The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?  (Read 309802 times)

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #950 on: 26/11/2013 18:38:59 »
You have to try to reconsider your own views regarding what science might be :
I've reconsidered my views about it many times, and continue to do so. If you could provide some coherent argument I'd take that into consideration too, but I'm still waiting to hear it.
[/quote]

No, you do not listen to what your opponents such as myself might say to you , you just prefer to continue listening to your own materialist bizarre one sided music :

Respond to the following then :

How can science try to explain "everything " = nothing just in terms of physics and chemistry ,while assuming that the latter is all what there is to reality , thanks to materialism ?

How can science be so deluded and so absurd surreal ...you name it ...as to try to explain reality as a whole ,just via one single side of it : just via the material physical and biological side of reality which science has been taking for granted as the whole reality , thanks to materialism .

Science has thus no choice but to try to deal with both sides of reality , the physical and the mental  alike , if science wanna try to explain the whole pic to us , and hence make us understand the latter .

The only way to do just that , is by rejecting materialism that has been reducing reality to just the material and physical , including the mind .
 

Offline cheryl j

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1460
  • Thanked: 1 times
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #951 on: 26/11/2013 18:58:47 »

Ironically enough , i have read yesterday a part of this interesting book written by Chris Carter " Science and psychic phenomena : the fal of the house of skeptics " ,concerning the nature of science where Karl Popper was quoted by saying that he was fascinated by what Einstein said in a conference ,concerning his relativity theory ,that it took him years to come up with a solution to Hume's logical paradox concerning induction :
Einstein said something like the following :
No amount of verification or falsification of my theory ,now or in the future , can ever prove it to be true .
Karl Popper then went on talking about Hume's rejection of induction ,and about Bertrand Russell' s  attempts to address the latter while failing to do so .
Karl Popper's solution for Hume's logical rejection of induction was marvellous,induction without which science cannot exist or function  ,and therefore there would be no way to differentiate science from insanity or from pseudo-science  :
Karl Popper proposed that universal induction can only exist logically ,if we would take into consideration that it can only be temporary , in a form of a conjecture , not in a form of absolute truth :
A certain scientific theory ,or scientific knowledge as a whole , can thus only be conjectural ,not definite truths .

I absolutely agree and am happy (stunned, actually) that you realize this as well. As dlorde aptly said earlier, "This is how science works; knowledge is provisional. There is no dogmatic materialist mechanistic orthodox neo-Darwinian  "scientific world view ", just the determination to stay with the best current model until new evidence gives good reason to replace or extend it."

Quote
Scientific theories must  be falsifiable and can thus be proven to be false , but can never be proven to be true definitely : scientific theories and paradigms can compete with each other , and the ones which do happen to have more explanatory power take the upperhand, temporarily  ,thinks like that .

Again, I absolutely agree. Couldn't have said it better. And it illustrates the problem with your position. You haven't provided anything with more explanatory power to compete, because you lack evidence to support your ideas.


« Last Edit: 26/11/2013 19:07:59 by cheryl j »
 

Offline dlorde

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1441
  • Thanked: 9 times
  • ex human-biologist & software developer
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #952 on: 26/11/2013 19:16:39 »
Only when science will reject materialism...
How, precisely, do you propose it does that?
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #953 on: 26/11/2013 19:21:08 »

The mental is the one that's more fundamental than the physiological ,not the other way around .The mental that's irreducible to the physical or to the material

Your statement that the mental is irreducible to the physical is an assertion, not a fact.  It's based on your  impression that they "seem" different or "feel" different to you, and therefore cannot be the same things, or causally related. It would be equally difficult to convince someone who didn't know anything about physics that different forms of energy (radiant energy, chemical energy, electrical energy etc.) were in any way related, or could be converted from one form to another because they "seem" so different. It would be difficult to convince someone with no understanding of photosynthesis how a plant pulls off "the materialist magic trick" of converting radiant energy from the sun to chemical energy in a tomato.

Sorry , lady : only fools ,idiots ,materialists or some other dogmatic or ignorant people would deny the fact that the mental is irreducible to the physical ,which also means that  some heritable mental illnesses ,for example ,get passed on to the next generations both physiologically and mentally non-physically , i guess .
The physiological side of mental illnesses is just one single side to them, the mental that's irreducible to the physical is the other side of the same medal , and the more fundamental one at that .
To try to reduce everything , including the mental, to just physics and chemistry is so absurd and surreal false an attempt , that it should not be dignified as to answer it .

Quote
Water, ice, and steam all have very experientially different properties but are the same thing. Even a non-scientist accepts this because  as children, we all watched this transformation take place, and verified that no one substituted a cup of water for an ice cube while our back was turned. But if one were never actually able to observe the process, it might be difficult to believe water could be changed in something that looks, feels, and behaves so qualitatively different.

You're just talking about material physical processes here : what has that to do with what i was saying then ?

We don't know yet what even matter is exactly : matter is not just matter either : see quantum physics .

Quote
I often wonder what the average person's response to Einstein's ideas were in the early 1900s. The idea that time is not constant is about as counter-intuitive as it gets. I doubt even physicists who understand relativity can actually personally "experience" time in any other way than all humans do. It's only the theories, the math, and reproducible, empirical evidence that tells them that their perception of it is wrong, or at least limited.

Logically, mathematically , physically , and even scientifically in the non-materialist sense thus , speaking : physics and chemistry cannot account either for the nature of life , nor that of consciousness .....not to mention that physics and chemistry alone cannot account fully for their origins evolution and emergence , simply because the mental side of life , the non-physical nature of consciousness ,are not reducible to the physical .

No wonder that materialists do speak of living organisms just in terms of machines or computers ,as to make consciousness fit into their false materialist mechanical conception of nature .

If we are just physics and chemistry , we should be behaving like mindless zombies , not  like intelligent machines that are man-made : physics and chemistry alone cannot account for intelligent sentient life .

Otherwise , try to make 'sentient living " machines .

Quote
It's just my opinion, which you are free to reject, but I think your reliance on your own experience of  "thoughts" "ideas" "emotions" as being intangible, ethereal, somehow substance-less, is a major reason why you reject  any explanations involving neurons and biochemistry.

Who said i do reject biochemistry , neuro-chemistry or physics and chemistry , biology ...? I just said they are just one single side of life or of reality .
The mental is the other side of the same coin, so to speak : the mental that's irreducible to the physical : we are not just physics and chemistry : we are much more than just that : we are also immaterial minds .

Quote
Quote
What makes you rather think that the mental can be inherited only physiologically just via genetics or via epigenetics ? How can that happen then ,since the mental is irreducible to the physical ?

Are you aware of this paradox ?

It's not a paradox to me because I don't agree that the mental and physical are two completely separate things. I'm not a dualist.

Who said they are 2 completely separate things then ? they are in fact 2 totally different processes interacting with each other mutually : how ? That remains to be discovered : one cannot try to escape this seemingly impossible issue of mind and body , just by reducing the mind to just biology ,just for ideological materialist purposes science has nothing to do with .

Quote
Quote
What makes you think that inheritance can only be material , that it can only either be  genetic or epigenetic  ? What makes you exclude any non-physical form of inheritance then ?What makes you exclude the non-physical ,non -genetical ,non-epigenetical form of inheritance ?

 I don't exclude it. Science doesn't exclude it. But you'd have to have some kind of direct evidence to show that can be. Just saying "what if" or "how do you know it doesn't happen" isn't enough. It's not enough to make an idea like immaterial inheritance a scientific theory. It's stuck at being just a fanciful idea, without some kind of evidence for it
.

For your info :
Current science does exclude that , simply because science has been assuming that reality is just material or physical , including the mind thus .

Only when science will reject materialism ,only then, science will be able to extend its realm as to include the mental that's irreducible to the physical : the mental that's just the other side of the same pic .

Science will thus have to stop its absurd surreal false ...attempts to try to explain "everything " = nothing just in terms of physics and chemistry = just via one single side of the whole pic ,it has been taking for the whole pic or for the whole real thing , thanks to materialism thus ,once again .

Is that so hard to understand ?

The problem is thus not the immaterial side of reality , not our immaterial or mental side without which there would be even no science , the problem is materialism in science which reduces everything to just the material or to the physical biological ,including the mind .

Science has thus no choice but to try to deal with those both sides of reality or of the whole pic , if science wanna deserve fully to be called science , if science wanna try to explain the whole pic ,and hence make us understand the latter .

Quote
Quote
What makes you think that science proper will not be able to discover those non-physical forms of inheritance , after rejecting materialism thus ?[/i]

Who knows, maybe it will. Science doesn't exclude the possibility. There's just no evidence for it so far. I don't understand your need to reject everything that has been explained so far by chemistry and physics, because of that possibility. A discovery like that wouldn't necessarily invalidate every other scientific finding, any more than epigenetics destroyed Natural Selection - it simply added more knowledge and better understanding.

See above : science does exclude the immaterial side of reality ,does thus exclude the immaterial side of life as a whole , and hence does exclude our mental immaterial side as well , the mental or immaterial side of reality that has been reduced to the material physical or to the biological ,thanks to materialism .

It's not thus that there is no evidence for the immaterial side of reality , it's just that materialism , per definition, does exclude the immaterial side of reality , materialism has been reducing that to the material physical or to the biological : science has nothing to do with that false materialist mainstream "scientific world view " : how can't you understand just this simple fact ?

And i am not rejecting physics and chemistry , i just reject that "everything " = nothing , can be explained only in terms of physics and chemistry : see the difference ?
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #954 on: 26/11/2013 19:46:34 »

Ironically enough , i have read yesterday a part of this interesting book written by Chris Carter " Science and psychic phenomena : the fal of the house of skeptics " ,concerning the nature of science where Karl Popper was quoted by saying that he was fascinated by what Einstein said in a conference ,concerning his relativity theory ,that it took him years to come up with a solution to Hume's logical paradox concerning induction :
Einstein said something like the following :
No amount of verification or falsification of my theory ,now or in the future , can ever prove it to be true .
Karl Popper then went on talking about Hume's rejection of induction ,and about Bertrand Russell' s  attempts to address the latter while failing to do so .
Karl Popper's solution for Hume's logical rejection of induction was marvellous,induction without which science cannot exist or function  ,and therefore there would be no way to differentiate science from insanity or from pseudo-science  :
Karl Popper proposed that universal induction can only exist logically ,if we would take into consideration that it can only be temporary , in a form of a conjecture , not in a form of absolute truth :
A certain scientific theory ,or scientific knowledge as a whole , can thus only be conjectural ,not definite truths .

I absolutely agree and am happy (stunned, actually) that you realize this as well. As dlorde aptly said earlier, "This is how science works; knowledge is provisional. There is no dogmatic materialist mechanistic orthodox neo-Darwinian  "scientific world view ", just the determination to stay with the best current model until new evidence gives good reason to replace or extend it."

Well, lady , i cannot but say that you did not read me well on that :
I also said that materialism or the materialist meta-paradigm in science ( The materialist mainstream "scientific world view" thus ) has been ossifying itself as to become extremely orthodox  dogmatic irrational by considering itself to be the absolute truth , and hence by making itself unfalsifiable and thus unscientific : materialism was in fact already unscientific from day 1 , it just hardened itself into an increasingly untenable unfalsifiable dogma  "truth " , while scientific knowledge or theories  , scientific meta and paradigms can never be taken for granted as being true , never , ever : no amount of present or future falsifications attempts can prove them to be true , never , ever , simply because it would have to take only one succesfull falsification in the far future , to brand them as being false , while other alternate  competing  theories  with more explanatory power might replace them  temporarily in their turn and then the same process would go for the latter also and so on , as Einstein said , and as Hume has demonstrated in relation to induction in science , even poor Russell could not solve , and only Popper could  so brilliantly indeed .

Any scientific theories, any scientific knowledge , any scientific meta or paradigm ,are per -definition , temporary and cannot thus be taken for granted as absolute truths ,as to become unfalsifiable , as materialism has been doing , by assuming or rather by dogmatically and absolutely believing that reality is just material or physical , as the current "scientific world view " has been doing for so long now , turning themselves into unfalsifiable dogmas and absolute truths= unscientific  , by excluding any existence of the immaterial side of reality as a matter of materialist absolute "truth " or as a materialist unfalsifiable dogma belief .

Quote
Quote
Scientific theories must  be falsifiable and can thus be proven to be false , but can never be proven to be true definitely : scientific theories and paradigms can compete with each other , and the ones which do happen to have more explanatory power take the upperhand, temporarily  ,thinks like that .

Again, I absolutely agree. Couldn't have said it better. And it illustrates the problem with your position. You haven't provided anything with more explanatory power to compete, because you lack evidence to support your ideas.

Should we keep  on  considering materialism as being a "valid " theory of nature  , simply because we cannot yet find more clear and valid theories ,with more explanatory power ?   what kindda "scientific reasoning " is that ?
The fact that the materialist meta-paradigm in science has been turning itself into an unfalsifiable dogma "absolute truth" by rejecting , per definition, a priori and per se any alternate competing theory of nature  out there , is reason enough to reject materialism , while trying to give form to alternatives to materialism, as Sheldrake and others ,for example , have been doing so far at least , by triggering this new scientific revolution .

P.S.: If you want to : i can let Karl Popper speak on the subject via quoting some of his words on the subject from his "Conjectures and refutations : The growth of scientific knowledge " .
« Last Edit: 26/11/2013 19:53:28 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #955 on: 26/11/2013 19:54:18 »
Only when science will reject materialism...
How, precisely, do you propose it does that?

See right here above  what i said to our Cheryl on the subject .
Science will have to face ,and has no choice but to address the fact that reality is not just material or physical, and hence to continue trying  to explain "everything " = nothing just in terms of physics and chemistry is an unscientific and a false absurd surreal ...attempt to make ,such an unscientific attempt should be abandoned .
Sheldrake and others have already been starting this scientific revolution so far their own more or less clumsy ways : that's how scientific revolutions do start ,clumsily : they are first ridiculed , then violently opposed , and then they become self-evident afterwards : that's what i assume that' ll be happening = none or nothing  can stop such a scientific process from taking place,as the very young history of science itself has been showing , no matter how powerful  ,deceptive ,oppressive ,bullying,  inquisitory and persuasive  any temporary  majority or  scientific priesthood's consensus  might ever be ,or turn out to be  .
« Last Edit: 26/11/2013 20:04:59 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline RD

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 8134
  • Thanked: 53 times
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #956 on: 26/11/2013 20:41:38 »
... only fools ,idiots ,materialists or some other dogmatic or ignorant people would deny the fact that the mental is irreducible to the physical

You've use that everyone-who-disagrees-with-me-is-an-idiot line before,
repeatedly ... https://www.google.com/search?q=%22only+fools+idiots+%22++site%3Athenakedscientists.com

it demonstrates you have no evidence to support your position, ( and how tediously repetitious you are).
 

Offline cheryl j

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1460
  • Thanked: 1 times
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #957 on: 26/11/2013 20:58:51 »

Sorry , lady : only fools ,idiots ,materialists or some other dogmatic or ignorant people would deny the fact that the mental is irreducible to the physical ,which also means that  some heritable mental illnesses ,for example ,get passed on to the next generations both physiologically and mentally non-physically , i guess .

Well, that kind of wrecks your concept of free will, if your mother's mental illness is immaterially forced on to your consciousness.

Quote
To try to reduce everything , including the mental, to just physics and chemistry is so absurd and surreal false an attempt , that it should not be dignified as to answer it .
lol.


Quote
Quote
Water, ice, and steam all have very experientially different properties but are the same thing. Even a non-scientist accepts this because  as children, we all watched this transformation take place, and verified that no one substituted a cup of water for an ice cube while our back was turned. But if one were never actually able to observe the process, it might be difficult to believe water could be changed in something that looks, feels, and behaves so qualitatively different.

Quote
You're just talking about material physical processes here : what has that to do with what i was saying then ?

My point was that you give way too much credence to  superficial qualities when you compare two things.  You keep insisting that the mental processes have no physical basis because the two things are just "totally different", but can’t explain how or why. They just are, you say over and over, and only “idiots” would think otherwise.

On the other hand, I’m not surprised that you think the way you do. When one relies on immaterial explanations, what choice is there? There is nothing but  vague superficial, impressionist descriptions to use  for comparison, because there are no immaterial mechanisms or processes to even consider.

Quote
Who said i do reject biochemistry , neuro-chemistry or physics and chemistry , biology ...?


You do, Don, every single time any explanation involving chemistry or physics comes up, even in examples that don't involve consciousness.


Quote
Who said they are 2 completely separate things then ? they are in fact 2 totally different processes interacting with each other mutually : how ? That remains to be discovered :

Gosh that sounds a bit "messianic/promissory."
« Last Edit: 27/11/2013 04:16:22 by cheryl j »
 

Offline dlorde

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1441
  • Thanked: 9 times
  • ex human-biologist & software developer
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #958 on: 27/11/2013 00:09:49 »
It's called 'magical thinking'. Basically wish fulfillment.
 

Offline Ethos_

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1278
  • Thanked: 14 times
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #959 on: 27/11/2013 00:53:15 »
No, you do not listen to what your opponents such as myself might say to you , you just prefer to continue listening to your own materialist bizarre one sided music :

So, we're being described as opponents are we? As an opponent, are we expected to surrender, or to listen to music that is severely out of key? The band your playing in will never make the top ten my friend!
 

Offline cheryl j

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1460
  • Thanked: 1 times
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #960 on: 27/11/2013 04:09:15 »
How can the mental that's irreducible to the physical or to the material be inherited physiologically ? how ? via some sort of materialist magic ?

The inheritance of certain mental illnesses ,for example, cannot be just the work, so to speak, of genes or epigenetics ,simply because the mental is irreducible to the physical or to the material : there might be some extra form of inheritance of the mental out there thus


Have you forgotten all of your posts explaining that mental illness, Alzheimers, dementia, and yes, even genetic defects, are just problems with the brain as a biological receiver? And that , "the corresponding elements or aspects of consciousness that get apparently altered as a result , are still there , they are just disconnected from the brain as a receiver , they do not get through"?

If mental illness or Alzheimers is just a problem with the biological receiver, they wouldn't require a immaterial form of inheritance. Obviously.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #961 on: 27/11/2013 18:31:36 »
Hi , guys:

The following will explain , in clearer and much better ways than i can ever do, all what i have been saying ,concerning the fact that the false materialist meinstream "scientific world view " has been hardening itself into becoming an unfalsifiable dogma :
What Karl Popper says here below , regarding Freud ,Adler and Marxism goes perfectly for materialism ,as i have been experiencing the latter to be all along :

Karl Popper is no doubt the biggest philosopher of science ever born, i think :

Enjoy :

(dlorde :

What Karl Popper is all about is exactly what i meant way earlier in the origin of science thread , concerning the fact that it is highly important to know the origins of science , and therefore  the nature and genesis of  its epistemology + the latter's  status and growth evolution , if we wanna understand what science is all about , what the nature of human knowledge and epistemology are , what the nature of scientific knowledge is ....)

Excerpts from " Science -Conjectures and Refutations " By Karl Popper :  Science As Falsification  :


Science as Falsification
The following excerpt was originally published in Conjectures and
Refutations (1963).
by Karl R. Popper
When I received the list of participants in this course and realized that I
had been asked to speak to philosophical colleagues I thought, after
some hesitation and consolation, that you would probably prefer me to
speak about those problems which interests me most, and about those
developments with which I am most intimately acquainted. I therefore
decided to do what I have never done before: to give you a report on my
own work in the philosophy of science, since the autumn 1919 when I
first begin to grapple with the problem, "When should a theory be
ranked as scientific?" or "Is there a criterion for the scientific character or
status of a theory?"
The problem which troubled me at the time was neither, "When is a
theory true?" nor "When is a theory acceptable?" my problem was
different. I wished to distinguish between science and pseudo-science;
knowing very well that science often errs, and that pseudoscience may
happen to stumble on the truth.
I knew, of course, the most widely accepted answer to my problem: that
science is distinguished from pseudoscience—or from "metaphysics"—
by its empirical method, which is essentially inductive, proceeding from
observation or experiment. But this did not satisfy me. On the contrary, I
often formulated my problem as one of distinguishing between a
genuinely empirical method and a non-empirical or even pseudoempirical
method — that is to say, a method which, although it appeals
to observation and experiment, nevertheless does not come up to
scientific standards. The latter method may be exemplified by astrology,
with its stupendous mass of empirical evidence based on observation —
on horoscopes and on biographies.
But as it was not the example of astrology which lead me to my problem,
I should perhaps briefly describe the atmosphere in which my problem
arose and the examples by which it was stimulated. After the collapse of
the Austrian empire there had been a revolution in Austria: the air was
full of revolutionary slogans and ideas, and new and often wild theories.
Among the theories which interested me Einstein's theory of relativity
was no doubt by far the most important. The three others were Marx's
theory of history, Freud's psycho-analysis, and Alfred Adler's so-called
"individual psychology."
There was a lot of popular nonsense talked about these theories, and
especially about relativity (as still happens even today), but I was
fortunate in those who introduced me to the study of this theory. We
all—the small circle of students to which I belong—were thrilled with
the result of Eddington's eclipse observations which in 1919 brought the
first important confirmation of Einstein's theory of gravitation. It was a
great experience for us, and one which had a lasting influence on my
intellectual development.
The three other theories I have mentioned were also widely discussed
among students at the time. I myself happened to come into personal
contact with Alfred Adler, and even to cooperate with him in his social
work among the children and young people in the working-class
districts of Vienna where he had established social guidance clinics.
It was the summer of 1919 that I began to feel more and more
dissatisfied with these three theories—the Marxist theory of history,
psycho-analysis, and individual psychology; and I began to feel dubious
about their claims to scientific status. My problem perhaps first took the
simple form, "What is wrong with Marxism, psycho-analysis, and
individual psychology? Why are they so different from physical
theories, from Newton's theory, and especially from the theory of
relativity?"
To make this contrast clear I should explain that few of us at the time
would have said that we believed in the truth of Einstein's theory of
gravitation. This shows that it was not my doubting the truth of those
three other theories which bothered me, but something else. Yet neither
was it that I nearly felt mathematical physics to be more exact than
sociological or psychological type of theory. Thus what worried me was
neither the problem of truth, at that stage at least, nor the problem of
exactness or measurability. It was rather that I felt that these other three
theories, though posing as science, had in fact more in common with
primitive myths than with science; that they resembled astrology rather
than astronomy.
I found that those of my friends who were admirers of Marx, Freud, and
Adler, were impressed by a number of points common to these theories,
and especially by their apparent explanatory power. These theories
appear to be able to explain practically everything that happened within
the fields to which they referred. The study of any of them seemed to
have the effect of an intellectual conversion or revelation, open your
eyes to a new truth hidden from those not yet initiated. Once your eyes
were thus opened you saw confirmed instances everywhere: the world
was full of verifications of the theory. Whatever happened always
confirmed it. Thus its truth appeared manifest; and unbelievers were
clearly people who did not want to see the manifest truth; who refuse to
see it, either because it was against their class interest, or because of their
repressions which were still "un-analyzed" and crying aloud for
treatment.
The most characteristic element in this situation seemed to me the
incessant stream of confirmations, of observations which "verified" the
theories in question; and this point was constantly emphasize by their
adherents. A Marxist could not open a newspaper without finding on
every page confirming evidence for his interpretation of history; not
only in the news, but also in its presentation — which revealed the class
bias of the paper — and especially of course what the paper did not say.
The Freudian analysts emphasized that their theories were constantly
verified by their "clinical observations." As for Adler, I was much
impressed by a personal experience. Once, in 1919, I reported to him a
case which to me did not seem particularly Adlerian, but which he
found no difficulty in analyzing in terms of his theory of inferiority
feelings, Although he had not even seen the child. Slightly shocked, I
asked him how he could be so sure. "Because of my thousandfold
experience," he replied; whereupon I could not help saying: "And with
this new case, I suppose, your experience has become thousand-andone-
fold."
What I had in mind was that his previous observations may not have
been much sounder than this new one; that each in its turn had been
interpreted in the light of "previous experience," and at the same time
counted as additional confirmation. What, I asked myself, did it
confirm? No more than that a case could be interpreted in the light of a
theory. But this meant very little, I reflected, since every conceivable case
could be interpreted in the light Adler's theory, or equally of Freud's. I
may illustrate this by two very different examples of human behavior:
that of a man who pushes a child into the water with the intention of
drowning it; and that of a man who sacrifices his life in an attempt to
save the child. Each of these two cases can be explained with equal ease
in Freudian and Adlerian terms. According to Freud the first man
suffered from repression (say, of some component of his Oedipus
complex), while the second man had achieved sublimation. According to
Adler the first man suffered from feelings of inferiority (producing
perhaps the need to prove to himself that he dared to commit some
crime), and so did the second man (whose need was to prove to himself
that he dared to rescue the child). I could not think of any human
behavior which could not be interpreted in terms of either theory. It was
precisely this fact—that they always fitted, that they were always
confirmed—which in the eyes of their admirers constituted the strongest
argument in favor of these theories. It began to dawn on me that this
apparent strength was in fact their weakness.


« Last Edit: 27/11/2013 18:36:24 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #962 on: 27/11/2013 18:32:34 »

With Einstein's theory the situation was strikingly different. Take one
typical instance — Einstein's prediction, just then confirmed by the
finding of Eddington's expedition. Einstein's gravitational theory had
led to the result that light must be attracted by heavy bodies (such as the
sun), precisely as material bodies were attracted. As a consequence it
could be calculated that light from a distant fixed star whose apparent
position was close to the sun would reach the earth from such a
direction that the star would seem to be slightly shifted away from the
sun; or, in other words, that stars close to the sun would look as if they
had moved a little away from the sun, and from one another. This is a
thing which cannot normally be observed since such stars are rendered
invisible in daytime by the sun's overwhelming brightness; but during
an eclipse it is possible to take photographs of them. If the same
constellation is photographed at night one can measure the distance on
the two photographs, and check the predicted effect.
Now the impressive thing about this case is the risk involved in a
prediction of this kind. If observation shows that the predicted effect is
definitely absent, then the theory is simply refuted. The theory is
incompatible with certain possible results of observation—in fact with
results which everybody before Einstein would have expected.[1] This is
quite different from the situation I have previously described, when it
turned out that the theories in question were compatible with the most
divergent human behavior, so that it was practically impossible to
describe any human behavior that might not be claimed to be a
verification of these theories.
These considerations led me in the winter of 1919-20 to conclusions
which I may now reformulate as follows.
• It is easy to obtain confirmations, or verifications, for nearly every theory
— if we look for confirmations.
• Confirmations should count only if they are the result of risky
predictions; that is to say, if, unenlightened by the theory in question, we
should have expected an event which was incompatible with the theory —
an event which would have refuted the theory.
• Every "good" scientific theory is a prohibition: it forbids certain things to
happen. The more a theory forbids, the better it is.
• A theory which is not refutable by any conceivable event is non-scientific.
Irrefutability is not a virtue of a theory (as people often think) but a vice.
• Every genuine test of a theory is an attempt to falsify it, or to refute it.
Testability is falsifiability; but there are degrees of testability: some
theories are more testable, more exposed to refutation, than others; they
take, as it were, greater risks.
• Confirming evidence should not count except when it is the result of a
genuine test of the theory; and this means that it can be presented as a
serious but unsuccessful attempt to falsify the theory. (I now speak in
such cases of "corroborating evidence.")
• Some genuinely testable theories, when found to be false, are still upheld
by their admirers — for example by introducing ad hoc some auxiliary
assumption, or by reinterpreting the theory ad hoc in such a way that it
escapes refutation. Such a procedure is always possible, but it rescues the
theory from refutation only at the price of destroying, or at least
lowering, its scientific status. (I later described such a rescuing operation
as a "conventionalist twist" or a "conventionalist stratagem.")
One can sum up all this by saying that the criterion of the scientific
status of a theory is its falsifiability, or refutability, or testability.
II
I may perhaps exemplify this with the help of the various theories so far
mentioned. Einstein's theory of gravitation clearly satisfied the criterion
of falsifiability. Even if our measuring instruments at the time did not
allow us to pronounce on the results of the tests with complete
assurance, there was clearly a possibility of refuting the theory.
Astrology did not pass the test. Astrologers were greatly impressed, and
misled, by what they believed to be confirming evidence — so much so
that they were quite unimpressed by any unfavorable evidence.
Moreover, by making their interpretations and prophesies sufficiently
vague they were able to explain away anything that might have been a
refutation of the theory had the theory and the prophesies been more
precise. In order to escape falsification they destroyed the testability of
their theory. It is a typical soothsayer's trick to predict things so vaguely
that the predictions can hardly fail: that they become irrefutable.
The Marxist theory of history, in spite of the serious efforts of some of its
founders and followers, ultimately adopted this soothsaying practice. In
some of its earlier formulations (for example in Marx's analysis of the
character of the "coming social revolution") their predictions were
testable, and in fact falsified.[2] Yet instead of accepting the refutations
the followers of Marx re-interpreted both the theory and the evidence in
order to make them agree. In this way they rescued the theory from
refutation; but they did so at the price of adopting a device which made
it irrefutable. They thus gave a "conventionalist twist" to the theory; and
by this stratagem they destroyed its much advertised claim to scientific
status.
The two psycho-analytic theories were in a different class. They were
simply non-testable, irrefutable. There was no conceivable human
behavior which could contradict them. This does not mean that Freud
and Adler were not seeing certain things correctly; I personally do not
doubt that much of what they say is of considerable importance, and
may well play its part one day in a psychological science which is
testable. But it does mean that those "clinical observations" which
analysts naďvely believe confirm their theory cannot do this any more
than the daily confirmations which astrologers find in their practice.[3]
And as for Freud's epic of the Ego, the Super-ego, and the Id, no
substantially stronger claim to scientific status can be made for it than
for Homer's collected stories from Olympus. These theories describe
some facts, but in the manner of myths. They contain most interesting
psychological suggestions, but not in a testable form.
At the same time I realized that such myths may be developed, and
become testable; that historically speaking all — or very nearly all —
scientific theories originate from myths, and that a myth may contain
important anticipations of scientific theories. Examples are Empedocles'
theory of evolution by trial and error, or Parmenides' myth of the
unchanging block universe in which nothing ever happens and which, if
we add another dimension, becomes Einstein's block universe (in which,
too, nothing ever happens, since everything is, four-dimensionally
speaking, determined and laid down from the beginning). I thus felt that
if a theory is found to be non-scientific, or "metaphysical" (as we might
say), it is not thereby found to be unimportant, or insignificant, or
"meaningless," or "nonsensical."[4] But it cannot claim to be backed by
empirical evidence in the scientific sense — although it may easily be, in
some genetic sense, the "result of observation."
(There were a great many other theories of this pre-scientific or pseudoscientific
character, some of them, unfortunately, as influential as the
Marxist interpretation of history; for example, the racialist interpretation
of history — another of those impressive and all-explanatory theories
which act upon weak minds like revelations.)
Thus the problem which I tried to solve by proposing the criterion of
falsifiability was neither a problem of meaningfulness or significance,
nor a problem of truth or acceptability. It was the problem of drawing a
line (as well as this can be done) between the statements, or systems of
statements, of the empirical sciences, and all other statements —
whether they are of a religious or of a metaphysical character, or simply
pseudo-scientific. Years later — it must have been in 1928 or 1929 — I
called this first problem of mine the "problem of demarcation." The
criterion of falsifiability is a solution to this problem of demarcation, for
it says that statements or systems of statements, in order to be ranked as
scientific, must be capable of conflicting with possible, or conceivable,
observations.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #963 on: 27/11/2013 19:47:42 »
The following is also extremely relevant to our discussion ,regarding the unfalsifiability of the current "scientific world view " :
"The Nature of Science " :
David Hume's Logical Rejection of Inuduction or Hume's  dilemma of induction , Bertrand Russel's Failure to Solve it ,and Karl Popper's brilliant solution :


When Sheldrake talks about the laws of physics as  non-fixed habits , i used to think what the heck the guy was talking about ,untill i have read the following :

Enjoy : extremely fascinating , and cristal-clear :
Karl Popper is indeed the greatest philosopher of science so far :


THE NATURE OF SCIENCE
It is generally recognized that science is concerned with theories, but in a scientific context the word
theory has a somewhat different meaning than it frequently does in ordinary conversation: in the latter
it is often used loosely to mean any degree of speculation. In police work, for example, it often means
a provisional explanation of what happened in the commission of a crime. But scientific theories are
not meant to be explanations of isolated events: they are meant to apply to a class of events that are
similar in some crucial respects. So, a scientific theory of crime will not attempt to explain how or
why a particular crime occurred but will attempt to explain some class of crimes.
This universal property of scientific theories cannot be stressed enough. A scientific theory cannot
be merely speculation about a particular fact. The ancient Babylonians kept highly precise records of
daily observations, and they were able to use these records to make highly accurate predictions about
the movements of heavenly bodies. But the Babylonians did not engage in science; although they
gathered facts, they did not propose theories to explain how these facts fit together. When Isaac
Newton proposed that a planet and the sun are attracted by a gravitational force that is directly
proportional to the product of their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance
between them, he offered a relation between masses and distances—a relation that of course became
celebrated as the Newtonian theory of gravity.a
But what makes a theory scientific? How do we distinguish between scientific and nonscientific
theories? Traditionally, the answer has been that science is distinguished from pseudoscience, and
from metaphysics, by its empirical method, which is essentially inductive: theories are inferred from
observations, and in turn these theories are confirmed by further observations.
But many theories purport to be based on, and confirmed by, observation. Astrology, for instance, is
thought by its supporters to be confirmed by extensive empirical evidence based on observation—on
horoscopes and biographical data. Should astrology be considered a science? What is the distinction
between true science and other forms of belief that purport to be based upon observation?
The celebrated philosopher of science Karl Popper began pondering this question while he was a
student in Austria during the early years of the twentieth century. As a student, he had been exposed to
a lot of the revolutionary new ideas that were then gaining wide exposure—most notably Freudian
theories of psychoanalysis, Adler’s theories of individual psychology, the Marxist theory of history,
and Einstein’s theory of relativity.
It struck the young Popper how the supporters of Freud’s and Adler’s psychological theories
seemed to find confirmation everywhere they looked. The data always seemed to fit the theories, and
it began to dawn on Popper that perhaps this fact—that observations always seemed to be consistent
with the theories—might not be their biggest strength, as supporters claimed, but their greatest
weakness.
The situation with Einstein’s theory was different. Here was a theory very different from Newton’s
theory in its fundamental outlook, which at that time was utterly successful. But what really impressed
Popper was the way Einstein used his theory to make a number of bold predictions, all of which could
be tested. Einstein declared that these predictions were crucial: if the results of future experiments did
not agree with his theoretical calculations, he would regard his theory as refuted. One of these
predictions was that light would be bent by massive bodies such as the sun to twice the degree
predicted by Newton’s theory. In one of the earliest tests of that theory, photographs of stars taken by
the Sir Arthur Eddington expedition during an eclipse provided data in agreement with Einstein’s
prediction, and contrary to Newton’s.
Here seemed to be a crucial difference between relativity and the two psychological theories: the
former took risks in making predictions that could in principle be wrong. Unlike the theories of Freud
and Adler, Einstein’s theory was incompatible with certain possible results of observations. Or, in
other words, it could be tested.
This consideration led Popper to the conclusion that a theory that is not capable of being refuted by
any possible observation is not truly scientific. One can sum up Popper’s famous demarcation between
science and nonscience by saying that the criterion of the scientific status of a theory is its
falsifiability.
Accordingly, theories that are not falsifiable in principle cannot claim to be scientific, and so they
belong to metaphysics, ideology, or pseudoscience.
It is important to stress that Popper never thought that metaphysical theories were meaningless, or
insignificant, or unimportant. They are simply not testable in the way that scientific theories are.
Popper actually thought that what Freud and Adler said was of considerable importance, and he hoped
that these theories might one day play a role as part of psychological theories that were testable.
Metaphysical speculations may inspire programs of scientific research; they also may in time become
capable of being tested and hence attain scientific status. Ancient examples of metaphysical theories
that became testable would include the speculations of Aristarchus and Copernicus that the earth
revolves around the sun; another example would be the theory of Democritus that the world is
composed of atoms.
Popper also noted that the reverse can happen: a theory may start out as scientific, by having
testable implications, and then become unscientific by immunizing itself against apparent examples of
falsification. Thus Popper argued that Marxism started out as a scientific theory: it predicted that
capitalism would lead to increasing misery among the masses and then be overthrown by revolution
and replaced by socialism; it also predicted that this would occur first in the most technologically
developed countries. When the so-called worker’s revolution first occurred in then-backward and
agrarian Russia, supporters of the theory did not accept this as a refutation: the theory was simply
modified so that it became immune to falsification.
According to this scheme, Freud’s and Adler’s theories were never scientific but belonged in the
realm of protoscientific metaphysics; Marxism started out as a science but became an ideology; and
astrology, insofar as it makes vague predictions that are simply irrefutable, belongs to pseudoscience.b
A few further points are necessary to clarify this picture. One is that some metaphysical theories
may not be directly testable, but they may be implied by scientific theories. They enter into our belief
systems on the coattails of currently accepted scientific theories, but if a scientific theory is refuted by
observation, then any metaphysical theories that entered in its wake are also refuted. An example of
this would be the metaphysical theory of determinism implied by the clockwork universe of
Newtonian physics. If Newtonian physics is rejected as false, then determinism should be rejected as
well.
Another important point is that Popper’s demarcation between science and nonscience is rough. As
mentioned, what was a metaphysical idea yesterday can become a testable scientific theory tomorrow.
And, of course, some theories are more testable than others for a variety of reasons: the technology
currently available, the ease with which reliable data may be gathered, or the nature of the subject
matter. According to Popper, “a theory is scientific to the degree to which it is testable.”4 (emphasis
added)
Finally, it is worth pointing out that Popper was not a simple falsificationist in the manner that
many of his critics have assumed:5 He did not think that theories were automatically abandoned as
soon as they are shown to be false but only when we have a better theory available. One theory may be
considered better than a competitor in at least two senses: it may pass tests its competitor fails, and it
may explain everything the other theory explains and more. Popper realized that science often
operates as though it aims not at truth but merely at approximations to the truth. In such
circumstances, a theory will not be discarded as soon as it is falsified but only when it is found to
approximate the truth less accurately than some rival hypothesis.
Early in the last century, Popper attended a lecture given by the young Albert Einstein, and he was
greatly impressed. Here was a bold new theory that deviated in its fundamental outlook from
Newton’s, a theory that, up to that time, had been almost entirely and utterly successful in its
predictions. (It failed to predict the orbit of Mercury with complete accuracy, but this did not trouble
many.) According to Einstein’s theory, Newton’s theory was an excellent approximation, though false
(just as, according to Newton’s theory, Kepler’s theory is an excellent approximation, though false).
What really impressed Popper were the following two points: first, Einstein used his theory to make
several bold predictions, and, second, he declared that if the subsequent experiments did not agree
with his predictions, he would regard his theory as refuted. But, as the lecture continued, Einstein went
even further, as Popper recounts:
Even if they were observed as predicted, Einstein declared that his theory was false: he said that it would be a better
approximation to the truth than Newton’s, but he gave reasons why he would not, even if all predictions came out right, regard
it as a true theory. He sketched a number of demands that a true theory (a unified field theory) would have to satisfy, and
declared that his theory was at best an approximation to this so far unattained unified field theory.6
This lecture led Popper to spend the rest of his life in the philosophy of science. Einstein himself
spent the rest of his life trying to achieve his dream of a unified field theory and failed, but the crucial
point that Popper eventually concluded from Einstein’s lecture was that truth does not decide the
scientific character of a theory—its falsifiability does.c
THE PROBLEM OF INDUCTION: ARE OUR SCIENTIFIC BELIEFS
IRRATIONAL?
As mentioned earlier, traditional accounts of science stressed verification of scientific theories and
argued that scientific theories differ from nonscientific theories in that the former are based on
observations, which in turn are verified by further observations. Thus, it was argued that the scientific
method is essentially inductive: that is, our scientific laws, expressed as universal laws governing a
class of events similar in some crucial respects, are derived from repeated observations of events of
the type in question.
But as long ago as 1739, the Scottish philosopher David Hume pointed out that induction cannot be
logically justified. He held that there were no logical arguments that would allow us to establish “that
those instances, of which we have had no experience, should resemble those, of which we have had
experience.” He maintained that we have no logical reason to expect the future to resemble the past, as
“even after the observation of the frequent or constant conjunction of objects, we have no reason to
draw any inference concerning any object beyond those of which we have had experience.”7 In other
words, from the fact that every crow we may have seen so far is black the conclusion that all crows are
black does not logically follow. Seeing a white crow would not in any sense be a logical contradiction
of the earlier observations.
However, Hume of course noticed that people everywhere, including himself, believe in laws and
regularities. But if an inductive inference— an inference from repeatedly observed instances to yet
unobserved instances—could not be justified on rational grounds, what could account for its apparent
prevalence? Hume concluded that it was nothing more than force of habit. Although there was no
rational justification for induction, Hume believed that it was a psychological fact, and that in any
case, people needed induction for their very survival. But if this is the case—that all empirical belief
is based on nothing more than habit—then this would imply that all scientific knowledge is irrational.
This conclusion greatly distressed Bertrand Russell: he was not willing to abandon the principle of
empiricism, which asserts that only observation and experiment may decide upon the acceptance or
rejection of scientific statements, including laws and theories. But he was driven to conclude that if
Hume’s rejection of the principle of induction is valid, then “every attempt to arrive at general
scientific laws from particular observations is fallacious, and Hume’s scepticism is inescapable for an
empiricist.”8 He wrote that “the rejection of induction makes all expectation as to the future
irrational” and that “taking even our firmest expectations, such as that the sun will rise tomorrow,
there is not a shadow of a reason for supposing them more likely to be verified than not.”9 He writes of
Hume, “It is evident that he started out with a belief that scientific method yields the truth, the whole
truth, and nothing but the truth; he ended, however with the conviction that belief is never rational,
since we know nothing.”10 So, “It is therefore important to discover whether there is any answer to
Hume within a philosophy that is wholly or mainly empirical. If not, there is no intellectual difference
between sanity and insanity. The lunatic who believes that he is a poached egg is to be condemned
solely on the ground that he is in a minority. . . . This is a desperate point of view, and it must be
hoped that there is some way of escaping from it.”11
Russell’s solution is equally desperate: he maintains that “Hume has proved that pure empiricism is
not a sufficient basis for science,” and so allows a single departure from his otherwise strictly
empirical philosophy, basically concluding that we simply have no choice but to accept inductive
arguments if we are going to practice science. All we can do, according to Russell, is accept that
“induction is an independent logical principle, incapable of being inferred either from experience or
from other logical principles, and that without this principle science is impossible.”12
Russell’s solution is essentially to accept Hume’s logical refutation of induction but then to argue
that we must accept it as a principle incapable of being justified by logic or experience, or in other
words, simply on faith. Otherwise, “science is impossible” and “there is no intellectual difference
between sanity and insanity.”
Popper’s solution was radically different. He denied that induction was needed in order to practice
science: he even denied that humans or animals used any sort of inductive procedure at all, calling it
“a kind of optical illusion.”13 As evidence against the reality of induction, he argued that expectations
may be formed after only one observed instance; that we may be born with certain expectations (such
as the expectation of being fed); and that long experience may not strengthen our expectations of
regularities but rather make us less rigid and dogmatic. Instead of forming our expectations from
observed regularities, Popper proposed that both humans and animals use a method of trial and error
that only superficially resembles induction but is logically very different.
As mentioned, Popper proposed that we all may be born with expectations—expectations that are
psychologically a priori, that is, prior to all observational experience. One of the most important of
these expectations is the expectation of finding regularities.14 Popper thereby turned the tables on
Hume’s psychological theory: instead of explaining our propensity to expect regularities as the result
of repetition, he proposed that we hypothesize repetition as a result of our propensity to expect
regularities. In other words, instead of passively waiting for nature to impose regularities upon us, we
actively try to impose regularities upon the world. We search for similarities and try to explain those
similarities in terms of laws invented by us. These laws may have to be discarded later, should
observations show that they are wrong. But according to Popper, first we jump to conclusions, and
then we test them against observations.
This was a theory of trial and error—of conjectures and refutations. It made it possible to understand why our attempts to force
interpretations upon the world were logically prior to the observation of similarities. Since there were logical reasons behind this
procedure, I thought that it would apply in the field of science also; that scientific theories were not the digest of observations,
but that they were inventions—conjectures boldly put forward for trial, to be eliminated if they clashed with observations.15
Popper realized that the problem of the irrationality of all human belief, including scientific belief,
is solved if we can obtain our knowledge by a noninductive procedure. There is no need to postulate an
“inductive principle”; even if we think that induction exists as a psychological fact, there is, according
to Popper, no need to attempt to justify the unjustifiable.
Hume was right: we are not rationally justified in reasoning from instances of which we have had
experience to the truth of the corresponding law. But to this negative conclusion Popper added a
second: we are justified in reasoning from a single counterinstance to the falsity of the corresponding
law. Consider the universal statement “all swans are white.” Hume demonstrated that neither ten nor
ten thousand observations of white swans logically imply that the next swan we see will be white. It
cannot be verified by any number of observations, because no matter how many white swans we may
see, it is logically possible that the next swan we see will be black. Yet the universal statement can be
falsified by the observation of a single black swan.
Of course, in practice, we would be most reluctant to accept a single counterinstance to a highly
successful law: we may question the eyewitness accounts, or suspect that the black specimen before us
was not really a swan. But this is beside the point: we are logically compelled to reject even the most
successful law the moment we accept a single counterinstance. Empirical observation can never verify
a theory, but it can decisively refute a theory.

 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #964 on: 27/11/2013 19:50:15 »

Popper demonstrated that science can proceed in a truly deductive manner through a process of
conjectures and refutations. As long as we concede that all our scientific theories are held tentatively,
not as “truths” but as conjectures that may only be approximations to the truth, then Hume’s dilemma
is resolved. They may be falsified by a deductive procedure but never verified in any logically valid
manner. In other words, scientific theories are not verified by observations consistent with them;
rather, they are corroborated by unsuccessful attempts at refutation.
Popper admitted that it took him several years to realize that the problem of induction is an aspect
of the problem of demarcation between science and nonscience.16 In fact, his demarcation solves the
so-called problem of induction: the problem that, if our scientific beliefs are based on induction, then
they are irrational. Hume’s problem of induction, and Popper’s solution, imply that all our scientific
beliefs are not irrational, merely conjectural. Belief would indeed be irrational if by belief we meant
uncritical acceptance of our laws based upon attempts to verify them through repeated observations. If
however, by belief we mean only tentative acceptance of our scientific theories combined with a
willingness to revise them if they fail to pass crucial tests, then Hume was wrong. There is nothing
irrational about such acceptance, nor is there anything irrational about relying for practical purposes
upon well-tested theories. There is no more rational course of action available to us.
Hume’s rejection of induction means that our universal laws or theories can never be proven correct
and so must remain only conjectures, or hypotheses. But Popper’s demonstration of our ability to
falsify theories by observation means that we can, on purely rational grounds, prefer some competing
conjectures to others. Popper sums it up:
To put it in a nutshell, Russell’s desperate remark that if with Hume we reject all positive induction, “there is no intellectual
difference between sanity and insanity” is mistaken. For the rejection of induction does not prevent us from preferring, say,
Newton’s theory to Kepler’s, or Einstein’s theory to Newton’s: during our rational critical discussion of these theories we may
have accepted the existence of counterexamples to Kepler’s theory which do not refute Newton’s, and of counterexamples to
Newton’s which do not refute Einstein’s. Given the acceptance of these counterexamples we can say that Kepler’s and
Newton’s theories are certainly false; whilst Einstein’s may be true or it may be false: that we don’t know. Thus there may exist
purely intellectual preferences for one or the other of these the-ories; and we are very far from having to say with Russell that
all the difference between science and lunacy disappears. Admittedly, Hume’s argument still stands, and therefore the
difference between a scientist and a lunatic is not that the first bases his theories securely upon observations while the second
does not, or anything like that. Nevertheless we may now see that there may be a difference: it may be that the lunatic’s theory
is easily refutable by observation, while the scientist’s theory has withstood severe tests.17
Nor do there seem to be any valid exceptions to the conclusion that in empirical matters we can
never attain certainty of belief, as Popper reminds us:
From the point of view here developed all laws, all theories, remain essentially tentative, or conjectural, or hypothetical, even
when we feel unable to doubt them any longer. Before a theory has been refuted we can never know in what way it may have
to be modified. That the sun will always rise and set within twenty-four hours is still proverbial as a law “established by
induction beyond reasonable doubt.” It is odd that this example is still in use, though it may have served well enough in the
days of Aristotle and Pytheas of Massalia—the great traveler who for centuries was called a liar because of his tales of Thule,
the land of the frozen sea and the midnight sun.18
A few final points are in order. First of all, as mentioned, although no amount of observation can
prove a scientific theory, a single counterinstance can falsify it. But, of course, observations that
appear to refute a theory are themselves fallible. Experiments may not be performed properly, and
mistakes may be made, and there is always the possibility of fraud. But the acceptance of a single
counterinstance logically refutes a universal theory.
Secondly, as mentioned earlier, the universal property of scientific theories cannot be stressed
enough. A scientific theory cannot be merely speculation about a particular fact or an isolated event,
because nothing new and nontrivial can be predicted from such a speculation. This point has to be
stressed, because it has caused a great deal of confusion among philosophers and historians of science.
For example, historian and professional “skeptic” Michael Shermer has written:
Popper’s attempt to solve the problem of demarcation . . . between science and nonscience begins to break down in the
borderlands of knowledge. Consider the theory that extraterrestrial intelligent life exists somewhere in the cosmos. If we find
out by making radio contact through the SETI program then the theory will have been proven absolutely . . . But how could this
theory ever be falsified?19d
Shermer’s mistake is his categorization of the statement “extraterrestrial intelligent life exists
somewhere in the cosmos” as a scientific theory. It is no such thing. It is merely speculation about a
specific fact, from which no nontrivial predictions follow.e It is no more a scientific theory than the
statement “there are white swans somewhere on the lake.” Such statements about specific factual
matters can indeed be confirmed, even proven “beyond all reasonable doubt.” But this is only because
they are not universal statements. Scientific theories are universal statements about how facts fit
together, and from such universal statements follow predictions about specific facts. So, from the
universal statement “all swans are white” follows the prediction that “the next swans we will see on
the lake will be white.” The former is a (simple) scientific theory; the latter a prediction about a
specific fact that follows from the theory, and that may used to test the theory.
Note that Shermer would have formulated his idea as a scientific theory if he had stated it in a
universal, testable form, such as: “Life arises quickly wherever there is water and an average
temperature above freezing, and given a few billion years, some of this life will become recognizably
intelligent.” This is a universal statement that relates specific facts to each other, can be used to make
predictions about how much intelligent life exists elsewhere in our galaxy, and can be tested (at least
in principle) by sending probes to planets in which conditions for life appear to have been appropriate
for a few billion years. If intelligent life is not found, then the theory is refuted, and it must either be
abandoned or modified.
SUMMARY OF POPPER’S PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE
Many consider Popper to be the greatest philosopher of science the twentieth century has produced.
This is understandable, since his criteria of demarcation between science and nonscience is by far the
clearest and most logically consistent that has ever been developed. Popper’s ideas have been highly
influential among both scientists and philosophers: the list of scientists who have acknowledged a
debt of gratitude to Popper would include Nobel Prize winners John Eccles and Peter Medawar.
Einstein endorsed Popper’s views, and, of late, Stephen Hawking has taken falsifiability as the
defining characteristic of a scientific theory.
According to Popper, the scientific method in its purest form is a method of trial and error: of
conjectures and refutations, of boldly proposing new hypotheses and then subjecting them to the most
severe tests possible in an attempt to falsify them. Since induction cannot be rationally justified—no
amount of repeated observation can guarantee that a rule inferred from such repeated observation is
true—it follows that all our scientific theories and laws are only conjectures, only tentative
hypotheses. Popper has shown that there is nothing irrational about scientific belief, as long as we
realize that our theories are only conjectures open to revision in the light of new evidence. We can
have rational preferences for some beliefs or theories over others: one theory may be preferred over
another because it has passed more severe attempts at refutation, or because it has more explanatory
power.
Popper’s principle of falsification as the criterion of scientific theories thus frees our scientific
beliefs from the fallacy of induction and allows us to learn from our mistakes by providing a means by
which false theories may be expelled from science. The requirement that scientific theories be open to
falsification provides science with a self-corrective mechanism at its very core.


Source : " Science and psychic phenomena : the fall of the house of skeptics " By Chris Carter : "The nature of science " .
 

Offline dlorde

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1441
  • Thanked: 9 times
  • ex human-biologist & software developer
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #965 on: 27/11/2013 22:16:56 »
...
tl;dr

Good old Popper - a great clarifier. I studied his work as part of my degree. Not everyone agrees with his emphasis on falsifiability, but I've always used it as the litmus test of a scientific hypothesis or theory, and an acid test for pseudoscience.

So tell us, Don. What particular theories of our current 'false materialist meinstream(sic) "scientific world view "' do you find to be unfalsifiable?

Contrariwise, how might any of the assertions you've been making about consciousness and the immaterial be falsified?
 

Offline RD

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 8134
  • Thanked: 53 times
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #966 on: 27/11/2013 23:42:18 »
I was not talking about any psychic phenomena ...

And  then you quote from a book with the title ...

" Science and psychic phenomena : the fall of the house of skeptics " By Chris Carter*

[ * Not Chris X-Files Carter . Maybe Christopher David Carter will sell a few copies via mistaken identity ].


PS are Chris [D] Carter and Rupert Sheldrake joined at the hip ? ...

Quote from: amazon.com

Parapsychology and the Skeptics: A Scientific Argument for the Existence of ESP
by Chris Carter
Foreword by Rupert Sheldrake Ph.D
« Last Edit: 28/11/2013 00:47:40 by RD »
 

Offline alancalverd

  • Global Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4729
  • Thanked: 156 times
  • life is too short to drink instant coffee
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #967 on: 28/11/2013 00:25:36 »
Quote
Popper’s principle of falsification

That old fraud KP and I received doctorates at the same ceremony, though his was honorary and mine was earned the hard way. "His" principle (it was actually taught in schools for years before he claimed to have invented it) is of falsifiability, not falsification.

Hence the definitions of science and scientific knowledge that I gave you about 38 pages ago. How sad that you only accept them from a windbag philosopher instead of a working scientist who uses the stuff every day. 
 

Offline cheryl j

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1460
  • Thanked: 1 times
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #968 on: 28/11/2013 13:40:13 »
I'm bewildered to say the least.

Don, you post a criticism of theories that make vague and therefore irrefutable claims, which are unfalsifiable and untestable. Popper criticizes theories that have no evidence, or no evidence other than carefully selected observations which ignore contradictory evidence - theories that are speculations from which no predictions follow.

And you don't see how your concept of the immaterial has every single one of the flaws he described????


« Last Edit: 28/11/2013 14:55:21 by cheryl j »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #969 on: 28/11/2013 17:56:17 »
...
tl;dr

Good old Popper - a great clarifier. I studied his work as part of my degree. Not everyone agrees with his emphasis on falsifiability, but I've always used it as the litmus test of a scientific hypothesis or theory, and an acid test for pseudoscience.

Popper is indeed a great clarifier : i do not see how his sound arguments regarding science as falsification can be controversial , to some extent .
Anyway ,what he says about Freud , Adler and marxism goes perfectly for materialism as a whole ,as i have been experiencing the latter to be ,once again .

Quote
So tell us, Don. What particular theories of our current 'false materialist meinstream(sic) "scientific world view "' do you find to be unfalsifiable?


The whole materialist mainstream "scientific world view " is unfalsifiable,simply   by taking itself for granted as the absolute truth , as a fact (science is in fact not about either facts or the truth , just about tentative conjectures or approximate knowledge )  , a materialist world view which assumes or rather believes that all is matter ,and therefore the mind is in the brain, or the mind is just brain' s activity ...which closes the door in the face of  any non-materialist world view in science .

Any scientific theories meta-pardigms paradigms or knowledge is supposed to be verifiable falsifiable ,and just conjectural , not a matter of absolute truths ,as materialism has been thinking itself to be = an absolute undisputed truth or dogma = unfalsifiable = unscientific .

Quote
Contrariwise, how might any of the assertions you've been making about consciousness and the immaterial be falsified
?

Very good question indeed :

I am inclined to believe in the following quantum theory of consciousness ,by quantum physicist Evan Harris Walker :

He thinks that the immaterial consciousness or mind does interact with the brain at the very level of electrons all the way up to controling the activity of neuro-transmitters between neural synapses :

Try to read the following on the subject very carefully , and do tell me about it :


THE OBSERVATIONAL THEORIES
We saw in the previous chapter how nothing in quantum mechanics forbids psi phenomena. Costa de
Beauregard even maintains that the theory of quantum physics virtually demands that psi phenomena
exist.3 Nobel Laureate Brian Josephson has written, “If psychic phenomena had not been found
experimentally, they might have been predicted by an imaginative theoretician.”4
Various modern physicists have gone even further, proposing theories of psi based upon quantum
mechanics. One obvious attraction of such theories is that they would account for what have been the
most problematic features of psi—its statistical nature and its seeming independence of space and
time. The most detailed of these theories so far has been based on the work of theoretical physicist
Evan Harris Walker. Since Walker’s theory of psi is an extension of his quantum mechanical theory of
consciousness, it is worthwhile to briefly review his and other quantum theories of consciousness.
All these theories follow the von Neumann/Wigner interpretation of quantum mechanics, which, as
the reader may recall, was first formulated by the mathematician John von Neumann in opposition to
the thenorthodox Copenhagen interpretation. According to quantum theory, the world before
observation exists only as pure possibility; yet when we observe the world at any level we see not a
range of possibilities but one actual state of affairs. Something is required to collapse the state vectors
of pure possibility into one actual result. The Copenhagen interpretation asserts that the presence of
any macroscopic measuring device is sufficient to collapse the state vector. But von Neumann,
following his rigorous mathematical logic wherever it would go, disagreed: the entire physical world,
including measuring devices, must obey the laws of quantum physics. Something nonphysical, not
subject to the laws of quantum mechanics, must account for the collapse of the state vector: the only
nonphysical entity in the observation process that von Neumann could think of was the consciousness
of the observer.
It is difficult to fault the logic, and decades of experimentation by Nobel-hungry physicists eager to
knock quantum theory apart has revealed not one instance of failure. The results of experiments
carried out so far indicate that not a single part of the physical world evades the quantum rules. Yet we
are aware of one nonphysical entity that carries out observations. Because according to quantum
theory the world before observation exists only as pure possibility, von Neumann and his followers—
most notably London, Bauer, and Wigner—were led inescapably to the conclusion that it is
consciousness (human or otherwise) that brings the universe of possibility into actuality.b
This brings us to the crux of the mind-body problem: What is the relationship between the mind and
the brain? The brain is a physical entity and we have no reason to suppose that it evades the rules of
quantum physics. In 1924, when quantum theory was still in its infancy, biologist Alfred Lotkas
proposed the daring conjecture that mind exerts control over the brain by modulating the occurrence
of otherwise random quantum events. Since then, our knowledge of both quantum mechanics and the
brain has increased immeasurably, and today most quantum models of consciousness place the
mechanism of mind-matter interaction at the level of the neural synapse—the tiny gap between the
electric tentacles of the nerve cells.
In 1963, Sir John Eccles received the Nobel Prize in medicine and physiology for discovering how
nerve cells communicate with each other: they do it with drugs. The synaptic gap is too wide to be
bridged by electrical signals: instead, when a nerve cell is excited, its extremities emit tiny packets of
chemicals—called neurotransmitters—that quickly transverse the gap and cause or inhibit the firing
of adjacent nerve cells. As Nick Herbert writes, “to handle the fine details of its vast informational
traffic, the human brain employs a veritable pharmacy of exotic transmitter substances.”5 Most mindaltering
drugs achieve their effects by tampering with the transmission of neurotransmitters, which
gives us important clues about the consciousness-sensitive areas of the brain.
Eccles has written about how the firing of just one “critically-poised neuron” could have a
cascading effect on activity in the brain, and he speculates that consciousness affects brain activity by
manipulating the way chemicals are released into the synaptic gap. The neural sites where packets of
chemicals are released are so tiny that quantum uncertainty may govern whether or not the release
mechanisms are activated. Eccles speculates that an immaterial mind controls these microsites in one
particular part of the brain—the premotor cortex—in order to produce voluntary behavior.
We should expect quantum uncertainty to play an even larger role in systems smaller than this, so
other quantum theories of consciousness place the mind’s role in controlling matter at smaller
locations near the synaptic gap. Berkeley physicist Henry Stapp has developed a model similar to
Eccles’s, but he places the critical juncture between mind and matter at the level of the calcium ion—
about a million times smaller than Eccles’s synaptic microsites—and essential for the operation of the
synapse. But Evan Harris Walker, who has developed the most detailed, comprehensive model of
quantum consciousness so far, places the interaction between mind and matter at the level of the
electron—almost 100,000 times less massive than the calcium ion.
Briefly, according to Walker’s model, when a synapse is excited, electrons may “tunnel” across the
synaptic gap connecting an initiating neuron with its neighbor, and because of quantum nonlocality,
may influence electrons controlling the firing of distant synapses. Walker postulates the existence of a
second nervous system operating by completely quantum rules, acting in parallel with the
conventional nervous system. The latter handles unconscious data processing, and the former allows
an immaterial mind to interact with matter by selecting which second-system quantum possibilities
become actualized. In turn, these quantum states act upon the conventional nervous system in order to
produce voluntary action. One advantage of his model is that it helps account for the unity of
conscious experience we observe despite the fact that the brain activity associated with even simple
perception is spread out over different parts of the brain.
These three theories differ regarding the precise location of mind-matter interaction, but it should
be noted that they are all clearly dualistic, in the sense that they postulate a nonphysical mind that also
exerts a real influence in the physical world.c As an adherent of the von Neumann interpretation,
Walker believes that
duality is already a part of physics. . . . The dualism enters because “observation” as it is used in quantum theory must have
properties that go beyond those that can be represented in terms of material objects interacting by way of force fields (which is
the way all of physics describes physical processes). The reason is that the observer is introduced in QM as a way to account for
state vector collapse.6
Brain scientists have generally ignored Walker’s model of consciousness, because it contains what
are considered by some to be rather unreasonable neurological assumptions.d Nevertheless, it is the
most ambitious and detailed attempt so far to relate quantum mechanics to the mind-body problem. In
common with the other models, it is based on the idea that the conscious mind may bias the collapse
of state vectors of quantum phenomena within the brain in such a way as to influence brain activity in
a desired manner. Walker bases his theory of psi upon his theory of consciousness, and in a nutshell it
is this: consciousness can collapse state vectors to a single desired outcome inside the person’s own
brain; because of the nonlocal property of quantum phenomena,e it can, on occasion, instantaneously
affect the state of another person’s brain (telepathy), another person’s body (psychic healing), or a
distant physical process (PK).
Walker’s theory is thus an extension of the original formulation of von Neumann’s interpretation,
in which observation collapses state vectors. Von Neumann’s original formulation implicitly assumed
that conscious observation has no effect on which specific value the quantum phenomena actually take
upon observation—the actual outcome was assumed to be purely random. But we have seen that the
experiments of Helmut Schmidt apparently demonstrate that human consciousness can bias the
collapse of random quantum systems in a desired direction. Yet we have also seen that the effect with
random event generators appears to be weak. Walker speculates that consciousness may exert a
stronger influence on quantum events within the brain because of its close and intimate link with this
sensitive instrument. This idea seems reasonable. After all, it is hardly surprising that the effect of
mind on the fission of atoms in the RNG experiments is very weak. We should rather wonder why
there should be any effect at all. Any such effect must inevitably be greater on biological systems,
which have presumably evolved to respond to mental influence.
Broadly similar theories of psi have been proposed by others, such as Helmut Schmidt, Robert Jahn,
and Brenda Dunne, although Walker’s is the most detailed so far. All these theories are referred to as
“observational” theories because they require observation of results in order for psi to operate. They
have sometimes been criticized on the grounds that “observation” is an ambiguous term. But Walker
defines observation simply, writing that “observation is the interaction of mind with matter” and that
“observation is the same as state selection.” One great advantage of these observational theories is
that they are formulated in mathematical terms and thus generate precise predictions that, at least in
principle, are open to testing.f
EVALUATION OF THE OBSERVATIONAL THEORIES
One of the obvious strengths of the observational theories is that they provide solid explanations of
what have been, up until recently, two of the most puzzling features of psi: its seeming independence
of distance and barriers and its apparently statistical nature. We now know that the universe allows
nonlocal effects, so reports that the operation of psi is unaffected by distance and barriers can no
longer be dismissed as contrary to the known laws of physics. The logically impeccable von Neumann
interpretation of quantum mechanics holds that events are not fully real until they are observed; the
time-displaced PK experiments support this interpretation and thereby upgrade its status from a purely
metaphysical theory to a testable, scientific one. Finally, since, according to the observational
theories, psi only operates on otherwise random phenomena by biasing probabilities, they explain why
the operation of psi seems fundamentally statistical in nature.
Theoretical physicists familiar with the experimental evidence from both physics and
parapsychology have constructed the observational theories, all within the framework of a logically
valid interpretation of quantum physics. Hyman’s desperate argument that the acceptance of psi would
require that we “abandon relativity and quantum mechanics in their current formulations”7 is thereby
shown to be nonsense. Contrast Hyman’s statement with that of theoretical physicist Costa de
Beauregard, who has written that “relativistic quantum mechanics is a conceptual scheme where
phenomena such as psychokinesis or telepathy, far from being irrational, should, on the contrary, be
expected as very rational.”8
We have seen that the observational theories result in numerous predictions, several of which
appear to be corroborated by the experimental evidence. Walker’s theory in particular is the most
testable theory of psi to come out of modern physics. It suggests many possible experiments and
makes clear predictions about what should happen. But acceptance or rejection may take some time.
Applying the theory involves complicated logic and calculation and requires that some questionable
assumptions be made. Having said that, it is fair to say that Walker’s theory is a gallant attempt to
explain psi by means of concepts consistent with modern physics, and its predictions are consistent to
some degree with much of the experimental evidence. As such, the theory appears to be a good first
approximation to the truth.
At any rate, this theory is certainly limited in that it has nothing to say about the psychological
aspects of psi performance. It is to the psychological theories that we now turn.

Source : "Science and psychic phenomena : the fall of the house of skeptics " by Chris Carter .


http://www.amazon.com/Science-Psychic-Phenomena-House-Skeptics/dp/159477451X
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #970 on: 28/11/2013 18:09:23 »
I'm bewildered to say the least.

Don, you post a criticism of theories that make vague and therefore irrefutable claims, which are unfalsifiable and untestable. Popper criticizes theories that have no evidence, or no evidence other than carefully selected observations which ignore contradictory evidence - theories that are speculations from which no predictions follow.

Go back and read that carefully , my lady :

What  faslifiable verifiable  'evidence " has materialism been providing concerning the "fact " that all is ...matter? , and hence the mind is in the brain , or the mind is just brain's activity , memory is stored in the brain ....

Materialism that tries to explain 'everything " , just in terms of physics and chemistry, including the mind thus , materialism that seems to be corroborated or rather verified by everything,and thus can be faslified by nothing , so it seems  :

See how these gate -keepers of the false materialist reductionist neo-Darwinian mainstream 'scientific world view " ,have been convinced,beyond a shadow of a doubt  ( How can the latter be achieved in science , ever ) ,  of the unfalsifiable unverifiable materialist "fact and absolute truth dogma " that they can explain everything : no scientific theory or meta or paradigm , no scientific knowledge can explain everything ,otherwise that would be just unfaslifiable stuff absolute truths dogmas , no science , the latter that's supposed to deliver just conjectural falsifiable temporary theories ,or just approximate knowledge :

http://www.amazon.com/This-Explains-Everything-Beautiful-Theories/dp/0062230174/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1385661794&sr=1-1&keywords=that+explains+everything

Quote
And you don't see how your concept of the immaterial has every single one of the flaws he described????

See the falsifiable verifiable statistical mathematical  quantum theory of consciousness by quantum physicist Evan Chris Walker , in my latest post to our dlorde , here above .
« Last Edit: 28/11/2013 18:12:31 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #971 on: 28/11/2013 18:23:28 »
Quote
Popper’s principle of falsification

That old fraud KP and I received doctorates at the same ceremony, though his was honorary and mine was earned the hard way. "His" principle (it was actually taught in schools for years before he claimed to have invented it) is of falsifiability, not falsification.

Hence the definitions of science and scientific knowledge that I gave you about 38 pages ago. How sad that you only accept them from a windbag philosopher instead of a working scientist who uses the stuff every day.

Then you do probably do not know much about either Popper's thought epistemology , or about the philosophy of science in general , the latter that's extremely relevant , especially in this time and age where an unfalsifiable unverifiable = unscientific world view such as the materialist conception of nature has been taken for granted for so long now as the "scientific world view " ,without question .

What was your definition of science again : come again : science is a process ? : what does that mean in fact ? : science is more than just that ,way more than just that vague statement of yours : read Popper : the man is cristal-clear about it.

Science is in fact not a matter of facts or truth , just a matter of verifiable unfalsifiable temporary approximate conjectures,but the current materialist mainstream false "scientific world view " has been taken for granted as the 'absolute truth " for so long now ,that anyone who would challenge its undisputed authority  would be branded as pseudo-scientific ,as  a charlatan, a heretic , or worse   .
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #972 on: 28/11/2013 18:36:00 »
I was not talking about any psychic phenomena ...

And  then you quote from a book with the title ...

I was not talking about any psychic phenomena in fact , i did that just incidently though : i have been mainly talking about the false  current mainstream materialist  "scientific world view " which believes in the unfalsifiable and unverifiable "fact " = unscientific ,that all is ...matter , and hence the mind is in the brain, the mind is just brain's activity , memory is stored in the brain ...

Why should i not quote relevant insights , even from the very dark ,ugly and terrifying heart of the devil in person ? haha , if the latter would happen to be telling  some relative  approximate conjectural  "truths " ,why not ?

Note that i am not saying that either Sheldrake, Carter or any other non-materialist thinkers ,scientists researchers ...are "devils ", no way .

Quote
" Science and psychic phenomena : the fall of the house of skeptics " By Chris Carter*

[ * Not Chris X-Files Carter . Maybe Christopher David Carter will sell a few copies via mistaken identity ].


PS are Chris [D] Carter and Rupert Sheldrake joined at the hip ? .
..

So what ? You're a very judgemental person : simplistic "reasoning " of yours in fact  .

Do you think you do know already the "absolute truth " ?: science is not about the truth , dude : you have been taking the unfalsifiable unverifiable  'scientific world view " as an absolute "truth " = that's an unscientific thing to do , simply because science is all about just approximate faslifiable verifiable knowledge or conjectures .

Quote
Quote from: amazon.com

Parapsychology and the Skeptics: A Scientific Argument for the Existence of ESP
by Chris Carter
Foreword by Rupert Sheldrake Ph.D

Great book in fact , relatively speaking, even though i haven't finished reading yet , not even remotely close thus .

http://www.amazon.com/Science-Psychic-Phenomena-House-Skeptics/dp/159477451X
« Last Edit: 28/11/2013 18:41:02 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1763
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #973 on: 28/11/2013 18:44:25 »
Induction is indeed a myth : Hume was so right   and so brilliant about rejecting induction as a logical impossibility  .

Popper's solution of  Hume's dilemma is simply ....brilliant .

I am currently  or temporarily thus  "in love " with this great thinker's thought , epistemology ,which also means that materialist scientists must abandon their unscientific search for  the "holy grail " , by abandoning their unfalsifiable unverifiable = unscientific " scientific world view =holy grail = absolute truth dogma ",by rejecting ...materialism thus  .

Popper's thought , epistemology ...are so far reaching that they can not only  help us distinguish between science and pseudo-science , but can also help us detect pseudo-science at the very heart of science as well = the false current "scientific world view " , not to mention that even some forms of pseudo-science can stumble on the "truth " somehow,sometimes ....

I can even apply some of Popper's insights , regarding the nature , genesis , status and growth evolution of ...epistemology and thus  regarding  those of human knowledge ,even to my own ...belief : very enlightening indeed ;simply because religions do also experience similar processes to those of science : they start as being revolutionary , tolerant ,open minded ....and then they end up becoming exclusive hard dogmas "absolute truths " ....some religions are more able than other ones to overcome the latter , thanks to their own core self-correcting nature though .

In short :

We are hardly in need  of such brilliant thinkers or reformers such as Karl Popper , science , religion or any other world view for that matter , cannot do without .

P.S.: Note that i am not taking Popper's thought , epistemology for granted as 'absolute truths " either ( I am sure he did not intend them to be as such,otherwise , he would be contraditcing himself  in the process  ,concerning the temporary nature of our human knowledge . ) : we need to keep on developing and evolving our own human epistemology concerning the valid sources of knowledge , their genesis , nature growth  evolution  ( RD : Do not forget to jump on the latter haha ) , concerning the very nature and growth of knowledge , especially in ...science thus .


In short :

Epistemology and hence science is an evolutionary process (dlorde : i hate to say : did i not tell you so ?  haha ) ,so, we must condemn any attempts to ossify science as to turn it into a dogma,into an 'absolute truth " , or into a secular irrational unfalsifiable unverifiable religion  ,as the materialist mainstream 'scientific world view " has been doing to science , for so long now .

Not to forget the following :

Western thought , epistemology ,values ,norms, principles ...are certainly not universal, not in the absolute sense at least , nothing is in fact , including science : major proof ? : the current false 'scientific world view " .
« Last Edit: 28/11/2013 19:17:52 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline cheryl j

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1460
  • Thanked: 1 times
    • View Profile
Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #974 on: 28/11/2013 19:52:04 »

Go back and read that carefully , my lady :

What  faslifiable verifiable  'evidence " has materialism been providing concerning the "fact " that all is ...matter? , and hence the mind is in the brain , or the mind is just brain's activity , memory is stored in the brain ....

Materialism that tries to explain 'everything " , just in terms of physics and chemistry, including the mind thus , materialism that seems to be corroborated or rather verified by everything,and thus can be faslified by nothing , so it seems  :



You're attributing a claim or goal to scientists that they do not themselves claim, and aren't even interested in - "explaining everything", or disproving the immaterial. There are about 26,000 current scientific journals that publish the results of experiments -- experiments that make specific, falsifiable predictions, just as your hero Popper says science should do. If you or someone could find a way to do the same with some aspect of the immaterial, I'm sure that one of them would them would gladly publish your results too.
« Last Edit: 28/11/2013 19:53:40 by cheryl j »
 

The Naked Scientists Forum

Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #974 on: 28/11/2013 19:52:04 »

 

SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums