|Replicative nature of Indian research, essence of scientific temper, and future of scientific progress
Ajai R Singh, Shakuntala A Singh
November-December 2003, 1(4):3-16
A lot of Indian research is replicative in nature. This is because originality is at a premium here and mediocrity is in great demand. But replication has its merit as well because it helps in corroboration. And that is the bedrock on which many a fancied scientific hypothesis or theory stands, or falls. However, to go from replicative to original research will involve a massive effort to restructure the Indian psyche and an all round effort from numerous quarters.
The second part of this paper deals with the essence of scientific temper, which need not have any basic friendship, or animosity, with religion, faith, superstition and other such entities. A true scientist follows two cardinal rules. He is never unwilling to accept the worth of evidence, howsoever damning to the most favourite of his theories. Second, and perhaps more important, for want of evidence, he withholds comment. He says neither yes nor no.
Where will Science ultimately lead Man is the third part of this essay. One argument is that the conflict between Man and Science will continue till either of them is exhausted or wiped out. The other believes that it is Science which has to be harnessed for Man and not Man used for Science. And with the numerous checks and balances in place, Science will remain an effective tool for man's progress. The essential value-neutrality of Science will have to be supplemented by the values that man has upheld for centuries as fundamental, and which religious thought and moral philosophy have continuously professed.
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