Science vs Magic: Where Do You Draw the Line?


     Magic, folklore, and fairytales; these are the backbone of many a myth and legend. The definition of such magic varies amongst countries and regions, and the literature that comes with it is often enrapturing, such as age-old tales like Snow White from Germany. But, while the modern day continues, and technology advances, we question what the universal understanding of magic could be. With scientists creating new and modern wonders, what really is the difference between science and magic?

     In the past hundred years, there has been an explosion of technology, knowledge, and scientific expansion. Things like growing fetuses artificially or replacing an unborn child’s genes with another’s to cancel a genetic disorder are popping up rapidly, filling the world with amazing advances. But, there are also science-fiction and fantasy novels that describe things we see today. Martin Caidin’s book Cyborg mentioned the creation of bionic limbs. Likewise, The World Set Free by H.G. Wells predicted the atomic bomb, and Men Like Gods, also by H.G. Wells, spoke about voicemail. When these books were written, things like atomic bombs and bionic limbs were topics of fantasy, impossible concepts. Now, they are all too real and are widely recognized. Nowadays, magic is considered in things like controlling elements and telepathy, but how long will it be until those things are fact rather than fiction? An article by ExtremeTech in September 2014 stated that, “International researchers are reporting that they have built the first human-to-human brain-to-brain interface, allowing two humans — separated by the internet — to consciously communicate with each other, with no additional sensory cues….In short, the researchers have created a device that enables telepathy...rather than vocalizing speech.” Not long ago telepathy was considered impossible and unreal, but there is such a thing in the world now. So, what really is the difference between magic and science?

     There is, in fact, no defined line between magic and science. The spectrum fades from the extreme end of imaginative magic like controlling elements to cold-hard fact like the law of gravity, the division a grey area in the middle. Truly, humanity will always continue to grow and expand its knowledge, constantly changing what we think of as ‘magic’. The definition of magic is stated to be ‘the power of apparently influencing the course of events by using mysterious or supernatural forces,’ but we can already do that! (For example: the Mindflex game is a game in which you move a ball with your brainwaves by connecting your brain to the game.) In short, there is no definite divide between science and magic while science rapidly advances, but people will always dream up new possibilities and ideas, these ideas sparking invention and innovation. What’s your idea of magic?


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