Learning something is not a trivial act – the ancient Greeks were quite aware of the difficulties attendant to the creation of something from nothing. If knowledge in the learner’s head can be created from nothing, the floodgates are open, and all kinds of things can be created from nothing, contrary to everyday experience. Prolepsis, often translated as ‘foreshadowing’ or ‘preconception’, is a technical term originating with the Stoics, for whom it meant a naturally endowed and innate system of thought involving universal concepts.
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