From: David Clounch <>
Date: Sat Jun 02 2007 - 20:19:54 EDT

Phil said:
"In effect, they were insisting that theists must hold to the purity of
science while they were overlooking their own injection of non-theistic
metaphysics into science. "

I have to ask. Isn't the "injection of non-theistic metaphysics into
science" really scientism in action?

This Iowa group of signers may have that problem. If they do, it is easy
to see an immediate establishment clause problem emerging.

Another group that has the problem would be the petition circulated by the
(former) Dean at UW Osh Kosh, who supposedly gathered the signatures of
10,000 Christian ministers. Just asking ministers to make a statement on
science seems (to me) to constitute a religious act. Doesn't it? But
there is also no disclosure of the underlying injection of naturalistic
metaphysics into that petition's statement. One is left wondering if many of
the ministers would have signed had they realized what lies beneath?

So, two cases of scientism? Hmmm. If so, it would seem to be raining
scientism these days. I would think everyone would be worried about it. My
personal view is some are afraid to allow the position that the ID movement
is committing scientism (and that this is the real achilles heel of ID).
They simply don't want to ask the question. Why? Because to do so would
expose their own (anti-ID) position to the exact same set of questions. And
everyone would then realize that there is indeed non-theistic metaphysics at
play. Better to just pretend scientism doesn't exist.

I object. I think the world needs clear demarcation criteria for what is
science versus what is scientism. You see, its got to be more than just
Phil, or anyone really, merely claiming that non-theistic metaphysics was
injected. We all have to *know* if this is what is going on in these
political statements according to objective standards. If we don't know,
then the nation's public policy is guaranteed to be wrong.

Thank you,
David Clounch

On 5/31/07, <> wrote:
> > However, it seems to me that one could easily take the view that
> > "natural phenomena" covers all events in space-time that are not caused
> > by something outside the continuum eg super natural. In such a view the
> > resurrection while occurring in space-time is not a "natural phenomena".
> But clearly they didn't mean to allow this kind of interpretation, because
> if they did then it exposes the scientific process to the counter claim that
> certain events in history were not "natural phenomena," including the
> appearance of bacterial flagella or priveleged planets, because an
> intelligent designer may have caused these things from outside the
> continuum. That is exactly the sort of claim that they were intending to
> deny by their statement.
> Also, this interpretation reduces their statement to the tautological
> claim that "all things that are not supernatural are natural." That kind of
> tautology is not at all helpful in defining the "method" of methodological
> naturalism. So clearly they didn't mean this.
> > You could well be right in your conclusion of duplicity, but I'd like to
> see
> > some other evidence that philosophical naturalism was what was meant
> > before coming to that conclusion.
> Like Rich, I think they were just sloppy and not purposely deceptive. But
> I think that kind of sloppiness is inexcusable in a statement that was
> intended to protect the purity of science against metaphysical intrusions.
> In effect, they were insisting that theists must hold to the purity of
> science while they were overlooking their own injection of non-theistic
> metaphysics into science. I think this statement is very telling in the
> same sense that a Freudian slip is very telling.
> Phil
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Received on Sat Jun 2 20:20:28 2007

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