On 06 Jan 2012, at 17:54, Evgenii Rudnyi wrote:

On 06.01.2012 17:08 John Clark said the following:
On Fri, Jan 6, 2012  Evgenii Rudnyi<use...@rudnyi.ru>  wrote:

If to talk about Galileo, then it would also good to remember
(for example Against method). Feyerabend has studied the way
Galileo has made science a lot and his conclusion:

"The church at the time of Galileo was much more faithful to reason
than Galileo himself, and also took into consideration the ethical
and social consequences of Galileo's doctrine. Its verdict against
Galileo was rational and just, and revisionism can be legitimized
solely for motives of political opportunism."

I believe those remarks could be summarized more concisely if he had
said " I Paul Feyerabend am an idiot". I love philosophy but hate
philosophers because very little philosophy comes from professional
philosophers, it comes from scientists and mathematicians. Every time
I think I'm being too hard on philosophers somebody mentions a person
like Feyerabend and I remember why I dislike them so much.

John K Clark

This statement contradict to a normal scientific world view but it is based on historical facts. Hence it well might be that you have to read more about Galileo.

As for Feyerabend (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Feyerabend)

"Feyerabend became famous for his purportedly anarchistic view of science and his rejection of the existence of universal methodological rules.[1] He is an influential figure in the philosophy of science, and also in the sociology of scientific knowledge."

His book Against method has been cited more than 6000 times according to Google Scholar


This does not mean that everybody has to agree with him but a statement about an idiot looks exaggerated.

I agree. In fact I do agree often with John Clark, but then he exaggerates also very often the point. I am probably very close to him on philosophers, especially continental one, and on Feyerabend. But, actually, in this Galileo case, I have come to similar conclusion as Feyerabend, and I think it is an important point. The church was asking to Galileo to present his view as a theory or conjecture, and the church agreed that such a theory explain better the facts. The church asks him only to accept that it was only a theory, but Galileo refused (or accepted it but only to avoid trouble, cf "e pur si muove"). Of course, Galileo should have answered "all right, but then you should accept that God and all that is only a theory, too", which was not diplomatically possible.

But by refusing the status of theory (conjecture) for its own findings, Galileo did endorse the "modern" view of naturalism, and that science *has* to be naturalist, and this *is* a scientific error (as comp illustrates) which has not yet been corrected (excepting the study of comp). Even Aristotle did not commit that error explicitly, although he paved the road for it. Most scientists, even layman, believes today that the existence of a primary physical reality is a *scientific fact*, where it is only either a gross animal extrapolation, or an aristotelian assumption, which can be refuted (as comp illustrates, at the least).

A pity is that more or less recently the catholic church has done a work of rehabilitation of Galileo, where they endorse that very mistake, showing how much the catholic Church want weak materialism and naturalism to be dogma. That is not new, Catholics even differ from protestants on the importance of the notion of primitive matter, notably to be able to say that bread is, in concreto, the flesh of Jesus.



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