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Who here believes in "Scientism"?

Exaltist Ethan

Bridging the Gap Between Believers and Skeptics
I would say that religion gives an answer. Actually it gives many different answers. The question is are any of them right? Generally the sciences are not a tool in discussing this. It may apply in some cases, but quite a few religions do not have a problem with testable reality. To decide if any of them are right a different tool than the sciences would be needed.

I remember once I was at a church and they gave us all kinds of answers about life. To serve Jesus. I don't really remember what the sermon was about, other than it was preachy general Christianity. What I do remember however is after the service they fed everybody who attended. Feeding people isn't an answer, it's a solution to hunger, especially to those who are poor and find it difficult for them to feed themselves. Religion likes to say they know how people exist, but those answers are always incorrect; proper religion teaches us why we exist instead. And at that time, that religion was there to feed the poor, and did a pretty good job of it. I don't remember what the sermon was exactly about, but I remember that the food they served was hearty delicious beef stew.

In my opinion, them serving us food was their way of doing their job. They were benevolent to us and we received that kindness in the form of sustenance.
 

Quintessence

Consults with Trees
Staff member
Premium Member
Here's the thing - those who espouse scientism (treating science as the one true stick of truth) don't tend identify as such. It's a label applied to people (often pejoratively, hence it not being used to self-identify) who express thoughts and ideas consistent with scientism - applied to folks who exhibit a faith in science analogous to that which some have in, say, the inerrancy of the Bible.

And I've absolutely seen scientism on RF, and elsewhere. As someone with a strong science background, drives me up the wall whenever I see it too.
 

Heyo

Veteran Member
I just mentioned the motivation of some to use it. But just focusing on the claim of "scientism" I have never seen the accusation used properly here. I have a feeling that the people that use that claim do not understand the concept.

So I will ask: Does anyone know of valid accusations of scientism on this forum?
Sorry, @Jose Fly, but I think this question is worth answering and at least related to the subject.

I don't know of any and I don't think many scientismists will come forth. Accusations of scientism are usually just a red herring tactic of science deniers.
 

Heyo

Veteran Member
And I've absolutely seen scientism on RF, and elsewhere. As someone with a strong science background, drives me up the wall whenever I see it too.
As @mikkel_the_dane has called me out, I have to ask: examples?

(I know that the search function sucks and you'll probably default on your claim. I can't remember a single instance of a valid accusation of scientism - but that may be just my bad memory.)
 

Exaltist Ethan

Bridging the Gap Between Believers and Skeptics
This thread reminds me of something in @Jose Fly 's defense. Sometimes giving wisdom is benevolent. For example, I'm sure many people here have heard the saying, "Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, feed him for a lifetime." There is a science behind properly catching fish, skinning that fish, then eating it which makes it safe and viable to eat. So, sometimes sharing wisdom is an act of benevolence, and being benevolent often helps teach people to become wise. But they aren't the same and shouldn't be treated as such. That's what Scientism has wrong about its assertions. Sorry, Jose.
 

Jose Fly

Fisker of men
Here's the thing - those who espouse scientism (treating science as the one true stick of truth) don't tend identify as such. It's a label applied to people (often pejoratively, hence it not being used to self-identify) who express thoughts and ideas consistent with scientism - applied to folks who exhibit a faith in science analogous to that which some have in, say, the inerrancy of the Bible.

And I've absolutely seen scientism on RF, and elsewhere. As someone with a strong science background, drives me up the wall whenever I see it too.
That's the point....I keep hearing how "many" at RF believe in scientism, but no one will show any post where it's espoused, no one will say who advocates it, nor will anyone admit to believing it (so far).

So if no one can point to it or name an advocate, and no one admits to it, it's nothing more than a baseless pejorative (in my experience, one science deniers throw around when they've lost a debate).

Perhaps this thread will show otherwise.
 

Jose Fly

Fisker of men
Sorry, @Jose Fly, but I think this question is worth answering and at least related to the subject.

I don't know of any and I don't think many scientismists will come forth. Accusations of scientism are usually just a red herring tactic of science deniers.
I tried asking that earlier and was informed that answering it is against the rules.
 

Jose Fly

Fisker of men
This thread reminds me of something in @Jose Fly 's defense. Sometimes giving wisdom is benevolent. For example, I'm sure many people here have heard the saying, "Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, feed him for a lifetime." There is a science behind properly catching fish, skinning that fish, then eating it which makes it safe and viable to eat. So, sometimes sharing wisdom is an act of benevolence, and being benevolent often helps teach people to become wise. But they aren't the same and shouldn't be treated as such. That's what Scientism has wrong about its assertions. Sorry, Jose.
Again, please stick to the point of the thread. If you're not an advocate of scientism, then this thread isn't for you.
 

exchemist

Veteran Member
Within the last few months or so, it's been claimed that there are "many" here at RF who believe in and/or advocate for "scientism", i.e., the notion that science is the means to answer all questions, or at least is the means to answer all questions worth answering.

I've been a member here for quite some time, but I can't recall seeing anyone advocating such a view. So, to clear this up I'm starting this thread for all of you RF members who do. If you are an advocate for "scientism", please reply to this post with something like "Yes, I am an advocate for scientism as you have described it".

Also, let's keep this focused on the point of the thread, which means no debates about what is or isn't "scientism", whether gods exist, evolution/creationism, or anything else. The thread quite literally has a singular purpose and I'd like to keep it that way.
Scientism exists, but I doubt you will find anyone actually admitting to it, due to its -ve connotations. And to be honest I don't think I've seen it among any of the community here.

Here is an example of what looks to me like scientism - a video by Dawkins, designed with emotive music and dreamy shots to encourage a sense of mystery, awe and wonder, in an attempt to get science to push the buttons in the human psyche that religion is commonly thought to push.

This strikes me as the sort of overreach, whereby science is elevated to another job, beyond understanding of nature, that strays into scientism.
 

mikkel_the_dane

My own religion
That's the point....I keep hearing how "many" at RF believe in scientism, but no one will show any post where it's espoused, no one will say who advocates it, nor will anyone admit to believing it (so far).

So if no one can point to it or name an advocate, and no one admits to it, it's nothing more than a baseless pejorative (in my experience, one science deniers throw around when they've lost a debate).

Perhaps this thread will show otherwise.

No, it won't. We have had threads like this before and they show nothing, unless you can spot it.
 

MikeF

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
That's the point....I keep hearing how "many" at RF believe in scientism, but no one will show any post where it's espoused, no one will say who advocates it, nor will anyone admit to believing it (so far).

So if no one can point to it or name an advocate, and no one admits to it, it's nothing more than a baseless pejorative (in my experience, one science deniers throw around when they've lost a debate).

Perhaps this thread will show otherwise.

Well, I have been accused several times of scientism, or being a scientismist, or whatever. :)

I don't know if its possible to do a search on my username and the word scientism, but I suppose that would point you to where scientism is being 'espoused', in the opinion of a few people on RF.
 

mikkel_the_dane

My own religion
As @mikkel_the_dane has called me out, I have to ask: examples?

(I know that the search function sucks and you'll probably default on your claim. I can't remember a single instance of a valid accusation of scientism - but that may be just my bad memory.)

Well, sorry. But I shouldn't have done that, because it is not what this thread is about. So again, sorry for that.
 

Jose Fly

Fisker of men
Well, I have been accused several times of scientism, or being a scientismist, or whatever. :)

I don't know if its possible to do a search on my username and the word scientism, but I suppose that would point you to where scientism is being 'espoused', in the opinion of a few people on RF.
I've been accused of it as well, usually in the context of what we've covered....a science denier loses a debate, and in trying to save face accuses the other person of "scientism".
 

Secret Chief

nirvana is samsara

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