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Existential Crisis

  1. Mar 17, 2015 #1
    Hello everyone.

    This is my first post on these forums. I came here for guidance, as I am currently very confused with the nature of reality, and how I should be thinking. I can't imagine that anyone here will have an absolute answer, but I am hoping to be grounded a little. The biggest problem I am having now, is one of epistemology; I am having a very hard time trying to solidify "facts" or "knowledge" in my mind. I have a habit of taking in all views, and opinions, as possibilities, but I do not know what to accept for certain. I've recently spent a lot of time watching, and reading debates on the internet, usually to do with Science vs Religion, or Atheists vs Creationists. Some of the arguments from creationists really confuse me. Things like "You can't justify logic with logic", and "not believing in god is a belief", "everything is subjective", "Something had to create the Universe", "Quantum mechanics explains spirituality", "The Scientific Method is flawed", "The Universe is an illusion, so evidence is pointless", "Math is subjective", etc. I try to rationalize these things, and my logic tells me that their reasoning is flawed, or that the propositions that they make in their premise is too much of an assumption. Despite my best efforts to analyse logically, I can't help but think that maybe logic itself is just a belief, or that they must know something that I don't. As you can see, I am very confused...what do you think? Sorry for writing half a novel, by the way.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 17, 2015 #2

    Quantum Defect

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    Science supplies a set of rules/procedures by which humans can investigate the natural world. These are actually pretty straightforward rules, and they have gotten us incredibly far. Despite the power of science, it has difficulty answering some questions: "Why is there a universe?", "Is there a God?", "Why doesn't Betty like me?" etc. If you cannot think of a way of measuring something using real tools, then the methods of science tend to break down.
  4. Mar 17, 2015 #3
    Well said, but why do you think some people deny science? Do you think that some people just misunderstand it? It seems to be the only thing we can rely on, to me. Is that faith on my part?
  5. Mar 17, 2015 #4

    Quantum Defect

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    In history, there have been times when science is able to answer previously unanswerable questions that had already been addressed by traditional beliefs. This creates the difficult situation where you must either jetison some of your traditional beliefs, keeping the bits that are unanswerable by science, or push back on the science. We seem to have gone back and forth with the different approaches through the ages. Right now, there seems to be much more pushing back hard on science.
  6. Mar 17, 2015 #5
    Science is grounded in evidence and fact and that our surroundings and physical conditions tend to shape our world view as well. If you are indeed having an "existential crisis" then maybe analyze the root causes which have made you get there in the first place.
  7. Mar 17, 2015 #6
    Do you think it is a matter of "choosing a side", so to speak? I guess I'm trying to work out whether Science is just another belief or not.
  8. Mar 17, 2015 #7
    I don't know what else it would be, if not an existential crisis. Where do you think I should start? How can I find the root causes?
  9. Mar 17, 2015 #8


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    Staff: Mentor

    Unfortunately this is philosophy, and we don't discuss philosophy. You've received about as good of answers as can be expected when you are questioning beliefs. A good place to start would be reading our guidelines, which I see you haven't.
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