Changing The Subject
It seems out of character, I know, but I’m inclined to agree with President Bush that Intelligent Design is worth teaching in our public schools. He might not agree, however, with the scope of imagination that I would advocate for such a program. The greatest puzzles have not yet been answered, and there is every reason for a reasonable person to believe that behind it all somewhere is a planner, a thinker, something we could relate to, or maybe something else.
After they understood the basics, here are a few things I would want my students to speculate on. Let me ask you. Who came before the Big Bang and how did they get there? Who will pick up the pieces at the end? How can the Universe be with no one to see? Where does a black hole come out? How can all the stuff that we know fit in our heads? Why is the value of pi knowable? Could the value of pi be something else in another universe? What is Free Will? How did those damn finches get to the Gallapagos? So they flew? Then how did the turtles get there? Do you know how far it is to the Gallapagos? Why is there so much more variety among dogs than wolves? Why do some species, living fossils they call them, fail to change at all over millions of years? How did ancient humans breed bigger grain without the basic understanding of selection processes? Wouldn’t they eat all the big grains and throw the little ones back on the soil? Why are the ancient languages more formal, precise and sophisticated than modern ones? How did the ancient Hindus know that the age of the world was measured in billions of years? If people with small heads are as likely to be intelligent as people with large heads, then why don’t we all have small heads? If we take as given that the human form and custom is superior to that of other animals, why would the chimpanzees be permitted to evolve from the same ancestors as humans did, but in the wrong direction? ... Just asking.
Will Wright, creator of Sims and SimCity, is working on a simulated evolution game where the user can play God. That should be very interesting. I think that his games have already changed the world. I imagine it was very hard to be a flat-earther after Jules Verne.
9/4/2005 12:27 AM