09 May 2009

A Walker Percy Formula

A Lover of Man=Thoreau
A Technician of Man=Skinner
A Lover of Man + A Technician of Man=Hitler

John Steinbeck on the Progression of Mystery

I guess we're all, or most of us, the wards of that nineteenth-century science which denied existence to anything it could not measure or explain. The things we couldn't explain went right on but surely not with our blessing. We did not see what we couldn't explain, and meanwhile a great part of the world was abandoned to children, insane people, fools, and mystics, who were more interested in what is than in why it is. So many old and lovely things are stored in the world's attic, because we don't want them around us and we don't dare throw them out.

John Steinbeck from The Winter of Our Discontent

I don't know why, but the religion/science question has heated up in my circle lately. Everything I've been reading has been coming back to the question. Even when I'm just trying to read a novel, there it is.

Today, I was thinking about what I was like when I was a teenager. Regrettably, I was one who knew it all. It wasn't until my early twenties that I was able to make decisions out of my vast knowledge and wisdom...and it wasn't until the last few years that some of these decisions have come home to roost. I wonder if science (I'm talking about the ideology/religion of science that pervades our culture) is in that early twenties phase. The knowledge has been met with resources and now it's on like Donkey Kong.

A list of scientific accomplishments whose conseqences are mostly unknown:
  1. Genetically coded plants who only respond to proprietary fertilizer and herbicide.
  2. Cell phones vs. brain health
  3. The long-term effects of an industrialized diet
  4. The internal combustion engine and its possible link to climate change
I'm not saying we throw out science, scientific progress, and cell phones, I'm just wondering what science's 30s will look like. Will we be too far gone?

07 May 2009

Goodbye Tree

I expanded my garden this year by cutting down a Leyland Cypress. Cutting down a thirty foot tree with a chainsaw is manly...in case you were wondering.