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National Scientific Temper Day: Need to oppose irrational and irresponsible behaviour on rise in public life
Scientific temper is an acquired mindset and a way of life of an individual and his or her social process of thinking and acting logically and rationally for reaching an articulated but tentative point view subject to reconstruction or renewal, I perceive.

A person with scientific temper is objective in his or her outlook and process based to keep thinking and acting in life dynamic. This happens by imbibing and employing the acquired scientific method through deep learning and practice all the time aptly and spontaneously through the mental processes of questioning, re-observing present reality, hypothesizing, testing or verifying, analysing, and communicating.

In the Indian context, the phrase of 'scientific temper' was coined and used by the first PM of India, Jawahar Lal Nehru, who  was of the view that discussion, argument and analysis are vital parts of the precept of democratic values.

He had explained the term scientific temper in his book 'The Discovery of India' saying that for acquiring scientific temper one needed imbibe 'the scientific approach, the adventurous and yet critical temper of science, the search for truth and new knowledge, the refusal to accept anything without testing and trial, the capacity to change previous conclusions in the face of new evidence, the reliance on observed fact and not on pre-conceived theory, the hard discipline of the mind—all this is necessary, not merely for the application of science but for life itself and the solution of its many problems.'

The phrase 'scientific temper' also found a place in The Constitution of India too, which says that "It shall be the duty of every citizen of India to promote rationalism, scientific temper, reform and humanism" as a part of the Article 51 A (h) of the Constitution.

Many rationalists are once again batting for scientific temper by observing the National Scientific Temper Day (NSTD) in honour of thinkers, rationalist and activist Narendra Dabholkar who was killed in 2013 on August 10 by irrational fanatics.

Some recent utterances of the politicians and extreme rightists have led to spread of cultural bigotry, narrow mindedness and intolerance across India seen in form of killings and murders of intellectuals and rationalists.

Consequently, NSTD observance has taken the form of protest marches besides holding seminars, street plays, discussions and submitting memoranda to the people in power to protect and promote scientific temper and democratic values.

Here an ABC verse to understand scientific temper and its importance.

A: Attitude of logical and rational thinking for personal and societal development

B: Beholding all knowledge as tentative and subject to renewal with new evidences discovered

C: Creative, constructive, critical mindset that verifies things to accept, modifying or reject the projected precepts

D: Dogmas and superstitions free open mindedness

E: Employing a scientific method to inquiring into social and scientific spheres

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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