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End game for physics as a science?

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From Adam Frank at NPR:

To begin with, it’s important to understand how much cosmology and physics has gotten right. Our ability to map out the history of the universe back to a fraction of an instant after its inception is a triumph of the human intellect and imagination. And because that history could not be told without a detailed description of matter and forces at a fundamental level, it’s clear we’ve done something remarkable — and remarkably correct.

It’s the next steps down into reality’s basement, however, where the trouble seems to begin. Some researchers now see popular ideas like string theory and the multiverse as highly suspect. These physicists feel our study of the cosmos has been taken too far from what data can constrain with the extra “hidden” dimensions of string theory and the unobservable other universes of the multiverse. Of course, there are many scientists who continue to see great promise in string theory and the multiverse. But, as Marcelo and I wrote in The New York Times last year, it all adds up to muddied waters and something some researchers see as a “crisis in physics.”

Smolin and Unger believe this crisis is real — and it’s acute. They pull no punches in their sense that the lack of empirical data has led the field astray. As they put it:More.

Why does anyone need us to point out the obvious: The war on falsifiability and evidence-based science will doom physics and by extension all other sciences.

Every pressure group in science will want the same accommodations for its non-evidence-based (but doubtless highly correct) beliefs. Accommodating beliefs will be more important than discovering facts.

Maybe science was just a cultural phase anyway. Who knows?

See also: In search of a road to reality


The bill arrives for cosmology’s free lunch

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3 Replies to “End game for physics as a science?

  1. 1
    Robert Byers says:

    I don’t think physics was ever that big a accomplishment for people to figure out. It had to be something. biology is more difficult. i suspect the physics is still got a long way to go. It seems to be guessing still. Or about final conclusions.
    Indeed the issue is evidence. Evolutionism got away with not proving itself by evidence. nOW it seems some ideas in physics are trying it too. AHA. Some complain. Well if the complaints are right then why not look at evolutionism!?

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    As to this quote from the article:

    Thus, the goal of The Singular Universe and The Reality of Time is to take a giant philosophical step back and see if a new and more promising direction can be found.

    Perhaps taking a ‘a giant philosophical step’ away from the self-defeating, fantasy infused, philosophy of atheistic naturalism, which is artificially imposed onto science prior to investigation, (i.e. Methodological Naturalism)?,,,

    Darwinian evolution, and atheism/naturalism in general, are built entirely upon a framework of illusions and fantasy

    BRUCE GORDON: Hawking’s irrational arguments – October 2010
    Excerpt: ,,,The physical universe is causally incomplete and therefore neither self-originating nor self-sustaining. The world of space, time, matter and energy is dependent on a reality that transcends space, time, matter and energy.
    This transcendent reality cannot merely be a Platonic realm of mathematical descriptions, for such things are causally inert abstract entities that do not affect the material world,,,
    Rather, the transcendent reality on which our universe depends must be something that can exhibit agency – a mind that can choose among the infinite variety of mathematical descriptions and bring into existence a reality that corresponds to a consistent subset of them. This is what “breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe.” Anything else invokes random miracles as an explanatory principle and spells the end of scientific rationality.,,,
    For instance, we find multiverse cosmologists debating the “Boltzmann Brain” problem: In the most “reasonable” models for a multiverse, it is immeasurably more likely that our consciousness is associated with a brain that has spontaneously fluctuated into existence in the quantum vacuum than it is that we have parents and exist in an orderly universe with a 13.7 billion-year history. This is absurd. The multiverse hypothesis is therefore falsified because it renders false what we know to be true about ourselves. Clearly, embracing the multiverse idea entails a nihilistic irrationality that destroys the very possibility of science.
    Universes do not “spontaneously create” on the basis of abstract mathematical descriptions, nor does the fantasy of a limitless multiverse trump the explanatory power of transcendent intelligent design. What Mr. Hawking’s contrary assertions show is that mathematical savants can sometimes be metaphysical simpletons. Caveat emptor.

    ,,,and then perhaps taking another ‘giant philosophical step’ towards the ‘philosophy’ of Christianity which just so happened to be the ‘philosophy’ which gave us modern science in the first place?

    The truth about science and religion By Terry Scambray – August 14, 2014
    Excerpt: In 1925 the renowned philosopher and mathematician, Alfred North Whitehead speaking to scholars at Harvard said that science originated in Christian Europe in the 13th century. Whitehead pointed out that science arose from “the medieval insistence on the rationality of God, conceived as with the personal energy of Jehovah and with the rationality of a Greek philosopher”, from which it follows that human minds created in that image are capable of understanding nature.
    The audience, assuming that science and Christianity are enemies, was astonished.

    The Threat to the Scientific Method that Explains the Spate of Fraudulent Science Publications – Calvin Beisner | Jul 23, 2014
    Excerpt: It is precisely because modern science has abandoned its foundations in the Biblical worldview (which holds, among other things, that a personal, rational God designed a rational universe to be understood and controlled by rational persons made in His image) and the Biblical ethic (which holds, among other things, that we are obligated to tell the truth even when it inconveniences us) that science is collapsing.
    As such diverse historians and philosophers of science as Alfred North Whitehead, Pierre Duhem, Loren Eiseley, Rodney Stark, and many others have observed,, science—not an occasional flash of insight here and there, but a systematic, programmatic, ongoing way of studying and controlling the world—arose only once in history, and only in one place: medieval Europe, once known as “Christendom,” where that Biblical worldview reigned supreme. That is no accident. Science could not have arisen without that worldview.
    Several other resources backing up this claim are available, such as Thomas Woods, Stanley Jaki, David Linberg, Edward Grant, J.L. Heilbron, and Christopher Dawson.

    Science and Theism: Concord, not Conflict* – Robert C. Koons
    IV. The Dependency of Science Upon Theism (Page 21)
    Excerpt: Far from undermining the credibility of theism, the remarkable success of science in modern times is a remarkable confirmation of the truth of theism. It was from the perspective of Judeo-Christian theism—and from the perspective alone—that it was predictable that science would have succeeded as it has. Without the faith in the rational intelligibility of the world and the divine vocation of human beings to master it, modern science would never have been possible, and, even today, the continued rationality of the enterprise of science depends on convictions that can be reasonably grounded only in theistic metaphysics.

  3. 3
    bornagain77 says:

    Supplemental Notes:

    Special and General Relativity compared to Heavenly and Hellish Near Death Experiences – video (reworked May 2016 – following two videos referenced in it)

    (Entropic Concerns) The Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the Dead is the correct solution for the “Theory of Everything” – video

    Albert Einstein vs. “The Now” of Philosophers and of Quantum Mechanics – video

    (Centrality Concerns) The Resurrection of Jesus Christ from Death as the “Theory of Everything” – video

    Shroud of Turin: From discovery of Photographic Negative, to 3D Information, to Quantum Hologram – video


    Colossians 1:15-20
    The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

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