“Physiology seeks to derive the processes in our own nervous system from general physical forces, without considering whether these processes are or are not accompanied by processes of consciousness.” – Wilhelm Wundt
Daily Nugget of Gold 1570
The United Cells of You
Physicists and Biologists have a problem with each other. Oh, they’re both scientists, that’s true- but when you get to studying what stuff is made of, and particularly, what we are made of, there’s trouble brewing. Biologists and in particular- physicians (doctors) have a perception of us that life is to a greater extent, composed of microbiological structures and functions. There’s a lot of evidence for that, too. Often, cause and effect are demonstrated at this level.
We’re not saying that all the causes and effects are completely understood- nope! What we are saying is that sometimes doctors or biologist can show that generally speaking, “This is bad for you” or “This helps you stay healthy” or what have you. It gets even clearer with things like massive doses of poison, “This will kill you” might be said and probably, they’re going to be right.
So what’s this rift, this great divide in opinions between physicists and physicians? (Before we get to that, notice the similarity of those two titles) For physicians, it’s about how the physical system, intelligently directed by the brain, operates right down to the cellular level. With around a hundred trillion cells, that’s amazing and complicated stuff, for sure. The study of how all this functions and functions so well, normally- is nowhere near being fully understood, but the more we understand about the miracle of life, and just how it all comes together to happen, the more we stand in wondrous amazement.
The physicists have an entirely different problem. Their journey of the last hundred years took them from having great confidence in “objective reality”- meaning that physical things definitely exist as objects, to the rather shocking research revealing that physical items don’t actually come into definite form without being observed by conscious entities. In other words, while- yes, there are physical objects out there that we see, feel, hear, taste, and smell- but the objects only appear because we perceive them. Wrap you mind around that one! So what of the differences between the two scientific fields? The ideas that physicists came up with have been called “crazy” or “insane”. Worse yet, it’s not only the physicians and biologists making those characterizations- the physicists themselves are saying that!
We’re going to explore that craziness next time, join us- it’ll be fun!
Question of the Day to Ask Ourselves
“If physical objects aren’t really physical, what are they?”
Copyright 2016 Kevin Littleton, all rights reserved.