Humans are pattern detection machines.
We’ve evolved everything we needed to detect the patterns that mattered to our survival and reproduction. Our brains assemble the patterns to create our reality.
Then our minds match the patterns up to meaningful heuristics that are already stored in the brain. Patterns are nothing without meaning so we search for meaning.
If we’ve already learned a meaning for a pattern, great! We match the pattern to the meaning.
If we haven’t learned a meaning, we search. Or, dangerously, we misapply a different meaning.
It is meaning that is the most important. Wisdom is born from the accumulation of correct meanings.
Image from Flickr Commons: Cassiopeia A: Cassiopeia A in Many Colors by Smithsonian Institution