Is the scientific method both faith and knowledge based?

  • #26
selfAdjoint
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What empirical, objectively perceivable effects did Aleister Crowley's magic ever produce (aside from disgust). And the intent of the Mass is to produce an effect explicitly stated to be unobservable: the conversion of the unobservable substance of the bread and wine, but not the observable accidents, into the body and blood of Christ.

None of this can possibly be considered part of the scientific method.
 
  • #27
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Loren Booda said:
Mentat,

I know you're not a Turing machine, which is better than I can say of most people!
Thanks, I think (<-- that's an obscure joke; it needn't be funny).

You may agree that all logic, as all relationships, can be reduced to a series of dualities.
If not, it could get a little hairy (another failed joke...unless you're a logician).

Until we human observers get a grasp of quantum logic
?

social relevance to the physical world will ultimately be classical in nature, thus potentially no more complete than an individual's information of the macroscopic.
"Social relevance to the physical world"? We're the ones studying it, so we're all that matter, aren't we? Who's going to argue with "us"?

I gotta go. I'll try to get back to this as soon as I can.
 
  • #28
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Mentat,

All ingest. My ignorance makes for bad humor. Feel free to take time to ruminate.

To say that our community of observers is the basis of objectivism overlooks that, because we humans process exclusively in terms of classical logic, when participating with the microworld we must construct incomplete models in attempting to describe the dual, quantum logic.

As we experimenters evolve, we gradually eliminate old ideas (and their creators) as obsolete. If that is so, a Darwinistic time's arrow would be an overarching factor which determines the eventual selection of procedures to test our environment. The scientific method has become a distillation of the Anthropic Principle, as it were, where we individuals have interacted with our physical world more than within a community of scientists. We test our modes for survival often selfishly over other sentients and alongside the universe from which we have arisen.

Aquamarine,

The defining term of a specific scientific method (e. g., usefulness, generality or fecundity) often determines not only the form of that menu but its anticipated outcomes as well. I propose a predominant theme for an effective method should be "personableness," (i. e., "relative beauty").
 
  • #29
self, hopefully you know enough about crowley's work... and the methods of enochian "magic" to write it off such.

because if not... your post is quite ridiculous. Actually, it must be "not" since you're asking me to supply YOU with evidence... if you had it to retort i'm sure you would have. Please do not attack me out of ignorance(am heritage).

Also, please point me to the passage in the bible that implies this...

"And the intent of the Mass is to produce an effect explicitly stated to be unobservable"

Then define "unobservable" in relation to your arguement(if that's what it is).

please put a little thought into this. It's no fun otherwise :)
 
  • #30
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Loren Booda said:
Mentat,
To say that our community of observers is the basis of objectivism overlooks that, because we humans process exclusively in terms of classical logic, when participating with the microworld we must construct incomplete models in attempting to describe the dual, quantum logic.
Look, I wasn't just joking when I said it could get "hairy". Fuzzy logic has been dealing with more than two truth values for some time now. "Quantum Logic", as you refer to it, requires simply allowing for a truth-value that is neither true nor false: fuzzy logic.
 
  • #31
selfAdjoint
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marley.wannabee said:
self, hopefully you know enough about crowley's work... and the methods of enochian "magic" to write it off such.
Of course I write it off, it's ridiculous.

because if not... your post is quite ridiculous. Actually, it must be "not" since you're asking me to supply YOU with evidence... if you had it to retort i'm sure you would have. Please do not attack me out of ignorance(am heritage).
My post was directed at your assumption that just because somebody says a particular process is causal, it is therefore scientific. Science has other tests of validity than claimed causality; experiment for example.

Also, please point me to the passage in the bible that implies this...

"And the intent of the Mass is to produce an effect explicitly stated to be unobservable"
The description isn't drawn from the Bible but from Catholic teaching. The Catholic Church does not accept that revelation ended with the Bible, and accepts the revelations of the Saints as inspired writ. The doctrine of transubstantiation was developed in the 9th century and carefully explained along Aristotelian lines by St. Thomas Aquinas. It says, following Aristotle, that everything has an inner nature or "substance" which provides its identity and "true nature" and a separate outer nature or accidents which provide its physical properties. Then transubstantiation says that a miracle happens when the priest says the Eucharist (central part of the Mass) which transforms the substance, but not the accidents into the identity and reality of the body and blood of Jesus the Christ. Thus the communicant is brought into the Real Presence of Christ, although every scientific test of the hosts will show mere bread and wine.

Then define "unobservable" in relation to your arguement(if that's what it is).
The Real Presence is physically unobservable, as you will see from my discussion above.

please put a little thought into this. It's no fun otherwise :)
I have been relying on the intelligence and general culture of the posters here to understand without having everything spelled out for them. Sorry if I was wrong.
 
  • #32
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Mentat,
Look, I wasn't just joking when I said it could get "hairy". Fuzzy logic has been dealing with more than two truth values for some time now. "Quantum Logic", as you refer to it, requires simply allowing for a truth-value that is neither true nor false: fuzzy logic.
A wavefunction which appears at first glance to blur truth and falsehood may in actuality relate a field of binary truthvalue singularities. In either case, the introduction of measurement is necessary to make physical and definite a relatively arbitrary (though very practical) mathematical artifact. Personally, I have heard little about productive application of fuzzy logic to quantum mechanics. The vote is not yet in.
 
  • #33
so essentially that big long post says you don't know what you were talking about... have fun fluffin your own ego... i'm not helpin yah ;)
 
  • #34
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Loren Booda said:
Mentat,A wavefunction which appears at first glance to blur truth and falsehood may in actuality relate a field of binary truthvalue singularities. In either case, the introduction of measurement is necessary to make physical and definite a relatively arbitrary (though very practical) mathematical artifact. Personally, I have heard little about productive application of fuzzy logic to quantum mechanics. The vote is not yet in.
Maybe, but you seem to be working off something like the Copenhagen interpretation. The "truth" about a quantum particle is probabilistic, it's not that we just don't know enough (or can't see past a "blur" of possible truths). From what I've read, QM requires that the particle is in all the possible places at once, though not necessarily observable as such, and with greater "probability" of being observed at some locations than at others.

That sounds like the typical use, in Logic, of a third truth-value, to me. Indeed, "mu" (as it is sometimes called) has been defined as (aside from not being true or false) "both and neither", in some texts. The third truth-value of fuzzy logic seems (IMHO) perfect for defining a quantum state, so that we're not so worried about how accurately we can tell what it actually is (which is a classical concern), but are content to say that it can be "both, neither, and everything in between".

I hope that's somewhere near coherent. I just got in from shoveling snow a few minutes ago, and I...am...pooped out! :tongue:
 
  • #35
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marley.wannabee said:
so essentially that big long post says you don't know what you were talking about... have fun fluffin your own ego... i'm not helpin yah ;)
I know I haven't been here for a while, but I'm pretty sure this kind of post isn't going to be permitted for very long, wannabee. In my experience, the only people who post like the above are those that "wannabee" banned.
 
  • #36
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Consider a singularity. It may have either a value of one, zero or intermediate to both. These values infer not probabilities, but fractions.

A field of singularities, however, may obey proper-fractional fuzzy logic, which assigns the average of a neighborhood of singularities approaching zero volume to a representative singularity therein. Thus a quantum measurement coheres that neighborhood, collapsing information interior to it and assigning to that singular determination the locally averaged observable.
 
  • #37
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Loren Booda said:
Consider a singularity. It may have either a value of one, zero or intermediate to both. These values infer not probabilities, but fractions.

A field of singularities, however, may obey proper-fractional fuzzy logic, which assigns the average of a neighborhood of singularities approaching zero volume to a representative singularity therein. Thus a quantum measurement coheres that neighborhood, collapsing information interior to it and assigning to that singular determination the locally averaged observable.
Ok, but what has that to do with Logic?
 
  • #38
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It asks whether quantum logic involves either singular measurements from a field of possible fractional observable values, or a "fuzzy" coherence of binary observable values whose average over their local phase space assigns to a given interior point.
 
  • #39
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Loren Booda said:
It asks whether quantum logic involves either singular measurements from a field of possible fractional observable values, or a "fuzzy" coherence of binary observable values whose average over their local phase space assigns to a given interior point.
Well, I see that point or I'd not have brought up "fuzzy logic" in the first place. How, in turn, does all this apply to the original question of whether science is based on faith, or if there is some more solid basis?
 
  • #40
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selfAdjoint said:
The description isn't drawn from the Bible but from Catholic teaching. The Catholic Church does not accept that revelation ended with the Bible, and accepts the revelations of the Saints as inspired writ. The doctrine of transubstantiation was developed in the 9th century and carefully explained along Aristotelian lines by St. Thomas Aquinas. It says, following Aristotle, that everything has an inner nature or "substance" which provides its identity and "true nature" and a separate outer nature or accidents which provide its physical properties. Then transubstantiation says that a miracle happens when the priest says the Eucharist (central part of the Mass) which transforms the substance, but not the accidents into the identity and reality of the body and blood of Jesus the Christ. Your Thus the communicant is brought into the Real Presence of Christ, although every scientific test of the hosts will show mere bread and wine.
Your post I would agree with accept one thing. I know you know some Latin.
These are the exact words tanslated from the Hebrew to Latin Vulagate. Hebrew was the language spoken at the "Last Supper". So what was written in Hebrew was believed in Hebrew and when translated into Latin was also believed in Latin.

HOC EST ENIM CORPUS MEUM.

THIS IS MY BODY.

HIC EST ENIM CALIX SANGUINIS MEI, NOVI ET AETERNI TESTAMENTI: MYSTERIUM FIDEI: QUI PRO VOBIS ET PRO MULITIS EFFUNDETUR IN REMISSIONEM PECCATORUM.

BECAUSE THIS IS THE CHALICE OF MY BLOOD, OF THE NEW AND ETERNAL TESTAMENT: MYSTERY OF FAITH THAT WILL BE SHED FOR YOU AND MANY FOR THE PARDON OF SINS.

This is what kept the faith alive during the Roman persecution. The belief in the transubstantiation was expressed known and believed at the "Last Supper" and passed down through the ages until today. This was faith 9 centuries prior to St. Thomas Aquinas, although he was a stanch professor of the "Faith" as we both know.
 
  • #41
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Mentat,
Well, I see that point or I'd not have brought up "fuzzy logic" in the first place. How, in turn, does all this apply to the original question of whether science is based on faith, or if there is some more solid basis?
Faith may be necessary in choosing between two parallel but together uncertain alternatives of logical systems under the scientific method. Measurement carries with itself inherent uncertainty, but the overall scientific method's need for faith over ignorance arises in the limit of its systematic effectiveness, demonstrable in the ambiguity of quantum logic.

At best, the scientific method is fundamentally incomplete, as its procedure cannot appreciate simultaneously, e. g., both the logic of the singular fractional valued experiment and of the probabilistic locally averaged value experiment. Call it preference or faith, but the scientific method must eventually incorporate dual logics to justify the bounds imposed by the like of the quantum.
 
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  • #42
selfAdjoint
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Loren Booda said:
At best, the scientific method is fundamentally incomplete, as its procedure cannot appreciate simultaneously, e. g., both the logic of the singular fractional valued experiment and of the probabilistic locally averaged value experiment. Call it preference or faith, but the scientific method must eventually incorporate dual logics to justify the bounds imposed by the like of the quantum.
Loren, I've been trying to get a clear meaning of this passage into my brain, but I am not having any success. Could you clarify what the different alternatives ("singular fractional valued experiment" and "probabilistic locally averaged value experiment") are, and why they cannot be considered at the same time? Thanks.
 
  • #43
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selfAdjoint,

I tried to express that uncertainty exists not only in observable measurements, but in the scientific interpretation that underlies them. If you were to relate to me that a particular point in space had a 35% chance of being occupied, I would ask whether that value was a fractional possibility of 35% at that one singularity, or a probability of 35% "collapsed" from an average over all space. These interpretations differ between a quasi-classical particular determination and a normalized wavefunction property of quantum mechanics - realizable together only as a belief, not a logic.
 
  • #44
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Ah, I see now. I didn't understand because I can't consider classical physics any possible basis for what I guess you might call ontology. It still has its uses as a practical matter for finding answers to a restricted range of questions, as long as you don't need too much accuracy, but quantum nature rules the roost and until someone comes up with a valid replacement for it, we have to accept its approach. That is my belief and I have experimental and meshing theoretical backing for it.
 
  • #45
Loren Booda said:
Does the scientific method mark the coexistence between belief and actual science, and describe tenets that involve a religion of information? Its prediction of world events may apply equally to measuring the electron's mass, or consequently to the conviction in its own efficacy.

The scientific method cannot justify itself by circular logic, but by its reflection of nature in the reproducibility of results. Creed, on the other hand, survives by seeming self-fulfilling prophesies that define the mind in terms of often uncontrollable events.

May one say that the scientific method has become as much a way of life for many as a process for determining material truths? What philosophical effect could the scientific method possibly have when applied to itself?
Your post is so wordy it is almost impossible to decipher. This over use of the thesaurus is a cheap trick, beloved of high school English students and ought not to be relied upon by those serious about philosophy. However, i will attempt to answer your questions, in plain English.

The scientific method does not mark the coexistence of faith and science, nor does it decribe the tenets or dogmas of a religion of information. The scientific method is an attempt to rationally analyse real world events in order to produce rules which can be used to describe and or to predict the behaviour of forces and objects. It is useful. Its prediction of world events is not a consequence of it's conviction of it' s own efficacy. The scientific method is not, so far as I am aware, a conscious or sapient entity and therefore has no convictions about itself. It similarly does not want or need to justify it's own existence or validity. However, it's validity is indeed proved by the reproducability of results. Gravity exists and it behaves as we expect it to, according to rules established by the application of the scientific method (new research in LQG aside, that is).

One may indeed say that the scientific method has become as much a way of life for some, as a process used for determining material truths, but it would be simpler to say that many people think rationally.

Your last question I have no answer for, because it makes little sense to me at the moment. I will think about it and try to decide what you might mean, before I attempt to answer. I should of course, be most grateful for any light you care to shed upon this for my benefit.

Kate.
 
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  • #46
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Kate,

You are right in that I make too much use of the (Roget's) thesaurus. You're the first to notice that after thousands of my posts on PF. I did get an 800 (perfect score) on the vocabulary portion of my SAT's in 1976, however. I also won a monthly contest held by The Washington Post, where I was quoted as using the thesaurus, a couple of years ago. Anything more than a sentence by me could seem rather pained. Thanks for the observation.

Your rebuttal is well thought out. I myself cannot easily expound upon concepts that represent to me no direct physical meaning, with which I include philosophy in general. I do appreciate your ascertaining the scientific method as a tool of reason - I had pictured it as a procedure for obtaining one's worldview, both scientific and otherwise. Perhaps, for instance, one could create a song using its menu, or similarly, explore the bounds of metaphysics. Some peoples might interpret its results in a magical sense, like a Delphic oracle.

My last question, which you refer to, contains an attempt to ascertain whether the scientific method is self-consistent; "Goedel's theorem" comes to mind. Can the scientific method surpass Goedel's constraints?
 
  • #47
reilly
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Ask ten working physicists about the scientific method, and you'll get ten different answers. In the nine years of my training, I never heard about the scientific method in any of my science courses. And in my time as a practicing theoretical physicist, I never heard any of my colleagues talk about it. For the most part, formalized discussions of work come after the fact, and are often sanitized -- they give no clue about how the work was actually done. Great examples of this can be found in Sir E.T. Whittaker's History of the Aether and Electricity.

On the other hand, in my few years as an urban economist, I found professional economists to be obsessed with the scientific method, and with methodological purity -- they eschew the intellectual opportunism common among physicists. I was part of a small team building simulation models of urban neighborhoods. We were roundly criticized by economists for getting some of our ideas from analysis of real data, rather than formulating a hypothesis, etc, etc. (The criticizing economists never got their urban model to work. Ours was used with considerable success by real planners in real cities for quite some time.)

It would be great if methodological mavens would study science as done by real scientists. Then, maybe, many working scientists would pay more attention to formal discussions of methodology -- in fact, physics is much like art, as it relies on intuition, guessing, and inspiration. (I've been a working jazz pianist, and composer. The way I do jazz and the way I did physics are remarkably similar.) Hypotheses are often like the Cheshire Cat -- now you see them, now you don't, and they never look the same from viewing to viewing.

Regards,
Reilly Atkinson
 
  • #48
Loren,
Thank you, it is clear to me that I simply did not understand what you meant. If you mean to suggest that the apparent accuracte prediction of world events by the scientific method is illusory, and only appears to exist because of a shared belief in it's efficacy by it's proponents, then I must defer: of course that is possible. We may all be watching shadows on the cave wall after all.
As for whether the scientific method can be used to prove it's own consistency, and if so, whether that means it is in fact inconsistent - I must confess to being lost at sea. I will have to go and think about that for a long time.
Kate.
 

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