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Avoidance of admitting that we dont know something

  1. Nov 21, 2009 #1
    i have always been puzzled by the fact that when addressing core issues related to trying to disentangle what could be disentangled,to may be reach a logical sequence of explanations,i find many physicists trying to address important issues,by giving examples of phenomenon that is by far unable to explain root causes,for example,what are the forces that has created the forces and dimensions portrayed by physics?,and i usually find the answer related to the four basic forces that we know of,and that they are treated as a given,but this was not the original question forwarded,which is : what made the laws of physics,another bigger scheme of physical laws,another dimension that is beyond our current knowledge,isnt this a legitimate physics question,and if not why so,would appreciate your views.
     
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  3. Nov 21, 2009 #2
    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    You're assuming all physicists are atheist. That isn't true. Physics is just an attempt to make a mathematical model of things, and therefore was never expected to concern itself with religious questions.
     
  4. Nov 21, 2009 #3
    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    It's a legitimate physics question and the simple answer is that we don't really have an answer. There will always be "why?" questions we will have to answer. In fact you could probably tie the incompleteness theorem in here somewhere.

    However that's not to say that we will *never* have some sort of an answer to this particular question.

    If you are, as YellowTaxi assumed, trying to make a religious counterargument to science you should know that when the sciences explain something previously unknown religious pundits just retract to something else that science can not explain and claim proof of religion.

    I'm not saying don't believe in a religion I'm simply telling you the stance "against" science and why in this particular instance it might be a little skewed.
     
  5. Nov 21, 2009 #4

    Pengwuino

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    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    Actually, no, it is not a legitimate question. Physics works in the realm of what we can see and what can be falsified. If there is an underlying bigger scheme of laws that created our laws, how would we study or be able to test or interact with them? It would seem, by definition, they are out of our 'reach' so to speak, since if they weren't, they wouldnt be part of a "higher scheme". Beyond that is philosophy.
     
  6. Nov 21, 2009 #5

    A.T.

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    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    Forces and dimensions are abstract human made concepts.
    Another human idea.
    If your question is "Why the world behaves like it does?", then no, it is not a physics question. Physics just describes how it behaves.
     
  7. Nov 22, 2009 #6
    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    I think the most suitable answer to the question you pose is "We cannot, at this time, pose an empirically supported answer." It may turn out that some 'theory of everything' (which many physicists are working on) gives an answer, or a starting point for investigation, but right now, its beyond the grasp of physics.
     
  8. Nov 22, 2009 #7
    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    thanks guys,i am not taking any stance against science,actually the more discoveries science makes ,it only reinforces the fact that we know so little,and we can only try to explore more of what we dont know,it is our legitimate human curiousity that no one is supposed to belittle.i am only "curious" to know how far are we from an explanation,could you recommend a good read of that theory of everything,in a simplified and non mathematical writing ?preferably a free online one,thanks a million.
     
  9. Nov 24, 2009 #8
    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    The book is under construction by an unknown author; no one knows what its gonna say. :wink:
     
  10. Nov 24, 2009 #9

    Pythagorean

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    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    I've noticed that scientists with genuine curiosity are the most eager to admit they're wrong as part of learning what's right. If they're curious about the truth, they will seek it out.

    I guess this doesn't necessarily mean they'll admit it always, though.
     
  11. Nov 24, 2009 #10
    So the question is how do we find a way to see the unseen? If it is truely the unseen then it will never be seen. If it is not truely then the only thing stoping us from seeing it now is the fact that we have yet to do the work for us to realize that we infact looking it dead square in the eye.
     
  12. Nov 24, 2009 #11

    DaveC426913

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    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    This is a semantics issue.

    Humans may have named and quantified the forces and the dimensions, but they are most indeed, not human-made concepts.

    A stegosaur who has stepped too close to a cliff-edge softened by a rainstorm most distinctly experiences the laws of physics relating to the vertical dimension - just prior to rather abruptly experiencing forces.
     
  13. Nov 24, 2009 #12
    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    The only conclusion I can come to is.... stegosaurs must have had bigger brains than we thought, and must've understood English.
     
  14. Nov 25, 2009 #13

    disregardthat

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    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    Yes, we are naming the forces and dimensions and implementing them in our language, but that doesn't mean they are not entirely constructs of the mind (some necessary constructs) with no meaning or sense in any way detached from our perspective.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2009
  15. Nov 25, 2009 #14
    Re: avoidance of admitting that we dont know somethin

    Oh boy... Another "is 'x' created or discovered?" argument :)
     
  16. Nov 25, 2009 #15

    I admit that i do not know what to 'know' means.
     
  17. Nov 25, 2009 #16

    DaveC426913

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    Re: avoidance of admitting that weI ont know somethin

    I don;t understand why you say this. Forces and laws of physics can be experienced by animals and microbes.
     
  18. Nov 25, 2009 #17

    disregardthat

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    Re: avoidance of admitting that weI ont know somethin

    Animals as well as microbes are as any other object manifestations of perception. And the "laws of physics" are created principles, they have no mind-independent meaning and thus no validity (not to be interpreted in the realist sense). They all depend on a context in which they can be interpreted and understood.

    I can interpret "forces and laws" as the principle of causality. It is however wrong to say that we experience causality, rather, causality is a form in which experience necessarily must be in. Thus any conscious agent, like an animal, must experience according to this principle. I don't think we can give microbes the property of being conscious. To say that microbes experience forces and laws would be like saying a rock is experiencing forces and laws.

    The main point is to detach oneself from the view of an objective world subject to proper understanding. It is at best a misleading concept.
     
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