Being a Sunday, I thought I would write about my faith. No, I’m not talking about religion, although at times religious groups have been against my faith, while at the same time rejoicing in all it h done for them. No, I’m not going to rant about rights and wrongs. All I’m doing here is talking about my faith, and how it affects my life, and why I believe in it, when most of the time it gets things wrong.
Yes, I love science. Not scientists in particular, but the art of science itself. The asking of a question, the search for the answer, the countless number of times things go wrong, but in going wrong, it’s an achievement, because it’s a step closer to possibly knowing what is right.
Think of science in this way. You have a phone number, but need to know the address. Reverse telephone directories don’t exist, the Internet doesn’t exist to find the number, the only way you can find it is to look it up in a telephone book.
There in lies the first problem, working out how you are going to search for the number. Let’s say the number is 8866-5544. There are a variety of ways you can try to cut down the workload required. You could only look on pages where the first number on that page starts with 88. You could decided that because it’s an even number, you only look on even numbered pages. You may decide the the only way is to look at each number, check it off, and go through the entire book that way. A very long process indeed.
A good starting point would be to find out what research other people had done in the area of telephone numbers, and see if that research is or isn’t relevant to what you are researching. Through that process you may find that someone else has worked out that the telephone numbers that start between 86XX-XXXX and 89XX-XXXX are all in the town of Dumdorey, and that town has a telephone book with just those numbers in it.
So before you have wen started to physically looked for the number, you’ve done a hell of a lot of research and checking. You haven’t just blindly said “Well I’ve been told the answer is in this book, so I better start looking randomly”.
It’s this research that has me marveling at the work scientists do. They are the ultimate optimists, who keep going when things go wrong, because being wrong means being successful. Don’t get me wrong, there are crackpots out there doing scientific research, or people researching stuff claiming to be scientific, and even others who claim that the mystic wonders of unknown origin are all the science we need. Please, people don’t get confused.
Yes, I put my faith in science not because it is always right, but because it is always searching for the correct way, and usually better way. I say usually better way because they may find eating a kiwi fruit is better for you, but it certainly tastes better when sliced up and on top of a pavlova.
I feel I must also point out that science is very humble. Recently there was a discovery of things moving faster than the speed of light. This is a major breakthrough in science and discovery, that has wide ranging ramifications across so many walks of life. But what did the scientists do who discovers this amazing thing? They said they had to check. Even though they discovered it, they were not convinced, so they checked over everything, and found out they were wrong. Through failing to prove something moving faster than the speed of light, they did discover an error in a computer that caused them to think they had made a major discovery. But that error was a success, because now they have fixed that computer problem, they know that future experiments will give a more accurate finding.
You see, even through failing, we learn, we don’t just accept failure as the way it is. That’s why I put my faith in science.