RE: RE: Public perceptions of science: was Why Most Published Research Findings Are False

From: Alexanian, Moorad <>
Date: Fri Sep 09 2005 - 16:44:29 EDT

However, we have to be careful not to characterize, say, love in purely physical and physiological terms. Such purely physical/physiological description will fail to explain the notion of what love is to an alien who, albeit, not human is very well versed on science. I am afraid the same will be true with the notion of life, human rationality and consciousness.



From: on behalf of David C Campbell
Sent: Fri 9/9/2005 4:20 PM
Subject: Re: RE: Public perceptions of science: was Why Most Published Research Findings Are False

>If the subject matter of science is defined to be the physical aspect of
>the universe, as Rep. Holt stipulates, then biologists have to either
>consider life to be physical+, say an emergent property or feature, or
>else redefined what science is to include life. In the former case, they
>have to either indicate how life emerges from the purely physical or
>else admit that biologists cannot handle the question of the origin of
>life since they would suppose its prior existence.

Living entities unquestionably have physical properties that can be
examined scientifically, regardless of their origins. Models for the
physical origin of life exist; they do not provide exhaustive detail
but they do show that it's worth trying to find scientific
descriptions. It's possible, though IMO unlikely, that this effort
will come across a clear break that can't be explained scientifically.
However, this does not negate the physical descriptions of the
remaining aspects.

Dr. David Campbell
425 Scientific Collections
University of Alabama, Box 870345
Tuscaloosa AL 35487
"James gave the huffle of a snail in
danger But no one heard him at all" A.
A. Milne
Received on Fri Sep 9 16:46:13 2005

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