Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Up to page 384

One evening in Berlin, Einstein and his wife were at a dinner party when a guest expressed a belief in astrology. Einstein ridiculed the notion as pure superstition.

How scientific is that, I wonder, to hold a strong opinion about something with which you’ve had no direct experience? From Einstein, yet. But that’s modern science: if it doesn’t fit the paradigms they've made up, then it can’t be possible. Hence the medical profession’s skepticism about homeopathy and acupuncture, and why it chooses to forget that Jung used astrology in his practice. During Nixon’s trip to China in the seventies, photographers sent back images from China showing patients with needles stuck in them smiling and waving during surgery. Did it change the practice of anesthesia? Not a bit. And then there are those people who, on the basis of no empirical evidence whatsoever, apparently believe that hot air blown from a machine actually dries your hands.

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