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Posted by Aurino Souza on November 18, 2003 16:12:15 UTC

Harv,

Before you get upset with me, let me try and clarify my position.

If you watch my front door long enough, you will soon notice a pattern: I get home from work about the same time everyday. If you didn't know better, you would be tempted to believe there is a "law of the universe" which forces me to be home at that time. But you know there is no such law, that the time I get home is the result of a personal choice. The fact that there is regularity and predictability to it doesn't imply any causal explanation. In a sense, I get home everyday at 6:20PM for no other reason than because I want it so.

The problem with those "laws of the universe" is that they might well be an illusion. And if they are illusions, it's pointless to keep arguing that they appear real - that's the problem with illusions to start with.

There are only two possible ways to deal with the issue of whether science is an illusion or not. I favour both. Here they are:

1) Dismiss the issue completely. Thanks to science we can do a lot of useful things, so who cares?

2) Face the issue from the only perspective we trust as reliable: logic.

The first approach is at the foundation of science, but many people seem to forget that and start talking about science as a true description of the universe. I can't possibly accept that as it is a huge contradiction.

The second approach is not as hard as it is useless. It's the road Dick pursued, and I'm not qualified to tell whether he suceeded or not. However, I do take the position that until the issue of science and truth is properly addressed, I have no intellectual obligation to accept science as true. Some people think I'm anti-science, but I'm just trying to be consistent.

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