I’m not sure what you’ll be doing in your favorite watering hole this weekend, but in mine we always get into heated debates. Could be the Bears, Cubs, Mayor, President; or our two favorite controversies, Gangs and Scientists. That may sound a little strange, but then a lot of my friends are a little strange.
Here’s how these two very different subjects overlap. Each in their own way has cast a spell on the general population. Gangs scare and enrage the hell out of us! Scientists impress and dazzle the rest out of us! Now I’m here to say both spells are partly wrong.
* GANGS > From the news reports, these punks seem all powerful in their respective city rat holes. But let the record show once you lure them out into the light of a civilized city, big punks shrivel into the little punks they really are
* SCIENTISTS > From these same news reports, today’s remarkable investigators in fields like biology, physics and communication also seem all powerful. We have come to the conclusion that wherever there is a serious problem in our lives, there is a serious scientist with an answer. From headache to cancer, we have doctors….from bi-polar to dementia, we have psychiatrists….from criminals to terrorists, we have hi-tech cameras and profilers.
In other words, whereas at one time tribes went to their witch doctor and believers to their priests, today’s brilliant practioners of the scientific disciplines have taken on the status of universal mentors and masters. They are the new go-to-guys, because most of us by now feel they can offer us the pill, protocol or policy that can resolve most of our issues.
And you know what…? Lately most of the time most of them can.
But here’s where caution is called for by us impressionable laity. To assume that science is the alph and the omega, the heart and the spirit to our humanity — this unspoken assumption by the masses has earned the name Scientism. Scientism is not anti-Science thinking, rather it is philosophical thinking that says all reality is eventually reducible to what the empirical sciences can describe and verify. If you can’t see smell, touch or test it…it ain’t. In effect, anything beyond the empirically verifiable is the stuff of fantasy, imagination, primitivism. Worst of all, religious nonsense that we are more than evolved matter, but rather come from a source and a purpose that gives us eternal value. But that there might be such a dimension of reality knowable in a non-scientific but still rational manner never occurs to them.
Take it from me, our bar fights are loud and lusty. But for the life of me, I can never figure out why the other side is so anxious to convince everybody we’re really just so much unintentional DNA that occasionally gathers in here like the potted plants. If that’s all I’m worth, why am I being charged this much? Why are you? In fact, why am I even bothering to talk to you, when my inconsequential DNA is just as here-today-gone-tomorrow as yours?
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