A strange perspective on the practice of science

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A strange perspective on the practice of science


Quote:Defending a belief in physicalism should also be considered an exaggeration, a non-scientific speculation, if Vickers’ argument is to remain internally consistent.

To avoid this rather semantic issue, the panpsychist and idealist arguments can be formulated as follows: insofar as it is okay to believe in physicalism, we have better reasons to believe in idealism or panpsychism instead.

Quote:...unlike Vickers, I have been a professional scientist for many years and know the community fairly well, having worked in places like CERN and the Philips Research Laboratories (where the Casimir Effect of Quantum Field Theory was discovered). Even during my high-tech years, I have continued to move in advanced science circles, as my job entailed creating new technologies based on the latest scientific developments. To this day, in my philosophy role, I collaborate closely with well over a dozen active scientists and contribute regularly to science magazines such as Scientific American, which publishes my material because, apparently, it isn’t “repugnant” at all to their readership.

Mind you, my proposals are unscientific in the sense that they do not constitute a scientific theory. But they are not unscientific in the sense that—as acknowledged by Vickers himself—they “don’t contradict the relevant scientific claims.” Scientists, by and large, understand this; they are not just a bunch of prejudiced fanatics.
Quote:Indeed, arguing for one’s preferred interpretation is core to the field of foundations of physics. It’s what a lot of those folks do. Chris Fuchs dedicates his career to arguing for an interpretation called ‘QBism’. Carlo Rovelli is publicly associated with the relational interpretation, even though lately he has been focusing on loop quantum gravity. Henry Stapp—a living legend of quantum theory who should command the most profound respect from us all, and with whom I have had the distinguished honor of co-authoring a Scientific American article—defends an idealist version of the orthodox Copenhagen interpretation. The list goes on. The debate that ensues is how the field progresses. If Vickers thinks that defending a particular interpretation is misleading and constitutes a distortion of science, then the daily scientific practice in foundations of physics is guilty of both. Vickers’ contentions betray a surprising lack of familiarity with how basic science is actually done.
'Historically, we may regard materialism as a system of dogma set up to combat orthodox dogma...Accordingly we find that, as ancient orthodoxies disintegrate, materialism more and more gives way to scepticism.'

- Bertrand Russell

(This post was last modified: 2020-12-07, 07:50 PM by Sciborg_S_Patel.)
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