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Science and Myth
Original Post

Science in its popular form posits ultimate human victory over human suffering and death, disease will vanish, and conditions will continue to improve. It is shiny and white like a lab coat. Myth and ritual are darker, muddy, emerging from the earth, making the eternal pain of living and dying bearable, meaningful in some way. Both are necessary and yet have become increasingly isolated in their relation to each other. We live in an increasingly fast paced, technologically society that does not have time for much ritual, but still has not done away with human suffering. We have access to images of human suffering in real time round the clock; but what do we do when pain touches our lives? Depression and drug treatment are one response, there are also virtual mythic worlds and games. But it still seems to be in the shared acts of story telling and ceremony that we still seem to find peace, and closure.

There is certainly a point at the outer edge of science, on the lip of what cannot be explained where science and myth meet. Scientific description blossoms into metaphor, myths give insight into how our unconscious mind may work. Susan, the other scientist in the play working at Arvin’s lab, reads about Australian aboriginal philosophy and finds in it a metaphor for her own experimental work on memory consolidation in REM sleep. Both are descriptions of consciousness, positing models yet to be fully proven. Both share in being the astounding creations of human brains reflecting upon themselves to perceive the "world."

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