SCIENCE AND SUPERSTITIONS
Science and superstitions, although they claim their descent from the same, a common ancestry, yet like the Arabs and the Israelis, forgetting that they are brothers, are always at draggers drawn with each other; they have no love lost between them. Of the two sisters, the science and the superstition, the latter is the older. The common ancestor is ignorance. Born of the ignorance the superstition grew fast on the very I fertile ground of the hearts – innocent and ignorant. After a very long | time of the birth of the first child, the superstition, the second child, the more intelligent the more modern, the more beautiful child, the science was born. The latter born baby, the science, set-forth on the path that did shoot of distinctly at a fairly large angle, perhaps never to meet its sister again. It would not be wrong to say that though they are sisters, yet the latter, the younger sister is clearly distinguishable from her older sister.
As man gradually gained more knowledge about the causes behind the natural phenomena; he began shedding off some of the fear associated with them. This was because man could now find and understand some of the ‘natural’ secrets. Once the ball was set rolling, the pace of the progress of science gained acceleration and momentum. The progress of the one meant the regress of the other. That means the science progressed as the other regressed, it w as the mental standard of the superstitious people that deteriorated, they became more and more superstitious, while the scientific minded people became more scientific minded. As compared with the superstitious people, the men of science proceeded more scientifically, more logically. The men of science are gods as compared with their ancestors, who were not scientific or even scientific, minded. Yet whereas it would be perfectly correct to say that science is the sister, if not the daughter of ignorance, it must be remembered that this daughter is modem and is a thoroughly transformed child. It is the men of science who have revolutionized the world who made it at once a heaven and hell by their inventions of comfort and the devices of destruction. Had it been not for the revolutions of science, the world would have been much i different from what it is as we see it.
Science had reduced time and distance, the world shrink as the pace of science increases. Television, the telescope and the microscope are the eyes of our eyes; telephone is the ear of our ears, as the machines are the hands of our hands. We are riding the horseless carriages, the railways trains and the pilotless aeroplanes. Printing presses, the factories and the mills have made our lives fit to be envied by the gods of mythology, and the atom bombs, the I. C. B. M. s have set everything ready to destroy that has been created. The progress of science has brought the world to the edge – to the very top of the conical crater of a volcano, only a few fastidious steps and the world will be drawn into the abysmal depths of infernal fire of the hell.
‘Blood is thicker than water’ they say, and the same is true of science and superstitions. They are sisters, the children of the same parents after all sooner or later they will unite again. When anyone or anything goes up and up and had reached a point that it is not possible to go higher, there is no alternative but to fall down and again to the same level if not lower to rise slowly, gradually. Before and insects are near enough their death, just before they have come near enough to death, nature provides them with wings, turning them into moths to enable them to fly the flight of death. Similarly when a stage reaches when science has reached such a stage as that no further rise is possible, then there will be only the last, the final leap to the deep depths of the ravines of ignorance. There will then be happy meeting between the long separated sisters, the elder one will once hold the younger sister in her arms, perhaps more firmly, more tightly, out of the excited ness of the meeting.
Has superstition left man for good or has it left man at all, is a question that is not too difficult to answer. And the answer is’ NO. Even the most advanced of men, including the men of science, are seen worshipping God, and gods, and statues, and believing in the miracles, magic and superstition. Numerous Scientists, and seen wearing certain ‘karas’, red, black or white threads tied round their wrists or slung round their necks, certain devices to cast off the evil spell cast by the evil eye and other sources. A sneeze would keep in check most of the best advanced scientists from undertaking any new experiment in science or the sight of a crow or a cat or even a sweeper or a Brahmin or a bare headed or bald man, or the sight of an empty vessel will make even the most modern people shudder for a while, and for a moment make hem desist from doing anything new or stop them in midst of anything they are doing. How can it be said that superstition has divorced science or the other way round, the science has divorced superstition.
Last but not the least, the superstitions, of whatever type or nature they might be, if they or their origin be traced back, they will be found to have been based upon some very sound, scientific belief. This proves that there was science first and that gradually at some period in antiquity that science must have been advanced so much that, further advance not being possible, man would have become ignorant and superstitious again, retaining some of the science in it. And then superstitious must have grown on the soil of science, again and science would have done away with superstition, and the cycle must have continued, as we see today. We read in the scriptures of various mythologies that in the darkest ancient past people used to come on the earth from the ‘other worlds’ and return thither. Similarly the people from the earth used to visit the moon and other planets of the solar system and beyond. Only about a few years ago was in the papers mat Soviet scientists have proved mat Mohammad, Jesus Christ and Lord Buddha were nit the beings of the earth. They came, they say, from the other worlds and returned to the worlds they came from, because this world was not fit to be lived in by them. The ignorant and unworthy men of this earth were too human and so inhuman in their behaviour to them that either they killed them or they tortured them to slow death, and still they fortunately or unfortunately did not die, they left for heavenly abodes. This again proves that the stories about the people coming and going from and to the other worlds, were and are not merely tall talks or the fairy tales of the Arabian nights or just fairy tales; those stories that we read in the various scriptures. The pulse of the time has, since time immemorial, been pulsating between the two extremities, one at each end, the superstition and science, ties to the common thread of ignorance, their common mother.
Concluding, it may be said that whether it be, the science or it be the superstition, they are die inseparable companions from birth, and their relation cannot be snapped, it cannot be severed. One has something of the other in it, something inherent in it. Neither can divorce the other. This has been so since the time remembered not and shall probably till the times that cannot be predicted. They are hand in gloves with each other, they will ever be so.