Hello! My name is Trent Fowler and this is my blog. I’m reflective by nature and I enjoy writing, so I decided to create an online space where I can begin collecting my essays and my thoughts on, well, everything.
The name “Rulers To The Sky” comes from a sentence I read on the very day I started this blog. It’s from “The End of Faith” by Sam Harris. He wrote it in the context of discussing how our intuitions sometimes run counter to reality, pointing out that we can be deceived even when we know our intuitions are wrong. Here is the passage:
“The full moon appearing on the horizon is no bigger than the full moon when it appears overhead, but it looks bigger, for reasons that are still obscure to neuroscientists. A ruler held up to the sky reveals something that we are otherwise incapable of seeing, even when we understand that our eyes are deceiving us. Given a choice between acting on the basis of the way things seem in this instance, or on the deliverances of our ruler, most of us will be willing to dispense with appearances—particularly if our lives or the lives of others depended on it…It may be time to take out our rulers and hold them up to the sky.”
I don’t endorse everything Sam has to say, of course, but this struck me as a beautiful and concise summary of most of what underlies my personal philosophy. It’s a powerful image — dedicated searchers for truth, undaunted by the fact that their own eyes are undeniably wrong, doing anything required to understand how the world really is, even if it means holding a ruler up to the sky. I’ll probably talk more about it in the future, but I think such courage is important enough to border on a personal duty.
You’ll notice that the byline of the blog is ‘writings from the mind of an aspiring polymath’. I want to be a polymath because I believe that strong cross-disciplinary perspectives are still an asset in an age of information overload and hyper-specialization. But the deeper truth is that I simply don’t have a choice. My interests are shattered, spanning fields like evolution, philosophy, computing, weightlifting, poetry, mysticism, and linguistics, to name just a few off the top of my head. I say ‘aspiring’ because I’m still young and I have a lot left to learn and a lot of territory left to cover.
I’ll hopefully have this blog around for a while. So expect to see my mind change on a few things and, hopefully, my writing get ever-so-slightly better.
If you’d like to get in touch with me you can do so at: fowlertm9 [at] gmail [dot] com.