One theme common to scientific contemplation, that often distinguishes it from other activities of the mind, is parsimony. Science hopes to obtain the most elegant, simple yet complete, explanation, for the greatest number of related phenomena. Reduced to a single word, the program of science is nomothetic, law giving.
It would be immensely gratifying if one could account for the rise of later human activities such as art or religion, and have that account satisfy the requirements of science. Gratifying as it might be, a crystalline explanation is highly unlikely.
The journey inwards and backwards, as speculative, anecdotal, and fraught with counterexamples, occasionally proves to be irresistibly interesting. It simply might not qualify as science in the purest sense.
How, we might begin, does the evolution of the human brain structure parallel its expression of consciousness? Modern man emerged in his final state with such apparent swiftness, and the feature that most distinguishes him from all else, language, was part of that final, essential step. What forced the development of Broca's and Wernicke's area of the brain with such intensity? How did this parallel changes in the neo-cerebellum, especially in the dentate nucleus, which functions as a modern structure buried in the core of the oldest part of the brain?
© 1995 Morgan Garwood
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