Monday, 6 January 2014

From Science to School of Athens

Do you know where did science come from ?

How it developed, who developed it and how important it is to understand its role in our lives?

Science! This word is derived from the Latin word "Scientia" or "Scire" which means knowledge.

Science deals with the understand of natural phenomenons and the relations between them and it always ends at giving us some concrete results or interpretations of observations and aspects that have undergone either experimentation of further observation.

In the opinion of Karl Pearson, a great thinker. Hypotheses in science are formed on the basis of observation /observed facts which, when tested and confirmed by experiments and criticism, are turned into "Laws of Nature". For example, the law of gravity. It started with a mere observation, was tested and later on confirmed by experiment.

However , Science is not just one strict package talking about just one thing. It has various branches and a proper hierarchy. There is Natural Science as well as Social Science and in both these major types, there are further classifications of the subject. Space science,earth science,psychology, sociology etc etc

Let's come towards its background now.

History! 
If we wanna talk about history of science then its important to look at all of its aspects and development period of those aspects. Before Greeks drew the line between myth and reality, it was all that ruled the world. Greeks were the first ones to develop sophisticated arguments and make science stand out as something based on reality rather than on mythological views and religion.
However, their method was also flawed. It was not based on experimentation and logical reasoning. The reason for this was their immense intake from philosophy. Their entire science was influenced by philosophy therefore hard to verify.  And something that cant be verified is hardly , unlikely to produce any concrete laws of nature.
Here Muslims came as a force.A powerful and much more sophisticated learned force. They revolutionized the Greek work and gave true meaning to Science as the world now sees it. During the times when the part of the world,Roman and other empires were going through dark ages,Islamic scholars and scientists sitting in Cordoba Hall in Spain and other Muslim ruled places, were the actual heroes producing Jewels of knowledge. The took the work of Greek scholars, translated it in Arabic and tested the validity of the presented arguments. And in this process, they discovered and invented authentic and spectacular ideas that only dismissed all the previous work but gave world an entire new perspective to move towards. In a period known as Renaissance Muslim scholars revised and corrected the old concepts of science and then gave it back in the hands of west as history reveals. 

The famous painting "School of Athens" by Raphael bears witness to it and pays a tribute to the Muslim scholar and scientist Averroes. He is the only Muslim figure, painted in the picture among other Greek and famous scholars of the world of ancient times. Can you guess where is he sitting in this painting? I spent a pretty good amount of timing figuring it out before I googled to know it.



In a sum: Following is the spectrum of History of Science in chronological order:

1- Myth & Superstitious
2- Babylonian Science
3- Egyptian Science
4- Greek Science
5- Alexandrian Science
6- Islamic Science
7- Western Science
8- Modern Science

I hope this was informative. :)



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