Because life and its aspects can be extremely difficult to understand without experience, to present a full level of complexity to a student or child all at once can be overwhelming. Hence elementary explanations tend to be simple, concise, or simply "wrong" — but in a way that attempts to make the lesson more understandable. Sometimes the lesson can be qualified, for example by claiming "this isn't technically true, but it's easier to understand". In retrospect the first explanation may be easy to understand for its inaccuracies, but it will be replaced with a more sophisticated explanation which is closer to "the truth". This "tender introduction" concept is an important aspect of education.
Such statements are not usually intended as deceptions, and may, in fact, be true to a first approximation or within certain contexts. For example Newtonian mechanics, by modern standards, is factually incorrect (as it fails to take into account relativity or quantum mechanics) but it is still a valuable and useful model in many situations.
One particular progression of "lies" or simplifications, each of which are debunked or unraveled as one progresses deeper into a subject (in this case, physics), runs as follows:
The term appeared in the book The Science of Discworld, co-authored and partly based on ideas created by Terry Pratchett, and in The Collapse of Chaos and Figments of Reality, both by the other two co-authors of The Science of Discworld, Ian Stewart and Jack Cohen.
It is difficult to understand why the DA, as official opposition, is organising mid-term elections for the parliamentary leadership. This being the case, however, and Lindiwe Mazibuko having thrown her hat in the ring, this divisive stance must inevitably call forth the kind of partisanship expressed in your letter columns (October 19) from Brendan Doolan and others.
Oct 21, 2011; It is difficult to understand why the DA, as official opposition, is organising mid-term elections for the parliamentary...
I find it difficult to understand how a killer whale, which has been involved in the death of two other humans, can be used as a 'show'. Animal exhibitions need to stop keeping dangerous animals and using them for entertainment. I am sure the audience were very entertained that day: 'Come and see our killer whale do what it does it the wild -- kill.'
Feb 26, 2010; I find it difficult to understand how a killer whale, which has been involved in the death of two other humans, can be used as a...