Science before mythology

DC | DECCAN CHRONICLE
Published Jan 5, 2015, 11:59 am IST
Updated Mar 30, 2019, 2:41 am IST
A young scientist demonstrates her project to former President of India, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam during an exhibition in 102nd Indian Science Congress in Mumbai (Photo:PTI)
 A young scientist demonstrates her project to former President of India, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam during an exhibition in 102nd Indian Science Congress in Mumbai (Photo:PTI)

The Indian Science Congress would have provided the perfect platform for our scientists if they start believing that science is what is going to deliver humankind’s greatest advances, including space travel to fulfil the dream of colonising other planets. The Congress would also have contributed greatly to the progress of both the pure and applied sciences in India if it passed on the message that scientists should not confuse mythology with science.

The knowledge of science in ancient societies is not to be scoffed at. Some of the theories may have been postulated eons before the time proof could be established. However, to believe that our forefathers knew everything and were roaming the universe in flying saucer-like objects is to glorify mythology, which cannot be taken as absolute proof that ancient science simply disappeared from man’s midst.

The history of ancient thought is founded on experience. Many thinkers postulated the basic theory behind how things work. India contributed immensely to mathematics by proving the extraordinary power of zero and Aryabhata wrote of the Earth’s rotation on its axis and the movements of the planets long before Copernicus published his heliocentric theory. But there is simply no evidence of ancient aircraft and the like.

The way forward for India lies in rekindling interest in science in the young. By encouraging them to dream and by employing cutting edge technology official India would be helping the nation reap the fruits of modern science.

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