• Don Salmon

    May 11, 2023 at 1:08 pm

    I just realized a number of things I’ve left out that may be making this more confusing.

    1. I’m not interested in philosophizing about this. I don’t want to compare philosophies, or create a new one, or propose any philosophic ideas. I’m solely interested clarifying what science as method is about (science as method, rather than science as philosophy)

    2. I’m solely interested in an agnostic approach. My understanding, having been trained as a research scientist, is that science in itself is completely agnostic with regard to the “nature” of reality.

    3. I think I just got something about the way Whit says that physics has been successful by sticking to a materialist view. “Sticking to a materialist view” sounds to me like a philosophic statement, but perhaps I misunderstood.

    if you say, “Physics has been extraordinarily successful by sticking to an examination ONLY of the measurable aspects of phenomenal experience” – which is a bit more complex way of saying what perhaps Whit intended – I fully agree.

    I just want to be careful. When you say “materialist” you’re speaking of a certain philosophic view, which I’m trying to stay away from.

    So yes, physics deals only with extremely limited measurable aspects of experience (that’s the best I can do avoiding overt philosophic statements – it’s just a description of the method used by physicists)

    I know I’ve been clumsily inserting philosophic statements myself so i’d like to set those aside and start fresh.


    Physics excludes all of phenomenal reality but that which can be measured. It does not require ANY philosophic view to conduct research.

    If we can just get clear about this, I’d be interested at the conclusion of our discussion to start another group where we can explore whether it makes more sense, as a philosophic view, to assume a primarily material (ie unconscious, non living) universe or a conscious one. Whether that’s Vedantic, Greek Orthodox, Hasidic/Kabbalistic, Tantric, process philosophy, or another view, would be a discussion for yet a different group.