Science & Philosophy - A dichotomy?
#1
I see a distinct difference between a science philosopher like Dennet & the other ones like say Robert Wright & Terry Eagleton (who was thrashed by PZ in Pharyngula article a while ago),the two I have read & whose plank is quasi-religious.So do we rationalists mean by philosophy,the Russelian & Dennet version?
I am not aware whether Robert Wright qualifies as a philosopher or not.
Let me clarify that this is the beginner's dilemma.
when Hawking in his latest book The Grand Design,in the opening chapter itself,fires the salvo that philosophy is dead,& is now replaced by science,does he have the Eagletons in mind?
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#2
I am a philosophy noob as well and here is what I think of philosophy:

1. How do we know that something is true?
2. Having established some methods to determine what is true and what is not, use those methods to classify which things are true and which are not.

When it comes to point 1, science is the best method for it. Maybe that is why you see a difference between a philosopher of science like Dennett and theologians. Dennett is using a tool which constantly improves itself and so far has never failed to deliver what it promises. Theologians on the other hand are using methods which cannot model reality as well as science. In fact in most cases they completely fail in that endeavor.

And I think Hawking is wrong in saying that philosophy is dead. At least when it comes to morality, I don't see science replacing philosophy.
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#3
(27-Jan-2011, 05:25 PM)vvjoshi Wrote: when Hawking in his latest book The Grand Design,in the opening chapter itself,fires the salvo that philosophy is dead,& is now replaced by science,does he have the Eagletons in mind?
Hawking very statement proves him wrong. "Philosophy is dead" is not an empirical assertion but a philosophical one.

The whole science vs philosophy thing is a false dilemma.
"Fossil rabbits in the Precambrian"
~ J.B.S.Haldane, on being asked to falsify evolution.
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#4
(27-Jan-2011, 11:13 PM)Ajita Kamal Wrote: The whole science vs philosophy thing is a false dilemma.

I agree. Science and philosophy feed on each other. A good scientist is also a good philosopher and vice versa.
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#5
(03-Apr-2011, 09:51 AM)P11 Wrote:
(27-Jan-2011, 11:13 PM)Ajita Kamal Wrote: The whole science vs philosophy thing is a false dilemma.

I agree. Science and philosophy feed on each other. A good scientist is also a good philosopher and vice versa.

Actually, I would go so far as to argue that science itself is a branch of philosophy, with the major notable difference between science and non-empirical branches of philosophy being testability with respect to phenomena. If one uses a coherence theory of truth with respect to axiomatic deductive systems, in non-empirical philosophy relativism is a given, however, in science, if two hypotheses differ by at least one prediction they make experimentation can discriminate between them, and with respect to this relativism is not required.



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