The operations of a higher level cannot be accounted for by the laws governing its particulars forming the lower level. You cannot derive a vocabulary from phonetics; you cannot derive the grammar of a language from its vocabulary; a correct use of grammar does not account for good style; and a good style does not provide the content of a piece of prose. . . . it is impossible to represent the organizing principles of a higher level by the laws governing its isolated particulars.
Ã¢â‚¬â€Ã‚Â Michael Polanyi, The Tacit Dimension
It seems to me immensely unlikely that mind is a mere by-product of matter. For if my mental processes are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain, I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true. They may be sound chemically, but that does not make them sound logically. And hence I have no reason for supposing my brain to be composed of atoms. In order to escape from this necessity of sawing away the branch on which I am sitting, so to speak, I am compelled to believe that mind is not wholly conditioned by matter.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ John B.S. Haldane, “When I Am Dead”, Possible Worlds: And Other Essays
Ã¢â‚¬Â¦evolutionary speculation constitutes a kind of metascience, which has the same fascination for some biologists that metaphysical speculation possessed for some medieval scholastics. It can be considered a relatively harmless habit, like eating peanuts, unless it assumes the form of an obsession; then it becomes a vice.
Ã¢â‚¬â€Ã‚Â cell biologist Roger Stanier, in Organization and Control in Prokaryotic Cells: Twentieth Symposium of the Society for General Microbiology, Cambridge University Press, 1970.
Many biological ideas proposed during the past 150 years stood in stark conflict with what everybody assumed to be true. The acceptance of these ideas required an ideological revolution. And no biologist has been responsible for more – and for more drastic – modifications of the average person’s worldview than Charles Darwin.
Ã¢â‚¬â€Ã‚Â Ernst Mayr,Ã‚Â Crafoord Prize lecture
Laws and experiments are inappropriate techniques” for explaining evolutionary events and processes.
Ã¢â‚¬â€Ã‚Â Ernst Mayr, “DarwinÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Influence on Modern Thought,” Scientific American, July 2000, 80.