Chapter 8Owners of Our Future

Consciousness remains one of life's great mysteries. It is considered a ‘hard problem’ in both science and philosophy. For millennia, it has been investigated separately by philosophers, mystics and poets, and now by physicists, neuroscientists and psychologists. The physicist believes the answer lies in quantum mechanics, the neuroscientist in the brain stem, the theologian in metaphysics and so on. Perhaps the real answer lies in a very particular synthesis of all of the above. Or maybe none. How can we ever know, when various ‘experts’ examine such a complex, multidimensional phenomenon through their respective one-dimensional lenses? Should we set up an interdisciplinary panel of ego-driven ‘specialists’? Or perhaps the problem is best synthesised in a single, multi-dimensional mind – one that is an artist, a scientist and a spiritualist in equal measure? How many such minds do we really have?

It is no wonder, then, that polymaths have been the prime shapers of history, and why they will inevitably continue to shape the future. They have always been the only breed capable of offering multidimensional solutions to multidimensional problems. Their value to society has always been, and will forever be, indispensable.

To the individual, the value of polymathy is now abundantly clear. Being naturally multifaceted, humans do not reach optimality and self-actualisation until many, if not all, of their facets are allowed to flourish. Crucially, polymaths ...

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