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The Science of Deduction, Part 1

Deduction, as my good friend Sherlock Holmes would say, is elementary. And to an extent he’d be right. But Sherlock speaks like a marathon runner would speak about steady breathing- it’s easy if you’ve practiced.

So I’ll be going through some simple deduction methods over the next couple of…well, as often as I’d like really. So stay tuned, you never know when will pop up.

Today, however, I’d like to focus on something called garbology. Yes, that is an actual science for those of you who suspect it having something to do with garbage. And you’d be correct, it is the study of the garbage we humans leave behind, and to be perfectly frank there really is sweet little more beneficial when talking about learning about habits.

It is so elementary to deduce the activity of a human based on their garbage, and we archaeologists employ this method on numerous occasions. But you, the average person, can find plenty of use in this as well. The important things that define us, as persons, comes from our consumption habits. And those things are most visible in the things we throw out.


Granted, going through someones trash might label you a bit mad. Nevertheless, it is important to remember my little tip- if you want to know something about a someone, that someone is the last person you should go and ask. Try starting with their trash.



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Science versus Religion

Something I have felt strongly about for some time. However, not strongly in a traditional left or right sided opinion sort of way. I simply believe the two have a commonality that many people refuse to acknowledge (or are ignorant of).

Take Gregor Mendel, a personal hero of mine. His Punnett squares were a favorite of mine in every biology course I have taken from primary school until my university years today. However few people emphasize, or recognize for that matter, the fact that Gregor Mendel was a monk of the Augustinian order. William of Ockham, the author of the theory many scientists base their reasoning processes on, was also an English man of the cloth (a friar).

And lest we forget the point of religion in the first place- to explain the seemingly unexplainable. When man was young (as a species) in order to rationally explain how and why things were happening around him, he invented creation myths. Explaining the world around us is what science is. Granted science is the refined, logical and correct way…but that too would be considered by most to be opinion.

Religion is capable of creating beautiful things, and it has in the past. And while I personally see no practical, constant implication for such a system of explanation when we’ve quite definitely learned why the sun rises or where lightening comes from, this does not mean I can’t appreciate what religion is.

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From the British Museum, a lovely piece. And to think, the Maya haven’t always held my fascination as they do today. Anyway, the process being shown in the above funerary relief is called blood letting, a relatively common practice for the ancient Maya people.

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