Monday, May 07, 2007

[Scientific] Glossolalia:

Speaking in [mathematical] tongues


Scientists, especially physicists, like to be arcane, abstruse.

Of course scientists use the language of the gods, mathematics, but that should not prevent them from communicating their hypotheses and theories in the languages of mankind.


Yet this is what happens, except for a few scientific popularizers, such as the late, greats Stephen Jay Gould and Carl Sagan (to name only two).


Certainly physicists (and other scientific types) should be able to talk and write in the argot of their own kind, just as dolphins communicate with squeals and clicks to their own kind.

But that back-and-forth alienates those who want to know what’s going on in science but are excluded because the language employed, mathematical equations, is obscurant.

Science is an exclusive club, or has become one. It wasn’t always that way; well, not for the ancient Greeks anyway.

Science doesn’t exclude others by race, creed, nationality, gender preference, et cetera, but it does exclude those whose mental faculties have been short-changed.

And the shame is that such persons – the vast majority of humankind – do not have access to the truths that science has stumbled upon or ferreted out by ratiocination.

This is what has happened with Darwin and the creationists or intelligent design aficionados.


The science of evolution, although somewhat incomplete, can be accommodated by intelligent design, and no mathematics are involved.

But virtually all evolutionists (scientists) despise the idea of an intelligent designer (whom some imply is God) as we note elsewhere here.

And creationists and intelligent design proponents (nearly) loathe science and its practitioners; this because science has excluded them, as we indicate above.

Science isn’t concerned with the existential of the great unwashed, and why should they be? The hoi polloi’s interests are sensual not cerebral, usually.

But what about those who wish to evolve beyond the rabble-state? How can they do so when science speaks in language that is, for all practical purposes, foreign in nature, but more difficult to master than an actual foreign language (unless that language is Islenska perhaps).

Can mathematics be mastered by those without the mental acumen to do so? And should it be necessary for those math-defectives to learn the ins-and-outs of calculus or its abstract mathematical brethren?


To understand scientific exegeses one shouldn’t have to comprehend the machinations or tools that brought about the conclusions that those exegeses produce.

And scientists should defer, somewhat, to the needs of a select few who want to understand the reality in which they find themselves but don’t want to (or can’t) decipher the mathematical haze that is employed by science.

Anticipating science’s accommodation, should we hold our universal breaths? Probably not…..