There is always this issue of how the pop culture receives Buddhism. It is very difficult for most people to understand Buddhism. In every generation, there were only a couple of people who truly understand Buddhism. In the east, traditionally Buddhism had played a very important role in shaping the culture. Although the pop culture always understand Buddhism in a somehow twisted way, Buddhism did play a very positive role in influencing the baseline of a culture.
In the west, Buddhism is going to more base itself on a scientific foundation, thus there is going to be more certainty in the public’s perception of Buddhism. It is going to be more connected to the physical world. So it is more ok to “talk” about Buddhism in the west, as long as the talk is directed at more clearly explaining the teaching of Buddhism using the scientific system.
But this doesn’t mean Buddhism has to rely on science. Or you have to know science in order to understand Buddhism’s teaching. Science is still just a convenient way human beings come up to understand the world. To give Buddhism a scientific foundation is to help build a better shaped pop culture and thus improve the baseline of a culture. For people who want to really understand the teaching of Buddhism, the practice is still utmost important since Buddha nature is what we have originally. Having a good baseline of culture, we can hope that there are more people who will be able to really understand the teaching of Buddhism.
This is totally a random thought.