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History, Evolution, and The Darwin Debate

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The dangers of false scientific ‘smarts’

June 24th, 2012 · 1 Comment

http://history-and-evolution.com/whee4th/chap2_3.htm: Visions of a Ghostseer is the section from WHEE with the quote from Schopenhauer (see previous post), online at this link.

The issue of the ‘metaphysics’ of evolution, and, more directly, questions of (spritual) psychology deserve a study of the Kantian take on these metaphysical swamps.

In general, Kant sets the standard for high intelligence. Too often the scientific community, too often in the context of the misleading Einstein, exhudes an aura of high intelligence, which gives a kind of false credential and media aura to pronouncements that are often mere scientism. Over and over again we see this effect perpetrated on media consumers, and it is an effective tactic in promoting bad science, darwinism, and the rest of it. Sam Harris is a good example. Because he has a PHD in neuroscience, he claims somehow to be an expert on all sorts of metaphysical questions he is ignorant about. Behind that aura lies a bad education, and mediocre training.
The reason for this is that intelligent students are now too often coopted by the educational system which discovers talent and rewards its conformity to the estabished paradigms.
There is an obvious bait and switch, between issues clarified by real research, and those taken up by scientists that claim that clarity applied to metaphysics. It is a disastrous miscalculation. Science cannot resolve these questions the way it does with, say, medical questions.

At any rate, Kant points to the high tide of the Enlightenment, and he was an example of a brief moment of real high intelligence, not just academic booby prize smarts.

The point here is simply that the study of metaphysics and its limits haunts the whole of scientism, and those trained too narrowly in science tend to suffer that narrow vision.

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