I am often somewhat surprised by what seems to me as myoptic views among some scientists, although I fully acknowledge that this can also reflect my own lack of understanding.
Here are some of the views that I remember seemed naive to me even as I grew up, many of which science is fortunately moving beyond now.
- That genes somehow (magically) function isolated from each other and their environment, as it seems that some genetic researchers assume. It seems more reasonable that genes, as everything else, functions as an intrinsic part of an ecosystem. In this case made up of other genes and local (body) and regional (ecological/social) environment. They are an intrinsic part of a seamless holarchy after all, where each part of level are in mutual influence.
- Labeling DNA we don’t yet know the function of as “junk DNA’ , as if the white areas on the map reflect white areas out there and not in our current understanding.
- Blind reductionism: seeing everything as “caused” by the smallest parts, as if the different levels of the holarchy don’t mutually influence each other – up and down in the system.
- Scientifically justifying animal research because they are so similar to humans, and ethically justifying it because they are different from us.
- Making a taboo out of possible research areas such as prayer, distance healing, ESP and UFOs, which at the very least affords us some insight into the human psyche – and maybe other aspects of Existence as well. The taboo against seeing these as legitimate research areas is an example of the same irrational view they attempt to distance themselves from. Both blindly accept or blindly reject, and both are examples of blindness.
- Focusing on research topics of marginal and/or superficial interest and use, while humanity is facing a major ecological (and thus social/economic) crisis which requires a great deal of our attention and resources.
- Psychological research and techniques which only acknowledge the personal level (rearranging the personal level) and ignores the transpersonal (absolute), and along with this only acknowledge traditional western psychology and ignores the wisdom and insights from eastern psychology accumulated over centuries and millennia.
- Compartmentalizing the different disciplines, while what they are studying are just aspects of the same seamless whole.
- Taking the map for the terrain, and not fully acknowledging that any map is ultimately wrong. Existence is always more than and different from any map, no matter how comprehensive it may seem. And any map becomes obsolete with time and new experiences and contexts.
And here is another surprise, from NY Times:
Brain May Still Be Evolving, Studies Hint
Two genes involved in determining the size of the human brain have undergone substantial evolution in the last 60,000 years, researchers say, leading to the surprising suggestion that the brain is still undergoing rapid evolution.
The discovery adds weight to the view that human evolution is still a work in progress, since previous instances of recent genetic change have come to light in genes that defend against disease and confer the ability to digest milk in adulthood.
It had been widely assumed until recently that human evolution more or less stopped 50,000 years ago. […]
The last sentence reflect a surprisingly myoptic view. Evolution – for humans, other species, the Earth as a whole, and the Universe as a whole – is so obviously a continuous process, and we are right in the middle of it as we, and any sentient being, will always be. It seems that the Judeo-Christian mythological view of current humans as the “pinnacle of creation” somehow rubbed off on western scientists, and they didn’t notice or didn’t question it. This is another example of the blindly chauvinistic view often displayed by us humans, in so many areas of life.
As this turned out to be a little bit of a rant, a question for me is: in what way am I chauvinistic in my view, right now? What is it that I am not seeing?