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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Feynman and I (19/06/18 19:39:25)
    That is an interesting Feynman statement. I have always sort of viewed the tyrannical part of philosophy as rhetoric. Both care about arguments, but philosophy cares less about beating the other side than it does about using them as a means to find truth. Rhetoric is more concerned with winning. But I suppose both are prone to misuse and not all philosophy is helpful.

    I do agree with you that the struggle of some of the early modern philosophers was imperative to the free science from religion. Spinoza for sure. Even Descartes can be read in a way that sees his philosophy as an attempt create a space for physical science to coexist with religion--as strange as his argument is otherwise. Spinoza's solution is much more elegant that way. It is telling how much religion can delay progress or even the status quo (see the delay between the Antikythera mechanism and the start of modern clockwork again).

    You're right that religion is indeed gaining prominence over thought for dominance in general. Here it seems like an apathetic malaise has settled over people, so any group that has beliefs and the energy to fight for them will gradually increase in influence simply because enough people do not care to fight against it. It is slipping perhaps because people do not recognize (or think about) what may be lost as a result.

    I wonder if part of the problem is that most people are no longer able to understand how technology works (in its details). 100-120 years ago, most people could probably take apart anything and figure out how it worked. Whereas now most things (unless one is really inclined), are beyond most people's understanding because of the level of background needed for anything other than an analogy. It's easier (less work) to just ignore how it works than just to use it. The curious ones still figure out how it works. Distractions reign, and because of the general apathy it allows religious thinking to regain a foothold. It seems like there is a general decrease in interest in the natural world in favour of ones of human creation.

    Science provides a better explanation for life, but it doesn't provide a meaning for it. Religion claims to have such a meaning and that appeals to a lot of people who don't want to consider that life could be nothing more than a beautiful happenstance of nature. Without considering why it is that they think life should have some kind of meaning. That is a domain that science can't really cover. One can find meaning in doing science, but one can't scientifically find the meaning of life--if that makes sense. The options then strike me as either ignore the problem entirely (which seems to be what most people do), turn to philosophy (which doesn't have definitive answers but sort of equips one to deal with that fact), or take up religion (which claims to have answers but only by replacing thought with faith) without thinking about the impact that may have on quality of life in general.

    I do recall that original sin was taking a bite out of the fruit from the tree of knowledge. I have always found that story strange, because to know that eating the fruit was wrong presupposes that one already had the knowledge gained from the act.

    That's a fascinating article, it seems similar to the hypothesis that life originated in geothermal vents, albeit with slightly different circumstances. I admit my knowledge of biochemistry could be much better than it is, but how does that kind of setting compare to the experiments used to make RNA/RNA precursors in laboratory settings--beyond the obvious vent vs lab?

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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Feynman and I