by B.J. Delas Armas
on 1/13/2005 02:11:00 AM
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Being a Doctor in Western Society
Man (this isn't a letter to god or the Man, I'm just saying),
I wish I was studying to become a Medical Doctor.
But as with engineering, I don't have the technical skills in physics or chemistry.
And you know what ? I don't give 2 shits about technical skills (maybe 3, but definitely not 2) !
All I really wish is that I could first learn the practical skills of healing people/making cool shit, i.e. motors, and subsequently after having learned these practical skills, then learn the technical skills and manipulations with math. Those technical skills would be so much more useful then because I would know exactly what I'd be looking for in the math instead of learning what isn't useful and only finding out later. I don't really like learning what's abstract first because that which is abstract has no practical meaning to it.
From all the time I've been in a hospital (and I'm still taking a stab in the dark because I've never been to med school and don't work in a hospital), those mathematical/technical skills seem to be kind of useless for doctors in their day-to-day workings (correct me if I am wrong). Not that the technical skills wouldn't help, but all this energy they spend on learning technical skills in college seems to be a waste when most of their skills seem to rely on intuition, not mathematical skills. They have a know-how. These doctors work with their hands --- that's how surgeons operated prior to the organization of the Hotel Dieu. A work with hands, with the same kind of respect a plumber today would have in working with his hands. These surgeons knew more practical stuff than their physician counterparts, who learned Latin and the medical traditions of Hippocrates, but didn't learn to actually deal with patients. Lesson is that technical skills are useless until actually applied --- even my practicing Ph.D math professor in the summer said that.
Learning these abstractions/technical skills/math first without there being any relevance first is about learning the rules without even playing the game first. Those rules don't mean a thing if you don't know what's going on. I mean you learn some rules, but you just play the damn game, and then learn the rules as you go along. Same thing should be done with medicine/engineering: learn how to heal/do cool shit and then learning the technicalities.
If we did things my way, way more people would probably be doctors as well.
So why do we keep this system in place then ?
Well for one, I doubt most of the doctors today would go for my plan that since they basically had to be *functionally insane* (meaning they crazy but a crazy that is revered because it *appears* to contribute to society) for 12 more years after graduating high school. They obviously acclimated well and made it to be some of the top dogs of society. I doubt that most of them would want their knowledge to be known by everyone or else many people wouldn't waste money on their services. The worst of them, the most emotionally unintelligible of them, would dismiss me as a some kind of social science hack.
Labels: Challenge the Experts, Violence of Science