Science, Art, and Common Sense  - Science, Art, and Common Sense - Science is knowing, Art is doing, and Common Sense is knowing and doing on the basis of experience.  Science deals with observation, identification, description, experimental investigation, and theoretical explanation of natural processes, systems or phenomena.  Science is systematically gained knowledge, knowledge gained from experiments with controls.  Without controls there is no experiment, and without experiments there is no science.  The scientific method works best for mathematics and physics where the variables can be controlled.  In biology, there are so many variables, that no experiment can be designed with a control of all the variables.  Science has its limitations when the forest is considered.  Science cannot give all the answers because there is no way to control the many variables.  For this reason, it is essential to bring art and common sense into the picture.  Art requires skill.  Skill requires training and practice.  Common sense demands your time and attention to changes in nature, and especially changes associated with actions resulting from some treatment, an art factor.  This is how early man began to learn.  He or she observed a response to a stimulus.  They began to understand the response and the stimulus.  Then, they watched the response repeat every time the stimulus was applied.  As actions repeat, they become orderly.  Order repeats, or can be repeated.  Knowledge gained from experience is called empiricism. But, when empiricism repeats at a high level, then we begin to approach the same results that may come from science with an experiment.  Just as important as knowing, is the ability to regulate with high efficiency.  That is the measure of knowing.  And, if the system or process cannot be regulated, then the next step is to predict its outcome with high accuracy.  Recognition still must come first.  You must recognize an event, feature, characteristic, etc.  This comes from observation and the stimulus-response factors.  What this all means to a tree person is that tree biology depends not only on science but also on art and common sense.  And the greatest of these is common sense. 

See "Art” and  “Common Sense.

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