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  1. September 16, 2011 at 7:29 pm

    Hey all—

    I wanted to blog a little bit about a topic we discussed in class earlier this week. Found below is an expanded version of my response to the quote on page thirteen of “Perspectives on the Nature of Science,” which spoke about how, though we may try, there is no pure bedrock of observable fact for anything in life. Science is a series, not of truths, but of possible truths, that are constantly being “falsified” and reestablished as more evidence is discovered. It is always progressive, moving, changing. Science is, essentially, fluid.

    And so is life.

    I think the quote from page thirteen speaks about science and scientific observation, yes, but I think it also shines an important and largely ignored light on the human experience in general. We are all different. We all come from different backgrounds with different histories and traits and values and experiences. It is inevitable, and at least in my opinion, a benefit to society, that we are all unique. Each and every one of us, just like scientists, will approach individual situations from different viewpoints. And, also like scientists, we will all act differently and make our own conclusions. There is no “true bedrock,” as the authors affirm, because there is no single point of view. Just as there are six sides of a die, there are six (or more) different ways to look at a die. I think this idea of many perspectives yielding many answers is important to a wider understanding of how scientific discovery should be conducted, but it is also important to living life.

    Different views do not represent some sort of societal fallacy; all too often, people perceive differences as weaknesses, as things to be afraid of, to ignore, to change, to eradicate, but this notion is simply not true. I, personally feel that it is a blessing that we have the opportunity not only to observe things our own way, but that we can also be enlightened by the observations of others. Scientists do it: after all, much of what we know in science today would still be unknown had scientists not shared information. All significant technological achievements were made through collaborative efforts. Had the Johns Hopkins doctors not shared their findings relating to HeLa’s cells, all of the progress made because of her cells would never have come into existence.

    Any thoughts on this? Any examples of how the world of science is alone in the idea that life should be collaborative, and different viewpoints should be appreciated and utilized?

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