What is truth? Is it what Science dictates or is it what people are saying? If something is a truth to you, would you change your belief if science discredited it?
I have always valued my education and striven to constantly expand my knowledge base. However I want to share with you where my carefully assimilated knowledge base went wrong. With the accumulation of knowledge came accumulated confidence that I knew. But, as I have learnt, there is a huge difference in knowing about things and knowing things.
Take homeopathy for example, “How could it possibly work?” I wrinkled my nose at the pharmacist who suggested I try it for a cold. “Does it really work?” I persisted, watching his face carefully for a reaction. “Many people say it does.” He said, honestly. Ahh, what the hell, I thought, and purchased a pack.
Later that day was my second ever experience with Homeopathy – because I now know that I was taking the wrong remedy at the wrong frequency – I had a ‘proving’ to the Belladonna component. After repeating doses as the pack instructed me to I developed a rapid heart rate and very dry mouth. I was amused by this, because as far as my masters of nursing and previous modules in Human Biology had formed my scientific mind, homeopathy just didn’t make sense.
I don’t understand how it can work, therefore it probably doesn’t work – was my mindset. How awfully, awfully arrogant. And this is the mindset of many people with regards to not only homeopathy but also other alternative approaches to health and wellness.
Science is good, but limited
I’ve always loved science, I find it fascinating. However as you know from this post: Closed Minded Science, what it is and why it really, really sucks I’m very disillusioned with my own experience of scientific minds. The science I’ve met is the antithesis to the science I’d expected.
Exploring concepts to prove or disprove them is awesome. However I believe we need to be really cautious before saying or believing “science has officially proven/disproven”. Everything occurs within a context, that includes inference of results and understanding of ‘truths’. We are all familiar with the chopping and changing of scientific truths, fat is bad, fat is good, fat is OK BUT…Yet many of us are still suckers for media headlines that play this tug of war with our belief systems. Science is good, but we mustn’t forget that understanding is limited to context and current understanding, in the same way we used to think the sun revolved around us, it made perfect scientific sense within belief systems back then. And don’t forget tragic disasters like Thalidomide.
Oh Hana, I’m so grateful that you’ve taught me this. Having stood face to face with the limitations of science in my pursuit for help I’ve had to learn to step back from my accumulated knowledge, my scientific instinct and learnt to LISTEN to what people are saying:
If thousands of people are saying homeopathy works for them, for their children and their animals, how can we ignore that? Or if people are saying they react to Gluten? By falling for a media headline that says “scientist still says homeopathy doesn’t work”or “gluten intolerance doesn’t exist” what are we doing to our greater ‘world family’? We are discrediting their genuine experiences – in the thousands, or more – for the opinions or interpretations of a single body of professionals!
The same goes for Prayer! Thousands of people say that prayer works/has worked for them – to similarly say but this isn’t proven by science therefore it can’t be true would discredit a religious experience. Although I do recall there being some scientific basis to ‘prayer’ being proven to work in certain cases (i.e the ones actively tested) – but you get my gist.
Don’t KNOW. Listen.
Science is awesome, science is brilliant but it is NOT the comprehensive guide to truth. It changes, it evolves, it is transitory. People have so much to say, we could all learn so much more about the world and about WHO WE ARE if we could simply learn to LISTEN, more than we claim to KNOW.
Thanks for stopping by, as you’ll read in the About Me section I’m not really your average Nurse! I’m on a lifelong journey and quest to unlearn where I need to and learn where I can, sharing it all along the way. If you liked what you just read or if it resonated within you, why not share this post? And please check in with me on Facebook or leave a comment below as I’d love to hear from you.