How i became a scientist
"Few creatures of horror have seized readers' imaginations and held them for so long as the anguished monster of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. The story of Victor Frankenstein's terrible creation and the havoc it caused has enthralled generations of readers and inspired countless writers of horror and suspense."
How did i come to love science? As a kid, i stumbled across my very 1st nature documentaries airing on T.V. I looked at different planets and various topics. I looked at animals with such curiosity and amazement. Seeing how they behaved, breeded, moved, and hunted. I would often go to museums and the zoo. I saw my very 1st robotic dinosaurs and other fossils. I saw many different kinds of animals: Koala bars, Iguanas, crocodiles, alligators, tigers, ostriches, hippos, sea otters, bats, and many more! I looked at them with fear and reverence.
In elementary school, i was given the task to piece together a fossilized rat. I looked at it with such curiosity. That was also the day my science teacher read a story on how the whale went from being a land animal to a mammal adapted for the seas. I was inspired yet baffled because i thought whales were always sea creatures. It wasn't for any religious reason, it just didn't make sense to me.
I became so fascinated by life that i looked up documentaries on YouTube and learned many things. I learned about evolution, the big bang, animals, and so on. I was so puzzled by what i saw. How did scientists come to these conclusions? They explained how by making observations of the known world and excavating ancient fossils, they could piece together the past. They could use what they knew to help the human species making cures, saving animals from extinction, and such. I saw how they used the scientific method and creative genius to make discoveries.
There came a point in life where i experienced the pain of watching other animals suffer. As a kid, i saw with wonder a worm that laid on the ground. Out of nowhere, a lizard comes and snatches it away. I was very sad that the worm died and wanted the lizard to give the worm back. It vanished out of sight.
I remember having a gold fish in my house as an 11 year old boy. After my sister poured the wrong type of water into it's tank, it began to suffocate. I felt so heart broken and agitated as i tried so hard to save it's life. I pleaded with my mom to take it to a zoo or some place where it could live. My sister stubbornly refused to save it's life and desperately wanted to keep it. Every moment was precious as i saw it gasping for air. Suddenly, it stopped moving and sunk to the bottom. “Can you not see it's dying?!?” I exclaimed. I felt so powerless because we all were ignorant of how to take care of it. We dumped it into a river hoping that it would somehow revive. Sadly, i don't think it lasted long in the wild.
Another memory was when i found a black widow in my garage. I was so surprised but also in awe of this rare creature. I did not want to kill it, but to save it. After all, it was only another living organism trying to survive like me. My brother pressured me to kill it for the sake of our family. I was again agitated and powerless to save it's life. The ants swarmed over it and killed the spider before i could make my choice. I had often wondered why we lived in such a cruel world battling for survival.
My inspiration for science grew from reading Mary Shelly's “Frankenstein.” In our modern world, some become scientists for recognition and others for a career. Why did i want to want to become a scientist? Knowledge, power, respect, but more importantly to preserve life. I was motivated by a wound that never healed. The pain of being powerless and afraid. The pain of seeing innocent people suffer and life perish in the blink of an eye. I wanted to end the world's suffering. By obsessively studying nature, i could find a cure for death and disease.
I was often inspired by science fiction involving mostly aliens, time travel, cyborgs, and the unexplained. I believed that endless possibilities could be fulfilled by the mind of a creative genius. In reality, the only limits to nature were the ones inside our heads. Many people might consider me crazy because i am. The world's greatest scientists were also branded insane but they still pursued the Truth. I dreamed of one day creating the 1st race of human cyborg hybrids. No longer would we be subject to biological limits with this invention. I wanted to radically recreate our biological body into a highly advanced and artificial one. Perhaps we could avoid death and disease. Perhaps the only way to resolve all of the world's problems was to give our brains enough power to process information.
As i kept reading Frankenstein and learning more about science, i was rather disappointed with what i found. Being a field scientist gave you plenty of chances and resources to explore the world, but only under the hands of the government. The government would grant you the funds for your research if it's beneficial for them. I realized after so much hard work and knowledge, i would get nothing but pain. Why? Because the government would put my work in the market. If i created this cybernetic/human hybrid “race”, it could very easily fall into the hands of the government. Power, greed, and ambition would destroy it's original purpose. No matter what contributions i could come up, the cost was too great.
Albert Einstein deeply regretted establishing the theory of relativity after the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. To this day, people are still suffering the effects of the weapons. Since the creation of the atom bomb, warfare was never the same again. Though evolution is being used for the greater good, it is also being used for the unspeakable evil. After reflecting much on Frankenstein, i came to realize a very good lesson. I realized that human pride and selfish ambition can quickly consume a scientist. Our hunger for knowledge can destroy other lives. I wasn't willing to carry those burdens on my shoulders.
One of the biggest ironies in life is that death breeds life. I remember after the ants killed the black widow, they carried chunks of it away into their home. The gold fish that fell into the river dead was probably consumed by other organisms. The deaths of a few organisms brought sustenance for many more who were striving for it. As i began to study the ecosystem more, i saw that nothing ever goes to waste. Life is a continuous cycle that goes on irrespective of human action. That's the beauty of evolution and natural selection. Life has a grandeur purpose full of surprises and systematic order. The beauty of the whole universe is that it's comprehensible.
A demo. of how science works
Although i am not a field scientist, i am content being an amateur. Studying science has changed my life and perspective on how i viewed the world. The universe is full of complexity, rhythms, patterns, and full of mysteries just waiting to be unraveled. The knowledge i attained was so small in comparison to what i didn't know. I had only taken the first few steps in a quest for knowledge that never ends.