Telmo Menezes <> wrote:

> The theory of evolution as proposed by Darwin is non-reductionist. It
> relies on the concept of "natural selection", which is an holistic concept.

That is entirely false. Natural selection is local, not just spatially but
temporally as well. Evolution doesn't make decision based on the species as
a whole but rather on whether this particular animal right here survives
long enough to get its genes into the next generation. And Evolution has no
foresight, it doesn't understand one step backward 2 steps forward, it only
understands if there is a advantage to the animal right now.  Natural
selection works on what is happening right here right now.

> Finding a cure for cancer or understanding exactly how the brain works
> resist the reductionist approach to this day.

Richard Dawkins has said that in today's pop culture admitting to being a
reductionist is like admitting that you like to eat babies, but the fact is
that every disease science has found a cure for it has done so with a
reductionist approach, and you're only going to know that you really do
understand how the brain works if you can duplicate it, and that means
knowing all the billion little details, and that means reductionism.
However "holistic" is a great buzz word that will impress the rubes and
make you a hit at parties.

>> I can give a example of a effect with no cause at all, the creation of
>> virtual particles.
> > One could argue that they are the result of some condition created by
> the Big Bang.

On the contrary, one could argue that the Big Bang itself was caused by the
creation of virtual particles that became actual for no reason whatsoever.
Quantum Mechanics says that the probability of that happening is mind
bendingly small, but if you're dealing with a infinite amount of time you
can be certain it will happen. That being said I do admit that when
infinity is involved the meaning of probability becomes very fuzzy, so
although there are hints I can't claim that we have a firm understanding of
why there is something rather than nothing.

> Causality is just a human concept anyway.

Unless ET exists all concepts are human concepts because the universe can't
think but humans can.

>> there is either a infinite regress of causes and effects like the layers
>> of a infinite onion with no fundamental layer, or there is a effect without
>> a cause. Neither of those possibilities is emotionally satisfying to some
>> people but one of them must be true.
> > Unless we question causality itself. Which we should.

Well, if we don't know what "causality" means then there is nothing to talk
about; it's like those silly debates about if people have "free will" or
not when they have no idea what the term is supposed to mean and so very
literally don't know what in hell they're debating about.

> Science is not the only way to pursue knowledge

True, induction also works. Usually.

> Philosophy is necessary.

Philosophy is necessary but philosophers are not.

 John K Clark

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