The True Definition of Science

Photo by Aldebaran S

Science has generally been defined as the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment. The Science Council defines science as the pursuit and application of knowledge and understanding of the natural and social world following a systematic methodology based on evidence. Scientific methodology is agreed to include the following: 

  • Objective observation: Measurement and data (possibly although not necessarily using mathematics as a tool)
  • Evidence
  • Experiment and/or observation as benchmarks for testing hypotheses
  • Induction: reasoning to establish general rules or conclusions drawn from facts or examples
  • Repetition
  • Critical analysis
  • Verification and testing: critical exposure to scrutiny, peer review and assessment.

From an Igbo perspective, I believe it is rather ironic that Science theorists spend time and exert energy in trying to separate science from spirituality as opposing instead of complementary factors. Because in actuality, and as evident in all indịgenous practices, it can be attested to that science is basically the study of manifest spirit; that is the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world as scientists like to call it, is simply spirit (spiritual realities) persevering and manifesting in variations within our cosmos. 

Before we go further, let’s identify what Spirit is. Spirit has generally been defined as an animating or vital principle held to give life to physical organisms. With that said, the whole endeavor of the field of science is a consistent attempt at understanding that which many have tried counter-actively to separate from it - spirit. Those who can understand and come to accept that Science is the study of manifest spirit, and practice scientific enquiry with that perspective or awareness will have a better chance at progressing (even saving) humanity and our planet through mind-blowing constructive technological advancements, as opposed to the many destructive technologies constantly killing our planet which we have in place in our world today. I say this because it is impossible to progressively as well as constructively harness a thing when one has refused to acknowledge the reality of its source. Any attempt without that process (of acknowledgement) will only lead to abuse and destructive results in the long run as we can evidently see in our world today through the white man’s approach, what we call technological advancements are consequently doing more and more harm to our planet and the collective human consciousness. Like I have already mentioned, those who use the better approach of not trying to separate science from spirit but rather interrogating them as complementary factors will have a better chance at securing quantum leaps in technological accomplishments and inventions. Constructive techniques as opposed to destructive techniques to advance our civilizations will become the order of the age we live in. 

This piece is an excerpt from an ongoing manuscript titled - THEORIES OF MADNESS, a collection of short essays which the author is currently working on. 

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