An astrophysicist offers a warning about misusing science:
Here’s a warning, from me to you: don’t look to science for cheap validation, ever, because it will end up breaking your heart.
The process of science simply doesn’t care what the answer is. Sure, individual scientists may and will have their individual biases and preferences and hopes for a result. But in science the ultimate arbiter is the universe itself. The data we collect decide the outcomes, despite our individual preferences.Paul M.Sutter, “Stop Using Science To Validate Your Beliefs” at Forbes
But, of course, the data people collect is partly a function of what they look for which is, in turn, guided by their beliefs. And if they did not have beliefs, they would not do science at all. Hence the point of the title question.
The other day, for example, we ran a story about how psychologists began, in recent years, to study religious groups in terms of how people who belong to them make use of available coping skills. Psychologists didn’t used to do that because they didn’t believe they would find those skills in such groups.
It would be helpful if we knew more about what Dr. Sutter means by “cheap validation.” Also, what about approaches to science that couldn’t possibly be falsified?
Think, for example, of the researchers whose work seemed “very surprising,” whose conclusions they fought against, who are now announcing that the work. does NOT, after all, disprove Darwin. That’s because “Darwinism” is framed in such a way that it’s impossible to pin down and even fossil rabbits in the Cambrian would not disprove it.
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See also: Psychology: Study of religion takes evidence-based turn Association with things most people see as positive does not, of course, make a religion “true.” It does, however, make one wonder about the perspective of psychologists who don’t seem able to recognize the pattern.
“Adam and Eve” researchers say their work does NOT disprove Darwin Well, if their findings support orthodox Darwinian evolution, why did they find them “very surprising” and why did they fight against them? Isn’t that rather unscientific of them?