THE FREEDOM OF THE TRUTH
The large and small intellectual discoveries or the astounding scientific and technical innovations that have fertilised human civilization have been possible thanks to individual initiative and personal freedom. These acted on occasions aside from effective legality and on many others against authority, being the laughing stock of the ignorant mass and having to tolerate the scorn of indifferent people. The most attractive successes in all the human and natural sciences have been achieved against many obstacles of the atmosphere and they were generally carried out by reduced minorities and always by private individuals. With regard to these successes, groups do not invent nor discover. It is the individuals who do so. Those, perhaps, act as patrons facilitating the action of these.
When in a great society or in the habitual micro coexistence an atmosphere of responsible freedom is created that admires, respects and looks for the always astonishing truth in any science; and when that atmosphere is facilitated with suitable institutions that promote agility of thought and investigation avoiding direct control of individual efforts, it is possible to provide a maximum of successful opportunities to all types of original people. Free concatenation is strengthened and fecundates intellectual flashes in the multicoloured interdependent scientific map. The danger that these attitudes can cause is that of facilitating the extension and development of the forces of error and evil. However, it is necessary to take a risk. As Hayek indicates: “If freedom is not granted even when we don’t find the use that some make of it desirable, we would never achieve the benefits of being free; we would never obtain those unforeseeable new developments that freedom offers us. (…) Our faith in freedom rests in the belief that, in the last analysis, it will free many more forces for good than for evil.” If they say that a lie repeated a thousand times becomes true, I am sure that a truth explained only a hundred times has much more power of persuasion and is perfectly capable of drowning the previous lie.
It appears to be clear then that freedom favours and stimulates the search for the truth. Nevertheless, it also occurs the other way around: that the truth strengthens and expands freedom. I do not only mean that “the truth will make you free” that too, but rather the scientific developments in astrophysics, microbiology, electro or thermodynamic chemistry, not to mention many other fields of investigation, are discovering a living and seemingly risky reality freely materialized for us. It seems as if the most intimate nuclei in matter or energy, and the most secret sources in life were free and intelligible in a certain infinite degree of sophistication.
Nature is also creative. In the current scientific Cosmo-vision, the formation of new beings that belong to already existent types is a creative process. Physicists, for example, agree that electrons, photons, atoms, molecules, giant or dwarf stars, galaxies and meteorites all behave legally, but their laws are not of the type of laws of Newtonian mechanics or Aristotelian stability. Those laws do not allow us, even using the most sophisticated electronic tools, to predict what will happen with certainty. A concrete effect is not the result of an equal, constant and unique cause but rather countless convergent causes give rise to such an original effect, and each new discovery opens the door to another unknown universe. The flat monochord song of nature has to be substituted by polyphonic music with a great many voices harmonised in a masterful way. Each scientific Cosmo-vision, especially in economy, is the culmination of many linked individual inventions and the result of many advances and setbacks, of many blunders that end up being useful for the incomprehensible paradoxes of life and, in short, of a lot of intellectual humility that is continually surprised.
It appears that the truth is not monolithic, determinist and homogeneous; it is not feudal, lineal and predictable by the human mind; it is not paralysed nor is it closed nor dead. It appears that the truth on the contrary is open, living and always new, active and surprising. Perhaps the truth makes us free because the very truth is free.
JJ Franch Meneu