SCI-ART LAB

Science, Art, Litt, Science based Art & Science Communication

Q: How can I develop scientific thinking?

Q:Can science say it for sure that afterlife doesn't exist? What do you thinks about it? Krishna : Science says there is no evidence of afterlife except anecdotal experiences people tell and of course some imaginative stories people weave. If you tell some stories before people of science, you have to provide evidence too for them to trust you.
We can’t imagine like you do and cannot provide evidence to something that exists only in people’s minds and not in this physical world. So don’t ask for it.
If you want to believe in it, go ahead and do it. You have every right to do that.
And we have every right to reject it because you didn’t provide us any authentication.
What type of argument is it to weave a story in your mind and ask others to prove or disprove it? It is your baby, you conceived it so it is your duty to nurse it, bring it up and show it to the world that it exists. 

(After reading this answer of mine one person, RB, sent me this message: Ma'am, last para brilliant!)  

Q: What do you think  when I say almost all basic science fields have 'fathers' who were highly religious?

Krishna: :) Okay, agreed! 

When science became a separate entity in the earlier centuries, virtually everybody was a religious person. " Critical thinking" or 'rational thinking' was not even a part of science.  Most of the science happened then by using trial and error methods. "Scientific methodology and methods" were largely unknown. 

So you hardly find anybody then who was not religious in some way or the other. Their thinking  just reflected the time they lived in.

Some, although came out of this enigma through thorough thought process, were afraid to speak frankly against their religious leaders for the fear of debarment. 

I don't think there is anything unusual in this!

Q: What are the homeopathic medicines to cure high BP or hypertension?

Q: Is it possible to treat hypothyroidism with homeopathic medicine?

Krishna: I don't practice homeopathy. Homeopathy doesn’t work. Don’t go for it if you really want a ‘cure’ or ‘control’ a condition. Here is my evidence…

Q: How can you tell if astrology is true or fake? Several people believe in it. What is your experience with Astrology?

By critically and scientifically analyzing it. Like this…

Why Astrology is Pseudo-science

It was found to be fake. There are several research papers published all over the world. Many scientific studies have been made, and they all show that astrology is no more accurate than chance would have it in making predictions.

What is your experience with astrology?

Anecdotal evidence is the worst form of evidence. Why?

Why do people still think it works for them despite tremendous evidence to the contrary? Yes, why?

That is a psychological effect. The Barnum effect, also called the Forer effect, is a common psychological phenomenon whereby individuals give high accuracy ratings to descriptions of their personality that supposedly are tailored specifically to them but that are, in fact, vague and general enough to apply to a wide range of people.

Watch this video that tells why people are so confused about it.

So most of the people say it works for them and some astrologers could predict their future correctly.

And we, the people of scientific community, smile and think as long as suckers exist in this world, there won’t be any dearth in having cheaters who fool the world in the name of science, vedas and what not!

Ah! Games people play.

Q: What is the difference between an asteroid and a meteor?

Krishna: An asteroid  is a space rock, a meteor is a space rock burning up in Earth's atmosphere, and a meteorite is the leftover fragment that reaches Earth after a meteor comes through the atmosphere.

Q: What is the scientific reason behind coconut borewell testing?

The answer to the question "Can coconuts find ground water for you?" is a big "NO"!

Read here more on this: Is water dowsing real science?

Q: What should you do when your parents are superstitious and your denial to their thoughts makes them feel hurt?

My uncle and aunt are my ‘parents’ now. My uncle too supports me but I have a problem with my aunt and other relatives.

Because I see everything through a scientific lense and everything that passes through it always goes against the tide. Superstitions are completely opposite to science and my superstitious relatives therefore find it difficult to deal with me.

But by going the opposite way I am helping my relatives. How?

Everybody has his or her own right to believe in what they think is right for them. Right? But...there is an exception...

This right exists only till it doesn't do any harm to others around. The moment we realize some harm is being done because of these baseless beliefs, we have to negate them, fight them and try to eradicate them.

The health of a society as a whole is more important than an individual's right to have his or her beliefs.

I will now tell you a real story to underline this point of mine.

Recently while I was travelling with my aunt and uncle in a car, we found grey pumpkins on the way and my aunt wanted to buy one and asked the driver to stop the car..

"Do you want to prepare 'fryums' with it?" I asked her.

"No. I want to hang it in front of my house. The old one has become black because of peoples' nazar', she replied.

Before I opened my mouth, she immediately added after seeing the expression on my face, "There is no need to criticize me. My beliefs are mine. You have to respect them if you want to respect me".

My aunt very well knows I don't believe in such superstitions. So she tried to put a brake on my lecture on them.

I respect my aunt as she is older than me, loves me and looks after me. But that doesn't make me respect her beliefs. Why? Because her baseless beliefs are harming the societies we live in! How?

She goes and tells everybody around that 'Nazar' (Buri nazar in Hindi/Urdu, evil eyes, looks, views in English, 'disti' in Telugu) can cause harm and therefore each and every person should use grey pumpkins to neutralize the effect of 'Nazar'. Okay, if that gives them some sort of satisfaction, we have no right to say people cannot follow what they believe in. But when she spread this superstition, everybody around started believing in it. So all her neighbours started using grey pumpkins too. These pumpkins, after sometime, became black, not because of 'nazar' but because of fungal spores.

What is worse is these spores come out of the pumpkin and spread all over the place whenever a breeze brushes it causing allergies in people. Imagine a whole neighbourhood infested with these spores spreading asthma in the vulnerable! How can I respect such a thing?!

No, I cannot respect my aunt's beliefs. I respect her and her right to have such beliefs to make her mind remain calm with a belief that a grey pumpkin can remove 'nazar' and protect her and her family. But it is causing harm to the society we live in! Therefore, I have every right to criticize, educate and remove these misconceptions and baseless beliefs. That doesn’t make me disrespect my aunt. I am only trying to protect her and other people with my ‘disrespect’!

Therefore, I started my lecture…

Superstitions don't have any science behind them!

So if you are fighting with your parents regarding superstitions, don’t worry, you are doing the right thing. You have to think about and view the broader picture. Thinking about only your parents, narrows your vision.

[ Shanmugam P , a member of this network, sent me a message after reading the above answer of mine...

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