In natural science, discovering new facts or discovering new way of thinking is more important?

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kapokkid | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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Given the enormous amount of "facts" that have been discovered and subsequently proven wrong, one might easily make the argument that it is far more important to discover or develop new ways of thinking.  New ways of thinking might help to solve some of the "factual" problems we have like dwindling fossil fuels or other such limiting factors.

But it is likely true that these new ways of thinking are usually developed as someone tries to find certain facts or understand a certain process in a more factual or defined way.  So you might also argue that there is no real way to separate the two or declare that one is more important than the other.

If you looked at the rush to develop nuclear weapons prior to and during World War II, you can look at the importance of discovering facts about how fission worked and how to manipulate it but you might also consider the incredible importance of developing new ways of thinking that don't involve destroying the entire earth because people cannot talk to each other and solve problems.

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luckylynx | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

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we need to regard the discovery of new ways of thinking about old ideas as a thought process that encourages refinement and advances. This mindset is essential to develop a definition of truth. Without this mindset we would be clueless and just confused with any new data presented. We would not know where to start. This mindset also serves as a template for our beliefs. This intention to constantly evolve gives us a better understanding of the world and helps us uncover new facts and data. The Flat Earth model was used popularly throughout the world in many civilizations until some major historical authorities began questioning this theory that the world was flat. Aristotle’s goal to uncover a new way of thinking about the Earth and the Universe proved to redefine the modern age’s perception of space and the solar system. We see here the necessity of thinking about in a new way that then later lead to further advances upon space, and new facts. Without this new way of thinking about our position in space we would not have progressed in the right direction and not have become so technologically advanced in space. The things we perceive are always subject to change. With new facts constantly being presented we have a huge array of facts to pick from. Having a basic mindset to look for knowledge for progress is a key feature in knowing. To discover new ways of thinking about knowledge already known holds this principle and also lets us choose what to believe in. Both ways of thinking use progress as its method and go hand in hand as they complement each other.

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luckylynx | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

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The endless dilemma in choosing between discovering new ways of thinking about what is already known and discovering new data or facts is quite a complicated process. The typical approach may be to say that new ways of thinking are innovative and new advances are advantageous. And to some extent this is true. However, there is also a need for discovery new data and facts as to broaden the knowledge inventor and we can’t overlook this. Using examples such as religious historical beliefs, and science, I will attempt to prove equal importance in gaining new facts and discovering new ways of thinking about old knowledge .

The discovery of new data and becoming innovative with old ideas should go hand in hand. First, it is important to acknowledge discovering new ways of thinking about what is already known. This renewal process is an innovative one and works to create better, refined knowledge. This is important so that people do not stay limited and stuck on a certain mindset. Often time, people are asked to choose what they belief on the creation of the universe. Was it God or the Big Bang Theory? In only addressing these two popular options we are neglecting so many more options. In this example, we can ask ourselves, is it better to focus on these two theories and further progress and analyze them using the knowledge we have or to attempt to expand our ideas with further insights and new data? It seems that they go hand in hand as discovering new facts allows for questioning while looking for new ways of thinking helps us come to a conclusion on what we want to know.

The importance of discovering new facts and data as opposed to new ways of thinking lies in providing availability. Adding on to what we know can help us better analyze a certain situation and come to a conclusion on truth. As of 2006 many astronomers believe Pluto to no longer be a planet. This conclusion was brought to light because Eris, an object with 25% mass than Pluto was discovered. This new discovery leads to a change in our way of thinking. This shows the importance that gaining new data plays in developing a new way of thinking. Without these new facts, there would be no possibility that we could come to a conclusion that Pluto was not a planet. In this case, by only trying to discover a new way of thinking on old data we lack evidence and justification and operate on mere assumptions that discovery new facts can helpfully provide.

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