February 28, 2007
Name anything on earth or in the sky far beyond. Think of anything that you can think of. I can bet that Science has something interesting to say about it.
Except Science, there is nothing that humans have ever done , no goal that they have ever pursued that goes beyond our self-centric nature, our ever-present temptation to irrationally hold one species to be more important than all others and one planet to be the centre of everything.
Science is the universal language – when you learn how our heart works, you learn about hearts of so many other cousins of our species. When you understand the colours flowing out of a vapour lamp, you understand the language of the same gases staring at you from the stars far away. When you can decipher that small piece of magnet lying around, you understand the history of our planet etched in the magnetic domains of the Atlantic sea floor.
All that you see with your naked eye speaks electromagnetism – brandishing proudly their charged swords, writing psychedelic hues on the vacuum slate. Their masses come mostly from the ever-boiling strong interaction fields that pop in and out of nowhere like little kids. A silent swarm of neutrinos run through your body in a breeze more gentle than any that you’ve felt.
The deepest of your emotions is a symphony of atoms – the most mellisonant tune you’ve heard is their passionate dance in your eardrum.
Gold gets its golden hue from its electrons speaking relativity. The plain crystal of salt mumbles incessantly of solid state. The glorious sun hums as its plasma whirls around its magnetic roads.
To those who can hear, it is a concert with science as the ticket. For those who cannot, deep are my condolences.
And stronger still shall be my condemnation of all that deprives one of this most glorious of feelings – poverty of the body and soul, the hunger, human cruelty and indifference, mindless wars, boundless arrogance, shameless plunder and surrender to superstition. India celebrates Science Day today – and science means much more than most of its citizens assume…