RE: definition of science

From: Terry M. Gray <grayt@lamar.colostate.edu>
Date: Mon Apr 25 2005 - 15:08:42 EDT

That's a tautological claim. The whole point under discussion here is
whether or not the definition of science is so limited.

TG

>If science deals with the physical aspect of reality, then the
>question arises if life can be characterized by purely physical
>concepts only. I do not think so.
>
>Moorad
>
>________________________________
>
>From: Terry M. Gray [mailto:grayt@lamar.colostate.edu]
>Sent: Mon 4/25/2005 2:15 PM
>To: Alexanian, Moorad
>Subject: RE: definition of science
>
>
>
>Moorad,
>
>Are you suggesting that the study of life is outside the bounds of science?
>
>TG
>
>
>>The notion of supernatural seems to transcend Nature and venture
>>into the religious. I prefer the terms physical and nonphysical. The
>>former clearly the subject matter of science whereas the latter is
>>clearly outside the bounds of science. Examples of the latter are
>>human rationality, consciousness, and perhaps, even the notion of
>>life.
>>
>>Moorad
>>
>>
>>________________________________
>>
>>From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu on behalf of kbmill@ksu.edu
>>Sent: Mon 4/25/2005 1:41 PM
>>To: asa@calvin.edu
>>Subject: RE: definition of science
>>
>>
>>
>>Terry:
>>
>>
>>> Is biology "physical" in your use of the word? How about psychology?
>>>
>>> I'm not trying to invoke a sense of vital force here, but
>>> philosophers of science, especially philosophers of biology, have
>>> long advocated an autonomy of biology that makes it irreducible to
>>> physics and chemistry (even though it may be fully built upon a
>>> physics and chemistry substratum). In other words, there are
>>> scientific concepts, laws, theories, etc. that can't be reduced to
>>> some physical-chemical expression--they are expressed only in terms
>>> of the biological world.
>>>
>>> This is why I want to distinguish between physical and natural.
>>
>>I used the term "physical" to include all of physical reality (matter
>>and energy) and thus would include biology, neuroscience, etc. And no
>>I do not believe that everything is reducible to physics. My intended
>>distinction is between the physical (natural) and supernatural.
>>
>>Keith
>
>
>--
>_________________
>Terry M. Gray, Ph.D., Computer Support Scientist
>Chemistry Department, Colorado State University
>Fort Collins, Colorado 80523
>grayt@lamar.colostate.edu http://www.chm.colostate.edu/~grayt/
>phone: 970-491-7003 fax: 970-491-1801

-- 
_________________
Terry M. Gray, Ph.D., Computer Support Scientist
Chemistry Department, Colorado State University
Fort Collins, Colorado  80523
grayt@lamar.colostate.edu  http://www.chm.colostate.edu/~grayt/
phone: 970-491-7003 fax: 970-491-1801
Received on Mon Apr 25 15:10:16 2005

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