Level of abstraction

In his head were sounds that he associated with a lot of what had happened.  Furthermore, he and his neighbor had made sounds to each other and had discovered that they could agree on what those sounds meant.  They had language.  They had a means to think about what might be, and they had a means to communicate.
The neighbors developed their language and their imaginations until they had whole communities of neighbors
who were able to catch deer without falling over cliffs.  They also developed wondrous stories and fables—some true and some not so true—about how to catch deer and whales...and get the deer meat that's stored in the caves of the tribes who lived on the other side of the mountain, and get the women of the tribes who lived on the other side of the mountain, and . . . 

Sometimes their ideas didn't work as well as they wished.  Jumping up and down at the edge of the cliff while screaming the word for deer over and over again once did startle a deer which then fell off the cliff, but it never seemed to work well again.  They passed the word down through the generations, anyway, and it became widely considered as a way to get deer meat without having to do the hard work of chasing deer.

Many millennia later, human thinking had made great progress toward real effectiveness in getting what humans want.  One day one of the more respected thinkers of the day invented a word for what made the food important, and what made rest cure the fatigue of chasing deer.  Aristotle coined the word, "energy," from the Greek words meaning "at work."

The word "energy" stood not for experiences or imagined experiences, it stood for a deeper abstraction.  This "capacity for doing work" was something in common to a lot of different kinds of experiences and imagined experiences.  Thinking about it was a little harder than thinking about experiences themselves.

Science had begun to gestate.

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