Points about points

I was recently contacted regarding my work -- primarily concerning materials on the Belief Institute website.

The person (supportive of my work) sent me a list of 'points' by another critic who argues good articles, or beliefs should comply to various conditions:

Here's my reply to those 'points'.

  1. should not contain tautologies;

    English is a rich language, and while tautologies are a useful concept, the fact that one can frame an idea or concept (there's one now) differently using different words/approaches, reveals greater nuance to the concept or idea. Pun intended. So I wouldn't get too concerned about grammatical correctness.

  2. should not contain notion-metaphor transmutations (e.g., "power" it is a concept in Physics, but being used in Psychology, say, as "power of imagination", it becomes a metaphor);

    Well, this is a poor point. We don't know what causes 'power' in physics.

    We know now with around 30 years of research data from Princeton's PEAR that our minds have the power (physical) to move objects.

    "The enormous databases produced by PEAR provide clear evidence that human thought and emotion can produce measureable influences on physical reality. The researchers have also developed several theoretical models that attempt to accommodate the empirical results, which cannot be explained by any currently recognized scientific model."

    So psychological power is related to physical power. To say otherwise would require certain (incorrect) assumptions to be correct. Which they aren't. E.g. the power to collapse the wave-function.

    Better that you don't get me started on this one ... :)

  3. should not contain hypostatization (which occurs when something abstract is treated or represented as a concrete reality);

    In fundamental terms all is abstract ... until it is 'concretised' via our consensus reality. Even then it is fluid, and according to some physicists our reality is being 'refreshed' or 'collapsed into physical form' somewhere around 1043 times each second.

  4. should not contain incorrect definitions (when the unknown is defined through another unknown);

    Well that supposes there is some perfect 'known' that can be fully, totally, absolutely defined with which to then judge what is hypothetical. Wrong.

    Bad science to even go anywhere near that ... would need to disprove Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle, not to mention G?del's Incompleteness, and others (e.g. Turing, Chaitin).

    Seriously, this is starting to get silly.


  5. should not contain multiplication of hypotheses (which occurs when the new hypothesis is being based upon the previous one, instead of being the result of generalization and systematization of research data);

    Well, again, various assumptions (e.g. the past causing the present) not supportable or provable.

    E.g. all times exist at once (it's highly weirdo stuff to imagine otherwise), so the idea that the past causes the present -- that we can stack fact upon fact to get a new one, is denying the freedom to ignore all facts and produce new ones, 'magically' (pop them from possibility into reality). Then the supporting time-lines stretching back in time will emerge to support our 'fact'.

    Check John Wheeler's work -- You might want to read the Discovery Magazine article a few times. And this one as well -- "The quantum principle shows that there is a sense in which what an observer will do in the future defines what happens in the past." All of which messes with your head a bit, at first. But you sort of get used to it. Well, maybe not for everyone, like Prof. David Albert of Columbia University who finds it all "very, very, very disturbing". Not to worry too much -- there are some highly practical benefits to quantum physics.

  6. should not breach Okham's principle (the most evident and simplest explanation has to be preferred);

    Gee, that is really silly. Forcing the universe to be obedient to our ignorance and stupidity. E.g. multiverse theory (MWI) is regarded as being contrary to Okham's Razor. Well, so? Who cares? ... if it's correct.

    Science is about theory fitting fact, it's not about adopting the laziest method or approach to get there (hey, I love these tautologies. Can I keep using them :).

  7. should possess inner consistency (or, be formally non-self-contradictory);

    Nah, let's be inconsistent, and pop something into reality that is really, hugely and amazingly surprising. Not much fun otherwise.

  8. should be rational (when the aim and criteria of approach correspond to each other).

    Ah, the best for last.

    This one's a beauty, as we say in Australia.

    "Rational" ... well now, let's go to town shall we.

    Rational is based on the Latin "ratio" and being rational requires that we ratio ourselves in relationship to some aspect or thing that we are being rational about.

    Now, for scientists with their measuring sticks, this is largely, well, maybe a little bit okay.

    But for the serious movers and shifters (of big paradigms) ... forget it. Einstein, Newton et al were amazingly intuitive. Heck Newton was into the occult, big time. Nope. Rational is for losers, at least when it comes to the 'up front' stuff of intuiting grand new insights into reality.

    But most importantly being rational will seriously kibosh (restrict, constrain, limit) our nonlocal awareness which connects everywhere at-once.

    For the simple reason (ah, another word derived from the Latin 'ratio') that we can't ratio ourselves to the infinite. Sorry, no can do. So to be intuitive means forgoing any rational (reasonable) interface with that which is beyond reasoning.

    Which is why scientists (most of the "reasonable" ones) are typically pretty boring.

    I love Jodie Foster's character in Contact, when observing the majesty of the universe: "They should have sent a poet."

    Now we're talking.

But wait, there's more ...


See also (this site):