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Rationality Quotes April 2013

That on probabilistic or rational reflection one can come to believe intuitively implausible things that are as or more extraordinary than their theological counterparts. Or to mutilate Hamlet, that there are more things on earth than are dreamt of in heaven.

Rationality Quotes April 2013

Like all great rationalists you believed in things that were twice as incredible as theology.

― Halldór Laxness, Under the Glacier.

[LINK] NYT Article about Existential Risk from AI

I read NWM as well as a number of his other papers earlier this year, and while I enjoyed them a great deal I still struggle to understand the basic motivations for and plausibility/coherence of anti-representationalism/global expressionism. Why not rest content with commonsensical expressionism within restricted domains (culture/psychology/morals)? Total metaphysical and scientific expressionism make little sense to me; it seems obvious that there must be some underlying medium that governs our "discursive practices". I haven't read FFT (waiting on the 2nd ed) but I don't see a semantic/truth theory trumping my confidence in science as a method of representational success.

Would appreciate pointers, thoughts or conversation.

Rationality Quotes February 2012

Agree with that. There is a finer-grained distinction worth drawing -- with some other word!

Rationality Quotes February 2012

Unscientific does that job already, while the '-ism' suffix denotes, in this case, belief in science. Why let them have a perfectly good word?

Rationality Quotes February 2012

I suppose it's one of those statements that says a good deal in context and rather less outside it. 'Scientism' usually refers to a belief in the universal applicability of the tools of science in understanding the world. It is so understood by two camps, one who views it as an intellectual failing, the other a virtue. Wilson's point is that the latter camp should not cede any ground to the former -- not even terminological ground.

Edit: by context here I don't mean the book in particular. More like, reading too much contemporary philosophy.

Rationality Quotes February 2012

Wishing for something that is logically impossible is a sign that there is something better to wish for.

David Deutsch, The Beginning of Infinity

Rationality Quotes February 2012

Curious to know why this was downvoted. Many philosophers use 'scientism' as a term of abuse, and Luke has written about reclaiming the term here. I found this a rather pithy rallying call that antedates Rosenberg's.

Apologies if this is gratuitous but it was my first post!

Rationality Quotes February 2012

"The Enlightenment is the moment at which explanatory knowledge is beginning to assume its soon-to-be-normal role as the most important determinant of physical events. At least it could be: we had better remember that what we are attempting – the sustained creation of knowledge – has never worked before. Indeed, everything that we shall ever try to achieve from now on will never have worked before. We have, so far, been transformed from the victims (and enforcers) of an eternal status quo into the mainly passive recipients of the benefits of relatively rapid innovation in a bumpy transition period. We now have to accept, and rejoice in bringing about, our next transformation: to active agents of progress in the emerging rational society – and universe."

David Deutsch, The Beginning of Infinity

Rationality Quotes February 2012

"I yield the Lamp of Scientism to no one!"

Mark Wilson, Wandering Significance

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