Date: Mar 19, 2014 11:49 PM
Author: Robert Hansen
Subject: Re: How science shaped modern 'rejection of religion'
> BH has advanced a definition of "religious" that it means "faith in unproved beliefs?.
> JN is showing that Leibniz, holding just such beliefs (religious / unproved) came by that faith to espouse what we would call the scientific world view: that nature follows exceptionless rules and/or principles.
This was in place since time immemorial. Leibniz attributed it to god?s work. Even before it was called science, human beings were doing science. This universe is rational with no need of an explanation why (it just is) and the human mind, some of them at least, tuned into that and have been tuning into that forever. It never started as a ?belief?.
> The Davies article was making the point that the scientific world view is not obvious. We might live in a more capricious world. What got us to science was our faith, for which evidence needed to be amassed, in some set of exceptionless principles that might be over the course of time discovered by the human mind.
Fair enough description, of a premise I reject because of what I wrote above. Science (that mental process you describe below) wasn?t born of faith. In its most earliest existence (eons prior to the greeks), it wasn?t even recognized, it just was.
> So how can we distinguish between the faith that commits us to science (thinking of Catholics doing astronomy in their state-of-the-art observatory, or Teilhard de Chardin, the evolutionist Jesuit) and the faith that commits us to non-scientific thinking ala Kierkegaard? Both seem to derive equally from faith.
Same as above.
> BH's reply is that whereas "religious belief" is completely unjustified, the kind of faith that leads to scientific discovery and perhaps new synthetic judgments a priori, by pure reason, is not "belief" at all, but "mental feelings" and "mental feelings" are distinct from "beliefs?.
> According to BH's terminology, if we have some phony baloney belief that turns out to be crazy, that was by definition "a religious belief" or a "belief in general".
> "Mental feelings" on the other hand, lead to scientific discovery and rational constructs.
Check. Although the mental process (feelings) can turn out to be wrong. Just as long as it is that process.
> So, per BH's terminology, if you want to be on the side of science, make sure your feelings are really mental and not of the belief type, as the latter feelings just lead to phony baloney religion, whereas truly *mental* feelings reveal scientific truth, of the kind Leibniz possibly uncovered -- other than his believing in a god part).
I don?t see how Leibniz ?uncovered? scientific truth or science. Humankind has been tuning into science its entire existence. Replacing religious beliefs with scientific ones. Leibniz attributed the fact that the universe works like this to god. I am fine with Leibniz speaking to the order of the universe, and elevating it, but this has been an argument over my distinction between science and religion. A lot of thinking has changed since Leibniz as to the origin of this order in the universe, or if there is any sense in even bothering anymore with such a concept. It isn?t needed nor could it even exist in are universe or our frame of reference.
Still, I am impressed. Really nice focus. Who wrote this for you?:)