Goosing the Antithesis: ID Was Spanke...

Goosing the Antithesis: ID Was Spanked In Fort Worth

There are 35 comments on the goosetheantithesis.blogspot.com story from Nov 10, 2008, titled Goosing the Antithesis: ID Was Spanked In Fort Worth. In it, goosetheantithesis.blogspot.com reports that:

"The Great Debate," as it was billed, was sponsored by St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Fort Worth, Texas. It featured a four-way roundtable format, with a participant from each quadrant of the atheist/theist and pro-ID/anti-ID axes. I was there along with some fellow members of the North Texas Church of Freethought primarily to see Dr. Lawrence Krauss (atheist/anti-ID) and also, somewhat guiltily, to see Dr. David Berlinski (theist/pro-ID) in action. The field was rounded out by Dr. Denis Alexander (theist/anti-ID) and Dr. Bradley Monton (atheist/pro-ID). The debate was held at the Will Rogers Memorial Auditorium, and I would estimate about 1000 people in attendance.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at goosetheantithesis.blogspot.com.

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Cliff Harris

Haines City, FL

#21 Nov 11, 2008
the only distinction between natural philosophy and natural science is the scientific method, which does not bring science any closer to attaining absolute truth then natural philosophy.

As a point i made earlier. The only way to attain abslute truth through science is to gain a complete understanding of every factor in existance, and use the knowledge of each to evaulate a theory.

Until we can do that, science is just philosophy.

A philosophy that goes like this.
I have a theory!
Will by theory become a scientific fact?
And if so how long until my scientific fact is eventually disproven?

Philosophy is in the business of redefining reality.

Every time a 'scientific fact''a new philosophical idea yet to be disproven by natural laws' is thought up, you believe it, until a new philosophy back by the natural laws, which passes the scientific method is conjured up.

And this repeats itself over and over over
Cliff Harris

Haines City, FL

#22 Nov 11, 2008
And even the natural laws keep getting disproven and replaced in a ridiculous circle that never ends.
Cliff Harris

Haines City, FL

#23 Nov 11, 2008
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
LMAO! It was Plato and his followers that tried to CLAIM that math is absolute!
I was not talking about plato using his understanding, but the evolution formation in the 1800's
Gillette

Rose Hill, IA

#24 Nov 12, 2008
Science doesn't seek "absolute truth," nor does it claim to.
It gives us the best information we have up to the present time, subject to new and further information.

The game you've chosen to play here, namely that science can't know everything, and thus is a philosophy, is a f-ing moron's game, frankly.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#25 Nov 12, 2008
Cliff Harris wrote:
the only distinction between natural philosophy and natural science is the scientific method, which does not bring science any closer to attaining absolute truth then natural philosophy.
Actually, yes it does. By deliberately trying to show results false, the scientific method manages to discard ideas that are wrong. Pure natural philosophy never had that. By at least requiring the ability to predict new results, the scientific method allows the refinement of results to better agree with the real world.

So, in a sense, the scientific method doesn't find 'absolute truth'. But it does find a sequence of approximations that get better over time. That the results actually are better can be seen in any of the scientific endeavors that have lasted a couple of centuries. The range of things they can explain to within experimental error has increased dramatically and the error bars themselves have decreased. That is a HUGE difference between the ancient natural philosophy and modern science.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#26 Nov 12, 2008
Cliff Harris wrote:
<quoted text>
I was not talking about plato using his understanding, but the evolution formation in the 1800's
You had mentioned the philosophy of math. This has nothing to do with evolutionary biology. You also mentioned Platonism in the philosophy of math and completely mis-characterized its position. In fact, you got it exactly backwards. You also seem to not understand the alternative philosophies of mathematics such as formalism, intuitionism, etc.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#27 Nov 12, 2008
Cliff Harris wrote:
And even the natural laws keep getting disproven and replaced in a ridiculous circle that never ends.
Actually, you have this wrong. The scientific method requires that ideas be tested and either changed or discarded if they disagree with those tests. This means that over time, our approximations get better and better.

For example, Ptolemy formulated a system that allowed him to predict several types of astronomical events (eclipses, etc). However, his system was not so good at actually predicting the position of the planets in the sky. It was decent, but not very accurate. Kepler's ideas were able to make predictions of planetary positions to a much higher degree of accuracy. Newton was them able to find a general law that allowed very minute corrections to Kepler's results. Finally, Einstein was able to find another formulation that described the incredibly small deviations from Newton's theory.

Newton's theory is 'wrong' in the philosophical sense. But in the practical sense, it is still very good. It is used to plan trips of our probes to other planets, to describe the orbits of binary stars, etc. Einstein's results are very, very minor tweaks to those of Newton for the vast majority of situations.

So, the scientific method does not say that the philosophical ideas will get closer and closer to some 'absolute truth' over time. BUT, it does say that the *results* and *predictions* based on those ideas will get closer and closer to the reality over time. Once we have a mature theory, the predictions of any future theory *in the domain of the earlier theory* will not vary significantly from the earlier theory.

“I am evolving as fast as I can”

Since: Jan 08

Brooklyn, in Dayton OH now

#28 Nov 12, 2008
Cliff Harris wrote:
TedHOhio
You missed the top of that url which said,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_philosop...
Natural philosophy
This article or section includes a list of references or external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks inline citations.
You can improve this article by introducing more precise citations where appropriate.(December 2007)
Where is the concrete support for your reference?
Adler, Mortimer J.(1993). The Four Dimensions of Philosophy: Metaphysical, Moral, Objective, Categorical. Macmillan. ISBN 0-02-500574-X.

Philip Kitcher, Science, Truth, and Democracy. Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Science. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2001. LCCN:2001036144 ISBN 0-19-514583-6

Bertrand Russell, A History of Western Philosophy and Its Connection with Political and Social Circumstances from the Earliest Times to the Present Day (1945) Simon & Schuster, 1972.

Santayana, George (1923). Scepticism and Animal Faith. Dover Publications, 27-41. ISBN 0-486-20236-4.

David Snoke, Natural Philosophy: A Survey of Physics and Western Thought. Access Research Network, 2003. ISBN 1-931796-25-4

“I am evolving as fast as I can”

Since: Jan 08

Brooklyn, in Dayton OH now

#29 Nov 12, 2008
Cliff Harris wrote:
the only distinction between natural philosophy and natural science is the scientific method, which does not bring science any closer to attaining absolute truth then natural philosophy.
As a point i made earlier. The only way to attain abslute truth through science is to gain a complete understanding of every factor in existance, and use the knowledge of each to evaulate a theory.
Until we can do that, science is just philosophy.
A philosophy that goes like this.
I have a theory!
Will by theory become a scientific fact?
And if so how long until my scientific fact is eventually disproven?
Philosophy is in the business of redefining reality.
Every time a 'scientific fact''a new philosophical idea yet to be disproven by natural laws' is thought up, you believe it, until a new philosophy back by the natural laws, which passes the scientific method is conjured up.
And this repeats itself over and over over
You have a pretty poor understanding of science methodology. Here, let me simplify it for you.

1. Scientist observes a phenomena
2. The scientist repeats the observation, parameterizing the phenomena.
3. The scientist hypothesizes an explanation.
4. The scientist experiments (tests) the hypothesis
5. The hypothesis is refined based on the results of the experiments
6. The hypothesis, experiments, methodology, and results are published in peer-reviewed journals and papers
7. Other scientists replicate the work and agree or offer alternative explanations.
8. Over time an explanation of the phenomena is formed that meets the experiments results.
9. Then that explanation is experimented on for years/decades
10. If the resulting experiments support the hypothesis and the results of new discoveries also support the predictions made by the hypothesis, then it will be defined as a scientific theory.

Even that explanation pales in comparison to actually defending your work before peers. But it is an important process because anyone can call something a 'theory', we have seen that with ID. But without having gone through the process, it's nothing but an idea -- it's not even a hypothesis.

The other step you are missing is that theories rarely get tossed aside today, instead they get enhanced. Einstein's Theory of Relativity didn't replace Newton's Theories on Gravity, but it added to the whole, making a better explanation on things Newton couldn't have known about. Gould's Theory of Punctuated Equilibrium didn't replace Darwin's Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection, but it augmented it, making it a much better, more complete explanation.

Yes, two centuries or more ago, theories were discarded left and right, and most of those were the result of philosophical discussions, not scientific studies. It's the modern scientific theories that get added to, rather than replaced. You just like characterizing it that way because it makes your arguments sound better, but once again, you tailor the reality to suit your own purposes. Plus if the Theory of Evolution were replaced in total, it would be with something that offered a better explanation, more complete experimentation, and not the mealy-mouthed whining of a religious fanatic. It's a positive thing to learn new things and develop new theories, not a weakness like you are making it out to be.

Still waiting for your 'theory of ID', which even the daddy rabbit of the ID movement Phillip E. Johnson says does not exist.
Erasmus

Boise, ID

#30 Nov 12, 2008
Cliff,

From my reading the dividing line between natural philosophy and modern science was a shift in thinking. Prior to the invention of modern science the main philosophy was Rationalism. The idea was that one could DEDUCE the truth just by thinking about it. It tailored itself more towards the biases of the scientist then towards reality. Starting with Francis Bacon there was a shift towards Empricism, the idea that one must verify ideas with the outside world. He stated:

"Men have sought to make a world from their own conception and to draw from their own minds all the material which they employed, but if, instead of doing so, they had consulted experience and observation, they would have the facts and not opinions to reason about, and might have ultimately arrived at the knowledge of the laws which govern the material world."

That was the first real shift towards the science we recognize today. The contrast is probably best seen in the field of quantum mechanics. No one in their right mind could possibly rationalize a world where something can be a wave and a particle, but not both at the same time. However, for photons this is an empirical fact.
Cliff Harris

Haines City, FL

#31 Nov 12, 2008
OK let me clear this up for you. The only way any Absolute truth can be found apart from God, is to have a complete understanding of everything in existance.

And then to evulate the theory based on your infinite knowledge.

Natural Philosophy, and natural science are the same thing in terms of gathering truth. Neither have the means of doing so. Keeping science as just philisophy.

Therefore they both are still philosophy, just with different names.

“Nihil curo de ista tua stulta ”

Since: May 08

Orlando

#32 Nov 12, 2008
Cliff Harris wrote:
OK let me clear this up for you. The only way any Absolute truth can be found apart from God, is to have a complete understanding of everything in existance.
And then to evulate the theory based on your infinite knowledge.
Natural Philosophy, and natural science are the same thing in terms of gathering truth. Neither have the means of doing so. Keeping science as just philisophy.
Therefore they both are still philosophy, just with different names.
From an agnostic:

How are you sure that Science is not Man's attempt to use God's creations in trying to understand the Mind of God?
The Dude

Watford, UK

#33 Nov 12, 2008
Cliff Harris wrote:
OK let me clear this up for you. The only way any Absolute truth can be found apart from God, is to have a complete understanding of everything in existance.
And then to evulate the theory based on your infinite knowledge.
Natural Philosophy, and natural science are the same thing in terms of gathering truth. Neither have the means of doing so. Keeping science as just philisophy.
Therefore they both are still philosophy, just with different names.
So, you're saying we won't know a thing about gravity until we gain infinite knowledge?

Where's that darn tree when you need it...

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#34 Nov 13, 2008
Cliff Harris wrote:
OK let me clear this up for you. The only way any Absolute truth can be found apart from God, is to have a complete understanding of everything in existance.
And then to evulate the theory based on your infinite knowledge.
OK, so we give up on the idea of Absolute Knowledge, because we can't have it. Instead, we look for Good Approximation. That is what science does. The way we evaluate a scientific theory is by trying to find out where it fails by making actual observations. If it fails, we discard or modify the theory. It it does not fail, we keep it, gaining more confidence in it as we test it in more and more situations designed to try to make it fail.

THAT is the difference between natural philosophy and modern science: do you actually try to make the theory fail by subjecting it to actual observations? Old style natural philosophy did not do that. Modern science does.
Natural Philosophy, and natural science are the same thing in terms of gathering truth. Neither have the means of doing so. Keeping science as just philisophy.
But modern science DOES have the ability to eliminate falsehoods by testing with actual observations. That has proved a very powerful way of evaluating new ideas. It has shown that Aristotle's ideas about the natural world are wrong. That is an advance.
Erasmus

Boise, ID

#35 Nov 13, 2008
Cliff Harris wrote:
Natural Philosophy, and natural science are the same thing in terms of gathering truth.
Science gathers facts, not truth. Science constructs theories which are necessarily imperfect models of how reality works. Science tests this model to improve it.

Science DOES NOT seek truths.

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