1. Science and technology not only dominate the psyche of humanity but also the whole biosphere. How does science influence civilisation and how is it related to human happiness?
2. The original, cosmic evolution of the biosphere was one that promoted, supported, nourished, sustained and enhanced life. Life went on adding to the evolution with newer species and ecosystems, even more beautiful and vibrant than the ones before. Our biosphere accommodated a pleasant weather cycle and climate system to support these newer species, keeping everything in dynamic equilibrium.
3. Now the biosphere is overburdened and ailing. Some of our ecosystems have already collapsed, while others are at death’s door. Ever increasing pollution coupled with over–exploitation of natural resources and greenhouse gas emissions is driving several species towards extinction. This phenomenon that has occurred by itself, and neither has it been caused by, human beings alone. But it definitely has been spurred by so–called advances in technology.
4. In this millennium, we no longer live in a, biosphere – we are inhabitants of a technosphere. A technosphere is an impaired biosphere that has no affinity with values of life nor with sustainability and evolution of life. Although technology has empowered civilisation, it has also reduced it to being a mere tool of science and technology. And when the whole civilisation turns technocratic, science and technology are bound to dominate, causing life to shrink. The intensifying climate crisis is but a symptom of the biosphere’s illness and life’s gradual collapse.
5. We’ve reached a point where we are intolerant of anything remotely “unscientific” in our contemporary world. Scientists look for alternatives, but even these solutions are sought in the same domain that has caused these problems. In short, we are stewing in a soup of our own making.
6. So, what would be meaningful for the welfare of humans? Naturally, something that would enhance life, serve to integrate ecosystems and cleanse our environment. Enhancement of lit includes betterment of human life and vice versa. If life shrinks, we cannot blossom.
7. Science and technology by themselves are neutral; it is the way we use them that has either a positive or negative impact on our lives and environment. And when we use science in a manner that increases unsustainability and unhappiness in our lives, how can we rely blindly on science for our happiness?
7.1. On the basis of your reading of the passage, answer the following questions in 30–40 words each:
(a) How did the biosphere evolve over a period of time?
Originally when cosmic evolution happened, biosphere supported and promoted the growth of species. As life continued more and more species evolved. Our biosphere also evolved and created the right weather and climate to support the new species.
(b) How has this equilibrium got disturbed now?
Today many of the ecosystems have collapsed, many species have disappeared from the face of the earth. This has happened due to increasing pollution, deforestation and over exploitation of natural resources.
(c) What is the difference between biosphere and technosphere?
Biosphere is nature’s creation with plants, animals and the climat and animals live in harmony with the climate around. A technosphere is a biosphere that has been destroyed by the advancement of technology.
(d) Man needs to use ‘science and technology’ in a sensible manner. Explain.
By itself science and technology is neither good nor bad. It is how we use them. If we use it to increase instability, then we are creating unhappiness around us. Also the environment around us gets polluted.
7.2. On the basis of your reading of the passage, answer of the following:
(a) In para 3, the synonym of ‘disappeared is ___________.
Correct Option is (iv) collapsed
(b) In para 5, the antonym of ‘nearly’ is __________.
Correct Option is (ii) remotely
(c) A biosphere that has been destroyed by the advancement of technology is called an ecosystem. (True/False)
(d) Today many of the ecosystems have collapsed due to increasing _________.
pollution and over exploitation of natural resources.