addressalign-toparrow-leftarrow-rightbackbellblockcalendarcameraccwchatcheckchevron-downchevron-leftchevron-rightchevron-small-downchevron-small-leftchevron-small-rightchevron-small-upchevron-upcircle-with-checkcircle-with-crosscircle-with-pluscrosseditemptyheartfacebookfolderfullheartglobegmailgoogleimagesinstagramlinklocation-pinmagnifying-glassmailminusmoremuplabelShape 3 + Rectangle 1outlookpersonplusprice-ribbonImported LayersImported LayersImported Layersshieldstartickettrashtriangle-downtriangle-uptwitteruseryahoo

Re: [humanism-174] Excellent and Informative Description of Science

From: Mark R. O.
Sent on: Sunday, December 2, 2012 5:18 AM

Thank you for the link.  This is the first I've seen
the word 'scientism'.  

You can see my response below.
So is everything science?
No it isn’t. Science entails an obligation to do the best you can. It is acceptable to draw conclusions from limited data if you have nothing more; and you can do without rigorous controlled experiments if they are impractical. But to be scientific you should be continually seeking to do better, testing your conclusions, and checking for biase

If you have an emotional commitment to a desired answer, then that in itself isn’t unscientific, but it is a warning flag that you are highly prone to a biased assessment and so to a false conclusion. If you think that holding to the desired answer is more important than the evidence for that answer then you’re being unscientific. (Following is a personal comment from me, Randy. I also think you are being dogmatic and are infected by dogma if the statement above describes you.) If your emotional commitment to a faith (perhaps a religious faith) is clouding your judgement over the evidence for that faith then you’re being unscientific. And if you point airily at “other ways of knowing” as an excuse to pretend that you don’t need to provide evidence then you are being unscientific.  

I agree, and Randy you are holding to a desired answer that you
find more important than the evidence for that answer when you
deny the definition of a word, like dogma.  You want it to mean
something that it does not.  The system that is science is dogmatic. 

As far as definitions go, Coel's blog is simply defining science as
knowledge.  Which I can agree to as the word comes from the
Latin scientia, which means knowledge.  His definition also
applies to philosophy, as philosophy comes from the Greek,
philosophia, which translates to love of wisdom.   He paints
science with a broad brush which I have no problem with, it
will make for an interesting philosophical discussion.  

I especially like the fact that he doesn't seem to believe that there
is an absolute truth.  That all reality is empirical.  He also believes
that morality is not absolute, this gives credence to religion.  (This
comes for the remakes that follow the article, in which Coel clarifies
his reasoning in discussion.)

M. Orel

On[masked]:57, Randy Pelton wrote:
While reading one of Jerry Coyne's blog posts I found my way to another blog post that I think to be one of the best descriptions of science I have ever read. I highly recommend this piece to all of you. 

Below is the post in its entirety. It is lengthy but, IMO, well worth the read. Above I have also provided the link to the original post. I recommend reading the entire essay. I have taken the liberty of bold-facing and italicizing some sections that I found of particular interest, importance or insight. 

I think all will benefit from reading and pondering this essay. There are a few who will, in my opinion, benefit more than others because of their repeated demonstration of a limited understanding of science and self-imposed restricted definition of it. I look forward to the discussion and debate that will follow.


What does “science” in “scientism” mean?
Posted on February 25, 2012 by Coel

Our Sponsors

People in this
Meetup are also in:

Sign up

Meetup members, Log in

By clicking "Sign up" or "Sign up using Facebook", you confirm that you accept our Terms of Service & Privacy Policy