“Time after time I have pondered apparent minutiae that turned out to be very important.”
“My entire research career –
in history – in medicine – in religion –
in the history of “religion and medicine” –
has grown out of sustained curiosity
about unusual little details.”
Dr. Powell, a clinical psychiatrist and medical historian
who hangs around with clinical pastoral chaplains,
always starts off his research with
a nagging question that begs for an answer.
“Why do songs by ‘Queen” end up being played at funerals more than the songs by other ‘rock bands’?”
“Why do clusters of military folks coming back from the war-zone tend to have clusters of odd lab results?”
“Why did those interested in ‘the after-life’ have more kinship with Freud than did academic psychologists?”
“Why does a certain “old” and “cheap” medicine now have so much new and expensive research behind it?”
“Why do some folks have an almost total inability to explain how they know what emotion they are feeling?
“Why did the definite “founder” of “the American psychosomatic movement” have a theology degree?”
“Why do certain “drug addicts” – apparently quite intelligently – choose “this” street drug and not “that” one?