So, maybe you’ve been reading my blog and thinking to yourself, “But I can’t be a scientist. I don’t agree with half the things I’ve read about science.”
Let’s dispel one myth right now. Science is not a list of hard facts set in stone. Some people try to teach it that way, but it’s not reality. Science is a dynamic series of ever-evolving beliefs about the world and how it functions.
Take something controversial, like the theory of evolution. (For the record, I happen to believe that God created the world and it evolved, a personal theory that sets me at odds with a great number of people). You don’t have to believe in a theory in order to study it. In fact, we need people to challenge theories in order to build upon and improve the science behind them.
A theory simply reflects our best collective understanding of the world around us. Many scientific theories are replaced over time, as new facts are discovered and change our perception of the world that we live in. As the late Dr. Walter Johnson (a wonderfully eccentric and enthusiastic economics professor who taught both my husband and me) used to say, “What we have here is a beautiful theory that’s been set upon by a nasty gang of facts.”
For example, when I was in graduate school, I studied the origins of the moon. Earlier in school, I had been taught that the
So, feel free to bring your disbelief to the table of scientific inquiry. Conduct your own research, generate a new set of facts to share, and help us improve the world of science.