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Journal Anna Merikin's Journal: Science's Parents 1

Science owes its creation to Socrates and his circle, philosophers who could not agree whether the universe acted on causality or phenomenology. Since they did not have enough information to determine which was operant, they appointed a group of technicians to "measure" the world, to gather hard information that philosophers could use to further one argument or the other. They called those measurers "scientists."

The Greek civilization, in Socrates' time, was said to have begun with Hermes Trismagestis, whose Kybalion was written in symbolic metaphor (from which we retain the word "hermetic"). The advocates of this idea were the Sophists Socrates defeated in a debate using his tool, rhetoric.

Those who favored causality were called atomicists. Part of their theory was that if matter were divided repeatedly, eventually an "atom" would be found, a particle not further divisible.

So it took two thousand years to find an atom, and less than a century to divide it into electrons, etc., and further divide these constituents until no matter could be found except in tables of probability.

By then, however, the atomicists ran rampant, expecting everything to have a cause and ignoring their own brethren's warnings, conscious or not, of impending philosophical doom. This came in the form of the quantum theory, as boneheaded an idea as ever was accepted by an otherwise intelligent group of human beings. (See "is culture psychotic?" to come.)

At their acendancy, scientists forgot they were philosophers' measuring sticks, not philosophers themselves. They could never be such, as philosophy requires generalization and science deals with specifics. Today, a scientist cannot keep up with new developments in his field; one must read abstracts and journals within one's one sub-specialty. So their vision is narrow, not the wide-ranging view of the philosopher.

What does quantum theory have to do with this? Just that the very theory itself and its ramifications proves phenomenology to be at least equal to causality. Once the atom had been divided and subdivided until no material existed any more, science [with the notable exception of Einstein] accepted that probability is beneath physical events in a subatomic world. As Richard Feinman explained, the scientist looking through his electron microscope (in a hadron collider?) changes the result of the interaction simply by observing the event.

This is the very definition of phenomenology. That an eagle screeching at the moment of a child's birth will affect the fate of the child, and the child that of the eagle.

Science has, without knowing it, proved the atomicists wrong and proved the Sophists right!

But one would have to be a generalist, a philosopher, to see it.

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Science's Parents

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  • It would appear that you have chosen the "atomicist" philosophy over "sophist" on the grounds that causality is self-evident; so it is in the classical realm. From there you debunk quantum theory on the grounds that it is self-evidently false, and by implication you point to some of the seeming non-causality aspects of quantum mechanics. I would only like to counter that physicists have used quantum mechanics to make numerous predictions which have been proved right. That is, quantum mechanics follows withi

One can't proceed from the informal to the formal by formal means.