There is value to thinking in analogies to understand concepts. For me this is a way to visually abstract an idea and relate it in a shared experience that can help explain a complicated concept in a way people can understand. Another reason why I enjoy thinking this way is the universe is patterned, thinking in analogy is a great way to see how systems that occur in one place reappears in different contexts over and over again. I’d like to delve deeper into this on another post possibly.
Going through this mental exercise I came to the understanding that a spiders method for creating webs to catch their dinner would a useful analogy for the way we understand the world around us. A spider uses a web to catch their prey made out of individual strands attached at different edges of an open space to create a web enclosing a space to unsuspecting insects. Much like a spider constructs a web we as humans construct our lives knowledge, however most of us spend much of our time developing very specific areas, which could be analogized to the points a web connects to. Thinking of the spacing on the edge as different disciplines broadly speaking as engineering, science, art, history, mathematics. With math being on the opposite side as art and math and science being adjacent. Proximal locations thinking as colors on a color wheel with their complementary designs on opposite sides and similar fields adjacent in position. We can think that we spin our web by connecting these different fields together to create our understanding of the world around us.
To keep pushing the analogy the concentric stings that make up a web could be considered our levels of mastery with complete mastery being in the center of the web. As we can start to see most of us spin our knowledge in a small portion of what possible creating a condition where much of the world and new ideas are missed as a poorly constructed web would not catch many prey. For idea generation, it can be very helpful to learn about not only adjacent fields but how systems work in seemingly unrelated fields. I believe this is how to build a web that allows you to understand your world around you better and prevent ignorance. Additionally this allows to create new ideas as you will be able to take systems and concepts from other fields and rework them in your own area of specialty. Being able to see the whole picture could be an invaluable skill and can help you communicate with those whom have their specialty in areas that differ from yours. I have no proof of this, but then again the beautiful webs that spiders construct do seem to be pretty effective for catching prey.
I think this strategy of mapping out a system with its opposite and adjacent components could be a useful way to visualize all sorts of systems from human interactions to business strategies. Please contact me if you have found this to be useful in other ways then the example I provided.
Thank you for taking the time to read this musing