March for Science or March for Scientism?

If you’ve heard about this weekend’s March for Science, and if you really stand for science, you owe it to yourself to invest your time in viewing this discussion. You don’t want to be fooled by politics and rhetoric parading falsely under the name of science. This panel of four well-informed thinkers will show you what’s really going on among those who are trying to promote this march.

Comments

  1. SCBrownLHRM

    I think everyone agrees that understanding reality — all of it — is good even in and of itself, regardless of outcomes (…the sentiment that knowledge is good….). I don’t think that any serious Christian or Non-Christian thinker is arguing contrary to that sentiment.

    I think what is meant by some Theists or Christians and so on, but often not put clearly, is another sentiment layered over top of that first sentiment. That is found in the affirmation of the entirely non-moral nature of Non-Theism’s paradigm by folks such as Sean Carroll, M. Ruse, Hume, and A. Rosenberg. Reason as truth-finder is not obligated to chase after the illusory “qua” Truth. As they all allude to, there is no “Moral X” which reason is obligated to chase after in her role as truth-finder. Not within the paradigm which they affirm.

    In fact, this layering of the second sentiment (…the illusory…) really does impact the veracity of the first sentiment (…knowledge is good…) given reason’s lack of moral facts to chase after. It gets circular quite fast.

    Two basic examples are, first, “The lack of an ultimate objective scientific grounding for morality can be worrisome. It implies that people with whom we have moral disagreements—whether it’s… the Taliban, or schoolyard bullies who beat up smaller children—aren’t wrong in the same sense that it’s wrong to deny Darwinian evolution or the expansion of the universe….But that’s how the world is.” (S. Carroll), and, then, second, “Hume was right. We have no objective guidance on how to distinguish right from wrong: not from God, not from nature, not from the pure force of reason itself….Morality exists only insofar as we make it so, and other people might not pass judgments in the same way we do.” (S. Carroll)

    The affairs surrounding “Knowledge is Good” are in fact true given the Christian metaphysic, and, as Genesis reminds us, that only works “if” or “when” quite another sort of Tree precedes it.

    ___________

    LHRMSCBrown

  2. Luke Breuer

    @SCBrownLHRM:

    I think everyone agrees that understanding reality — all of it — is good even in and of itself, regardless of outcomes (…the sentiment that knowledge is good….). I don’t think that any serious Christian or Non-Christian thinker is arguing contrary to that sentiment.

    I’m afraid that not all knowledge is in fact good. For example, “what it is like to be raped” does not seem to be good. The only way it could possibly be good is if it is needed to dissuade people from committing rape. But this quickly turns absurd: can we only know that genocide is bad if we have experience with genocide? Can we only know that catastrophic climate change is bad if we experience it?

    It is also not necessarily good for humans to have some given technological ability without sufficient moral advancement. Unless you think it would be good for Kim Jong-un to have the ability to launch accurate ICBMs, tipped with multiple nuclear warheads each? Would it be good for Kim Jong-un to be able to deploy a lethal virus to the world population, where only he has a working vaccine?

    But perhaps you require more global political instability. Perhaps the world will oblige. You may then see how critical morality is to even conducting science [past a certain level]. Now, can we say that the necessarily preconditions to successful science exist in the realm of truth? That could get interesting.

  3. SCBrownLHRM

    Luke,

    I propose that the Infinite Knower houses no evil by/because He houses infinite knowledge. I think we have to be careful to define our terms by The Necessary (God) rather than by the Contingent (Man). Meaning flows downhill, so to speak.

    Privation is not Knowledge-Full-Stop. It is Good Minus Something.

    Is it enough for the Contingent Being to know the Necessary Being where knowledge is concerned? Well of course. Hence Eden’s two outward facing doors.

    So the terms I’m employing are from a more meta-reality vantage point.

    [Non-Theistic paradigmsuse no means by which the convertibility of the transcendentals survives the Ocean of the Illusory.]

  4. SCBrownLHRM

    Luke,

    The format’s tension on posting and quickly editing hits again. The last paragraph should be:

    [Non-Theistic paradigms house no means by which the convertibility of the transcendentals survives the Ocean of the Illusory.]

Comments are closed.

By commenting here you agree to abide by this site's comment guidelines.