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Author Topic:   Difference between Science and Scientism
Modulous
Member (Idle past 102 days)
Posts: 7801
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 4 of 29 (450896)
01-24-2008 5:37 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Cold Foreign Object
01-24-2008 3:08 PM


Therefore, the best-objective definition of science is that science is the investigation of reality via paradigmS.
Sounds like a general way of describing much of philosophy, not just the philosophy of science. The philosophy of science was revolutionized by people such as Popper. He writes: "Science must begin with myths, and with the criticism of myths; neither with the collection of observations, nor with the invention of experiments, but with the critical discussion of myths, and of magical techniques and practices. The scientific tradition is distinguished from the pre-scientific tradition in having two layers. Like the latter, it passes on its theories; but it also passes on a critical attitude towards them. The theories are passed on, not as dogmas, but rather with the challenge to discuss them and improve upon them."
Yes, the nature of philosophy of science has changed. Many scientists were already practising such discipline, but at the time of Popper many scientific ideas were emerging that were a little 'wild'. He argued for integrating falsifiability into explanations, to reign in some wild inductions.
Popper wasn't the only influence of course, and many of his ideas were criticised.
Scientism is the belief or proposition that either major paradigm excludes ANY phenomena or evidence for explanation.
I'm not sure I follow. Scientism is the (often perjoritive) term used for the idea that science is the best method for explaining all things. It is a sort of a claim of dogma.
We assume that the best paradigm is the one that explains ALL of the phenomena or evidence best. Therefore, when any evolutionist says "science excludes or cannot address the supernatural" (for any reason) THIS is advocating Scientism because Science exists to explain reality and all of its phenomena (via paradigms).
I wouldn't say it was scientism to say that science cannot explain a certain realm: that would be the opposite of scientism which claims science can explain all existing realms. What 'evolutionists' mean when they say science has nothing to say on supernatural is that science can only comment about evidence - and the supernatural is notorious in its lack of evidence. Any evidence that is supposed to be for the supernatural can be discussed scientifically, but if any theory appears that is unfalsifiable - then it isn't science.
Scientism is the exclusion of evidence, phenomena or knowledge of any kind for any reason, since we know that Science seeks to explain reality via paradigms.
It sounds like the argument Behe put forward at Dover. Your proposal ushers in astrology as science. With that in mind, we could try living with that but we'd need a name for a specific kind of science - the kind you feel that has been hijacked by 'evolutionists'. I don't think scientism cuts it, since that is already used for something else.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-24-2008 3:08 PM Cold Foreign Object has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 5 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-24-2008 7:38 PM Modulous has replied

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 102 days)
Posts: 7801
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 7 of 29 (450914)
01-24-2008 8:23 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by Cold Foreign Object
01-24-2008 7:38 PM


Re: More explanation
Traditionally, Scientism is the term used to describe the belief that Science is the ONLY way (not the "best way") to arrive at, or determine truth, or explain reality.
I don't think we disagree, though there are many variations on the same theme: it doesn't just mean one thing.
I am attempting to show and explain why we need to adjust the meaning of scientism based on the arguments presented in the OP. These arguments evidence the fact that Science has always claimed to explain ALL phenomena of reality since the rise of Darwin and Darwinism. Please review the OP?
In the OP you claimed that 'when any evolutionist says "science excludes or cannot address the supernatural"...[they are] advocating Scientism'. I disagreed with this claim. If you want to say that it is true, if we change the meaning of the word scientism in a specific fashion, then I'd agree (it's trivially true).
Based on the stipulated definition of scientism that I am offering, and based on your understanding of scientism that was corrected above, which I ASK you to accept for the sake of the argument, ANY "realm" (as you put it) or phenomena as I have described it (in the OP) which is asserted to not be explainable IS SCIENTISM because Science, like I explained in the OP DOES attempt to explain ALL realms and phenomena of reality via paradigms?
If scientism is saying that science cannot explain the supernatural, then so be it. It seems entirely at odds with any sane usage of the word scientism which normally holds that all things can be explained with science.
Science cannot explain the supernatural itself, though it can be employed to examine the phenomena of belief in the supernatural. This is contrary to the scientism as I've seen it described.
While you may disagree, do you understand my argument?
I believe I get the gist of it though the language you use is far from clear so there maybe things you are trying to communicate that aren't getting through. How would I know, if I didn't challenge where I thought we disagreed in order to provoke clarification?
For example:
the paradigm of evolution is Materialism-Naturalism, it CLAIMS to explain the supernatural.
Materialism-Naturalism does not explain the supernatural, it rejects its existence. Materialism is a school metaphysics - it would probably be best if we didn't use the word paradigm if you are talking about metaphysics since paradigm can be used ambiguously and cause confusion.
False.
Behe did not. He was misunderstood, and I am certainly not.
Well, I'll let him speak on that:
quote:
Under my definition, a scientific theory is a proposed explanation which focuses or points to physical, observable data and logical inferences. There are many things throughout the history of science which we now think to be incorrect which nonetheless would fit that -- which would fit that definition. Yes, astrology is in fact one, and so is the ether theory of the propagation of light, and many other -- many other theories as well.
You seem to proposing a similar thing, though I might be wrong.
We both know that no one wants astrology to be part of science or education. Astrology is a gimmick to make money from bored persons and stupid persons.
So you agree, on the educational issue, that we should be careful with how we define science so that we don't inadvertently include pseudo-science, proto-science, philosophy and any other ideas that might creep in? Neither of us wants conmen running around claiming they are scientists and cashing in on that authority at the expense of Joe Public.
After all - there was once a time when everybody took the paradigm that leads to astrology very seriously. As you mentioned in the OP, there was a time when everybody took the Creationism-Design paradigm seriously. If you want to include Creationism-Design as a paradigm, one would have to also include the paradigm that we can understand truths about reality through astrological studies.
Now, obviously you don't think Creationism-Design and Astrology are equally correct paradigms, but it is certainly in there.
Based on everything explained, if any evolutionist were to say that "Science has nothing to say concerning the supernatural" this is false and I have the evidence to back it up.
Science, the methodology, has nothing to say concerning the supernatural - other than 'there is no convincing evidence of its existence'. It is perfectly possible, however, to be a dualist about this issue. One can hold that there are two realms, the natural and the ideal/supernatural (whatever) and that science is the best methodology for uncovering truths about the natural realm but that science is silent regarding issues in the other realm.
I would be keen on what evidence you have to back this up, since this kind of dualism is rather common these days.
Since said belief is not going away (for whatever reason) I propose that we adjust the meaning of Scientism to describe the belief just quoted or ANY belief that thinks that Science does not claim to explain all phenomena.
To be clear: You propose to adjust the meaning of scientism to the exact opposite of its current common usage? Why bother? Why not just create a new word to describe this position. I believe it has been called noma or perhaps: scientific dualism.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 5 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-24-2008 7:38 PM Cold Foreign Object has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 8 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-25-2008 7:49 PM Modulous has replied
 Message 13 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-27-2008 4:48 PM Modulous has not replied
 Message 14 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-27-2008 4:49 PM Modulous has replied

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 102 days)
Posts: 7801
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 12 of 29 (451294)
01-27-2008 3:38 AM
Reply to: Message 8 by Cold Foreign Object
01-25-2008 7:49 PM


The three Ps.
I hope to change your mind on this particular point.
I've seen scientism used in a variety of ways. I'm not going to change my mind on that.
Science is actually the investigation of reality via paradigmS or presuppositions. Before Darwin, Creationism-Design was the paradigm of science. After Darwin, Materialism-Naturalism has been the majority paradigm of science. Creationism-Design is now the minority paradigm of science.
The 'Creationism-Design paradigm' doesn't explain the supernatural, it just utilizes it.
Materialism-Naturalism DOES CLAIM to explain the supernatural. The material process of evolution eventually produced the human brain. In turn the material brain invented the idea of gods, spirits and demons (= supernatural phenomena explained).
That is not an explanation of the supernatural. That is an explanation for a natural phenomenon (the belief in the supernatural). The two things are very different. You decided not to quote where I said this:
quote:
Science cannot explain the supernatural itself, though it can be employed to examine the phenomena of belief in the supernatural
What you describe is not explaining the supernatural itself. It is examining the phenomena of belief in the supernatural.
Materialism is a philosophy used to interpret scientific evidence.
Materialism is a school of metaphysics upon which is built an epistemology of rational empiricism (where evidence has primacy over ideas). This epistemology lends itself towards certain kinds of enquiry: namely the gathering of evidence, and the trying to explain it using ideas (if the ideas don't explain the evidence, throw out the ideas). As time has gone on, various methods of evidence gathering - and the discipline of explanations has changed through natural philosophy culminating in modern science.
A paradigm is simply a synonym for a philosophy that is used to explain reality and evidence, more literally, a paradigm is simply presupposition(s).
I'm not sure using the words "paradigm", "philosophy" and "presupposition" as synonyms is going to alleviate confusion, but rather cause it. If you must, by all means press on with your point: but I'm just flagging this as a possible cause of communication problems.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 8 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-25-2008 7:49 PM Cold Foreign Object has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 22 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-28-2008 1:34 PM Modulous has replied

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 102 days)
Posts: 7801
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 16 of 29 (451433)
01-27-2008 5:37 PM
Reply to: Message 14 by Cold Foreign Object
01-27-2008 4:49 PM


Re: More explanation
False.
The major paradigm of Science today is Materialism-Naturalism.
That would be the philosophy of science, not the methodology. I tried to make it clear I was talking about the methodology of science.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 14 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-27-2008 4:49 PM Cold Foreign Object has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 17 by CK, posted 01-27-2008 5:42 PM Modulous has not replied
 Message 20 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-27-2008 5:52 PM Modulous has not replied

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 102 days)
Posts: 7801
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 24 of 29 (451700)
01-28-2008 2:01 PM
Reply to: Message 22 by Cold Foreign Object
01-28-2008 1:34 PM


How could "best way to arrive at truth" make any sense compared to "only way to arrive at truth"? The ISM denotes negativity which corresponds to the latter and not the former.
They both make sense, but one wouldn't use the word to mean both. There is no conflict in words being used in different ways by different people in different contexts. I don't see this disagreement as particularly important though, since it isn't particularly large.
I realize your point but I must say that Creationism-Design presupposes the supernatural to exist in reality.
Yes, of course. That is what I meant when I said "The 'Creationism-Design paradigm' doesn't explain the supernatural, it just utilizes it."
Word or understanding play - Modulous - there is no difference worth arguing over since the pay-off will certainly not justify the effort.
When someone says science has nothing to say about the supernatural they mean it in the way I described it. If you choose to interpret their words to mean that they are saying that science does not give explanations for beliefs in the supernatural or claimed supernatural events then you are going to end up in trouble. It isn't that they are lying when they say science says nothing about the supernatural, it's that you simply don't understand their meaning.
There are several scientific hypotheses for a variety of claimed supernatural beliefs and experiences. A trivial example is epilepsy which was thought to be a supernatural event, but which science now has an explanation for that is not supernatural. If a certain fit, that was truly supernatural in origin, then science would be unable to investigate or comment on it. It could say, "their are a number of possible explanations, for example...", but it could not investigate the supernatural itself.
Your lower blue box: Materialism cannot be a school, it is a philosophy or even an ideology used by any given school, whether biological or metaphysical: reality owes its existence to material causation.
Perhaps you misunderstand 'school'. There are various 'schools' of metaphysis: idealism (reality is the ideal world), dualism (two realities, the ideal or non material and the material) and materialism (no reality beyond the physical).
As for "rational empiricism" and "evidence has primacy over ideas" these are not statements of fact, but predictable claims since all philosophies or ideologies could say, and do say, the same thing concerning itself.
Incorrect. Rationalism for instance holds that the criterion of truth is not how it holds up to sensory evidence (empiricism) but whether or not it can be deduced rationally. If a piece of evidence says one thing, and deductive intellectual reasoning says another: then the evidence is misleading and the reasoning should be held to.
Our views, without being nitpicky, agree that Materialism-Naturalism claims to explain supernatural phenomena, and of course Creationism-Design presupposes the same to be true.
In the context of your criticism of the claim 'Science doesn't explain the supernatural' no - we don't agree. Science doesn't, cannot explain the supernatural since the supernatural is not material by definition and science is the methodology for exploring the material world through empiricism and rationalism. One can be a dualist scientist. One can believe that their are two realms and there are two methods for understanding each of them. One does not need to be a materialist to engage in science.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 22 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-28-2008 1:34 PM Cold Foreign Object has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 25 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-29-2008 6:01 PM Modulous has replied
 Message 28 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-29-2008 6:38 PM Modulous has replied

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 102 days)
Posts: 7801
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 26 of 29 (452206)
01-29-2008 6:09 PM
Reply to: Message 25 by Cold Foreign Object
01-29-2008 6:01 PM


No they do not. They do not share your view or mine.
Can you find evidence of this position uttered by someone on this board? Perhaps you can start searching here

This message is a reply to:
 Message 25 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-29-2008 6:01 PM Cold Foreign Object has not replied

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 102 days)
Posts: 7801
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 29 of 29 (452234)
01-29-2008 7:23 PM
Reply to: Message 28 by Cold Foreign Object
01-29-2008 6:38 PM


I see you as the quintessential evolutionist, Modulous. Your participation here has aided me in understanding how to go about expressing my views for future publication. Your replies have shown me that what is clear to myself is not so evident to others. I will read your reply if you choose to respond. Thanks for your time.
Thanks Ray. I think if we want to move on from this point the question I asked in my last post requesting an example of an evolutionist saying this in a way that makes it clear they mean it in the way you suggest they mean it rather than in the way I suggest they mean it. That way we can advance a little further in our exploration of this topic.
I have the flu and I do not have the patience to go any further.
But there's no rush. This topic, as you observed, is not exploding with responses. It'll still be here when you've had some bed rest and some soup
Get well Ray.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 28 by Cold Foreign Object, posted 01-29-2008 6:38 PM Cold Foreign Object has not replied

  
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