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The Bad Effects of Methodological Materialism

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Thought you all might be interested in a new essay of mine on whether or not we should teach our students methodological materialism.

From the article:

…without having a priori rules to know if the phenomena you are studying is materialistic or not, and requiring a study of the phenomena to restrict itself to material causes, then there is no difference between this position and philosophical materialism. Philosophical materialism states that every cause is a material cause. Therefore, if you are restricted in your search for causes to materialistic ones, and cannot consider nonmaterial ones, then you have just bridged the gap between methodological materialism and philosophical materialism.

3 Replies to “The Bad Effects of Methodological Materialism

  1. 1
    Dionisio says:

    Been there, done that ๐Ÿ™
    Most of the education I received until got my engineering degree behind the Iron Curtain during the Cold War, was based on very strong philosophical materialism. I absorbed it all very well. Swallowed it all. It became my worldview. ๐Ÿ™
    But one day, years later, our loving and gracious God forgave me and pulled me out of that miserable darkness. Amazing grace! How could that be, that the King of kings had died for me?
    I was lost, but now I’m found. Was blind, but now I see.
    So I sing hallelujah! Praise the Lord!
    Looking back, I see all those years as waste.
    Not long ago I heard that John Lennox was asked to comment on Stephen Hawking’s affirmation that Heaven is a fairy tale for those who are afraid of the darkness. Dr. Lennox responded that atheism is a fairy tale for those who are afraid of the Light. I love the true Light, which is the ultimate source of true Life.
    Now I can enjoy science and look forward, with great anticipation, to reading the latest results coming out from the research laboratories, because I know they will shed light on our current knowledge about nature, thus revealing more wonders of God’s marvelous creation.
    In addition to taking free online science classes offered by some universities, I’m also enjoying the OPs and comments in this and other linked blogs.
    But this learning seems like a never-ending story, because the more I learn, the more I have to study ๐Ÿ˜‰
    So, please keep up the good work you all are doing here.
    Thank you. May God bless you.

  2. 2
    StephenB says:

    Good post, JB.

    To your comment,

    “In plain fact, it is true that in order to investigate the world rigorously, one must usually adopt a methodology. Using a methodology usually also restricts what type of data is allowed and how that data can be processed. There are certain areas of science which deal in material processes. If I am studying the flow of a fluid through a pipe, this rarely requires supernatural ideas (however, it should be pointed out that the understandings of what the measurement means requires a rational mind, which does in fact require supernatural ideas).”…..

    I would simply add this:

    The point of restricting data is to insure that the input will be relevant and limited to the specific research question being asked, not to allow some research questions and rule out others. Since only the scientist can formulate his own research question or problem, only that same scientist can decide which methods are appropriate for answering the question or solving the problem. Telling ID scientists that they may weigh only those facts that confirm philosophical materialism is like telling members of a jury that they may weight only those facts that would incriminate the defendant.

  3. 3
    Robert Byers says:

    trith is the object in investigation of origins etc.
    so rejecting from the start some options is rejecting truth as the priority UNLESS one already knows the rejected options are false.
    Everything must be on the table or its not intellectual desire for the truth.
    evolutionism etc anyways is confronted using science and rejecting evolution uses science.
    Unless I’m missing something.

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