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Common sense versus physics

Use this forum to discuss the philosophy of science. Philosophy of science deals with the assumptions, foundations, and implications of science.
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jkg20
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Common sense versus physics

Post by jkg20 » April 1st, 2018, 11:29 am

Just come from reading this blog:[link deleted - see policy on links] The guy seems to be saying that we shouldn't be taking modern physics literally, but just as some kind of heuristic device to help us manipulate reality. Sound like a contradiction not to take physics literally to me - can we really avoid doing so?

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jkg20
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Re: Common sense versus physics

Post by jkg20 » April 2nd, 2018, 5:41 pm

Apparently I violated the link policy - presumably because I've only just joined. I'm not going to copy paste the entire article here, so I'll give the gist of the argument (as far as I can tell) and then in a few days time I'll try reposting the link so that those who want more details can see the argument in full. The basis idea seems to be that the real world is the perceptible world and that, taken literally, physics does not describe the perceptible world, so taken literally physics does not describe the real world. So, if we assume that truth is correspondence with the real world only, if taken literally, physics cannot be true. So, we have to take physics heuristically not literally. That's my understanding anyway, but as I say, provided it doesn't violate the links policy, I'll repost the link when I've put in enough days as a member.

Fooloso4
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Re: Common sense versus physics

Post by Fooloso4 » April 2nd, 2018, 6:38 pm

See the site policy regarding links:
Excessive posting of links to the same website in many different posts will generally cause a blacklist of that site, particularly if the member posting the link is affiliated to that some way …
I do not know if it is your blog or if you have some other affiliation, but you have three posts including this one and two of them linked to this site.

With regard to the argument:

The claim that the real world is the perceptible world is questionable. An idealist might accept it but if one does not accept that claim the argument falls apart. If one does accept that the real world is the perceptible world, the claim that physics does not describe the perceptible world is false, provided one takes perceptible to mean observable with the proper instruments instead of with the senses aided or unaided. Once again the argument falls apart.

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Luin
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Re: Common sense versus physics

Post by Luin » April 5th, 2018, 2:48 pm

jkg20 wrote:
April 2nd, 2018, 5:41 pm
The basis idea seems to be that the real world is the perceptible world and that, taken literally, physics does not describe the perceptible world, so taken literally physics does not describe the real world. So, if we assume that truth is correspondence with the real world only, if taken literally, physics cannot be true. So, we have to take physics heuristically not literally.
Perception is isolated and unique per observer, even if some aspects of it can be agreed upon by fellow observers. What needs to be considered is the fact that all physics are focused on the interactions between material structure systems [and what can be presumed of the non-material agencies that create a consistent manner of interaction between material structure systems], and the associated fact that all such interactions are being observed by yet another material structure system [the observer], with that observation constituting an additional interaction. Yes, the observer is a material system, even if the interpretation of what's been observed has been deeply affected by the non-material agency [known as qualia] as well as the product of that qualia [in most cases] which is a combination of established scientific thought [paradigm] and the observation translation mechanisms that have been engineered to serve that specific scientific paradigm. That's a lot of muck to have to "see through" when perceiving with even the best scientific methodology and it's especially difficult if the paradigm being served by that science is based on assertions that have never taken into account just how isolated from each observable interaction all human perception actually is.

Naturally, what is real can only be abstracted by the corporeal human observer, but without a full and comprehensive understanding of all that exists as a filter between the observer and what's being observed, it's pretty unlikely that any amount of abstraction [regardless of its brilliance] will get the observer close to the real that is being observed. The "perceptible world" is translated by the observing system to serve the structural survival of that system. To achieve a factual appreciation of Reality, looking past the way that your own material structure has evolved to best serve its own survival as an integral and functional constituent of the "material realm" is the first hurdle to be overcome.

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LuckyR
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Re: Common sense versus physics

Post by LuckyR » April 6th, 2018, 2:20 am

Well since common sense leads to "conundrums" and "paradoxes", even in simple systems whereas physics predicts very accurately in simple systems, I am going with physics.
"As usual... it depends."

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Kevin Levites
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Re: Common sense versus physics

Post by Kevin Levites » April 29th, 2019, 12:03 pm

I would want clarigication on what the term "real world" means....and I'm not trying to be difficult jyst for the sake of being difficult.

Gallileo built a telescope based on reports from the Netherlands, and seems to be the first person who used it to study the sky.

He discovered stars invisible to the naked eye, and the clergy of his time denounced his discoveries and his telescope as an artifact of Satan....because if God wanted us to see those stars, then they would be visible to the naked eye.

This discussion about the differences between the real world (ie: "common sense") and physics seems similar...at least to me.

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