I myself have experienced this. In fact, I have even encouraged others who were about to give out and stop that “the summit is right up there,” we found that we still had a third of the mountain to go when we got there.
In 1894, at the opening of the laboratory of the University of Chicago, the new director stated that all the important discoveries of science had already been made and that in the future, we would just be perfecting theories out “to the sixth decimal place.” The problem for that statement was that Albert Einstein was only just growing up, but in a few years he would come out with Relativity. This theory only bent space and time, overthrew, with proof and evidence, nearly six thousand years of scientific thought, and shook up entire branches of science.
Besides that he also reformed our idea of energy, and gave us e=mc2.
So it often is in science, man thinks that they now know everything there is to know. The ancients postulated the Sun was about a foot wide. That was taught as fact. Then we were told the earth was flat and everything revolved around us. At another time it was stated that no rational person would ever state that there were other galaxies. Now every fourth grader knows that.
It was once stated different objects fall at different speeds, and this held up for a thousand years, until somebody bothered to drop something and find out-the idea was wrong.
Now, it is accepted in science that the universe began with a big bang. The textbooks, the scientists, the History Channel all proclaim it. It must be true.
While currently the great majority of scientists believe in the big bang, that does not make it true. Not even the fact there is a book called The End of Science, proclaiming that the current ideas of our modern world will never be changed, just worked out to the sixth decimal point, can alter the fact that in the end, science will move on.
And when science does move on, we will come a little closer to doing what Johannes Kepler, the astronomer, said science was all about. “Thinking God’s thoughts after Him.”
Andrew C. Abbott