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Scientism

tahir.imanov
Posts: 272
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11/2/2013 8:31:53 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Scientism is the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the natural sciences are the only source of genuine factual knowledge and, in particular, that they alone can yield true knowledge about man and society.

Is the statement above TRUE?
This is red.
Quatermass
Posts: 166
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11/2/2013 8:33:56 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/2/2013 8:31:53 PM, tahir.imanov wrote:
Scientism is the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the natural sciences are the only source of genuine factual knowledge and, in particular, that they alone can yield true knowledge about man and society.

Is the statement above TRUE?

You owe your entire modern way of life to science and the scientific method.
Poetaster
Posts: 587
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11/2/2013 8:35:14 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Yes, that is basically the definition of scientism, so the statement is true.
"The book you are looking for hasn't been written yet. What you are looking for you are going to have to find yourself, it's not going to be in a book..." -Sidewalker
Wnope
Posts: 6,924
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11/2/2013 8:46:22 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/2/2013 8:31:53 PM, tahir.imanov wrote:
Scientism is the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the natural sciences are the only source of genuine factual knowledge and, in particular, that they alone can yield true knowledge about man and society.

Is the statement above TRUE?

Only if you define "knowledge" as pertaining solely to material objects or states of affairs.

But how can induction explain logical deduction?
Dragonfang
Posts: 1,122
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11/3/2013 4:56:44 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
Can you scientifically prove that statement? It is a self-defeating statement as it uses (bad) logic. Induction and empirical generalization cannot have absolute truths.

Science necessarily depends on other forms of truths. Science cannot prove "If P implies Q, and it is P, then it is Q" or "1+1=2". Yet, it depends on them. It cannot address historical truths, moral truths, or political truths.
To use science, you must believe in assumptions that cannot be scientifically proven.

It is an amazing method with potentially extremely high degree of accuracy, especially at determining cause-effect relations and properties of material objects. But we can't neglect the existence of other methods that allows us to better understand our reality, and actually use science.
FREEDO
Posts: 21,057
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11/3/2013 2:12:04 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/2/2013 8:35:14 PM, Poetaster wrote:
Yes, that is basically the definition of scientism, so the statement is true.

23 FREEDO points
GRAND POOBAH OF DDO

fnord
Citrakayah
Posts: 1,500
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11/3/2013 5:50:05 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/2/2013 8:31:53 PM, tahir.imanov wrote:
Scientism is the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the natural sciences are the only source of genuine factual knowledge and, in particular, that they alone can yield true knowledge about man and society.

Is the statement above TRUE?

Well, I would certainly say that it's the best, most accurate way. I mean, someone could learn something by anecdote, it just wouldn't be as good.
slo1
Posts: 4,314
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11/4/2013 8:38:25 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/2/2013 8:31:53 PM, tahir.imanov wrote:
Scientism is the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the natural sciences are the only source of genuine factual knowledge and, in particular, that they alone can yield true knowledge about man and society.

Is the statement above TRUE?

I would not use the word "source" as it implies that scientism creates. Scientism discovers and confirms knowledge to the highest degree of confidence available, which is at least better than any other method out there.

You can gain knowledge in many different fashions, but scientism puts controls over the observations so one has an ability to judge the correctness of the conclusions. Just think about all the incorrect conclusions that people make in day to day life because the scientism is not used when formulating an opinion.

Scientism is not perfect, but it allows for an incorrect conclusion to be replaced with another conclusion or hypothesis.

With that said I would revamp your sentence to this: (it needs a little word smithing)

Scientism is the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the natural sciences are best methods to most accurately obtain and catalog facts of the physical world because other methods have more risk in generating erroneous conclusions which less likely to be updated or corrected than when using the scientific method.
Poetaster
Posts: 587
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11/4/2013 11:36:03 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/4/2013 8:38:25 AM, slo1 wrote:
Scientism is the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the natural sciences are best methods to most accurately obtain and catalog facts of the physical world because other methods have more risk in generating erroneous conclusions which less likely to be updated or corrected than when using the scientific method.

Upon accepting your definition of scientism, the statement above remains true whether or not scientism is true. The OP does the same thing.
"The book you are looking for hasn't been written yet. What you are looking for you are going to have to find yourself, it's not going to be in a book..." -Sidewalker
slo1
Posts: 4,314
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11/4/2013 1:00:05 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/4/2013 11:36:03 AM, Poetaster wrote:
At 11/4/2013 8:38:25 AM, slo1 wrote:
Scientism is the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the natural sciences are best methods to most accurately obtain and catalog facts of the physical world because other methods have more risk in generating erroneous conclusions which less likely to be updated or corrected than when using the scientific method.

Upon accepting your definition of scientism, the statement above remains true whether or not scientism is true. The OP does the same thing.

I would have to disagree. The OP's definition states that scientism is the only way to gain true knowledge. One can observe something, not test the observation or follow any of the tenets of the the scientific process and just be lucky that his conclusion is the truth. In other words one can stumble upon the truth.

That leads to my definition that implies that there are other ways to find the truth, but the scientism yields the highest probability of avoiding errors. (false positives or false negatives)
Poetaster
Posts: 587
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11/4/2013 2:06:47 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/4/2013 1:00:05 PM, slo1 wrote:
At 11/4/2013 11:36:03 AM, Poetaster wrote:
At 11/4/2013 8:38:25 AM, slo1 wrote:
Scientism is the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the natural sciences are best methods to most accurately obtain and catalog facts of the physical world because other methods have more risk in generating erroneous conclusions which less likely to be updated or corrected than when using the scientific method.

Upon accepting your definition of scientism, the statement above remains true whether or not scientism is true. The OP does the same thing.

I would have to disagree. The OP's definition states that scientism is the only way to gain true knowledge. One can observe something, not test the observation or follow any of the tenets of the the scientific process and just be lucky that his conclusion is the truth. In other words one can stumble upon the truth.

That leads to my definition that implies that there are other ways to find the truth, but the scientism yields the highest probability of avoiding errors. (false positives or false negatives)

Describing a position does not assert the correctness of that position. My point is not to dispute your description, but to draw attention to the fact that the statement issued by it doesn't even assert the truth of scientism itself. If that wasn't its design, then please forgive my act of socratic harassment here.

But otherwise, the OP itself would be commiting a similar cross-wiring, because it amounts to the question: "Is this above definition of scientism correct?" But I think he really wants to ask: "Is scientism correct?" I am pushing this point because the first sign of ill-concieved inquiry is the asking of questions which do not even further that inquiry.

To be sure, we can discuss both the definition of scientism and the correctness of scientism, but let us first discriminate between these things.
"The book you are looking for hasn't been written yet. What you are looking for you are going to have to find yourself, it's not going to be in a book..." -Sidewalker
SubterFugitive
Posts: 255
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11/4/2013 7:34:15 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Starting with Slo1's slightly more sophisticated definition, that,

inductive methods of the natural sciences are the best methods to most accurately obtain and catalog facts of the physical world because other methods have more risk in generating erroneous conclusions which is less likely to be updated or corrected than when using the scientific method.

... still requires abandoning many higher order disciplines on which science is built, thereby distorting science in the process: simply, you don't use what's less basic methods to prove more basic methods, like deduction and logic.

Induction has huge problems associated with it and it's only been until very recently that Bayesian models have begun to answer those problems, but only at the cost of abandoning the notion of "objective probability" when it comes to the so called prior probabilities. Modern Bayesians opt for the "subjective probability" pinning any sort of reliable inference on the prior "degrees of confidence" that a scientist has.

Scientism is passe, it's stuck in the old a naive form of logical empiricism. Moreover it can't account for the sociology of science, nor can it account for itself as a metaphysic, since it wold be circular. These are just some of the problems that I'm aware of when it comes to scientism. (Though it's propagandized as the obtained holy grail of knowledge on the internet education!)

It's also false that "you owe your entire modern way of life to science and the scientific method."

Sure engineering feats have been accomplished for the rich and middle class but we still have conveniences that aren't due to the methods of science. Nor are such conveniences as far reaching than those who aren't growing up in a Christianized suburbia would like to acknowledge.

Also what method is used to determined that the methods of scientific induction (whatever that is) is "the best, most accurate way" and that all other attempts at knowledge are anecdotal? This is just such a fanciful claim it's nearly not worth taking seriously.

How does "Scientism discover and confirm knowledge to the highest degree of confidence available? What's inherent in science that allows or such a claim? Recall the logical problems with induction in general.

Lastly, any imposed "controls" over observations are dictated themselves by a theory laden set of background assumptions about what's relevant to the observation. So it's false that one has an "objective" ability to judge the correctness of the conclusions in the way suggested.
Poetaster
Posts: 587
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11/4/2013 8:19:14 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Look, none but the crudest of people (in which case we may dismiss them) or the most naive (in which case we may forgive them) would actually identify their epistemological view as "scientism". In fact, the very term has its origins as a pejorative; it isn't really in circulation as a self-assigned name, but instead as a dysphemism used by critics of the exclusionary opinions which they attribute to over-zealous scientists and other philosophers at large. Refuting "scientism" is easy because it was made to be refuted.
"The book you are looking for hasn't been written yet. What you are looking for you are going to have to find yourself, it's not going to be in a book..." -Sidewalker
SubterFugitive
Posts: 255
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11/4/2013 8:39:09 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 11/4/2013 8:19:14 PM, Poetaster wrote:
Look, none but the crudest of people (in which case we may dismiss them) or the most naive (in which case we may forgive them) would actually identify their epistemological view as "scientism". In fact, the very term has its origins as a pejorative; it isn't really in circulation as a self-assigned name, but instead as a dysphemism used by critics of the exclusionary opinions which they attribute to over-zealous scientists and other philosophers at large. Refuting "scientism" is easy because it was made to be refuted.

It would've been cruel to challenge folks to a debate on scientism without telling them all of this in a forumn.. no doubt someone would be up for the challenge still!