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Science vs. superstition

Is it true that science and superstition are two opponents? In fact science, as I can understand, relies only on well designed experiments that entails careful notes of settings, observations and conclusions in concern of a clear question. However, the spark of the scientific process as regard time and reason is out of one’s decision and settles a ground for superstition as an essential element in scientific performance. Superstition is that unfounded belief of supra human force(s) that influence our feelings, observations and experiences, isn’t it? The wonderful order, pattern and regularity of life and nature that is the common and ultimate constant of science speaks for superstition loudly enough as a starter and tracer for science. Those amazing and amusing pointer of perception’s illusion would even minimize scientific arrogance to the benefit of superstition. The longstanding game between science and superstition may once prove drawn.

How to read and understand a scientific paper: a guide for non-scientists

Violent metaphors

Update (8/30/14): I’ve written a shorter version of this guide for teachers to hand out to their classes. If you’d like a PDF, shoot me an email: jenniferraff (at) utexas (dot) edu.

Last week’s post (The truth about vaccinations: Your physician knows more than the University of Google) sparked a very lively discussion, with comments from several people trying to persuade me (and the other readers) that their paper disproved everything that I’d been saying. While I encourage you to go read the comments and contribute your own, here I want to focus on the much larger issue that this debate raised: what constitutes scientific authority?

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