Approaching the Microcosm Rationally

Cory Duchesne
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Approaching the Microcosm Rationally

I don't know about you, but I can't stand being taught models and fancy words without seeing with my own eyes the thing that the word or model is signifying. Right now I'm taking a hormones and behavior course at school, and the massive quantity of scientific terms that have been thrown at me in the past two days, I find quite stultifying to the potential of human intelligence. In my opinion, one should never try to impart words or models without using those words to point to the actual perceivable topography that the words or models are supposed to refer to. Use words to point to the sensed phenomena first, and only then should you expect the student to be interested in memorizing words. Immediately get the student using his right brain by visualizing what must be named, and then the student will be able to appreciate the name or model for that phenomena. Right brain first (visual spatial), then left brain(language). Don't go the other way around and indulge in the superficial sensations that can be derived by fancy language. In my experience learning from people, whether from a friend who tries to teach me the biology or geology he thinks he has learned, or during the times I've taken a course in school myself, whether it was in electric circuits or endocrinology, I always find myself bombarded with large quantities of fancy words and dinky 2-dimensional models before my so called teacher makes an effort to correspond his words and models with perceivable phenomena. It almost makes the teacher or knower seem like he doesn't really understand anything, but has merely made a lucrative career for himself, or attained some psychological security and self esteem, by merely memorizing a bunch of words which he has attached to some really flimsy, dinky models. I think that's the problem with academics. They are often ignorant people who think they know, which is much worse than simply being aware of your ignorance.

I find that mainstream secular-scientific people (a great deal of university professors) love to jack off with big scientific words and simplistic models. It doesn't impress me at all. Science, when it is used to merely explain (rather than carefully point) only dulls peoples minds and makes them idiots who think they understand something when they only know empty words and simplistic models. They are hardly different from theologians. Superstring theorists exemplify the crassness that I'm referring to here.

Here is a great example of an intellectually lopsided imbecile:

The Amino Acid photo collection

Don't get me wrong, the photos of amino acids on the site I just linked are amazing, I'm very happy I found them. But the piece of writing above that links to the photos was obviously written by someone whose brain is very lopsided and silly.

Consider the first paragraph:


Amino acids are very small biomolecules with an average molecular weight of about 135 daltons. These organic acids exist naturally in a zwitterion state where the carboxylic acid moiety is ionized and the basic amino group is protonated. The entire class of amino acids has a common backbone of an organic carboxylic acid group and an amino group attached to a saturated carbon atom. The simplest member of this group is glycine, where the saturated carbon atom is unsubstituted, rendering it optically inactive.

What makes the above so silly, is that it is aimed at the layman, as the website is trying to sell posters, screensavers, calenders, etc.


It wouldn't be quite so bad if the piece of writing was aimed at a colleague who has worked with his fellow chemist quite a bit and has gone over some actual photographs of amino acids and agreed upon what names to give certain distinctions perceived in the topography.

I'm guessing that they think they are educating people with their eagerness to display fancy scientific words, but it's really quite ridiculous.

Also, consider this model of an amino acid or this one, and now compare those simplistic models to the actual phenomena, sensed through a microscope, and here's another one.

If you're someone who values truth, the models really aren't that helpful, are they?

Pretty awesome pics of the amino acids though.