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Sat Feb 21, 2015, 07:02 PM

 

What Things Really Exist?



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Arrow 49 replies Author Time Post
Reply What Things Really Exist? (Original post)
stone space Feb 2015 OP
Jim__ Feb 2015 #1
stone space Feb 2015 #12
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #2
cleanhippie Feb 2015 #3
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #4
edhopper Feb 2015 #5
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #6
stone space Feb 2015 #7
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #9
edhopper Feb 2015 #8
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #10
edhopper Feb 2015 #11
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #13
edhopper Feb 2015 #14
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #15
edhopper Feb 2015 #16
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #17
edhopper Feb 2015 #18
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #20
edhopper Feb 2015 #22
Warren Stupidity Feb 2015 #25
stone space Feb 2015 #19
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #21
Warren Stupidity Feb 2015 #24
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #29
Warren Stupidity Feb 2015 #30
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #33
Warren Stupidity Feb 2015 #34
Curmudgeoness Feb 2015 #35
Warren Stupidity Feb 2015 #36
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #43
Warren Stupidity Feb 2015 #48
Post removed Feb 2015 #26
Lordquinton Feb 2015 #37
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #38
Lordquinton Feb 2015 #39
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #41
edhopper Feb 2015 #40
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #42
edhopper Feb 2015 #46
AtheistCrusader Feb 2015 #23
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #28
Android3.14 Feb 2015 #31
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #32
Android3.14 Feb 2015 #44
NYC_SKP Feb 2015 #45
Android3.14 Feb 2015 #47
Warren Stupidity Feb 2015 #49
trotsky Feb 2015 #27

Response to stone space (Original post)

Sat Feb 21, 2015, 07:47 PM

1. Here's one version of Penrose's diagram of the 3 worlds.

[center]?w=640[/center]

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Response to Jim__ (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 10:29 PM

12. I think he's being overly generous to...

 

...both the mental world and the physical world for the sake of symmetry. (He says as much at one point.)

It's all math. That's all there is. That's all there ever was

Maybe I should start calling myself a New Age Pythagorean?

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Response to stone space (Original post)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 05:33 PM

2. God, Grace, and Gravity.

 

All are, in the end, accepted or rejected based on similar sets of assumptions.

All defy deep explanation and are only, arguably, "provable" by measure of a specific (though variable) set of instructions and assumptions.

Scientists admit that they most of their explanations for the most challenging scientific phenomena are really just best guesses based on observations and popularly accepted assumptions.

Is light matter or energy or both? They aren't sure. What the fuck magnets? Don't really know.

It's really not that different from the acceptance and dissemination of many religious dogmata.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #2)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 06:53 PM

3. I absolutely LOVE ignorance on public display.




Ask these folks if they "aren't sure" or "don't really know" about magnets, light, and energy.

http://home.web.cern.ch/about

http://home.web.cern.ch/about/engineering/pulling-together-superconducting-electromagnets






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Response to cleanhippie (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 08:17 PM

4. You don't say!

 

You love ignorance!

That's a very dandy hobby to have, loving ignorance.

Unfortunately, it doesn't equip a thoughtful person very well to have a discussion about the mysteries of science.

If you have credentials, I could introduce you to a discussion board where we can continue the conversation with some active and retired Lawrence Livermore National Lab scientists.

The best conversations, honestly, are the ones in which we all admit that we don't know everything about everything, or even everything about any thing.

But you might prefer that other interest you have.

Nice article, by the way, about the LHC components. If you haven't been there, you've got to go.

If you are ever in Palo Alto, I'll set you up with a SLAC tour, Stanford has big magnets, too!

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #4)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 08:21 PM

5. Can you demonstrate some tests

That will show the attributes of God and Grace the way we can with Gravity.
Also the effects on Universe by God and Grace, the way we can with Gravity.

Grace is such a bullshit Christian concept anyway. Pious nonsense.

Not knowing everything is not the same as knowing nothing.

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Response to edhopper (Reply #5)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 09:29 PM

6. You've demonstrated your closed mind with "Grace is such a bullshit Christian concept".

 

I didn't mean grace the Christian way.

I meant grace in the aesthetic sense, more at "beauty".

Despite your seeming predisposition to shit on any examples, I'll happily indulge you.

Various religions offer explanations for the origins of life on Earth, and science offers theories but really doesn't know.

Ditto for the beginning of time. Big Bang Theory.

It's just a theory.

And, gravity, one of God's tools that keeps the elements of our solar system, galaxy, and universe in perpetual balance.

Go ahead and ask one of your scientist friends why bodies (with mass) are attracted to one another and they'll say "gravity".

Then ask what gravity is and they'll say, "well, things are attracted to one another", and they'll be able to provide some ways to measure and quantify this phenomenon, but they can't really explain the mechanism by which gravity works.

The faithful, however, can say with certainty that the Creator made gravity.

To keep shit from flying all over, well, creation!

What else do you want to know?

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #6)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 09:35 PM

7. I'm no physicist by any means, but...

 

...but my understanding is that gravity is supposedly somehow related to curvature.

Not sure what happens when quantum mechanics enters the picture.

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Response to stone space (Reply #7)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 09:48 PM

9. Quantum mechanics was an outcome of the failure of Newtonian physics to explain atomic particles.

 

^^^oversimplified subject line.

You might have heard the expression, "finding new answers leads to having new questions" or similar.

This is like that; they still don't have the answers but are perpetually building conceptual models to explain phenomena.

This might be helpful:

To answer this question, one must first understand how it came to be.

When it was discovered in the early twentieth century that Newtonian physics, although it had stood unchallenged for hundreds of years, failed to answer basic questions about time and space, such as 'Is the universe infinite?' or 'Is time eternal?', a new basis for physics was needed.

This lead to the development of Quantum Theory by Bohr, Schrödinger and Heisenberg and Relativity Theory by Einstein. This was the first step in the development of a new basis for physics. Both theories, however are incomplete, and are limited in their abilities to answer many questions. Quantum Physics deals with the behaviour of very small objects, such as atoms, why they do not disintegrate as Newtonian Physics wanted. The theory of Relativity, on the other hand deals with much large scales, celestial bodies and others.

Both theories fail when confronted to the other's 'domain', and are therefore limited in their ability to describe the universe. One must unify these theories, make them compatible with one another. The resulting theory would be able to describe the behavior of the universe, from quarks and atoms to entire galaxies. This is the quantum theory of gravity.

--the explanation continues and is fairly comprehensible, considering the topic: http://www.physlink.com/Education/AskExperts/ae620.cfm

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #6)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 09:45 PM

8. Grace is a bullshit Christian concept.

But I am sorry for assuming you meant it in that way.

Other than that, you ignored my guestion about demonstrating attributes and effects.



I must bookmark that comment about the certainty of God.

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Response to edhopper (Reply #8)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 09:58 PM

10. I'm unfamiliar with the Christian application of the term "grace".

 

It may well be a bullshit Christian Concept, like "the Trinity".

Possibly, if you read over my comments at a later time, you'll see my point.

Many concepts in science are matters of faith, they exist as theories, conditioned by supporting facts and suppositions but open to challenge and revision as new concepts are developed.
---Other concepts are pretty damned solid, like fire creates heat which can change the state of matter (boil water).

In religion, the same is true. Many concepts are accepted on faith (rather vigorously) and their adherents don't feel they need to defend them, like the beginning of life on Earth, or the afterlife, and they defy proof.
---Other concepts are pretty damned solid, like it's our duty as humans to be compassionate and helpful.

It's easy for me to see that, to different extents and in much different ways, both science and religion are partly built on faith and partly build on indisputable fact.

No biggie.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #10)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 10:24 PM

11. I completely reject this analogy

Have seen it before.

Science does not deal with faith the way religion does.

It is spurious and does not reflect how science works.

Others might want to chime in or not.

I see no point in writing a long post on how inaccurate this assumption is.

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Response to edhopper (Reply #11)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 10:31 PM

13. That's just as well.

 

I appreciate that you don't see a reason to reply.

But for other readers, I'll say that it should be clear that I don't suggest that there's a particularly direct analogy so much as significant similarities.

People far too often think in binary concrete terms when, in fact and in practice, there are shades and subtleties, and it's in those shadows where live some of the most interesting details.

A Venn Diagram of religion and science would evidence a number of similarities, and these do not an analogy make.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #13)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 10:50 PM

14. But there is nothing in science

That religion has proven untrue.

The same could not be said the other way.

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Response to edhopper (Reply #14)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 11:04 PM

15. That's arguable.

 

First, science is all about proofs, and religions don't go around trying to prove theories, so it's no surprise that science has more frequently shown a religious idea to be wrong that the other way around.

However, this is not always the case. There are cases when religions have been right and the science wrong, but it was not a matter of religion "proving" science to be wrong so much as science evolving to correct itself and come into alignment with the religious practice or understanding which was right all along.

It's not a contest, they're two very different worlds, but both depend upon forms of faith.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #15)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 11:09 PM

16. Could you name some of those times?

Were science caught up to religion?

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Response to edhopper (Reply #16)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 11:25 PM

17. “Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.”

 

I needed to use that somewhere....

At different times and in different places, dietary and hygienic practices that were religious in nature have turned out to be healthy habits as proven by science, medical science that didn't exist at the time.

It's a bit of a pointless exercise, though, as science and faith are simply in different businesses and have different purposes for being.

You would want to see an example is which religion was proven to be right where science was wrong and I KNOW you'll want a scientific proof for that.

Do you see the paradox there? If the criteria for proof, for truth, is scientific then it's a biased criterion.

I might flip and ask when did science ever prove that there aren't afterlives?

5-year-old boy claims to have lived past life as Chicago woman

News965 – Orlando

CLEVELAND —

An Ohio boy is making people reconsider what happens when you die, with claims that he once lived another life.

5-year-old Luke Ruehlman states that he once lived as an African-American woman named Pam Robinson, who lived in Chicago.

The odd story began when Luke started bringing up the name “Pam” randomly in conversation.

Luke’s family knows no one named Pam, so his stay-at-home mom, Erica, decided to investigate further.

http://www.kirotv.com/news/news/weird-news/5-year-old-claims-have-lived-past-life-chicago-wom/nkFrQ/

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #17)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 11:31 PM

18. You were the one

Who stated they had similarities, I was the one who disagreed,

You also stated their were times science had to catch up with religion, I asked for examples.

The quote is ludicrous, science can do fine without religion.

And past lives!? Really, FFS, past lives?

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Response to edhopper (Reply #18)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 11:39 PM

20. The "ludicrous" quote is owed to one "Albert Einstein"...

 

.
Albert Einstein's religious views have been studied extensively.

He said he believed in the "pantheistic" God of Baruch Spinoza, but not in a personal god, a belief he criticized.

He also called himself an agnostic, while disassociating himself from the label atheist, preferring, he said, "an attitude of humility corresponding to the weakness of our intellectual understanding of nature and of our own being."

~snip~

a person who is religiously enlightened appears to me to be one who has, to the best of his ability, liberated himself from the fetters of his selfish desires and is preoccupied with thoughts, feelings and aspirations to which he clings because of their super-personal value. It seems to me that what is important is the force of this superpersonal content ... regardless of whether any attempt is made to unite this content with a Divine Being, for otherwise it would not be possible to count Buddha and Spinoza as religious personalities. Accordingly a religious person is devout in the sense that he has no doubt of the significance of those super-personal objects and goals which neither require nor are capable of rational foundation ... In this sense religion is the age-old endeavor of mankind to become clearly and completely conscious of these values and goals and constantly to strengthen and extend their effect. If one conceives of religion and science according to these definitions then a conflict between them appears impossible. For science can only ascertain what is, but not what should be..

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_views_of_Albert_Einstein

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #20)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 11:43 PM

22. I know

I meant your use of it was ludicrous.

Einstein in no way was talking about any formal religion or belief in the supernatural.

I see too many out of context Einstein quotes.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #17)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 07:29 AM

25. That is your proof of "religions have been right and the science wrong"?

 

That is pathetic. First, what science has made any claim about the existence of an afterlife? Would that be physics? Chemistry? Biology? Be specific.

Second, are you fucking kidding me? A "past lives" claim? Rilly?

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #15)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 11:33 PM

19. psssssst...that's math, not science.

 

First, science is all about proofs


Science doesn't really use proofs, except insofar as it uses mathematics.

Science is a lot fuzzier than math.

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Response to stone space (Reply #19)

Sun Feb 22, 2015, 11:42 PM

21. I stand corrected.

 

Math is rigid, science is fuzzy indeed but maths are frequently used to verify scientific theories.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #15)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 07:23 AM

24. "There are cases when religions have been right and the science wrong"

 

please name those cases.

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #24)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 11:18 AM

29. I'll name one general case.

 

And then you'll dismiss it but here it is anyway:

Historically, many faith based dietary directives have stood in opposition to accepted medical "wisdom" of the time and, by modern scientific standards, turned out to be valid.

Similarly, hygienic and prophylactic practices were long established, and existed during periods that "science" saw no need for them.

There is a great deal that science has learned from various religions, large and small, and good scientists are open-minded to these.

Some of the best in science have learn a lot from non-scientific sources by being curious and open-minded.

Happy Monday!



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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #29)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 11:40 AM

30. exactly which faith based dietary directive?

 

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #33)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 12:29 PM

34. No, it is your argument, exactly which faith based dietary restriction are you referring to?

 

Lots of religions have dietary restrictions, you made a claim that science somehow rejected one or more of these restrictions and that subsequently the rejected restriction was "proven" beneficial. So name one such restriction.

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #34)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 12:38 PM

35. I think it's those cloven hooved critters

that are a no-no. Pigs, you know, are filthy. And, you know, bacon kills.

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Response to Curmudgeoness (Reply #35)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 12:47 PM

36. Ok, this is like pulling nails.

 

Now exactly what science was overturned by dietary restrictions against eating pork?

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #36)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 08:33 PM

43. Scientists are credited with creating the various food pyramids...

 

...which, I would argue, promote a pretty shitty diet.

Further, modern science would probably agree.

Now, no religion set out to overturn or disprove science, they don't do that, they just establish their beliefs and these turn out to be "smarter than science" sometimes.

Science is there to set science straight on their mistakes.

Hell, it happens every day.

You're killin' me with your science!

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #43)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 11:05 PM

48. what?

 

Your claim was that religion overturned science. When asked for an example you hedged. When pressed you emitted "dietary laws". When pressed again for a specific dietary law that overturned scientific knowledge you now have now come up with "food pyramids were inaccurate". Science is a process that moves toward greater knowledge - at least you are sort of getting that part, but I am still waiting for your specific example of religious knowledge overturning scientific knowledge. So far, I think even you will have to admit, you have come up with NOTHING.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #6)


Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #6)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 03:04 PM

37. "It's just a theory."

You have just demonstrated you are completely ignorant on the subject of science.

You'll get more out of a scientist when asking them about gravity than you will out of any believer, from a lowly christmas/easter person all the way to the freaking pope.

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Response to Lordquinton (Reply #37)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 04:14 PM

38. "You have just demonstrated you are completely ignorant on the subject of science."

 

Yes, the Big Bang Theory is just a theory. AND, gravity is a phenomenon (not a theory) but how and why it exists is not fully resolved and is a matter of several theories. The Wikipedia entry for "gravitation" contains the word "theory" no fewer than 49 times.

If there weren't so many toxic people on the Internet, I would be happy to share with you my curriculum vitae.

You and a few others seem unwilling to accept the fact that science is fallible and has historically done nothing but correct itself, (much to it's credit).

At other times, however, some scientists have been reluctant to accept that they are, or were, wrong about a thing.

Respectfully, you would not do well in the field as you demonstrate a bit of emotion and seem to enter into a discussion with your mind already firmly fixed on a conclusion.

Frankly, I think you are embarrassed to have been out-reasoned and have nothing but insults left in your portfolio of responses.

Carry on.


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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #38)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 07:03 PM

39. were you talking to yourself there?

you are the one posting right wing, creationist talking points while admonishing everyone else on their close mindedness.

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Response to Lordquinton (Reply #39)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 07:38 PM

41. There you go again, making my point about having nothing but insults in your quiver.

 

Your poor quiver!

Odd how you can take my objective and factual reportage of the history of science and call it "right wing creationist talking points".

As I suggested earlier, an objective scientific mind might present an alternative viewpoint but they wouldn't resort to insult.

You entertain me, Lordquinton.

The term "flailing about" comes to mind as I reflect upon your content-less responses to me.

Care for a life preserver?

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #38)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 07:34 PM

40. You should look again

and see where most of the word theory is mentioned. At the end under unaccepted alternatives.

There is a reason they call what Newton found Laws.

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Response to edhopper (Reply #40)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 07:49 PM

42. Um, you mean "recent" and "historical" alternatives. Which totally makes my point. Just theories.

 

Good grief, edhopper, the work "unaccepted" isn't in the article at all.

And the fact that historical and recent alternatives are listed 'strongly suggests' that some of them are wrong.

You see, they are theories because the very smart science people know that they aren't certain of many things, that they are ideas based on faith that their suppositions are likely accurate.

Faith, it's your friend.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #42)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 10:12 PM

46. No

That isn't how science works at all.
Listen to Tyson, belief and faith have no role in science.
They don't have faith, they make an assumption and then look for evidence to support or reject it.
They don't believe things in spite of evidence. That's religion.

You are so completely off the track here.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #2)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 03:14 AM

23. fucking magnets

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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #23)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 10:53 AM

28. Magnets, fuck yeah!

 

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #2)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 11:51 AM

31. It looks like your understanding of physics may be out of date

 

And your grasp of the scientific method seems questionable at best.

With physics, people reject, modify or accept the models based on how well they predict outcomes of experiments and other observable data. There isn't a scientist worth his or her weight that would say the model is what is actually occurring. As if an electron were a itty-bitty BB or a light field actually behaved like water. At the nano scale, the best we can use in translating the math into language is clumsy metaphors.

As far as your grasp of electromagnetism, it seems to come from the '50s.

The Standard Model classifies light as a phenomenon with wavelike behavior, particle behavior, and behavior unique to light. To think it is one or the other is to misuse scientific language, as silly as thinking of the lingusitic characteristics of quarks (charmed, strange, etc.) as actually having meanings related to our typical understanding of "charm" or "strange" or whatever.

It really sounds like it is time for you to read a current textbook. I've used Paul Hewitt's Conceptual Physics in my classroom with great success.

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Response to Android3.14 (Reply #31)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 12:03 PM

32. I recommend Hewitt's book to every high school program I support.

 

I smiled at seeing you refer to it.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #32)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 08:59 PM

44. Perhaps, rather than recommend Hewitt's book

 

You might consider reading it. Anyone who uses the phrase "just a theory", lacks comprehension of the scientific meaning of the word. You might also consider the word, hypothesis, which is where the modifier "just" is usually appropriate.

You are partially correct that there are assumptions that scientists make, even if it has to resolve down to the minutia of Gödel's incompleteness theorem. More human-centered assumptions revolve around the unproven base truth that the human mind can actually comprehend universe, or that the scientific method works universally.

God, grace and gravity, besides being a (perhaps) unintentional homage to Simone Weil, have little else in common. Proof of God is elusive at best. Grace is totally subjective and varied.

The best verbal description of gravity at this time is that it is a curvature of spacetime. Repeated experiments have shown this description withstands close scrutiny. As people conduct further research, the details of the description will probably increase, but it will (probably) always be a curvature of space-time.

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Response to Android3.14 (Reply #44)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 09:41 PM

45. I don't plan to read Hewitt's book again any time soon. You seem fixed in your point of view.

 

And this is to be expected.

Adherents, devotees, believers, and stubborn fundamentalists in science and other disciplines are often rigid in their beliefs.

As I've mentioned above, my favorite scientist friends accept the fallibility of scientific theory.

I'm really tempted to bring up this conversation to my 999 friends, but they can be pretty nasty. I was surprised to learn that about them, that some are nasty, some seem racist and xenophobic, but I'd like to hear what they have to say.

For onlookers, here's a comprehensible read on the nature of "theory" that isn't going to be found in Hewitt which, after all, is a high school physics textbook and, by definition, needs to speak from position of certainty-- that's the nature of public education, that all things are known and students should shut up and listen to the facts.

Even theories change

Accepted theories are the best explanations available so far for how the world works. They have been thoroughly tested, are supported by multiple lines of evidence, and have proved useful in generating explanations and opening up new areas for research. However, science is always a work in progress, and even theories change. How? We'll look at some over-arching theories in physics as examples:

Classical mechanics
In the 1600s, building on the ideas of others, Isaac Newton constructed a theory (sometimes called classical mechanics or Newtonian mechanics) that, with a simple set of mathematical equations, could explain the movement of objects both in space and on Earth. This single explanation helped us understand both how a thrown baseball travels and how the planets orbit the sun. The theory was powerful, useful, and has proven itself time and time again in studies; yet it wasn't perfect …

Classical mechanics explains the movement of objects, large and small

Special relativity
Classical mechanics was one-upped by Albert Einstein's theory of special relativity. In contrast to the assumptions of classical mechanics, special relativity postulated that as one's frame of reference (i.e., where you are and how you are moving) changes, so too do measurements of space and time — so that, for example, a person speeding away from Earth in a spacecraft will perceive the distance of the spacecraft's travel and the elapsed time of the trip to be different than would a person sitting at Cape Canaveral. Special relativity was preferred because it explained more phenomena: it accounted for what was known about the movement of large objects (from baseballs to planets) and helped explain new observations relating to electricity and magnetism.

more goodness here: http://undsci.berkeley.edu/article/0_0_0/howscienceworks_20

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #45)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 10:33 PM

47. Why would you try to obscure the point?

 

Your excerpt fails to support your implication that theories are as unreliable as religious dogma.

Only an idiot claims theories are immutable.

The excerpt, a paper titled "Even theories change", shows that you have poor justification for the phrase "just a theory". The modifier "even" is there specifically because theories rarely undo themselves, but that science usually builds upon them.

Special relativity did not replace classical mechanics, but was simply a more accurate model, sort of the difference between a sketch of Mona Lisa and a painting of Mona Lisa. No one argues that a sketch or a painting are Monal Lisa the person.

I have a growing doubt regarding your bonafides. I also found this sentence -
"I'm really tempted to bring up this conversation to my 999 friends, but they can be pretty nasty. I was surprised to learn that about them, that some are nasty, some seem racist and xenophobic, but I'd like to hear what they have to say."
particularly strange. Why would you identify as scientist friends, a group of people you describe as "pretty nasty", "racist" and "xenophobic".

The scientists I know rarely exhibit these attitudes, and a thoughtful person would recognize folks who do exhibit these attitudes are something other than friends.

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Response to Android3.14 (Reply #47)

Tue Feb 24, 2015, 07:32 AM

49. A person who claims to have 999 friends is not being serious.

 

par for the course.

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Response to stone space (Original post)

Mon Feb 23, 2015, 08:12 AM

27. To paraphrase Philip K. Dick...

The things that don't go away when you stop believing in them.

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