Alastor wrote:Hi, I am a bit confused, I came to this board to find out about Druidry but got to reading this. I have a few opinons about science, I've had a bit of scientific training, but I am not an expert by any stretch of the imagination, but here goes...
My key opinion is that science is misused because it is not understood.
(1) Scientific method can be applied to any inquiry, it might not be fruitful though. I can improve a recipie by being systematic - that's Scientific method. I could research telepathy by experiments - just as good science. But what is often missed is that there may be conditions in which a result is true that tell you nothing about the truth beyond those conditions. My recipie may have been perfected by countless exeriments, but my cake so extensively tested on the British might be repulsive to the Polish. I might find telepathic ability in say a pair of twin amoebas, but that doesn't tell me about wether you and I could communicate - it would only suggest the possibility. Similarly if I do not find proof of telepathy it does not mean it does not exist in some other set of conditions.
(2) Scientific facts have authority, and people being physchologically motivated, will use things to shore up their belief. This seems to be especially true of Quantum Physics. The name itself is great, it's evocative, mystical, authorative. It has great things, to list a few Einstien, Schrodinger's Cat, The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle and Parallel Universes. Now people quote these things, they think they know about them, they have watched a TV programme, perhaps read a popular book, to become authorative they can Google it, get Wiki quotes, and hey presto graft the ultimate authority of science onto their belief. Now I often fall into this trap. I do not know what Maxwells equations are, I could not solve them, I don't know how to measure the speed of light, but I can quote big science with the best of them. Does quantum physics really support the truth or otherwise of the Hindu belief system? I don't honestly believe so, but it sounds good, I don't know know enough about Hindu cosmology, or physics to be able to judge, but it is an argument advanced by earnest inteligent people who I doubt know much more than I do.
(3) There is one bit of Science that can be applied, it was referred to by someone on this board. Godel's Theorum, he showed that there must exist statements that are true, but not provably so. This is true in any system that is complex enough to express arithmetic. That is a pretty low level of complexity. So Science has shown that we cannot know everything.
(4) In relation to religions science is a god killer. Christianity is the only religion I really know a lot about, so that's the one I'll use as the example. Christians used to have an authority figure- priests - with strange and wonderful knowledge - like the Latin Mass. Now Christians attested the world had a special place, essentially the centre of the universe, that it was 4000 years old etc, these statements have been falsified by science. So for people like me, all that's left is a book. Others try to wriggle with various interpretations, but in the end it's no longer possible to believe as people in the past seem to have that the Bible is literally the word of God, absolute truth.
(5) Because science does not know, does not mean we do. There are many places that science has not established any authority. Conscience for example, is that where god(s) is/are? We come to god(s) on the retreat, no longer the creator(s) - ousted by evolution, no longer the sun or moon - a nuclear furnace and a lump of rock - no longer in the sky, perhaps he/she/they hide in dark matter? or another dimension? Perhaps in some explanation of conscience - who knows? What we do have is a history that shows that whenever arcane knowledge is open to test it has often been falsified.
I don't really want to draw a conclusion, I came to this board hoping to find out about Druidry. I love the mystery in life, I have stood alone in stone circles, seemingly experienced becoming one with the wind, and feel there is a place for another kind of truth. I don't need to invoke some quantum dimension, some parallel universe, I don't need to experiment, I don't need to know, these are the experiences of a normal(ish) person. So if anyone can point out the right place to find out about druidry - a few paragraphs - I'd like to know. I am no more going to wade through an 18 month course I know nothing about than I will spend hours learning about Tensor calculus - a fair invocation of a mysterious god like name from Physics.
Please, remember that this is a HUGE board with many members. The OBOD boards is very tolerant and one person's point of view is taken just as serious as another's. I actually feel the same way as you when it comes to not needing to KNOW, that it is enough to experience the feeling of truth.
The OBOD course is based on guiding you to have your own experiences in druidism, without dogmas, without any strict rules you have to follow. It is YOUR own way, where you are on your own path that is important and that is the starting point.
If you want to learn about druidism, check out the OBOD Homepage as Dryadia wisely said. There are several good books in the bookstore as well
Nice to meet you I hope you will stay.