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Saiyan300Warrior

Could we be wrong about everything?

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What if there existed an alien race out there that saw the world and universe in a different way and so to them everything was different. And they had cool super powers to move stuff with  simple a thought or fly at the speed of light or even faster. Some people view aliens as possibly simple creatures similar to humans (have eyes, big green head and green skinny body, ET lookin' mfker" which is understandable because we would most likely want to find relations with such creatures if they existed. Even the way I am describing them now could be even alien to them like them being able to think similarly to humans or describing them as creatures when they could exist in a much more different way we expected. Maybe also take it like this, what if our way of life, our way of thinking, our bodies and earth was like a spec of dust to their existence?

Another thing I am trying to say is due to the way our bodies are made and how the brain is made and functions are we not limited in that way to how we can comprehend the world around us/universe. The fact that we are built a certain way, we understand some stuff about us through this method and structural system of thinking and communicating called language and mathematics and science etc... that we developed ourselves, does that not make limited in way to everything based on what we decide is true or not? This can get deeper into philosophy if we explain the notion of "Truth" but for me it is simple, man simply decides what is true or not, what exists is a self and to the self is what perception falls to... The only true knowledge one can attain in life is the knowledge of their self don't you think? Philosophical question and ending.

 

- Hope you all have a great day :) - 

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In a way we are limited by our own existence.
Consider J DeLancie's words as 'Q', at the end of the last episode of Star Treck:TNG ...

Q : You just don't get it, do you, Jean-Luc? The trial never ends. We wanted to see if you had the ability to expand your mind and your horizons. And for one brief moment, you did.
Capt. Picard : When I realized the paradox.
Q : Exactly. For that one fraction of a second, you were open to options you had never considered. *That* is the exploration that awaits you. Not mapping stars and studying nebulae, but charting the unknown possibilities of existence.

Maybe in 400 years ...

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What we can know is  limited by the apparatus available to us, which includes our senses and what we can engineer.

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2 hours ago, MigL said:

In a way we are limited by our own existence.
Consider J DeLancie's words as 'Q', at the end of the last episode of Star Treck:TNG ...

Q : You just don't get it, do you, Jean-Luc? The trial never ends. We wanted to see if you had the ability to expand your mind and your horizons. And for one brief moment, you did.
Capt. Picard : When I realized the paradox.
Q : Exactly. For that one fraction of a second, you were open to options you had never considered. *That* is the exploration that awaits you. Not mapping stars and studying nebulae, but charting the unknown possibilities of existence.

Maybe in 400 years ...

One of my favourite episodes! I truly loved how philosophically deep TNG was. DS9 was full of it too and was vastly underappreciated in my opinion. That being said, I still prefer Picard to Sisko but both are preferable to Kirk.

2 hours ago, Saiyan300Warrior said:

This can get deeper into philosophy if we explain the notion of "Truth" but for me it is simple, man simply decides what is true or not, what exists is a self and to the self is what perception falls to... The only true knowledge one can attain in life is the knowledge of their self don't you think? Philosophical question and ending.

Humanity would like to think that I'm sure. Humanity can just be wrong though and it's not really fair if we view it in a way where we are our own judges of how much "Truth" there is to know. It's just man playing a game with himself.

I don't believe truth is relative to man at all. I believe, Truth is relative to context. We can find truth within a lesser context of reachable knowledge but there will always be things we are incapable of knowing due to the visible context of existence that is available to us. In some ways, even a dog has access to contextual information about the universe that we cannot due to physiological differences in our sensory capacities. I cannot smell what a dog can smell. If a dog could talk, I'd not be able to understand a word he says as I am completely lacking in the qualitative context of actually being and existing as a dog. 

If we look at it purely through the lens of what we can know collectively, that still highlights problems in an individuals ability to be able to apply every ounce of our collective knowledge. It is only together that we can overcome our individual weaknesses and truly delve deep into the mechanics of structural context. Collaboration and unity are needed now, more than ever, just to be able to survive long enough to figure out more about how existence works.

 

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2 hours ago, Saiyan300Warrior said:

Another thing I am trying to say is due to the way our bodies are made and how the brain is made and functions are we not limited in that way to how we can comprehend the world around us/universe. The fact that we are built a certain way, we understand some stuff about us through this method and structural system of thinking and communicating called language and mathematics and science etc... that we developed ourselves, does that not make limited in way to everything based on what we decide is true or not?

We are almost certainly limited this way, but that’s why we build instruments. They can be sensitive to signals that humans aren’t 

 

2 hours ago, Saiyan300Warrior said:

This can get deeper into philosophy if we explain the notion of "Truth" but for me it is simple, man simply decides what is true or not, what exists is a self and to the self is what perception falls to... The only true knowledge one can attain in life is the knowledge of their self don't you think? Philosophical question and ending.-

Science is not the search for truth. Science is our attempt to discern how nature behaves, because behavior is what we are able to test.

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2 minutes ago, swansont said:

Science is not the search for truth. Science is our attempt to discern how nature behaves, because behavior is what we are able to test.

This confuses me a little. Is this not the same as saying that science is attempting to discern the truth of the natural behaviour of existence? Is science an inquiry into how nature behaves, why nature behaves the way it does, or both?

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Just now, MSC said:

This confuses me a little. Is this not the same as saying that science is attempting to discern the truth of the natural behaviour of existence? Is science an inquiry into how nature behaves, why nature behaves the way it does, or both?

It can be both, but science works by making models. There is no way to test if these models represent the truth. Only that they properly predict/explain behavior.

In physics, we have models that use abstractions which are only calculational conveniences. No contention that they are real. Phonons, for example. If phonons don’t actually exist, they can’t represent the “truth”

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9 hours ago, swansont said:

It can be both, but science works by making models. There is no way to test if these models represent the truth. Only that they properly predict/explain behavior.

In physics, we have models that use abstractions which are only calculational conveniences. No contention that they are real. Phonons, for example. If phonons don’t actually exist, they can’t represent the “truth”

That's really interesting! You could almost say the same about language to be honest. The word "Electron" by itself could not tell you anything about what an electron is, or what it is like, if you don't already know, anymore than the word "Dog" can tell you what a dog is or is like, if you've never seen one.

Words and letters themselves are also abstractions we use for expressive contextual convenience. We can go a stop further with "General relativity" being a linguistic abstraction of a mathematical model abstraction, meant to describe what might be the truth. 

Did I phrase all of that right? Sorry if this got a bit off topic, I should probably copy this to my what words mean thread. 

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@swansontSo to you, as a scientist I assume, do you think it is right to say that science is "mans interpretation of the universe".

 

Edited by Saiyan300Warrior
cutting out words for compaction

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6 hours ago, Saiyan300Warrior said:

@swansontSo to you, as a scientist I assume, do you think it is right to say that science is "mans interpretation of the universe".

 

Human, and that’s only a crude summary, since there’s detail that “interpretation” doesn’t necessarily cover. Philosophy and religion are also interpretations of the universe, but these are not science.

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26 minutes ago, swansont said:

Human, and that’s only a crude summary, since there’s detail that “interpretation” doesn’t necessarily cover. Philosophy and religion are also interpretations of the universe, but these are not science.

True, but in philosophy, especially if you're an empiricist, you have to pay attention to scientific facts. Philosophy and physics disagreements, justified disagreement, usually occur between fact and fact interpretation. Even then it's only really reviews of logic and semantics than any other branch of philosophy.

A famous example; Interpretations of the theoretical Nothingness prior to inflation. 

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3 minutes ago, MSC said:

True, but in philosophy, especially if you're an empiricist, you have to pay attention to scientific facts.

What if I don't care?

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10 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

What if I don't care?

Then you're a Cartesian Skeptic I guess. Good luck with that.

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1 minute ago, MSC said:

Then you're a Cartesian Skeptic I guess.

Why?

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1 minute ago, dimreepr said:

Why?

Because you'd be doubting all sense data about the external world including your thoughts, feelings, sensory data of your body. You'd doubt your own consciousness. 

If scientific facts don't matter or aren't worth caring about, then you're a type of Skeptic. 

However, it's a precarious situation to be in and a bit of a logic trap. Proving that the Cartesian Skeptics account of reality is true is only one side of it, proving you're a legitimate Cartesian Skeptic is the other side and is next to impossible.

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10 minutes ago, MSC said:

Because you'd be doubting all sense data about the external world including your thoughts, feelings, sensory data of your body. You'd doubt your own consciousness. 

If scientific facts don't matter or aren't worth caring about, then you're a type of Skeptic. 

However, it's a precarious situation to be in and a bit of a logic trap. Proving that the Cartesian Skeptics account of reality is true is only one side of it, proving you're a legitimate Cartesian Skeptic is the other side and is next to impossible.

Meh...

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On 10/9/2020 at 5:29 PM, swansont said:

We are almost certainly limited this way, but that’s why we build instruments. They can be sensitive to signals that humans aren’t 

That's a profound truth.  If we were dependent solely on our limited human senses,  we wouldn't know much about the Universe.

It's only by building instruments, such as telescopes, microscopes, and spectroscopes,  that we have increased our knowledge.

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9 hours ago, MSC said:

True, but in philosophy, especially if you're an empiricist, you have to pay attention to scientific facts. Philosophy and physics disagreements, justified disagreement, usually occur between fact and fact interpretation. Even then it's only really reviews of logic and semantics than any other branch of philosophy.

A famous example; Interpretations of the theoretical Nothingness prior to inflation. 

And?

Having some similarities or overlap doesn’t make them the same thing. They’re still different disciplines.

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26 minutes ago, swansont said:

And?

Having some similarities or overlap doesn’t make them the same thing. They’re still different disciplines.

I never said they were the same thing? 

I was simply highlighting your point that science and philosophy are not the same thing, and expanding and clarifying to others that you didn't mean this meant there was no overlap, similarities and interdisciplinary approaches. Analytical philosophy for example can be fairly scientific in it's approach and there are areas of philosophy where experiments can be devised to strengthen arguments with scientific data. 

I personally see the relationship between Science and Philosophy as symbiotic, mutually beneficial. The reason why relates to OPs thread.

Could we be wrong about everything? Perhaps but I think not, I think we are probably right about some things, there are hurdles to us knowing what we know with complete certainty but I believe there are things to be objectively right about whether we know it or not. Due to the positive feedback loop between science and philosophy. 

Good philosophy is stagnant without good premises with which to philosophise about.

Good science is stagnant without novel and counterintuitive interpretations of the good logical premises it provides to excite the imagination of scientist and philosopher alike. 

By some interpretations of what it means to be either, A scientist is a specialist natural philosopher. Some philosophers can be thought of as a type of metascientist that in some ways can function like a contructive critic or opposition to science. 

The thing is, a lot of philosophers would disagree with that and it's one of the reasons I don't particularly get along well with most of the rest. 

In terms of student development, I always preferred the concept-centric approach of science vs the person-centric approach of philosophy. I grew up wanting to be a physicist but stumbled onto philosophy after being rejected from a STEM course years ago based on a biology teachers opinion that I wouldn't be capable of obtaining a PhD. 

This matters to the topic at hand in the following way; Yes, we might be wrong about some things, but there is every reason to have faith that we will figure that out together and be all the better for it. Due to tje diversity of problem solving methods being applied to existence through science and philosophy.

Sure, they are different sports. That doesn't mean we can't root for the others team. :)

 

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2 hours ago, swansont said:

And?

Having some similarities or overlap doesn’t make them the same thing. They’re still different disciplines.

Do you think that "philosophers" are just  highly intelligent people who can't do maths?

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3 minutes ago, Charles 3781 said:

Do you think that "philosophers" are just  highly intelligent people who can't do maths?

You should start your own thread if you wish to explore this off-topic topic 

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7 minutes ago, iNow said:

You should start your own thread if you wish to explore this off-topic topic 

Seconded, even though I'd love to tackle it.

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8 hours ago, Charles 3781 said:

Do you think that "philosophers" are just  highly intelligent people who can't do maths?

WTF does this have to do with anything?

10 hours ago, MSC said:

I never said they were the same thing? 

And yet you gave an example of similarities, which is pointless as a rebuttal of my statement, and also does not buttress my statement.

It only makes sense to make that observation if you are trying to say that philosophy and science are pretty much the same thing. Unless the point was to just go off-topic. 

10 hours ago, MSC said:

I was simply highlighting your point that science and philosophy are not the same thing, and expanding and clarifying to others that you didn't mean this meant there was no overlap, similarities and interdisciplinary approaches. Analytical philosophy for example can be fairly scientific in it's approach and there are areas of philosophy where experiments can be devised to strengthen arguments with scientific data. 

The overlap isn’t the salient part for the point of discussion. So this ends up as a distraction.

 

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3 hours ago, swansont said:

And yet you gave an example of similarities, which is pointless as a rebuttal of my statement, and also does not buttress my statement.

It only makes sense to make that observation if you are trying to say that philosophy and science are pretty much the same thing. Unless the point was to just go off-topic. 

The point is to answer OPs questions in the general philosophy section of this forum. The point is to collaborate to do that. 

I'm not trying to reject your statement that they aren't the same thing. 

I'm sorry for upsetting you. 

I really don't think your second statement is fair either. Why would I want to take us off topic? Why are you taking me out of context and ignoring the parts where I explain why this is pertinent to the topic of the thread?

Really confused.

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21 hours ago, MSC said:

The point is to answer OPs questions in the general philosophy section of this forum.

Sometimes we, philosopher's, overthink things...

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