META: Psuedo-Science (crop circles)

Rick Knight (
Tue, 02 Sep 97 15:10:56 CST

Not being a scientist, only fascinated by it, I probably take a
decidedly different path from the more high-brow attitudes towards
topics that occasionally surface on this digest and are ceremoniously
doused (heaven forbid the "Goo" thread was ever so quickly dismissed)
because of their "Moulder" rather than "Scully" like quality. (I'm
using pop icons as adjectives...wild!)

For instance, in the area of Crop Cirlces, about which I know
relatively little, it is an intriguing notion to think that they might
be communications (such as those suggested in the film "Contact"). A
scientific mind may seek to discredit crop circles as hoaxes by
pointing out the "proof" that they are man-made. In my mind, that
doesn't take into account a number of variables, many, alas,
metaphysical in nature and thus, likely discreditable under classic
scientific scrutiny.

However, I consider that the circles, whether they be hoaxes done by
clever humans or cryptic messages from an advances off-world race, to
be a fascinating phenomenon, at least archetypally and sociologically.
Some "hoaxes" are deliberate, confessed after the fact to be so, not
to discredit but to continue a dialog in earnest. The human-made
circles I'm told are often done with the utmost reverence, employing
sacred geometry, considering time and location thoughtfully and
planned out for months in advance.

One might say that such an elaborate hoax and expenditure of time is
all for naught. But even the effect it has on the different camps of
thought on the legitmacy of crop circles is a fascinating byproduct
for it "shakes the tree of knowledge" so to speak. Whether it
provokes with fascination or irritates and divides groups of
discussion, it has its place.

The real world of qualified scientific phenomenon may well be utterly
more fascinating than the more fanciful and supernatural notions
sometimes expressed here but whether one outweighs the other in
importance is up to the individual to decide. Science and imagination
should be free to comingle and dance together to produce possibilities
to come. I'll leave it to the moderators as to how to regulate a
balance that doesn't abruptly dismiss or matter-of-factly discredit.