Category Archives: Philosophy
A vegan Green explained to me over Christmas why eating eggs is bad. The problem, it seems, is that poultry bred for egg-laying is sexed at a day old, and the males, being non-productive, are mostly culled for animal feeding or fertilizer. This denies them the right to a meaningful life, which cannot be justified on animal welfare terms. Ergo eating eggs is immoral.
The title of this blog could refer to a number of things I’ve discussed here over the years. It could mean the fact that science is entirely a human activity, which could be summarised as asking the near-infinite realm of nature particular questions of human interest, to which it will return equally particular and incomplete answers. Or it could refer to the mysterious effects of mind on quantum events. But in fact in this post it’s about something else: providence.
My attention was drawn to an important, but rather predictably neglected, 2004 article How science makes environmental controversies worse, by Daniel Sarewitz (Environmental Science & Policy 7 (2004) 385–403). It’s essential reading.
Chasing up, for interest, references to the 1908 “Tunguska Event” (now most commonly thought to be a meteroric or cometary air-burst), I came across this recent piece in Physorg.
Returning to my long thread on science in the media over at Peaceful Science, at one stage the accusations of irrational climate denialism were expressed, by a classics graduate, no less, thus: This is the language of the science denialist. Which anti-science cause will you champion next, chiropractic and homeopathy?
You may or may not have seen the following sports awareness test on YouTube. If not you can check your skills:
George Berkeley is most famous for his immaterialist view of reality, which is nicely, if incompletely, summed up in Monsignor Ronald Knox’s limerick:
In my last post I drew on George Berkeley in the context of probability theory, to show how western thought’s tendency to make abstractions from reality actually leads to a misleading view of the world. The generalisations of science are particularly prone to the reification of abstract notions.
I’ve been dipping into George Berkeley’s philosophy recently, mainly because his mind-only view of reality resonates with some other thinkers whose ideas on the matter of matter have impressed me over the years, such as Arthur Eddington, Werner Heisenberg and William Dembski.
A quick thought here, based on a heads-up to me on Peaceful Science on a thread that, for some reason, doesn’t give me the ability to reply. No matter, because I have more space to reply here.