Naturalism and Logical Positivism?
*Questioner, Damien, what’s the difference between naturalism and Logical Positivism?
My responce, Well, to try and explain it at the simplest; to me naturalism is “what is” in discernible reality and Logical Positivism can be thought as kind of about the “limit of what is believed as available” to be true in a naturalism world. It’s more complicated but that is kind of what is different to me.
*Questioner, how do we respond to people who say that Logical Positivism is dead and therefore scientism is a self-refuting claim?
Logical Positivism, Naturalistic Epistemology, and the Foundations of Psychology:
“According to the standard account, logical positivism was the philosophical foundation of psychological neo-behaviorism. However, this interpretation has been questioned, suggesting that neo-behaviorism drew its philosophical inspiration from a different tradition, one more in keeping with naturalistic epistemology. Smith does not deny, however, the traditional interpretation of the philosophy of logical positivism, which sets it apart from naturalistic epistemology. Richard F. Kitchener suggests (following recent historical scholarship) that a more careful reading of the leading figure of logical positivism, Rudolph Carnap, shows an important naturalistic component in his philosophy. Hence, we must reevaluate our standard interpretation of the philosophy of logical positivism and its relation to psychological neo-behaviorism.” https://www.jstor.org/stable/27759470?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents
“Neobehaviorism is a school of thought that posits that the study of learning and a focus on rigorous objective observational methods form the key to scientific psychology. Neobehaviorism is the second phase of behaviorism. In contrast to behaviorists, neobehaviorists tried to formalize behavioral laws and drew influence from positivists. These logical positivists believed that anything that could not be proven through science via physical observations was nonsense or metaphysics. Knowledge must be built by observations and verified by observations.” Ref
I don’t claim Logical Positivism.
I hold to “Metaphysical Naturalism,” also called ontological naturalism, philosophical naturalism, and scientific materialism is a worldview, which holds that there is nothing but natural elements, principles, and relations of the kind studied by the natural sciences.
*Questioner, Isn’t that self-refuting or an a priori claim since radical empiricism can’t be prove empirically although I am a naturalist myself since there’s no reason to believe in anything supernatural. The universe is always here right, so there’s no reason to assume that the universe is noncontingent or contingent rather?
My responce, Well, I am justified to hold that view do to the extreme success of science using methodological naturalism which supports my claims of metaphysical naturalism. I don’t think atheists have to but should have answers or its most effective if us atheists can offer answers to these hard questions. I understand that others are not as outspoken or have things thought out as detailed as me; as I am a firebrand atheist trying to actively change minds with valid and reliable reason and evidence. One thing I would say is you can read up on Naturalism as there is several kinds.
“In philosophy, naturalism is the “idea or belief that only natural (as opposed to supernatural or spiritual) laws and forces operate in the world.” Adherents of naturalism (i.e., naturalists) assert that natural laws are the rules that govern the structure and behavior of the natural universe, that the changing universe at every stage is a product of these laws. “Naturalism can intuitively be separated into an ontological and a methodological component.” “Ontological” refers to the philosophical study of the nature of reality. Some philosophers equate naturalism with materialism. For example, philosopher Paul Kurtz argues that nature is best accounted for by reference to material principles. These principles include mass, energy, and other physical and chemical properties accepted by the scientific community. Further, this sense of naturalism holds that spirits, deities, and ghosts are not real and that there is no “purpose” in nature. Such an absolute belief in naturalism is commonly referred to as metaphysical naturalism. Assuming naturalism in working methods is the current paradigm, without the unfounded consideration of naturalism as an absolute truth with philosophical entailment, called methodological naturalism. The subject matter here is a philosophy of acquiring knowledge based on an assumed paradigm. With the exception of pantheists—who believe that Nature and God are one and the same thing—theists challenge the idea that nature contains all of reality. According to some theists, natural laws may be viewed as so-called secondary causes of god(s). In the 20th century, Willard Van Orman Quine, George Santayana, and other philosophers argued that the success of naturalism in science meant that scientific methods should also be used in philosophy. Science and philosophy are said to form a continuum, according to this view.” Ref
According to philosophybasics.com, “Naturalism is the belief that nature is all that exists, and that all things supernatural (including gods, spirits, souls and non-natural values) therefore do not exist. It is often called Metaphysical Naturalism or Philosophical Naturalism or Ontological Naturalism to distinguish it from Methodological Naturalism. It holds that any mental properties that exist (and hence any mental powers or beings) are causally derived from, and ontologically dependent on, systems of non-mental properties, powers or things (i.e. all minds, and all the contents and powers and effects of minds, are entirely constructed from or caused by natural phenomena). Some naturalistic beliefs claim that what is commonly called supernatural is, in fact, part of the natural world. Likewise, there are different varieties of Metaphysical Naturalism, but they are usually separated into two general categories: *Physicalism (or Materialism): The belief that everything which exists is no more extensive than its physical properties, and that the only existing substance is physical. Thus, everything that has ever been observed is in actual fact the product of fundamentally mindless arrangements or interactions of matter-energy in space-time, and it is unreasonable to believe anything else exists. *Pluralism: The belief that reality consists of many different substances (including abstract objects and universals) in addition to those fundamentally mindless arrangements or interactions of matter-energy in space-time. Moreover, Naturalism is inconsistent with any kind of Theism and compatible with Atheism. The direct opposite of Naturalism is Supernaturalism, which accepts the existence of such things as supernatural beings, magical objects, Platonic forms or the existence of love (for example) as a cosmic force.” Ref
But yeah, my views are quite similar to Positivism, but I don’t really claim “Positivism” as I prefer metaphysical naturalism.
According to oxfordbibliographies.com,”Physicalism and Metaphysical Naturalism – Much of contemporary metaphysical work is motivated in some way by the desire to accommodate what the natural sciences, especially physics, have taught us about the world. This motivation has drawn many philosophers to endorse doctrines variously described as physicalism, materialism, or naturalism. “Physicalism” and “materialism” are often treated as interchangeable names for a single doctrine that may be crudely expressed as the claim that everything that exists is physical. By contrast, “naturalism” is widely acknowledged to be ambiguous between at least two sorts of positions. Epistemological naturalism is the view that knowledge is best gained (perhaps: can only be gained) via the methods of science (perhaps: the methods of natural science). Metaphysical naturalism is often thought of as making a global ontological claim akin to physicalism—perhaps the claim that everything that exists is natural, where some explication of “natural” is evidently crucial. (“Naturalism” without qualification shall here be understood as referring to the metaphysical doctrine.) It is often suspected on the part of non-naturalists that a self-declared naturalist is really just a physicalist under a different label. Both doctrines are thought to have significant consequences for our understanding of the world, especially human aspects of the world and the nature of mentality. They may also have implications for our understanding of moral properties, abstract objects, the possibility of knowledge, and other familiar items of philosophical investigation. A global metaphysical theory of this sort induces what are known (following Frank Jackson in From Metaphysics to Ethics; see Jackson 1998, cited under Central Monographs) as “placement location problems”: the problem of locating in a wholly physical or natural world those things that seem not to be wholly physical or natural. Debates about these metaphysical doctrines often focus on the prospects for solving such placement problems, where a failure may justify an elimination of the thing in question or a rejection of the global doctrine. Other debates focus on the proper formulation and understanding of the doctrines (e.g., what is meant by calling an entity physical?), whether and how it might be justified (e.g., what in the development of natural science could justify the claim that everything is natural?), and its implications for science and the proper treatment of placement problems (e.g., does physicalism require all sciences to reduce to physics?).” Ref