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

** Jawaharlal Nehru was one of the first people to use the term scientific temper and advocate the promotion of scientific temper:

"[What is needed] is the scientific approach, the adventurous and yet critical temper of science, the search for truth and new knowledge, the refusal to accept anything without testing and trial, the capacity to change previous conclusions in the face of new evidence, the reliance on observed fact and not on pre-conceived theory, the hard discipline of the mind—all this is necessary, not merely for the application of science but for life itself and the solution of its many problems." —Jawaharlal Nehru (1946) The Discovery of India, p. 512

Nehru wrote that scientific temper goes beyond the domain in which science is normally done, and deals also with the consideration of ultimate purposes, beauty, goodness, and truth. But he also said that it is the opposite of the method of religion, which relies on emotion and intuition and is (mis)applied "to everything in life, even to those things which are capable of intellectual inquiry and observation." While religion tends to close the mind and produce "intolerance, credulity and superstition, emotionalism and irrationalism", and "a temper of a dependent, unfree person", a scientific temper "is the temper of a free man". He also indicated that the scientific temper goes beyond objectivity and fosters creativity and progress. He envisioned that the spread of scientific temper would be accompanied by a shrinking of the domain of religion, and "the exciting adventure of fresh and never ceasing discoveries, of new panoramas opening out and new ways of living, adding to [life's] fullness and ever making it richer and more complete.

Scientific temper describes an attitude which involves the application of logic. Discussion, argument and analysis are vital parts of scientific temper. Elements of fairness, equality and democracy are built into it. 

"To develop scientific temper" is one of the fundamental duties of Indian citizens, according to the Constitution of India.

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** World science day: Nov. 10th. the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) declared the theme of the 2018 World Science Day for Peace and Development on November 10 as “Science, a Human Right.” And UNESCO has partnered with regional networks of science centers and science museums around the world, raising awareness of the importance in of science in developing a sustainable and equitable future.

10 November, World Science Day for Peace and Development highlights the significant role of science in society and the need to engage the wider public in debates on emerging scientific issues. It also underlines the imp

** Science day (India): 28th Feb. National Science Day is celebrated across India onFebruary 28Indian scientist Sir Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman or CV Raman discovered the Raman Effect on this day in 1928. ... Raman effect is the inelastic scattering of a photon by molecules which are excited to higher vibrational or rotational energy levels.

** International Day of Women and Girls in Science: 11th February 

On 22 December 2015, the General Assembly decided to establish an annual International Day to recognize the critical role women and girls play in science and technology, through Resolution A/RES/70/212(link is external).

The International Day of Women and Girls in Science, celebrated on 11 February, is implemented by UNESCO and UN-Women(link is external), in collaboration institutions and civil society partners that aim to promote women and girls in science. This Day is an opportunity to promote full and equal access to and participation in science for women and girls. Gender equality is a global priority for UNESCO, and the support of young girls, their education and their full ability to make their ideas heard are levers for development and peace. 

Tackling some of the greatest challenges of the Agenda for Sustainable Development -- from improving health to combating climate change -- will rely on harnessing all talent. That means getting more women working in these fields. Diversity in research expands the pool of talented researchers, bringing in fresh perspectives, talent and creativity. This Day is a reminder that women and girls play a critical role in science and technology communities and that their participation should be strengthened.

** The United Nations designated June 5 to be observed as World Environment Day after a call for saving the environment from possible damage due to industrialization drew attention. ... The first World Environment Day was observed in 1974, giving a global platform for inspiring positive change in the environment.

** We celebrate World Laboratory Day every year on April 23 to honor the unique workspaces that provide controlled conditions and enable scientific research, experiments, and measurement. Products developed in laboratories have benefited mankind and the world in many ways.

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Replies to This Discussion
Scientific temper and the argumentative Indian

Scientific temper involves the application of logic and the avoidance of bias and preconceived notions
Since the Upanishadic or Mahabharata times, arguments, disputations, questions and dialogues have characterised Indian thought
Heterodoxy was the characteristic of medieval mystical thought — including the Bhakti and Muslim Sufi traditions
Each community in India has retained its identity within India's spectrum of faiths
SCIENTIFIC TEMPER is one of the attributes that Pandit Nehru wanted all of us Indians to cultivate. This involves the application of logic and reasoning, and the avoidance of bias and preconceived notions in arriving at decisions, and becomes particularly valuable while deciding what is best for the community or the nation.

Discussion, argument and analysis are vital parts of scientific temper. It is thus necessarily open — admitting every point of view, however heterodox it might be, or where it comes from. Elements of fairness, equality and democracy are built-in. Two eloquent phrases characterise a group that practices scientific temper — internal pluralism and external receptivity.

Indian thought's hallmark

These two phrases are from Dr. Amartya Sen's recent scholarly collection of essays called `The Argumentative Indian.'

His book makes us realise how scientific temper has been the hallmark of Indian thought over the millennia. The title is a bit of a tease, since the reader might expect Indians to be portrayed as loquacious and quarrelsome in the book.

Hardly! Sen makes the telling point that since the Upanishadic or Mahabharata times, arguments, disputations, questions and dialogues have characterised Indian thought. We often tend to think of science and scientific temper as Western, and brought to us by the colonials. Sen demolishes this thought and points out how the twin features of internal pluralism and external receptivity have been woven into the development of Indian thought over the ages.

Accommodating all

Internal pluralism involves accommodating all men, women, kings and robbers, old and young. Gargi questioned the sage Yajnavalkya in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad. And Yajnavalkya's own wife Maitreyi too engaged him in scholarly debate. Note that both Gargi and Maitreyi are women.

Then again the woman Draupadi instigates her wavering husband Yudishthira to go fight the usurper Kauravas.

The Indian argumentative tradition crossed not just the gender barrier, but of castes and class as well. Sen quotes the sage Bharadvaja: "If different colours indicate different castes, then all castes are mixed castes", and the Bhavisya Purana: "Since members of all the four castes are children of God, then all belong to the same caste. All human beings have the same father, and children of the same father cannot have different castes." Is this not what human genome studies have revealed to us recently?

Heterodoxy was the characteristic of medieval mystical thought — including the Bhakti and Muslim Sufi traditions. Many exponents rejected caste and class, religious divides and other imbalances — Khusro the poet, Kabir the weaver, Dadu the spinner, Ravidas the cobbler and Sena the barber.

Here, we find not internal pluralism alone but external receptivity as well. Incidentally, the grammarian Panini was apparently an Afghan!

Sen further argues that this richness of the tradition of argument has shaped our social world and the nature of our culture. It has deeply influenced Indian politics and the development of democracy in India and emergence of its secular priorities. ("It also includes the unequivocal rejection by the Indian electorate of a very prominent attempt in the 1970s to dilute democratic guarantees in India").

The point about secularism is important here. For centuries Buddhism, not Hinduism, was the predominant religion of India. And early Indian Buddhism was famous for its public discussions and `councils' (at Rajagriha, Vaisali, Pataliputra) to settle disputes between different points of view.

Remarkable example

Secularism in India included Muslims, Jews, Parsis, Christians, Bahais, Jains, Sikhs, and each community has retained its identity within India's spectrum of faiths.

A remarkable example in this connection that Sen cites is the multiple calendars that are in vogue even today in India. The nature and usage of calendars in India reflect its politics, culture and religion, as well as its science and mathematics.

Ujjain was chosen as the meridian of India (long before Greenwich was chosen in the U.K. and accepted by the world), and the astronomical work Paulisa Siddhanta talked of longitudes at Ujjain, Benaras and Alexandria. Sen says that Ujjain serves as a good reminder of the relation between calendar and culture — note the wonderful description of Ujjain in Kalidasa's works of the 5th century.

Another insightful essay

Another insightful essay in the book is `The Reach of Reason.' Western thought identifies reason with the age of enlightenment and that the ideas of individual liberty, democracy and ethics came into societal practice from that period. Western scholars identify these as `modern' and tend to point out that these thoughts were introduced by them into the colonies. Sen slams this type of `Samuel Huntingtonism' and points out how values such as rationalistic and liberal ideas, analytical scrutiny, open debate, political tolerance and agreement, rights and justice — and science — were part of the multicultural Indian tradition since the days of Ashoka, Tiruvalluvar, Aryabhata, Brahmagupta, Madhwacharya, Nanak, Kabir, Akbar, Gandhi, Tagore and Nehru.

Akbar in his Rahi Aql (the path of reason) argued that "the pursuit of reason and rejection of traditionalism are so brilliantly patent as to be above the need for argument. If traditionalism were proper, the prophets would merely have followed their elders (and not come with new messages)".

Tagore's Gitanjali

Is this not what Karl Popper argued years later in his study of science? Perhaps nothing crystallizes the Indian feel for rationalism and scientific temper better than poem 35 of Tagore's Gitanjali:

Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way,

into the dreary desert sand of dead habit,

where the mind is led forward by thee into

ever widening thought and action,

into that heaven of freedom, my father, let my country awake.

Sen argues: "That task, momentous as it is, is made easier by the long history and consummate strength of our argumentative tradition, which we have reason to celebrate and defend". In this collection of 16 erudite essays, he helps us realise the ethos of India. It is this ethos that Nehru wanted us to cultivate when he spoke of scientific temper.

D. Balasubramanian


I can use this!

The World Science Day for Peace and Development is celebrated worldwide on 10 November each year.
Prof. C.N.R. Rao's Bharat Ratna: The Third Toast to Indian Science

Chintamani Nagesa Ramachandra Rao, a scientific icon at the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Bangalore, will receive the country’s highest civilian honour.
Rao will be the third for contribution to science from among the 43 chosen for the country's highest civilian honour. He is the second researcher after the Nobel Prize winning physicist Sir C.V. Raman who will be conferred the Bharat Ratna for pioneering and fundamental research. Raman was awarded it way back in 1954. The only other person chosen for the award from the world of science, years after he made his striking contribution, was A.P.J. Abdul Kalam in 1997 for the stellar role he essayed in developing India's integrated missile programme and the Pokharan II nuclear tests which have served as immense and valuable contribution to scientific research and modernization of defence technology. It was, five years on, that he became President of India who gives away the Bharat Ratna.


Who named science?
Although, we do know that it was philosopher William Whewell who first coined the term 'scientist. ' Prior to that, scientists were called 'natural philosophers'.” Whewell coined the term in 1833.
Galileo Galilei
Galileo Galilei pioneered the experimental scientific method and was the first to use a refracting telescope to make important astronomical discoveries. He is often referred to as the “father of modern astronomy” and the “father of modern physics”. Albert Einstein called Galileo the “father of modern science.”
Who is the first scientist?
Actually, the answer should be, 'we don't know'. But ...
Aristotle is considered by many to be the first scientist, although the term postdates him by more than two millennia. In Greece in the fourth century BC, he pioneered the techniques of logic, observation, inquiry and demonstration.

What is scientific culture?
Scientific culture is a set of norms and practices and an ethos of honesty, openness, and continuous reflection, in- cluding how research quality4 is judged. ... Individual researchers and research institutions have the re- sponsibility for developing a scientific culture.
What are the characteristics of scientific culture?
Originality, independence of thought and dissent are characteristics of the scientific culture, and therefore a challenge to established cultural values. The safeguards for independence are free inquiry, free thought, free speech, tolerance and the willingness to arbitrate disputes on the basis of evidence.

Calendar of Scientific Events

No. Date Scientific Day/Week/Event  
1. January 1st Week National Road Safety Week
2. January 1st Week Indian Science Congress
3. January 12 National Youth Day
4. January 30 National Anti Leprosy Day
5. February 28 National Science Day
6. March 8 International Women’s Day
7. March 16 Measles Vaccination Day
8. March 23 World Meteorological Day
9. April 7 World Health Day
10. April 22 Earth Day
11. May 1-7 Malaria Prevention Week
12. May 11 Technology Day
13. May 17 World Telecommunication Day
14. May 31 World No-Tobacco Day
15. June 5 World Environment Day
16. June 26 International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking
17. July 11 World Population Day
18. August 1-7 World Breast-Feeding Week
19. August 9 International Youth Day
20. August 25 – September 8 National Eye Donation Fortnight
21. September 1-7 National Nutrition Week
22. September 8 International Literacy Day
23. September 8 Eye Donation Day
24. September 16 World Ozone Day
25. October 1 International Day for the Elderly
26. October 1 Voluntary Blood Donation Day
27. October 1-7 Wildlife Week
28. October, 1st Monday World Habitat Day
29. October, 1st Monday Universal Children’s Day
30. October, 2nd Wednesday International Day for Natural Disaster Reduction
31. October 9 World Post Day
32. October 16 World Food Day
33. October 24 United Nations Day
34. October 24 World Development Information Day
35. November 10 International Science Day
36. Nov. 19 – Dec. 18 National Environment Month
37. November International Week of Science and Peace
38. December 1 World AIDS Day
39. December 2 World Computer Literacy Day
40. December 2 National Pollution Prevention Day
41. December 14 National Energy Conservation Day
42. December 29 International Day for Biological Diversity
43. December 27-31 National Children’s Science Congress

Monument to the laboratory mouse

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Unveiled in 2013 in Novosibirsk in southwestern Siberia, the quirky statue depicts an anthropomorphic mouse as an elderly woman, complete with glasses balanced atop its nose. Emerging from two knitting needles in its hands is the recognizable double-helix of a strand of DNA.

The monument commemorates the sacrifice of the mice in genetic research used to understand biological and physiological mechanisms for developing new drugs and curing of diseases
Monument to the laboratory mouse
Monument to lab mouse-1.JPG
Monument to the laboratory mouse is located in Russia
Monument to the laboratory mouse
Location in Russia
Coordinates 54.848675°N 83.10655°ECoordinates54.848675°N 83.10655°E
Location Akademgorodok, Novosibirsk, Russia
Designer Andrew Kharkevich

The Monument to the laboratory mouse is a sculpture in Novosibirsk' Akademgorodok, Siberia, Russia. It is located in a park in front of the Institute of Cytology and Genetics of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and was completed on July 1, 2013, coinciding with the 120th anniversary of the founding of the city.


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