Posted: Aug 07, 2016 11:49 pm
by jamest
Calilasseia wrote:
jamest wrote:Yeah, let's not bother with philosophy


As I've repeatedly stated in the past, if by 'philosophy' one means assertionist navel gazing, then we don't need to bother with that.

Well, I don't know what you mean by naval gazing, but I will always agree that assertions [of truth] (assumptions) are useless in philosophy.

On the other hand, the proper business of philosophy, namely working out which questions are apposite to ask, is a different matter.

I don't really know what you mean by this, either, since it seems to me that one could not reasonably suggest which questions are apposite to ask unless one had already formed or assumed a basis upon which to make such suggestions.

jamest wrote:because we already know that science explains everything, even though it doesn't;


I'll refer you to Dara O'Braian:

"Of course science doesn't know everything, because if it did, it would stop!"

The point is that only a complete narrative by science could possibly render philosophy obsolete, because only at the point of completion can it be proved that the assumption that every phenomena is essentially physical and has a completely physical explanation... is correct.

jamest wrote:and we already know that 'reality' is material, even though we don't;


Correction: we know that every observable entity and phenomenon thus far encountered has a material basis.

The point I've been arguing for years is that the experience of X is not X itself, such that the experience of X does not necessarily have a material basis... unlike X itself (if such a thing exists). The bottom-line is that we don't know if any [experienced] thing (not least the experiencer) has a material basis, since it is a mere assumption that the experience of X is ultimately generated by matter itself (X). This is the fundamental point of metaphysics, one which cannot simply be swept under the rug. Not reasonably, anyway.

As the peer reviewed literature will tell you if you read it.

I'm not interested in peer reviewed literature, since the peers in question are ones which share your same bias. I am here arguing the point on its own merits.

Whether there actually exists any 'non-material' entities or phenomena, is a non-trivial question, not least because 'non-material' has yet to be properly and rigorously defined. How one defines this is a good example of those questions that is apposite to ask I referred to above.

Again, the point is that the substance of the experience of X [and the experiencer] is that which is in doubt. It is one thing to define the experience of a thing as a material object [X]... and another thing altogether to claim that material objects X exist independently of the experience of them; for if they don't, then what is the ontological significance of defining [an experience of] X as a material object? The answer is that there is no ontological significance to such a descriptive scheme, any more so than reporting observable phenomena as 'immaterial' would be significant in the same vein.

The bottom-line is that observed/experienced objects are not necessarily a reflection of 'reality'. I think that the assumption that they are is utterly unwarranted and therefore naive. Philosophers should not allow themselves the luxury of such slack thinking.

jamest wrote:Even the question pertaining to the thread's title is requiring of a philosophical answer


Hmm, another of those assertions whose truth-value isn't as trivially obvious as you might think. Because, for one, as those other disciplines philosophy launched, and which subsequently acquired independent life,

Any subject which is borne of reason cannot ever exist independently of that reason, nor then abandon reason in its own progression.

have taught us so well, it is possible for answers to be provided to questions previously thought to be solely the remit of philosophy, by activities outside that sphere. See: cosmology.

The philosophy which led to natural science dictates the answers which natural science can provide. Science was, is, and always will be accountable to reason. Further, the ontological significance of those answers was, is, and always will be accountable to reason. Though, of huge significance, the ontological significance of the answers provided by science have absolutely nothing to do with those purely engaged in doing science.

The exposed limitations of science are there for anybody who cares to see them. Unfortunately, few seem to make that effort. Even very smart fellows such as yourself. It's a crying shame, but the next paradigm shift will not come until these limitations are thoroughly understood and accepted by the philosophical establishment as a whole, which does include those who describe themselves as scientists. This may take hundreds of years, but it is an inevitable outcome, since everything I've said above is thoroughly true.

I'll have to leave it at that, as I'm tired.