The assumptions central and indispensable to the traditional Western religious view of the world are in fact not the origins of human beings qua organisms, nor the position of the earth relative to other heavenly bodies, nor any other matter of purely scientific concern. They are rather metaphysical in nature, and their truth must accordingly be determined, ultimately, by philosophical argument rather than empirical investigation. The immateriality of the human mind -- or the soul, to use the more traditional language -- is but one of these assumptions (an assumption usually referred to as dualism). Another is the existence of a Necessary Being who serves as the ultimate explanation or First Cause of the world of our experience and of the scientific laws that govern it: the existence, that is to say, of God (belief in whom is referred to by philosophers as theism). A third is the reality of a realm of abstract entities (mathematical truths, Plato's Forms, and the like), i.e. of objectively existing, immaterial, unchanging essences or natures of things, of which everyday material objects and organisms are merely imperfect realizations (an idea known as Platonism). If each of these assumptions were established, the Judeo-Christian religious worldview would be largely vindicated, whatever empirical science might discover; and if each of them were refuted, that worldview would itself be decisively refuted, even if the biologists all got de-converted from Darwinism tomorrow. So the findings of science per se are in fact irrelevant. (emphasis added)Check Bill's post Presumption of Constitutionality, at WalloWorld, in which he continues his part of the discussion with Ed from Dispatches regarding the 9th Amendment. The topic, at least for me, is actually broken down into two parts that I would simply state as: 1) de-constructionism vs. constructionism and, 2) how the 9th Amendment relates to unenumerated rights. Bill addresses point #2. I try to watch NBC's Law & Order series when I get the time (which usually means "not very often"). I missed last week's SVU episode. Evidently it was, in the opinion of the HSLDA, derogatory towards the Home School movement. Check their statement at NBC's Law and Order SVU Smears Homeschooling.
Tuesday, February 24, 2004
Links for the day...
Update: the reader named Michael is the one and only Rev. Mike! A reader named Michael e-mailed me a link to an article by Edward Feser titled, The Opium of the Professors. Feser, a Visiting Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, writes: