Science Paradigms Set Aflame
Opening on June 20 in Boulder, Colorado after receiving the highest number of submitted papers (48) in the history of the Society, the 31st Annual Society for Scientific Exploration (SSE) Conference has been given the title “Bonfire of the Paradigms” by the Organization committee headed by Cornell-trained entomologist and current owner of a Florida bioelectromagnetics laboratory Dr. Thomas Dykstra.
Specifically, the paradigms being challenged are: Health Sciences, Physical Sciences, and Biological Sciences. “We felt the title was catchy and accurate,” said Dykstra via phone interview. “There were reasons for it and against it, but we decided to go with it. It’s very accurate for what we planned on doing. It’s a reflection upon what our Society does. If you are, dare I say, controversial, you have a forum in the SSE... We’re not necessarily trying to establish new paradigms, what we are trying to do is make available new paradigm shifts.”
Dykstra himself is scheduled to open the “Challenging Paradigms in the Biological Sciences” day of presentations on the morning of the 23rd, and he spoke more about the goals of the SSE, “We try to allow people to come forward, and once they come forward, we try to critically examine them... because we pride ourselves on being a skeptical organization, not by accepting or rejecting everything that is thrown at us, but by questioning it.”
Conference presentations, due to be held in Boulder’s Millenium Hotel Ballroom, begin on the morning of June 21st and run until the evening of the 23rd (see schedule link below). “This has been the largest conference to date,” said Dykstra, “It’s really the big headline right now, and it’s been causing happiness but also disappointment. Disappointment because we haven’t been able to handle all of the submissions, but also happiness that this may be a reflection that the SSE is growing.”
The opening presentation will be offered by Dr. Henry Bauer, winner of the 2012 Dinsdale Prize awarded every two years at the SSE Conference. Bauer, Professor Emeritus of Chemistry & Science Studies, Dean Emeritus of Arts & Sciences at Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University, former Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Scientific Exploration (2000-2007 for the SSE’s quarterly journal), and author of many controversial papers and books, including a book made available in May, 2012 titled Science in the 21st Century: Knowledge Monopolies and Research Cartels, and older releases including The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory, is an example of a paradigm-shifting thinker provided a forum by the SSE.
Bauer’s scheduled presentation opens the “Challenging Paradigms in the Medical Sciences” day and is titled, Seeking Immortality: Challenging the Drug-Based Medical Paradigm. Dykstra, who is not on the Dinsdale prize selection committee charged with selecting the winner, said of Bauer’s selection, “I was delighted. He’s one of my favorites in the Society.”
David Dilley will open the 2nd day (the ‘Challenging Paradigms in the Physical Sciences’ day) with his presentation titled, Natural Climate Pulse: Global Warming--Global Cooling--Carbon Dioxide. To Dykstra, speaking as a representative of the SSE, this and other challenges to widely accepted paradigm is welcomed at the forum, but the point isn’t to accept everything. “Many people believe the SSE should be an open-minded society.” Dykstra said, “this is a difficult term to apply to the SSE... If you remain open-minded to everything, then you are essentially a non-discerning individual. This is not the type of individual we are looking for... I would go so far as to say in advance that I will not subscribe to all of the presentations that are going to be presented next week.”
For a link to a YouTube series where SSE Program Chair Tom Dykstra attempts to disprove Insect Olfaction Theory, click here.
image by benwatts, courtesy of Creative Commons licensing.Tweet