Category: Miscellaneous Musings

Neuroscience: Answer to all Mankind's deepest questions?

03/09/07 | by hirby [mail] | Categories: Announcements [A], Miscellaneous Musings

Neuroscience, it seems to me, is the current most hopeful candidate for the role of putative but delusory answer to all Mankind's deepest questions: what is Man's place in Nature, and how should he live. What is the good life, at least in the western world?

Theodore Dalrymple, self-styled iconoclast, opens a critical essay on neuroscience with this quote, and then goes on to challenge the, to him, misguided belief that science will ever be able to answer “life's persistent questions” (to quote Garrison Keillor). Neuroscience is the particular science being probed, but Dalrymple's critique bears on any natural science.

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Welcome helpfulness

02/24/07 | by Steve [mail] | Categories: Miscellaneous Musings

It snowed last night -- quite a bit (considering the winter so far). After shoveling and breakfast, I took the bus to church for a meeting at 9:00. To ensure that I would arrive on time, I got off the bus early, even though it meant a longer walk.

As I was climing the hill on East South River Street (going east from Olde Oneida), a helpful driver stopped to offer me a ride. Thanking her for her thoughtfulness, I declined (it was warm, the snow wasn't deep, and I was enjoying the walk).

Reflecting on the incident afterwards, I found myself both appreciating the hospitality of that anonymous passer-by and wondering whether there was something in my gait or posture or appearance that made it look like I needed a ride!

As my age increases, I find it less and less unusual for people to show some deference toward me or extra consideration of me. And whenever I notice it, I find myself with mixed feelings similar to today's.

Something to ponder...

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