Having a lifelong love affair with science, I entered university to pursue a career as a scientist. Growing up, I was influenced by books on astronomy and had two cousins who went through academic programs in physics. As a result, I decided to follow the same path. Freshman year in college, I participated in real scientific research that would eventually lead to two projects being presented at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research.
Still, I felt as though something was missing from the discipline. I had questions. Why do we trust the scientific method? What are the limits to what science can tell us? How do we try to solve questions regarding ethics, or things we can’t set up experiments to observe such as free will? These questions led me to my second great love; philosophy. To me, philosophy seems to be the perfect partner to physics. Where physics tackles the fundamental functions of reality, philosophy tackles fundamental questions on existence, how we ought to live, and the framework of thought. In fact, the discipline of physics was historically considered a branch of philosophy called ‘natural philosophy’ and many of the most prominent philosophers were also scientists and mathematicians.
Today, I work as an analytical chemist who frequently philosophizes about the nature of existence. I hope that through my writing I will both challenge your commonly held beliefs and convince you that science, logic, and critical thinking are the best tools we have to understand the world around us.