The Scientific Method and Other Mass Delusions
Alexandra Courtesan
21

A long read, but well researched and an important point which I always try to encourage when I see it being made. IMO it’s not that the scientific method in itself is inherently flawed, only that we place far too much emphasis on its findings and tend to think of these as proven and therefore beyond the point of further investigation. Any scientist worth her salt will know that the results of an investigation are always based on the methods and tools used for said investigation. In this sense, science should be compelled to re-approach aspects of the world of phenomena when it is able to.

Sadly, all too often, the way scientific research is constructed and marketed, it is presented finally as gospel to the general public. First via academia and journals, and then by mainstream media. And this results in the kinds of biases towards alternative approaches that you mention, and all-too-often ideas that don’t already seem to fit the mould are overlooked.

I do think there’s an understanding of this process that is starting to emerge in society, and people are starting to see that empirical research and theory are both essential, and the one is useless without the other. Old dichotomies are breaking down between purely ‘empirical’ or ‘rationalist’ schools of thought. Space is opening up between these which allows people to have a wider view.

Interdependence, as you mention seems a good way to revitalise these practices. I think you sum it up best when you write “When our commonly held beliefs and behaviors lead away from balance rather than toward it, then we can simply examine our old, harmful delusions, and create new ones that are fun for everyone … Maybe it is as important to dismantle patterns as it is to make use of them. Freedom from these constraints can exist only marginally, but it is the effort that dissolves the dogmas of bad science.”

You may have already read these two texts, but I found them really useful in understanding the kind of point I think you’re making, and both were crucial in shaping my understanding throughout my studies.

The first is ‘What is this thing called Science?’ by Alan Chalmers.

The second is ‘The Master and his Emissary’ by Iain McGilchrist.

Thank you for posting!

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