By: Utari Wijayanti
The Elements was the first book to teach the basics of a deductive mindset and was written by Euclid in 300 BC. The book leaves behind the mystery of the 5th axiom that was only uncovered more than 2000 years later, with the discovery of non-euclid geometry.
A very interesting fact of the book is that it was first printed in 1482 and then translated and published over 1000 editions. It is estimated by Carl Benjamin Boyer to be the second most-published book after the Bible.
If we look again, 1482 was the transition from the Dark Ages to the Renaissance and then Europe managed to rise from the Dark Ages they had experienced some 1000 years after the collapse of the Roman Empire.
Looking at some of the facts including the very many editions of this book, recorded as one of the most influential books of all time, as well as the period of the first print edition appearing, it is clear we can draw the conclusion that this book played a very role in the revival of the Europeans.
What really makes this book so special that it became an important reference to the Europeans in the early Renaissance as well as the Century of Discovery? The book teaches not only logic but also deduction mindsets, axiomistic systems, evidentiary demonstrations, and the basic principles of problem solving (CMIIW). It was this mastery of principles that rebuilt European reasoning after hundreds of years of drowning in the Dark ages and stuck with mystical mindsets, such as calculating how many angels were at the end of the needle.
History also records the book exerting influence on several great scientists such as Nicolaus Copernicus, Johannes Kepler, Galileo Galilei, Sir Isaac Newtown and also on the evidentiary systems of the Legal Experts and the ayromatic approaches that can be found in Econoetry.
By scientists, existing axiomative concepts are further developed combined with inductive patterns – where axiomtic concepts are used as models of phenomena they observe, for example in the fields of science, law, economics, medical science, or computer technology.
Reflecting on the success of the Europeans rising from the Dark Ages, it is best for our nation to try to capture its spirit and set an example. We need to understand what is key to their success and what works to overhaul their mindset.