Is Nature out of our grasp?

Humans are naturally curious from the time we were toddlers to when we become adults. We tend to want to know more in order to understand our surroundings to exploit for our own advantages. For instances, since the advent of agriculture, humans have been manipulating plants to be more nutritious and high yielding through artificial selection and more recently genetic modification. Through technological advances, people have bettered the lives of others using nature as both a resource pool and catalysis for innovations. However, we also overexploit Mother Nature because we sometimes think of ourselves as against nature. As thesis 1 states, “it makes no sense to oppose nature to culture” as we depend on nature itself for our successes. How can we be against nature when human inventions such medicines are derived from plants in nature and flight was achieved by observing birds? By that logic, destroying nature slows our rate of technological advances.

 

I also find that thesis 3’s quote about how “Nature itself is always in movement” which is very true to me. Nature will always move on without humans as it had when humans did not exist. The concept of nature conservation is conserving nature so that it is habitable for us, not that it will be destroyed for all life. Life in nature will always appear in some form just as how it appeared out of simple chemicals through abiogenesis during the Planet’s infancy. In that sense, we do not control nature as it is something that defines us and our culture. We do not build dikes and earthquake to quell nature, but rather to live with nature. Like the article says, “we must think of Nature without any residual anthropocentrism” because nature does not care if we’re in the way.

 

Lastly, I believe that thesis 7’s quote “Our task today is, similarly, to conceive of Nature in ways that are grounded in, but are not reducible to, the best contemporary science” really speaks to me as a STEM student. In many ways, many of us tend to think that the math and sciences are inherent truths, but they are realistically the closest understanding of the universe at the time. “The best contemporary science” is one that evolves like an organism because there is so much information that gets supported and unsupported every day. The best mathematical models, such as ones for fluid flow in pipes, all have a degree of uncertainty because it is our best estimate. In other words, as much as we try to understand nature, we can only get closer but never achieve a “Theory of everything.”

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