In olden times we tried to explain everything by astrology and gods (primitive tribal cultures still do this; we don't have to go back in time to see this). Later came metaphysics and all kinds of strange philosophical disciplines. Today we have social sciences-psychology, sociology; "modern economics" "modern finance" etc. These are all far from what reality is (logical holes, not able to explain reality, etc.), but today's theories are more logically believable, rational, or at least not that easily refutable (hard to see the uselessness of modern finance, for example!).
At least the yarns we are spinning are more complex. But maybe that's what progress is-the theories, the marketing ploys, whatever, become more logical. They may not be the truth; but at least they are not very obviously wrong (like a child's explanation of the world).
I am not talking about hard science, real experimental observation, whether it was by the men who made the axe or the harpoon or a cell phone or a nuclear physicist-that is real progress, really verifiable by experiments. But the vast majority of humanity is busy with spinning false theories, drawing false conclusions. Or actually even the scientists are logical and scientists only in their very narrow disciplines-in all other walks of life they are as illogical as the rest of mankind. Falling for vintage wines, scotch whiskey, real russian vodka, brands or designer bags, fine teas, or more generally, environmental and global warming topics, hating or loving their form of government-we all are prone to these false conclusions based on insufficient data, or distorted data presented to us by some authority figure. But at least they are more believable than the explications of gods and demons of before. As a group, we are becoming more intelligent, compare the understanding of a 10 year old child in the modern world to a grown up of a primitive tribe in brasil, africa, indonesia or india, and u can see what i mean. But that doesn't mean we are speaking the truth, understanding and predicting reality as it is-we are just better theorists, coming up with more logical and rational explanations of what happens around us.