Privileged Planet: New study (Introduction)

by xeno6696 @, Omaha NE, Tuesday, May 01, 2012, 17:16 (3071 days ago) @ dhw

From the article on Svensmark : "Don't fret about the diehards. The glory of empirical science is this: no matter how many years, decades, or sometimes centuries it may take, in the end the story will come out right."

Dhw: Just one tiny problem here. Who can tell us for sure that it's "the end", and that the story has "come out right"?

MATT: YOU or I can't. It's only history that plays THAT one out. You and I are left with ideas and theories and have to decide for ourselves which ideas are sound.

Precisely. And as you and I are in no position to test the evidence or the soundness of the theories, and as history is one long succession of changing theories, I am advocating a degree of scepticism, in the sense of suspending judgement, at least until there is a general consensus among scientists themselves.

MATT: Which in the case of the general public is sad... but I've wanted to ask for some time why you do NOT consider yourself part of the masses?

This is a puzzling question. I don't know who you mean by "the masses". I don't consider myself part of the masses that believe in a god, I don't consider myself part of the masses that disbelieve in a god, I don't consider myself part of the masses that couldn't care less. I do consider myself part of the masses that have no answer to any of the fundamental questions we discuss on this forum, I do consider myself part of the masses that would love to know more about the universe we live in, but I also consider myself part of the masses that are bewildered by and sceptical of the string of different, often conflicting theories (both scientific and philosophical) purporting to explain the origin and nature of the universe and of life. I really don't understand your question, or why you ask it, although I feel uncomfortable about its possible insinuations. Perhaps you would explain it, and then tell us whether and why you do or don't consider yourself part of "the masses".

It appears I may have offended?

I tend to equate laymen with masses. You've said a couple times lately you considered yourself a layman.

Really, now?

\"Why is it, Master, that ascetics fight with ascetics?\"

\"It is, brahmin, because of attachment to views, adherence to views, fixation on views, addiction to views, obsession with views, holding firmly to views that ascetics fight with ascetics.\"

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