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<Link> Thalience and transapient perspective
That was an enjoyable read, nice to see the deep thoughts of intelligent people.

However, I don't completely agree with him.

For one, Quantum Mechanics and Relativity aren't two theories that explain the same thing, they're two theories that explain the universe at wildly different scales. It's not that they are irreconcilable (we don't have enough information to determine this yet), but that we haven't figured out how to join them together yet.

Loop Quantum Gravity and String Theory would be two different ways of explaining the same thing.

Supposing that there are multiple theories that explain the universe equally well, Occam's Razor comes into play. Not picking a vision of the universe that tickles your ego may be too austere for many people, but it's the rational choice. If there are multiple theories that have an equal number of assumptions, then one could pick the one that they like most, being mindful that the others have equal probability of being the truth.

Multiple working theories of the universe would not allow the creation of scientifically valid religions. Religions, by definition, assume the existence of entities, states of being, etc., that are untestable because they lie outside physical reality. Religious assumptions have no predictive ability. It would be possible to create religions that are consistent with observed reality; for example, it's possible that Buddhism is true, and people can reach Nirvana after death, but it's not possible that Fundamentalist Abrahamic Religions are true because the accounts in Genesis completely contradict the physical and secular-historical evidence. There's no hint that Nirvana actually exists, so Buddhism isn't scientifically valid.

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RE: Thalience and transapient perspective - by JohnnyYesterday - 10-16-2013, 06:38 AM

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