melbourne. During that time it became apparent that several forms of advanced reasoning were called for in the ongoing development of such a field. These include: the development of sound practices with the backing of known principles, the development of sound practices without the backing of any known principle, inventive reasoning and the successful development of new inventions.
Yet despite all these advances, I have long been exposed to the same forces of unenlightenment in my own well-educated circles.
These considerations have led me to the conclusions set out in this book.