The Scientific Method and its Philosophy Axioms

An axiom is something that is taken to be true, to serve as a premise or starting point for further reasoning and arguments. The logico-deductive method whereby conclusions (new knowledge) follow from premises (old knowledge) through the application of sound arguments (syllogisms, rules of inference), was developed by the ancient Greeks, and has become the core principle of modern mathematics. Tautologies excluded, nothing can be deduced if nothing is assumed. Axioms and postulates are the basic assumptions underlying a given body of deductive knowledge. They are accepted without demonstration. All other assertions (theorems, if we are talking about mathematics) must be proven with the aid of these basic assumptions.” ref

Some do realize all the utilized or assumed philosophy in the scientific method which to me entail things like Scientific Realism, Metaphysical Naturalism, Rationalism, Empiricism, Methodological Skepticism, Justificationism, Correspondence Theory of Truth, Falsafacationism, Falabalism, Reliabilism, Probabilism, Probability Theory, etc.

Scientific theories, it has sometimes been maintained enable us to describe precisely how things happen, but cannot really explain why they happen as they do. According to this view (which I shall call ‘descriptivism’), the .search for explanation or for explanatory theories is an illegitimate intrusion of metaphysics into science. Descriptivism is related to (but not, as is often supposed, identical with) an even more radical view, which I shall call ‘instrumentalism’ (following Popper) or ‘fictionalism’. The instrumentalist agrees with the descriptivist that scientific theories are not explanatory but goes further, and denies that they are descriptive as well. Theories, according to the instrumentalist, are not descriptions of the world, but mathematical devices or fictions which enable us to classify, systematize and predict descriptions of the world. Opposed to both of these views is realism. My aim is to argue in favor of realism. And in general will favor a fallibilist, realistic, and rationalist position in opposition to the idealistic, antirealism and relativistic viewpoints some champion.” From: Essays on Realism and Rationalism by Alan Musgrave

The scientific method assumes a priori about the nature of reality, one is not agnostic about this, the scientific method is using philosophical rationalism as the nature of reality proof or truth by using a priori assumptions. The scientific method uses a priori for the nature of reality or rationalistic naturalism.


The Scientific Method is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. Consisting of systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses”. Experiments are a procedure designed to test hypotheses and are an important tool of the scientific method which is a continuous process that begins with observations about the natural world. As in other areas of inquiry, science (through the scientific method) can build on previous knowledge and develop a more sophisticated understanding of its topics of study over time. This model can be seen to underlay the scientific revolution. The overall process involves making conjectures (hypotheses), deriving predictions from them as logical consequences, and then carrying out experiments based on those predictions to determine whether the original conjecture was correct. There are difficulties in a formulaic statement of method, however. Though the scientific method is often presented as a fixed sequence of steps, these actions are better considered as general principles. Not all steps take place in every scientific inquiry (nor to the same degree), and they are not always done in the same order. ” ref

Scientific realism is a positive epistemic attitude toward the content of our best theories and models, recommending belief in both observable and unobservable aspects of the world described by the sciences.” ref

Metaphysical naturalism (rationalistic naturalism), also called ontological naturalism, philosophical naturalism, and scientific materialism is a philosophical worldview, which holds that there is nothing but natural elements, principles, and relations of the kind studied by the natural sciences. Methodological naturalism is a philosophical basis for science, for which metaphysical naturalism provides only one possible ontological foundation.” ref

Rationalism in philosophy is the epistemological view that ‘regards reason as the chief source and test of knowledge’ or ‘any view appealing to reason as a source of knowledge or justification’. More formally, rationalism is defined as a methodology or a theory ‘in which the criterion of the truth is not sensory but intellectual and deductive’.” ref

Empiricism is a theory that states that knowledge comes only or primarily from sensory experience. Empiricism in the philosophy of science emphasizes evidence, especially as discovered in experiments. It is a fundamental part of the scientific method that all hypotheses and theories must be tested against observations of the natural world, “knowledge is based on experience” and “knowledge is tentative and probabilistic, subject to continued revision and falsification.” One of the epistemological tenets is that sensory experience creates knowledge. Empirical research, including experiments and validated measurement tools, guides the scientific method.” ref

Methodological Skepticism is distinguished from philosophical skepticism in that methodological skepticism is an approach that subjects all knowledge claims to scrutiny with the goal of sorting out true from false claims, whereas philosophical skepticism is an approach that questions the possibility of certain knowledge. Methodological Skepticism also called Scientific skepticism which concerns testing beliefs for reliability, by subjecting them to systematic investigation using the scientific method, to discover empirical evidence for them. Scientific skeptics maintain that empirical investigation of reality leads to the truth, and that the scientific method is best suited to this purpose. Scientific skeptics attempt to evaluate claims based on verifiability and falsifiability and discourage accepting claims on faith or anecdotal evidence.” ref, ref, & ref

Justificationism in philosophy is an approach that regards the justification of a claim as primary, while the claim itself is secondary; thus, criticism consists of trying to show that a claim cannot be reduced to the authority or criteria that it appeals to.” ref

Correspondence Theory of Truth states that the truth or falsity of a statement is determined only by how it relates to the world and whether it accurately describes (i.e., corresponds with) that world. Correspondence theories claim that true beliefs and true statements correspond to the actual state of affairs. This type of theory attempts to posit a relationship between thoughts or statements on one hand, and things or facts on the other.” ref

Falsificationism“. Popper stresses the problem of demarcation—distinguishing the scientific from the unscientific—and makes falsifiability the demarcation criterion, such that what is unfalsifiable is classified as unscientific, and the practice of declaring an unfalsifiable theory to be scientifically true is pseudoscience. Naïve falsificationism is an unsuccessful attempt to prescribe a rationally unavoidable method for science. Naïve falsification considers scientific statements individually. Scientific theories are formed from groups of these sorts of statements, and it is these groups that must be accepted or rejected by scientists. Sophisticated methodological falsification, on the other hand, is a prescription of a way in which scientists ought to behave as a matter of choice. Statementshypotheses, or theories have falsifiability or refutability if there is the inherent possibility that they can be proven false. They are falsifiable if it is possible to conceive of an observation or an argument which could negate them. In this sense, falsify is synonymous with nullify, meaning to invalidate or “show to be false”.” ref

Fallibilism is the epistemological thesis that no belief (theory, view, thesis, and so on) can ever be rationally supported or justified in a conclusive way (that no evidence or reason can ever overturn it). Always, there remains a possible doubt as to the truth of the belief (ie. one is always open to valid and reliable reason and evidence that could disprove or deminish the belief).” ref

Reliabilism, a category of theories in the philosophical discipline of epistemology, has been advanced as a theory both of justification and of knowledge.  One such theory is called “process reliabilism” which has been used as an argument against philosophical skepticism, such as the brain in a vat thought experiment. Moreover, process reliabilism (a form of epistemic externalism) focusing on the contribution of the truth, mainly the process of producing reliable or certain belief.” ref

Probabilism in theology and philosophy, is an ancient Greek doctrine of academic skepticism holding that in the absence of certainty, probability is the best criterion. And a probabilist is someone who believes that central epistemological issues are best approached using probabilities. This thesis is neutral with respect to whether knowledge entails certainty or whether skepticism about knowledge is true.” ref

Probability theory is the branch of mathematics concerned with probability. Although there are several different probability interpretations, probability theory treats the concept in a rigorous mathematical manner by expressing it through a set of axioms. As a mathematical foundation for statistics, probability theory is essential to many human activities that involve quantitative analysis of data. Methods of probability theory also apply to descriptions of complex systems given only partial knowledge of their state, as in statistical mechanics. A great discovery of twentieth-century physics was the probabilistic nature of physical phenomena at atomic scales, described in quantum mechanics.” ref

Pragmatic theory of truth, Coherence theory of truth, and Correspondence theory of truth

Here is more on fallibilism:

Fallibilism applies that assessment even to science’s best-entrenched claims and to people’s best-loved commonsense views. Some epistemologists have taken fallibilism to imply skepticism, though, it is fallibilist epistemologists (which is to say, the majority of epistemologists) who tend not to be skeptics about the existence of knowledge or justified belief. Generally, those fallibilist epistemologists see themselves as thinking about knowledge and justification in a comparatively realistic way — by recognizing the fallibilist realities of human cognitive capacities, even while accommodating those fallibilities within a theory that allows perpetually fallible people to have knowledge and justified beliefs. Epistemologists generally seek to understand knowledge and justification in a way that permits fallibilism to describe a benign truth about how we can gain knowledge and justified beliefs. The difference between fallibilism and skepticism lies in their beliefs about what constitutes knowledge. Fallibilists and skeptics both believe that we can never establish the truth of a proposition with 100% certainty. However, skeptics believe that we don’t know what we cannot confirm with 100% certainty, while fallibilists have a more moderate view where 100% certainty is not required for knowledge. When I state “fallibilists and skeptics both believe that we can never establish the truth of a proposition with 100% certainty.””, what I as a thinker using Fallibilism, believe that we can never establish the truth of a proposition with 100% certainty is referring to how it could be later found to be in error and may need adapting to the increase in epistemic accuracy tempered with Epistemic Humility. We are 100% certain all the time (certainty is a belief state), what most who doubt 100% certainty, likely are referring to is our ability to validate a kind of certainty or level of certainty as there is not one universal thinking on certainty with the two main types being psychological certainty or Epistemic Certainty. Certainty is connected to a belief state or level of sureness, so we can be 100% psychologically certain of things we state normatively. As in If I or you take a piece of text and know things about it as in is it written in a language legible to the general group of english only speakers to know it is written in english, as well as many other things with 100% logically certain belief. But I am open to new information to prove some thinking could be found in error in some way need updating to a more accurate view as a general epistemic persuasion. Ref Ref


Rationalism and the Enlightenment

Rationalist thinkers vs Skeptic thinkers

If I made the statement that the following proposition was 100% true and certain today and for all time that,

“There is a chance that Damien AtHope will either reply or not reply to his posts on FB”

I think people like to only talk as if there is one type of certainty as a universal true class. When I hold that there are different kinds of certainty such as first needing to know what type of certainty that I am referring, as in what is expressed in this statement:

“There is a chance that Damien AtHope will either reply or not reply to his posts on FB”

This is a kind of normative statement so to me normative thinking standards apply. As such, we can know that I proposed an “hedge one’s bets trying to keep from being wrong by saying you believe two contrary propositions at the same time which could be an unintentional oddity but just as likely is used as a form of intellectual dishonesty involving a rhetoric claim used as a red herring evasion.” Moreover, with further understanding we can also know that by accepting such an openness to all possibilities, what it is telling us, beyond its not making an open strong opinion on one side in its options, other than the thinking logically certain that accepting all possible outcomes of a being’s behavior is also maybe unwittingly confirming a stance to all, the possible presuppositions hidden in that, or that it seems “hedge one’s bets” possibly trying to avoid the possibility of making a claim that offers a thinking that is outside of challenge may not work that well unless you accept the belief in the reality of a world with free agents or even unthinking agents doing the choosing. But believing in as well as epistemically certain about the reality of a world, is not doing anything that strange assuming a lot a we all do all the time. But that’s the only thing we can do in a sense is unwittingly confirm a stance for the possible presuppositions hidden in much that we think or say as it seems we often express a belief in the reality of a world presupposition (which I believe we have extensive epistemic certainty, thus deserves 100% psychological certainty until shown otherwise.

Empiricism-Denier

What do you mean by god Evidence?

Atheistic Null Hypothesis: There is no God/Gods

Sorry You Have No Evidence

Folk Logic: YOU CAN’T PROVE A NEGATIVE because you can PROVE A NEGATIVE

No there is No gods and No we are not a Brain in a Vat

In reality, the world is quite logical, tangible, and natural in how it operates although as it’s devoid of magic or mind it thus is unaware of its absurdity and cruelty. Reality is logical in that things are fixed there is not a person one day and a horse another day. Reality is logical and that is why it is predictable and quantifiable. Whereas in the religious mind, they seem to think the world is illogical, unreal, unnatural, filled with reality-defying magical dreams. Dreams in which their chosen made up reality supposedly operates with magic and mind (god or whatever) some claims even hold that this god or somethingism magic is fully aware of our perceivable reality’s absurdity and cruelty, as well as reportedly planned that our “proven” reality was meant to be this way. And though that may sound thrilling to some such ridiculousness is not in evidence in our true rational “naturalistic” reality devoid of all magic or mind.


Wisdom as Epistemic Humility?


According to Sharon Ryan with The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Socrates’ view of wisdom, as expressed by Plato in The Apology (20e-23c), is sometimes interpreted as an example of a humility theory of wisdom (see, for example, Ryan 1996 and Whitcomb, 2010). In Plato’s Apology, Socrates and his friend Chaerephon visit the oracle at Delphi. As the story goes, Chaerephon asks the oracle whether anyone is wiser than Socrates. The oracle’s answer is that Socrates is the wisest person. Socrates reports that he is puzzled by this answer since so many other people in the community are well known for their extensive knowledge and wisdom, and yet Socrates claims that he lacks knowledge and wisdom. Socrates does an investigation to get to the bottom of this puzzle. He interrogates a series of politicians, poets, and craftsmen. As one would expect, Socrates’ investigation reveals that those who claim to have knowledge either do not really know any of the things they claim to know, or else know far less than they proclaim to know. The most knowledgeable of the bunch, the craftsmen, know about their craft, but they claim to know things far beyond the scope of their expertise. Socrates, so we are told, neither suffers the vice of claiming to know things he does not know, nor the vice of claiming to have wisdom when he does not have wisdom. In this revelation, we have a potential resolution to the wisdom puzzle in The Apology. Although the story may initially appear to deliver a clear theory of wisdom, it is actually quite difficult to capture a textually accurate and plausible theory here. One interpretation is that Socrates is wise because he, unlike the others, believes he is not wise, whereas the poets, politicians, and craftsmen arrogantly and falsely believe they are wise. This theory, which will be labeled Humility Theory 1 (H1), is simply (see, for example, Lehrer & Smith 1996, 3): Humility Theory 1 (H1): S is wise iff S believes s/he is not wise. This is a tempting and popular interpretation because Socrates certainly thinks he has shown that the epistemically arrogant poets, politicians, and craftsmen lack wisdom. Moreover, Socrates claims that he is not wise, and yet, if we trust the oracle, Socrates is actually wise. Upon careful inspection, (H1) is not a reasonable interpretation of Socrates’ view. Although Socrates does not boast of his own wisdom, he does believe the oracle. If he was convinced that he was not wise, he would have rejected the oracle and gone about his business because he would not find any puzzle to unravel. Clearly, he believes, on some level, that he is wise. The mystery is: what is wisdom if he has it and the others lack it? Socrates nowhere suggests that he has become unwise after believing the oracle. Thus, (H1) is not an acceptable interpretation of Socrates’ view. Moreover, (H1) is false. Many people are clear counterexamples to (H1). Many people who believe they are not wise are correct in their self-assessment. Thus, the belief that one is not wise is not a sufficient condition for wisdom. Furthermore, it seems that the belief that one is not wise is not necessary for wisdom. It seems plausible to think that a wise person could be wise enough to realize that she is wise. Too much modesty might get in the way of making good decisions and sharing what one knows. If one thinks Socrates was a wise person, and if one accepts that Socrates did, in fact, accept that he was wise, then Socrates himself is a counterexample to (H1). The belief that one is wise could be a perfectly well justified belief for a wise person. Having the belief that one is wise does not, in itself, eliminate the possibility that the person is wise. Nor does it guarantee the vice of arrogance. We should hope that a wise person would have a healthy dose of epistemic self-confidence, appreciate that she is wise, and share her understanding of reality with the rest of us who could benefit from her wisdom. Thus, the belief that one is not wise is not required for wisdom. (H1) focused on believing one is not wise. Another version of the humility theory is worth considering. When Socrates demonstrates that a person is not wise, he does so by showing that the person lacks some knowledge that he or she claims to possess. Thus, one might think that Socrates’ view could be better captured by focusing on the idea that wise people believe they lack knowledge (rather than lacking wisdom). That is, one might consider the following view: Humility Theory 2 (H2): S is wise iff S believes S does not know anything. Unfortunately, this interpretation is not any better than (H1). It falls prey to problems similar to those that refuted (H1) both as an interpretation of Socrates, and as an acceptable account of wisdom. Moreover, remember that Socrates admits that the craftsmen do have some knowledge. Socrates might have considered them to be wise if they had restricted their confidence and claims to knowledge to what they actually did know about their craft. Their problem was that they professed to have knowledge beyond their area of expertise. The problem was not that they claimed to have knowledge. Before turning to alternative approaches to wisdom, it is worth mentioning another interpretation of Socrates that fits with the general spirit of epistemic humility. One might think that what Socrates is establishing is that his wisdom is found in his realization that human wisdom is not a particularly valuable kind of wisdom. Only the gods possess the kind of wisdom that is truly valuable. This is clearly one of Socrates’ insights, but it does not provide us with an understanding of the nature of wisdom. It tells us only of its comparative value. Merely understanding this evaluative insight would not, for reasons similar to those discussed with (HP1) and (HP2), make one wise. Humility theories of wisdom are not promising, but they do, perhaps, provide us with some important character traits associated with wise people. Wise people, one might argue, possess epistemic self-confidence, yet lack epistemic arrogance. Wise people tend to acknowledge their fallibility, and wise people are reflective, introspective, and tolerant of uncertainty. Any acceptable theory of wisdom ought to be compatible with such traits. However, those traits are not, in and of themselves, definitive of wisdom.” Ref

When would skepticism NOT be reasonable?

Knowledge can be classified in several ways. Firstly, it can be either explicit (self-conscious) or implicit (tacit, hidden from self-consciousness). Secondly, it can be either propositional or non-propositional (something which cannot be represented by propositions, e.g. knowing how to do something?).

Simply the scientific method requires certain a priori assumptions of epistemology and metaphysics in order to even get out of the starting gate. It assumes you are not a brain in a vat. The scientific method means that supernatural entities or concepts that are meaningless or logically contradictory cannot be included in a scientific hypothesis (not least because you can’t put a sample of a god in a test-tube). Consequently, when carrying out investigations scientists assume a position of methodological naturalism.

The idea that scientific evidence can disprove the notion of god is scientific realism. Scientific realism is also a priori rationalism about the accepted natural reality of nature. The point is a thing cannot validate itself science accepts what is reasoned, it may forget the philosophy it uses and cannot live without but it is still there. I can reasonably likewise assume a priori rationalism about the natural world that has no rational validity to a supernatural being called god.

“The Hammer of Truth” (scientific philosophy: Ontology, Epistemology, & Axiology) in action.


Scientific knowledge

To be scientific the knowledge must be
. communicable: It is something which is discussed.
. general: generalized vs. separate fragments of knowledge
. conceptual: represented by concepts vs. intuitive ideas (i.e. explicit and propositional knowledge)
. true or probable
. argumented: It can be proved or demonstrated.

The scientific methods should also fill some criteria, which try to guarantee quality of scientific knowledge. (These are important and quite permanent part of general paradigm of science):
. progressive: knowledge base is expanded by using this method
. self-correcting: the errors get corrected by this method.
. publicity: arguments are public for anyone
. justifiable: the arguments are satisfactory


Scientific Realism

Forms of Knowledge

BETWEEN NATURALISM AND RATIONALISM


Absolute Knowledge?

Certainty and Probability

My Methodological Skepticism Style

Philosophical Skepticism, Solipsism and the Denial of Reality or Certainty

Rationalist atheism


“String theory, the multiverse and other ideas of modern physics are potentially untestable. At a historic meeting in Munich, scientists and philosophers asked: should we trust them anyway? And, as many in Munich were surprised to learn, falsificationism is no longer the reigning philosophy of science. Massimo Pigliucci, a philosopher at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, pointed out that falsifiability is woefully inadequate as a separator of science and nonscience, as Popper himself recognized. Astrology, for instance, is falsifiable — indeed, it has been falsified ad nauseam — and yet it isn’t science. Physicists’ preoccupation with Popper “is really something that needs to stop,” Pigliucci said. “We need to talk about current philosophy of science. We don’t talk about something that was current 50 years ago.” Nowadays, as several philosophers at the workshop said, Popperian falsificationism has been supplanted by Bayesian confirmation theory, or Bayesianism, a modern framework based on the 18th-century probability theory of the English statistician and minister Thomas Bayes. Bayesianism allows for the fact that modern scientific theories typically make claims far beyond what can be directly observed — no one has ever seen an atom — and so today’s theories often resist a falsified-unfalsified dichotomy. Instead, trust in a theory often falls somewhere along a continuum, sliding up or down between 0 and 100 percent as new information becomes available. “The Bayesian framework is much more flexible” than Popper’s theory, said Stephan Hartmann, a Bayesian philosopher at LMU. “It also connects nicely to the psychology of reasoning.” Gross concurred, saying that, upon learning about Bayesian confirmation theory from Dawid’s book, he felt “somewhat like the Molière character who said, ‘Oh my God, I’ve been talking prose all my life!’” Another advantage of Bayesianism, Hartmann said, is that it is enabling philosophers like Dawid to figure out “how this non-empirical evidence fits in, or can be fit in.”” Ref


My “Methodological Rationalism” approach

Basics of my Methodological Rationalism Epistemology Approach


Truth Navigation: Techniques for Discussions or Debates

Science, unlike faith, uses more Critically Open-Minded Reasoning (open assessment and reflective correctability) the effort to overcome all of those issues common with Induced Delusional Disorder or “faith brainwashed” thinking. With science, unlike faith thinking, all facts are welcomed, even if they contradict a treasured theory or model, which must then be rejected immediately. A true scientist will be delighted at having found a new aspect of science, especially if it changes a scientific view, whereas a true religionist/fideist motivated by faith or Induced Delusional Disorder will deny it and try to explain it away. Admittedly science is not a single category, approach or thinking, however nobody who is reasonable and informed can or should reject or deny the truths it produces. Religion too is not a single category, approach or thinking, however nobody who is reasonable and informed can accept its deluded or reality devoid beliefs as any kind of truths. The scientific method assumes a priori of methodological naturalism about the nature of reality that is devoid of considering supernatural causes, it is not agnostic about this. The scientific method is using a form of philosophical rationalism to establish this view about the nature of reality along with the commonly held philosophy of empiricism, because looking for proof or truth devoid of considering supernatural causes by using a priori assumptions is employing rationalism. 

More on Rationalism
By Luke Mastin at philosophybasics.com
Rationalism is a philosophical movement which gathered momentum during the Age of Reason of the 17th Century. It is usually associated with the introduction of mathematical methods into philosophy during this period by the major rationalist figures, Descartes, Leibniz and Spinoza. Rationalism is a philosophical movement which gathered momentum during the Age of Reason of the 17th Century. It is usually associated with the introduction of mathematical methods into philosophy during this period by the major rationalist figures, DescartesLeibniz and Spinoza. The preponderance of French Rationalists in the 18th Century Age of Enlightenment, including VoltaireJean-Jacques Rousseau and Charles de Secondat (Baron de Montesquieu) (1689 – 1755), is often known as French Rationalism. Rationalism is any view appealing to intellectual and deductive reason (as opposed to sensory experience or any religious teachings) as the source of knowledge or justification. Thus, it holds that some propositions are knowable by us by intuition alone, while others are knowable by being deduced through valid arguments from intuited propositions. It relies on the idea that reality has a rational structure in that all aspects of it can be grasped through mathematical and logical principles, and not simply through sensory experience. It has some similarities in ideology and intent to the earlier Humanist movement in that it aims to provide a framework for philosophical discourse outside of religious or supernatural beliefs. But in other respects there is little to compare. While the roots of Rationalism may go back to the Eleatics and Pythagoreans of ancient Greece, or at least to Platonists and Neo-Platonists, the definitive formulation of the theory had to wait until the 17th Century philosophers of the Age of ReasonRené Descartes is one of the earliest and best known proponents of Rationalism, which is often known as Cartesianism (and followers of Descartes‘ formulation of Rationalism as Cartesians). He believed that knowledge of eternal truths (e.g. mathematics and the epistemological and metaphysical foundations of the sciences) could be attained by reason alone, without the need for any sensory experience. Other knowledge (e.g. the knowledge of physics), required experience of the world, aided by the scientific method – a moderate rationalist position. For instance, his famous dictum “Cogito ergo sum” (“I think, therefore I am”) is a conclusion reached a priori and not through an inference from experience. Descartes held that some ideas (innate ideas) come from God; others ideas are derived from sensory experience; and still others are fictitious (or created by the imagination). Of these, the only ideas which are certainly valid, according to Descartes, are those which are innate. Baruch Spinoza expanded upon Descartes‘ basic principles of Rationalism. His philosophy centred on several principles, most of which relied on his notion that God is the only absolute substance (similar to Descartes‘ conception of God), and that substance is composed of two attributes, thought and extension. He believed that all aspects of the natural world (including Man) were modes of the eternal substance of God, and can therefore only be known through pure thought or reason. Gottfried Leibniz attempted to rectify what he saw as some of the problems that were not settled by Descartes by combining Descartes‘ work with Aristotle‘s notion of form and his own conception of the universe as composed of monads. He believed that ideas exist in the intellect innately, but only in a virtual sense, and it is only when the mind reflects on itself that those ideas are actualizedNicolas Malebranche is another well-known Rationalist, who attempted to square the Rationalism of René Descartes with his strong Christian convictions and his implicit acceptance of the teachings of St. Augustine. He posited that although humans attain knowledge through ideas rather than sensory perceptions, those ideas exist only in God, so that when we access them intellectually, we apprehend objective truth. His views were hotly contested by another Cartesian Rationalist and Jensenist Antoine Arnauld (1612 – 1694), although mainly on theological grounds. In the 18th Century, the great French rationalists of the Enlightenment (often known as French Rationalism) include VoltaireJean-Jacques Rousseau and Charles de Secondat (Baron de Montesquieu) (1689 – 1755). These philosophers produced some of the most powerful and influential political and philosophical writing in Western history, and had a defining influence on the subsequent history of Western democracy and LiberalismImmanuel Kant started as a traditional Rationalist, having studied Leibniz and Christian Wolff (1679 – 1754) but, after also studying the empiricist David Hume‘s works, he developed a distinctive and very influential Rationalism of his own, which attempted to synthesize the traditional rationalist and empiricist traditions. During the middle of the 20th Century there was a strong tradition of organized Rationalism (represented in Britain by the Rationalist Press Association, for example), which was particularly influenced by free thinkers and intellectuals. However, Rationalism in this sense has little in common with traditional Continental Rationalism, and is marked more by a reliance on empirical science. It accepted the supremacy of reason but insisted that the results be verifiable by experience and independent of all arbitrary assumptions or authority. Ref

 According to David Papineau at the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy as indicated by the above characterization of the mid-twentieth-century American movement, naturalism can be separated into an ontological and a methodological component. The ontological component is concerned with the contents of reality, asserting that reality has no place for “supernatural” or other “spooky” kinds of entity. By contrast, the methodological component is concerned with ways of investigating reality, and claims some kind of general authority for the scientific method. Correspondingly, this entry will have two main sections, the first devoted to ontological naturalism, the second to methodological naturalism. Of course, naturalist commitments of both ontological and methodological kinds can be significant in areas other than philosophy. The modern history of psychology, biology, social science and even physics itself can usefully be seen as hinging on changing attitudes to naturalist ontological principles and naturalist methodological precepts. This entry, however, will be concerned solely with naturalist doctrines that are specific to philosophy. So the first part of this entry, on ontological naturalism, will be concerned specifically with views about the general contents of reality that are motivated by philosophical argument and analysis. And the second part, on methodological naturalism, will focus specifically on methodological debates that bear on philosophical practice, and in particular on the relationship between philosophy and science. Ref

Methodological Naturalism vs Ontological or Philosophical Naturalism

by Lawrence Lerner

It is standard intelligent design creationist jargon to deliberately confuse and misuse the terms ontological (philosophical) naturalism andmethodological naturalism. The former is the view that nothing supernatural exists – a point which may engender heated debate among theologians and philosophers but is irrelevant to the pursuit of science. Methodological naturalism is not a “doctrine” but an essential aspect of the methodology of science, the study of the natural universe. If one believes that natural laws and theories based on them will not suffice to solve the problems attacked by scientists – that supernatural and thus nonscientific principles must be invoked from time to time – then one cannot have the confidence in scientific methodology that is prerequisite to doing science. The spectacular successes over four centuries of science based on methodological naturalism cannot be gainsaid. On the other hand, a scientist who, when stumped, invokes a supernatural cause for a phenomenon he or she is investigating is guaranteed that no scientific understanding of the problem will ensue. Here is an example. Let us imagine a geocentrist astronomer in the era of Newton. Newton uses his dynamics to account for the perturbation of the elliptical orbit of Mars around the Sun due to the gravitational influence of Jupiter, and cranks out numbers that are quickly verified by astronomical observation. The entire exercise makes no sense to the geocentrist, who (a) on the basis of the central importance of mankind in the eyes of God, does not grant the ellipticity of the orbit of Mars around the Sun but insists that the Earth be the center of the universe; (b) insists that the orbits of the planets (and the Sun) are guided by angels. The intelligent design creationist arguments may be couched more subtly and elusively than this geocentric view, but they are of the same kind. As for the phraseology, “not designed,” there is here a slipping around the need to define the term “design.” Living things certainly have organs and systems that are best described in terms of Aristotle’s “final cause” – that is, the function which their form enables them to accomplish. But design can mean either of two things. It can mean the form itself, without reference to the way that the form came to be. No one doubts that the wings of birds are admirably designed to the function of flight, in this sense of design. What the intelligent design creationists are after, however, is the other meaning of design – the end-product of the work of a designer. Intelligent design creationists often hide the essentially theological nature of this meaning by insisting that the designer might have been some space aliens and not the God of their scriptures. But they do not maintain this position when addressing sympathetic church groups of their own or similar persuasion. Ref


More on Methodological naturalism

According to Rationalwiki.org, Methodological naturalism is the label for the required assumption of philosophical naturalism when working with the scientific method. Methodological naturalists limit their scientific research to the study of natural causes, because any attempts to define causal relationships with the supernatural are never fruitful, and result in the creation of scientific “dead ends” and God of the gaps-type hypotheses. To avoid these traps scientists assume that all causes are empirical and naturalistic; which means they can be measured, quantified and studied methodically. However, this assumption of naturalism need not extend beyond an assumption of methodology. This is what separates methodological naturalism from philosophical naturalism — the former is merely a tool and makes no truth claim; while the latter makes the philosophical — essentially atheistic — claim that only natural causes exist.
“”If a philosopher or social scientist were to try to encapsulate a single principle that yoked together the intellectual process of [civilization], it would be a gradual dismantling of presumptions of magic. Brick by brick, century by century, with occasional burps and hiccups, the wall of superstition has been coming down. Science and medicine and political philosophy have been on a relentless march in one direction only — sometimes slow, sometimes at a gallop, but never reversing course. Never has an empirical scientific discovery been deemed wrong and replaced by a more convincing mystical explanation. (“Holy cow, Dr. Pasteur! I’ve examined the pancreas of a diabetic dog, and darned if it’s NOT an insulin deficiency, but a little evil goblin dwelling inside. And he seems really pissed!”) Some magical presumptions have stubbornly persisted way longer than others, but have eventually, inexorably fallen to logic, reason and enlightenment, such as the assumption of the divine right of kings and the entitlement of aristocracy. That one took five millennia, but fall it did. —Gene Weingarten
The majority of scientists do not believe it is possible to combine methodological naturalism with theistic or supernatural philosophical belief systems. Even in the United States, a majority of scientists embrace full philosophical naturalism — although a significant minority (40%-45%) describe themselves as “theistic evolutionists” or hold other religious beliefs. Methodological naturalism has become an important buzz word in the culture wars with the anti-science movement. The battle hinges around intelligent design and creationism advocates who claim the theory of evolution is a religion. The modern form of this started with Phillip Johnson and his publication of Darwin on Trial where he not only created a list of repeatedly refuted creationist claims but also tried to put forward the idea that teaching evolution was a violation of the establishment clause of the United States Constitution. Johnson’s main argument centered around confounding philosophical naturalism and methodological naturalism and claiming that teaching evolution was an endorsement of philosophical naturalism and thus impinged on the religious beliefs of students. Eugenie Scott described Johnson’s error in her review:

“”The scientific definition of evolution makes no mention of theological issues such as whether God created. Science as practised today is methodologically naturalistic: it explains the natural world using only natural causes. Science cannot explain (or test explanations about) the supernatural. There is also an independent sort of naturalism, philosophical naturalism, a belief (not science, but belief) that the universe consists only of matter and energy and that there are no supernatural beings, forces, or causes. Johnson’s crucial error is not distinguishing between these two kinds of naturalism. That some individual scientists are philosophical naturalists does not make science atheistic any more than the existence of non-believing bookkeepers makes accounting atheistic.

While Johnson and the creationists may have started the ball rolling it is the intelligent design advocates that have really embraced the rhetoric surrounding the evils of methodological naturalism. The Discovery Institute (“DI”) as the primary public relations firm for “ID” has been beating this drum in every possible direction. The DI claims many things all at once, and the fact that they may contradict each other never seems to bother them. They just like to throw a bunch of bullshitout there and see what sticks. They claim that:

  1. Methodological naturalism is not really the accepted approach in Science.
  2. Intelligent design actually follows methodological naturalism because it doesn’t say who or what the designer is.
  3. Answering the kinds of questions that intelligent design and evolution ask can not be handled by methodological naturalism.
  4. Evolution is as much a religion as Intelligent design because of its reliance on naturalism.

All of these arguments together are pretty self-defeating, but they are also wrong individually. Methodological naturalism is a cornerstone of science, embraced by both practitioners and philosophers of science. There is always disagreement in philosophy, and that includes philosophy of science. The fact that intelligent design doesn’t talk about the designer is a major hit against it as a hypothesis, and it certainly doesn’t save it from violations of methodological naturalism. The value of methodological naturalism comes from the ability to quantify, measure, and study the causes of phenomena. Intelligent design removes our ability to predict, measure and quantify, whether the intelligent designer is supernatural or an alien. The questions that evolution answers are rooted as firmly in empirical evidence and methodological naturalism as any other science. Arguments that claim it is not are really holdover ideas from creationists, who like to claim that unless it’s directly observed in a laboratory, “it’s not science”. Sometimes the DI likes to mix in issues of morality and ethics, and claims evolution address those questions, but this is simply the naturalistic fallacy. Finally, the last argument that evolution is a religion is the same old Johnson argument — all over again — that Scott and others have had to address ad nauseumRef

Open-Minded Inquiry
Openmindedness for Bertrand Russell is the virtue that prevents habit and desire from making us unable or unwilling to entertain the idea that earlier beliefs may have to be revised or abandoned; its main value lies in challenging the fanaticism that comes from a conviction that our views are absolutely certain. A review of certain key ideas provides a clearer sense of the dimensions of the ideal of open-mindedness for all those who are determined to make this aim central to their work as teachers. What follows is a road map to the terrain which surrounds the idea of open-minded inquiry. Ref  Openmindedness is receptiveness to new ideas. Openmindedness relates to the way in which people approach the views and knowledge of others, and “incorporate the beliefs that others should be free to express their views and that the value of others’ knowledge should be recognized.” According to What Makes Your Brain Happy and Why You Should Do the Opposite, closed-mindedness, or an unwillingness to consider new ideas, can result from the brain’s natural dislike for ambiguity. According to this view, the brain has a “search and destroy” relationship with ambiguity and evidence contradictory to people’s current beliefs tends to make them uncomfortable by introducing such ambiguity. Research confirms that belief-discrepant-closed-minded persons have less tolerance for cognitive inconsistencyRef

Barbara Forrest

This article was originally published in Philo, Vol. 3, No. 2 (Fall-Winter 2000), pp. 7-29.

SCIENTIFIC VIEWS OF NATURALISM

Since methodological and philosophical naturalism are founded upon the methods and findings, respectively, of modern science, philosophical naturalism is bound to take into account the views of scientists. As Hilary Kornblith asserts, “Philosophers must be … modest … and attempt to construct philosophical theories which are scientifically well informed.” Arthur Strahler, a geologist who has taken particular interest in the claims of supernaturalists to be able to supersede naturalistic explanations of the world, points out the essentiality of naturalism to science: The naturalistic view is that the particular universe we observe came into existence and has operated through all time and in all its parts without the impetus or guidance of any supernatural agency. The naturalistic view is espoused by science as its fundamental assumption.” Clearly, the first statement refers to philosophical naturalism. Strahler’s point in the second statement, however, is that science must operate as though this is true. So philosophical naturalism serves minimally as a regulative, or methodological, principle in science, for the following reasons given by Strahler: [S]upernatural forces, if they can be said to exist, cannot be observed, measured, or recorded by the procedures of sciencethat’s simply what the word “supernatural” means. There can be no limit to the kinds and shapes of supernatural forces and forms the human mind is capable of conjuring up “from nowhere.” Scientists therefore have no alternative but to ignore the claims of the existence of supernatural forces and causes. This exclusion is a basic position that must be stoutly adhered to by scientists or their entire system of evaluating and processing information will collapse…. To find a reputable scientist proposing a theory of supernatural force is disturbing to the community of scientists. If the realm of matter and energy with which scientists work is being influenced or guided by a supernatural force, science will be incapable of explaining the information it has collected; it will be unable to make predictions about what will happen in the future, and its explanations of what has happened in the past may be inadequate or incomplete. This is clearly a methodological objection to supernaturalism on Strahler’s part. Introducing supernatural explanations into science would destroy its explanatory force since it would be required to incorporate as an operational principle the premise that literally anything which is logically possible can become an actuality, despite any and all scientific laws; the stability of science would consequently be destroyed. While methodological naturalism is a procedural necessity for science in its study of the natural world, it is also the rule for philosophical naturalism since the naturalist world view is constrainedand thereby stabilizedby methodological naturalism. Strahler ventures onto the turf of philosophical naturalism when he points out how supernaturalism’s lack of methodology renders it metaphysically sterile, in effect pointing out the inseparable connection between epistemology and metaphysics: In contrasting the Western religions with science, the most important criterion of distinction is that the supernatural or spiritual realm is unknowable in response to human attempts to gain knowledge of it in the same manner that humans gain knowledge of the natural realm (by experience)…. Given this fiat by the theistic believers, science simply ignores the supernatural as being outside the scope of scientific inquiry. Scientists in effect are saying: “You religious believers set up your postulates as truths, and we take you at your word. By definition, you render your beliefs unassailable and unavailable.” This attitude is not one of surrender, but simply an expression of the logical impossibility of proving the existence of something about which nothing can possibly be known through scientific investigation. Although I am generally in agreement with Strahler, I differ with him on one point. Although it is logically impossible to prove the existence of something about which nothing can be known at all, it is not logically, but procedurally, impossible to prove the existence of something about which nothing can be known through scientific investigation. Scientific investigation is a procedure based on an empiricist epistemology. The fact that there is no successful procedure for knowing the supernatural does not logically preclude its being known at all, i.e., through intuition or revelation. The problem is that there is no procedure for determining the legitimacy of intuition and revelation as ways of knowing, and no procedure for either confirming or disconfirming the supernatural content of intuitions or revelations. My objection notwithstanding, Strahler is making an essential point which the philosophical naturalist also makes: the methodology of science is the only viable method of acquiring reliable knowledge about the cosmos. Given this fact, if there is no workable method for acquiring knowledge of the supernatural, then it is procedurally impossible to have knowledge of either a supernatural dimension or entity. In the absence of any alternative methodology, the metaphysical claims one is entitled to make are very strictly limited. The philosophical naturalist, without making any metaphysical claims over and above those warranted by science, can demand from supernaturalists the method that legitimizes their metaphysical claims. In the absence of such a method, philosophical naturalists can not only justifiably refuse assent to such claims, but can denytentatively, not categoricallythe existence of the supernatural, and for the same reason they deny the existence of less exalted supernatural entities like fairies and ghosts: the absence of evidence. Strahler makes another point that is important to the understanding of philosophical naturalism: the metaphysical adequacy of supernaturalism is inversely proportionate to the explanatory power of science. The more science successfully explains, the less need or justification there is for the supernatural as an explanatory principle. Strahler, quoting E. O. Wilson, asserts that the explanatory power of science diminishes the metaphysical adequacy of supernaturalism by explaining even religion: Most importantly, we have come to the crucial stage in the history of biology when religion itself is subject to the explanations of the natural sciences … sociobiology can account for the very origin of mythology by the principle of natural selection acting on the genetically evolving material structure of the human brain. If this interpretation is correct, the final, decisive edge enjoyed by scientific naturalism will come from its capacity to explain traditional religion, its chief competitor, as a wholly material phenomenon…. However, many people reject the application of scientific method to the phenomenon of religion and, though they adopt the methodology of naturalism to inquire about a natural entity or object or to solve a practical problem, they simultaneously assent to existential claims about the supernatural. Sterling Lamprecht, in Naturalism and the Human Spirit, says that some philosophers “accept a kind of empiricism for purposes of scientific procedure and practical affairs, but all the time hold that the existences and occurrences thus empirically found require some further ‘explanation’ to make them ‘satisfactory’ or ‘intelligible.’” These philosophers hold that what is learned scientifically must still be explained from within a more comprehensive, non-naturalistic metaphysics, in effect adopting the supernatural as a causal explanation. Strahler, however, in his remarks about using the supernatural as a causally explanatory principle while simultaneously acknowledging the sufficiency of scientific method to provide causal explanations of the natural world, maintains that using the supernatural as an additionalcausal explanation is logically contradictory as well: A specific event of history in a specific time segment must fall into either (a) divine causation or (b) natural causation. Our logic is as follows: ‘If a [divine, supernatural causation], then not b [natural causation]. If b, then not a.’ To follow with the proposal ‘Both a and b‘ is therefore not logically possible. Moreover, one cannot get out of this bind by proposing that God is the sole causative agent of all natural causes, which in turn are the causative agents of the observed event. This ‘First Cause/Secondary Cause’ model, long a standby of the eighteenth-century school of natural theology … adds up to 100 percent supernatural creation. Consider the analogy of cosmic history as an unbroken chain [of causal explanations] made from all possible combinations of two kinds of links, a [supernatural cause, as in religion] and b [natural cause, as in science]…. When a theist declares any link in the chain to be an a-link (whereas all the others are b-links), an element of the science set has been replaced by an element of the religion set. When this substitution has been accomplished, the entire ensuing sequence is flawed by that single antecedent event of divine creation and must be viewed as false science, or pseudoscience. The reason that replacement of a single link changed the character of all ensuing links is that each successor link is dependent upon its predecessor in a cause-effect relationship … that divine act can never be detected by the scientist because, by definition, it is a supernatural act. There exists only the claim that such an act occurred, and science cannot deal in such claims. By the same token, science must reject revelation, as a means of obtaining empirical knowledge. Under the theistic model, according to Strahler, any recognition of natural causation is logically nullified by the simultaneous assertion of supernatural intervention, either actual or merely possible. Even while differing with Strahler on the logical impossibility of invoking both natural and supernatural explanationsit is logically conceivable if the supernatural and natural causes operate at different ontological levelsone must recognize that invoking supernatural explanations is illegitimate because of the procedural impossibility of ascertaining the facticity of the supernatural cause itself, not to mention its intervention in the chain of natural causes. This points to the metaphysical implications of methodological naturalism: if supernatural causal factors are methodologically permissible, the cosmos one is trying to explain is a non-natural cosmos. Conversely, if only natural causal factors are methodologically and epistemologically legitimate as explanations, then only a naturalist metaphysics is philosophically justifiable. Let us consider now the comments of Wesley Elsberry, in “Enterprising Science Needs Naturalism”: While the subjective appreciation of a role for supernatural causation may be important to personal fulfillment, it does not afford a basis for objective knowledge, nor can it be counted as a means of comprehending the universe in a scientific manner…. I will connote “naturalism” as “proposing only natural mechanisms for physical phenomena” rather than “asserting that only natural mechanisms have existence.”… Science is incompetent to examine those conjectures which cannot be tested in the light of inter-subjective experience or criticism. The assertion that “only natural mechanisms have existence” is equivalent to the claim that “no supernatural causes exist.” That is an example of proving a negative, and can only be regarded as a statement of faith, since it requires omniscience on the part of the claimant…. humans cannot establish a supernatural cause by experimental reproduction of that cause. No human is capable of producing a supernatural cause…. natural and supernatural causation are confounding: suspected supernatural causation may simply be due to currently indiscernible natural causes. Because of the confounding nature of the interaction, the only way to establish supernatural causation is through the elimination of all natural alternatives. This is simply another case of proving a negative, which is an intractable problem…. Elsberry’s point is a methodological one: in explaining the natural world, one can not invoke the supernatural because of its methodological inaccessibility, and no successful method other than the naturalistic one is available in scientific explanation. However, Elsberry’s methodological point has metaphysical implications. If supernatural causation as a methodological principle “does not afford a basis for objective knowledge,” the implication is that methodological naturalism does afford one. If supernatural causation cannot be “counted as a means of comprehending the universe in a scientific manner,” the implication is that methodological naturalism can be so counted upon. And comprehending the universe in a scientific manner is the goal of philosophical naturalism. Steven Schafersman, also a scientist, makes the same point as Elsberry: [N]aturalism is a methodological necessity in the practice of science by scientists, and an ontological necessity for understanding and justifying science by scientists…. The alternative to naturalism is supernaturalism…. [T]he foundations of science … will not be epistemologically reliable unless naturalism is either true or assumed to be true, since by not doing so, part of reality will remain unexplained and unexplainable. Schafersman’s point here is that, given the (procedurally but not logically) necessary exclusivity of methodological naturalism in science, any view of the cosmos other than a naturalistic one becomes unjustifiable. The philosophical naturalist would expand upon this by adding that given the procedurally necessary exclusivity of methodological naturalism in science and the unavailability of any other workable method for grounding any claims with existential import, any metaphysical view of the cosmos other than the naturalistic one is epistemologically unjustifiable. The point is not that supernaturalism is logically impossible; rather, the point is that, from both an epistemological and a methodological standpoint, supernaturalism has not proved its mettle, whereas methodological naturalism has done so consistently and convincingly. Supernaturalism has not provided the epistemology or the methodology needed to support its metaphysics, whereas naturalism has, although the invitation to supernaturalism to do likewise is a standing one, as Schafersman indicates: “except for humans, philosophical naturalists understand nature to be fundamentally mindless and purposeless…. Of course, this doesn’t eliminate the possibility of supernatural mind and purpose in nature; the only requirement would be the demonstration of its existence and mechanism, which is up to the supernaturalist to provide. We are still waiting.” Ref


THE THINKER’S GUIDE TO SCIENTIFIC THINKING 

By DR. RICHARD PAUL and DR. LINDA ELDER

Based on Critical Thinking Concepts & Principles

Why Scientific Thinking? The Problem: Everyone thinks; it is our nature to do so. But much of our thinking, left to itself, is biased, distorted, partial, uninformed, or down-right prejudiced. Yet the quality of our life and that of what we produce, make, or build depends precisely on the quality of our thought. Shoddy thinking is costly, both in money and in quality of life. Excellence in thought, however, must be systematically cultivated. A Definition: Scientific thinking is that mode of thinking — about any scientific subject, content, or problem — in which the thinker improves the quality of his or her thinking by skillfully taking charge of the structures inherent in thinking and imposing intellectual standards upon them. The Result: A well cultivated scientific thinker: • raises vital scientific questions and problems, formulating them clearly and precisely; • gathers and assesses relevant scientific data and information, using abstract ideas to interpret them effectively; • comes to well-reasoned scientific conclusions and solutions, testing them against relevant criteria and standards; • thinks openmindedly within convergent systems of scientific thought, recognizing and assessing scientific assumptions, implications, and practical consequences; and • communicates effectively with others in proposing solutions to complex scientific problems. Scientific thinking is, in short, self-directed, self-disciplined, self-monitored, and self-corrective. It presupposes assent to rigorous standards of excellence and mindful command of their use. It entails effective communication and problem solving abilities as well as a commitment to developing scientific skills, abilities, and dispositions. Ref


Fibonacci sequence as scientific evidence of a creator?

Absolute Knowledge?

Real Truth Seekers?

Philosophy to The Rescue

That is not accurate in any way… Challenging Claims?

Battle For Evidence?

You can’t change people, by reason and evidence. WRONG, I do it all the time.

Challenged or Challenging? (questions of ontology)

Critical or Analytical Thinking and Suspension of Judgment, Disbelief or Belief

Grasping the status of truth (ontology of truth)

Ontology, Epistemology, & Axiology argument/challenge protocol

“The Hammer if Truth” (scientific philosophy: Ontology, Epistemology, & Axiology) in action.

Ancient Aliens Conspiracy Theorists are Pseudohistorians

Creationism (pseudoscience)

The Evolution of Religion and Removing the Rationale of Faith


I personally try to use what is most reliable and the most accurate. I generally use in one way or another: Scientific Realism, Metaphysical Naturalism, Rationalism, Empiricism, Methodological Skepticism, Justificationism, Correspondence Theory of Truth, Falsafacationism, Falabalism, Reliabilism, Probabilism, and Probability Theory. Pretty much all the methods that used by the scientific method. I use the many methods that are also employed by the scientific method, which is not one thing but a group of things used in succession so its not a one method to me its a group of methods that I also use so your question then is not about my use as they are also used in the scientific method. I use them as they add to the accuracy in thinking and evidence generation and validation they are a priori tools for validation. Most if not all tools at their root will be pragmatic axioms use as they are what we have that works. I use my hammer of truth to know things that are true from that which is untrue. my hammer of truth involves three epistemological tools Questioning the ontology: “the philosophical study of the nature of being, becoming, existence, or reality, as well as the basic categories of being and their relations.” this is part of a hypothesis, testing the assumption of its truth and will be involved in the conclusion.

Ontology delineation: unpack and lay bare WHAT is being said, assumed or believed and is this valid and reliable in a reasonable amount, expression and or qualities.

Epistemology deconstruction: unpack and lay bare WHY it is being said, assumed, or believed and is this valid and reliable in a reasonable amount, expression, and or qualities. Axiology discrediting: unpack and lay bare HOW it is being said, assumed, or believed and is this valid and reliable in a reasonable amount, expression, and or qualities.

Address Thinking (Ontology): Identity what they are talking about, investigate its thingness, its beingness, its purpose, how it works and question the elements that would be involved and their thingness, beingness, and purpose.

Then Analyze Thinking (Epistemology): Identify how they can claim to know what they think they know, as well as its detailed information, assumptions, implications, and challenge their belief etiquette on what they claim is their way of acquiring what they say they believe or know, in addition to when and how they claimed to know.

Last Assess Thinking (Axiology): Identify how they can claim worth, value, accuracy, relevance, depth, significance, logic, reason, justification, warrant, and fairness of what they think they know. This refers to the assessment of thinking or supposed evidence and is a value judging stage in the systematic inquiry which is challenging the quality of what is being offered.

 

Critical thinking skills truly matter in learning. Why? Because they are life skills we use every day of our lives. Everything from our work to our recreational pursuits, and all that’s in between, employs these unique and valuable abilities. Consciously developing them takes thought-provoking discussion and equally thought-provoking questions to get it going. Begin right here with the Critical Thinking Skills Cheatsheet. It’s a simple infographic offering questions that work to develop critical thinking on any given topic. Whenever your students discover or talk about new information, encourage them to use these questions for sparking debate and the sharing of opinions and insights among each other. Together they can work at building critical thinking skills in a collaborative and supportive atmosphere. Ref