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To what extent can an idea be unique?

Are all ideas just the combination of known principles or trial and error? Examples and peronal experiences are good as well as just opinions. This question could be expanded to any thought at all, not just ideas. If there is a thought that is almost entirely unique, there can't be any previous oppposite idea. What I mean is if an idea is the exact opposite of another it isn't really original. It just stated the opposite. If an entirely original idea can be made, how will it be formed?

I have some opinions currently, but I'm sure they'll change after your comments. Please ask me to expand or clarify if needed.

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  • Aug 3 2013: Hi Kai,

    I think I'd like to go into physiology for a bit.
    we store in our brains in the form of neuronal connections a lot of information. it keeps getting accumulated. sometimes they get destroyed as well. however, an idea in my mind is when a lot of these information gets played around and a new circuit or connection gets formed. that's our eureka moment.

    now would you say that its unique?

    In a sense no, because its all due to previous information that we gathered from our environment.

    but more likely, its a yes. because the information in each of our brains is unique as a whole. it is built from the experiences and thoughts of our lives, which has never been before and never be after.

    thus a lot of times we are able to come up with similar ideas as other people (because they may have had the same set of info particular to that topic in their storage), and sometimes completely new(by forming a connection never previously made)(this would be rarer) and sometimes we build up on what appears to be someone else's ideas(a mix of both)

    I hope this was helpful pertaining to your question

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