IS SCIENCE A BLESSING OR A CURSE ?
SCIENCE AND HUMAN WELFARE
SCIENCE AND HUMANITY
Science has been a benefactor of mankind. By science man has
conquered nature and become the proud lord of the land, water and air.
But is science an unmixed blessing ? Science has given away much, but
it has at the same time taken away much.
None can deny the creative role of science. In a number of ways science
has helped the progress of mankind. It has enabled man to unveil the
mystery of Nature and use it to his own advantage. Machines are used
to increase the productive capacity of industries and agriculture. Large
scale production is possible because of the use of machines. Necessary
as well as luxury goods are made available to man. With the modern
methods of irrigation and cultivation, even the risky business of
agriculture has no more been a gamble with nature. It has conquered
diseases and lessened human sufferings. Man’s longevity has been
increased. Child mortality has been reduced. New discoveries and
inventions in the field of medicine, surgery, chemistry, physics and
astronomy have added to the wealth and well-being of human life. It
has killed distance and people have come close together. The mobility
and mingling of the people of different countries and continents has
furthered the cause of good relationship and solidarity among peoples.
It has made life comfortable by providing amenities of life. We no longer
feel uncomfortable in summer heat because of electric fans and air-
conditioning. We no longer suffer in cold because of the system of electric
heating of the room. We use science in everyday life. We see distant
places and distant people through television; we enjoy songs and dramas
sitting comfortably in recumbent chairs. These are the positive sides of
modern science. Modern age is called the age of electronics and
computers. These have revolutionized the method of production,
calculation and even our enjoyment of things.
But science has brought many evils. It has made life restless,
mechanical and full of haste and noise. It has taken away initiative, skill,
originality and sense of beauty. Science has given speed, but it has
deprived us of passion and beauty. Men work now with mechanical
efficiency. Every worker contributes just a part of the total production.
He has no sense of creativity, no joy of creation. He has been reduced to
an automation. Moreover, productions through machines are
standardised. Producers cannot show their individual skill, taste and
talent. Large-scale productions of goods call for large industrial markets,
and there is fierce competition among nations for widening their markets,
and thus frictions, bad relationships and wars threaten and darken the
horizon. Consumerism has developed and men and women have given
up their plain, simple life. Industrial townships have grown with many
serious problems. Science has helped the production of food and other
articles, but the benefits do not reach all. Man’s greed and love of power
have sharpened the difference between the rich and the poor. A rich
mercantile community has arisen and it has replaced the feudal lords of
the middle ages.
Thus science has made life complex. Moreover, it has plaed at the
disposal of powerful nations destructive weapons. We can hardly forget
the terrible memories of Hiroshima. The world to-day is threatened with
nuclear holocaust. With the powers given to man by science, man is
becoming devilish, selfish and cruel.
However, it should be noted tht science cannot be blamed for all the
ills that scientific discoveries have brought about. Man who uses science
is really responsible for all the evils that plague modern existence. Science
is not the enemy of mankind. Man with his pride, selfishnes, cruelty
uses science for the destruction of mankind. He uses his intellectual
powers for creating Frankenstein. Science can be used for peaceful and
constructive purposes and benefits of mankind. With the achievements
of science, man has a greater responsibility to use them for man’s good.
Politicians use science for their selfish imperial purposes. Scientists and
intellectuals should stand united to frustrate the evil designs of politicians
and imperialists. Science for peace should be inculcated to all. Human
values have to be promoted, and a scientific culture has to be developed
among all. Science means knowledge, and knowledge contributes to the
welfare of mankind. Scientific attitude means a spirit of enquiry, curiosity
and investigative bias. It extends the boundary of knowledge and
develops wisdom. Science combined with culture and humanist outlook
will be of immense benefit to mankind.