Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Scientism masquerading as scientific thinking

An article I read off NewScientist magazine is titled "Pheromone attracts straight women and gay men."

To start with, I am weary of such pronouncements, and this one reeked of gay rights activism. Sure one can argue that the scientists are merely looking for proofs whether homosexuality is due to 'nature' or 'nurture'. The Catholic Church itself never claimed to know exhaustively what gives rise to this phenomenon of homosexuality, and consulted 'experts' (to disastrous result!) on its scientific nature. What is troubling is the use of the seeming pattern of 'nature'-oriented 'scientific' studies results to justify the promotion and endorsement of gay lifestyle.

Looking at the article itself, I am shocked to see that this pronouncement is made on the basis of observing 36 (yes, that's only thirty-six) people! 36 people, to represent 6+ billions of people on Earth. Perhaps the scientists have somehow defended their thesis in the actual journal publication Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, but the general tone of the article reflects a decline of true scientific attitude and a rise of scientism. (I hesitate to put a link to this word; for I believe the source to be biased, but you can see for yourself—third definition)

St. Thomas Aquinas, whose short hagiography by the ever-witty GK Chesterton I am currently reading (again!), is known for his scientific methods and philosophy. He did away with the heresy that a man may have two minds—one to believe and one to disbelieve: 'that Christianity is all nonsense when being naturalists and that Christianity is all true when we are being Christian.' In his time, such false thinking is quickly pointed out as heresy, while today we live in a world where scientism masquerades as scientific thinking.

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