How is it rational to discredit something because of inaccuracies and criteria that do not apply?

This is an extension of my previous question. I will continue with answers from my previous question.

"Dark matter doesn't cease to exist when someone else looks for it. It's always there. Anyone can measure it."

In this case, someone showed not knowing what I was talking about, and chose to not admit it. Dark Matter is a theorized type of matter that is believed to be there because it has gravity and it would explain difficulties in other scientific theories. It cannot be seen, nor studied, but is believed to be there because something there has gravity. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_matter)

I obviously am not the best at explaining scientific method. I see my argument was dismissed over my views on the method rather then the obvious. I also see that someone is pointing out the scientific method's steps.

If ghosts do not exist because we cannot drag them into labs and perform tests that can be repeated with exact results, then I argue of other things, by that criteria do not exist either.

Dark matter and dark energy are considered scientific. Except we can't actual study them.

Any scientific based theory where it explains the creation of energy violates the First Law of Thermodynamics. (Less there is an exception to this I have not heard of yet.)

Extinct animals, especially sea animals, are believed to be extinct because there is no evidence they're not. Coelacanth's proved that animals can be mistook for extinct. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colacanth)

Quantum Physics, which has had to be explained to me, is levels of contradictory that I wouldn't know where to begin.

Explanations for things, "based on science," that are based on what's more culturally acceptable. The Sphinx and water damage comes to mind especially.

How is it that anything labeled "science" regardless of how absurd, is more valid then the concept of studying something that cannot be easily studied nor explained? Not everything can be dragged into a lab and replicated. Isn't it possible that there are things, paranormal or not, that cannot be studied in a lab?

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  • eri
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    As an astrophysicist, I think I understood you just fine. Dark matter can indeed be observed. That's how we know it's there. No, we can't see it, but we can see it's effects on normal matter due to gravity. And anyone who makes those observations can see the same thing. It doesn't just disappear on you. There's no evidence at all for ghosts, nothing that can be studied and has the same results every time, and is not easily explained by anything else.

    Dark matter and dark energy can indeed be studied, just not directly. Indirectly. And there are a ton of studies out there on them. They lead to testable predictions. You have apparently misunderstood thermodynamics; you create energy all the time by burning fuel. Mass and energy are interchangeable. Remember E = mc^2?

    Yep, we thought the Coelocanth was extinct - because we hadn't seen it in a long time. That's how we determine if things are extinct. We can't prove there aren't any anywhere, because we can't look everywhere at once. But the Coelcanth was found. Ghosts haven't been found yet. I'm sorry you don't understand quantum mechanics, but that's probably because you haven't taken 6 classes in it like I have, along with most physicists. Your computer and MRI machines wouldn't work if QM wasn't real. And it's pretty funny you're trying to prove one branch of physics wrong using another. I hope you don't think you've thought of something that hasn't occurred to us - we study this stuff all the time, after all.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    You're talking the world of physics here, and that is a somewhat different study than the rest of 'laboratory' science. Physics uses extremely advanced mathematics to 'discover' laws. Not everything is proved by dragging it into a laboratory. Some things are proved with a pencil and paper.

    So yes, it is possible that there are things that cannot be studied in a lab. There are 'things' that can't be quantified, measured, theorized or derived. Take the existence of 'God' for example. This can't be proved nor disproved.

    Science isn't always right either. Sometimes research is funded by an industry or person who wants to prove a point or promote a product. This makes the findings a bit biased. Science isn't all bad though. Most peer-reviewed studies out there do a pretty good job of furthering our knowledge of the world around us, opening new possibilities and understandings.

    My question to you is how come you are so fascinated with this subject? You are obviously passionate about it, which isn't a bad thing at all.

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  • John
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    "If ghosts do not exist because we cannot drag them into labs and perform tests that can be repeated with exact results, then I argue of other things, by that criteria do not exist either."

    But that's not a rationale that skepticism would lead to. A skeptical approach wouldn't usually start with "X is impossible" or "X do not exist", except in the case that X directly contradicts an already established and very well supported theoretical understanding. In the case of ghosts, which aren't known scientifically anyway, a skeptical approach would tacitly admit the possibility for the sake of evaluating the evidence for it. I think most regular skeptics in this category do this.

    I think your objections on "absurd" science is based on some misconceptions. Quantum Physics theory is anything but contradictory. It's a mathematically precise science and it has allowed the discovery and invention of numerous devices based on those principles. But it is not a complete science and there are still poorly understood frontiers to be explored and many questions to be answered, and this is true of just about everything in science. Regarding dark matter, it's more accurate to say that the dark matter theory is scientific, not dark matter itself, since "scientific" is a word that describes a method or explanation and not an object. The dark matter/energy theory can be scientifically studied (see link) and there is much measured, objective evidence accumulated in those studies. That doesn't guarantee it's a correct theory, but again this is true for all science.

    This all stands in direct contrast to ghosts, which (1) cannot be shown to exist empirically; (2) are not predicted to exist by any other established science; (3) are not explained by any other established science; (4) are not needed in order to explain any reported scientific observations. This is why it is paranormal.

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  • 4 years ago

    Because talk is cheap. And fun And requires no real work. It is often a bit masturbatory, easy pleasure taken by emulating the much more difficult and perilous task the pleasure evolved to evoke. And also because we really are supposed to spend more time pursuing our desires rather than evaluating then, So our Language is more often used for simply getting our desires, rather than the more complex task of evaluating or changing them. We rarely seek deep truth, we just want to amuse the girl. In the end the point is survival not truth. If the truth obstructs the struggle for survival, then Darwin recommends the empowering lie. There is a wonderful Latin quote that translates. "A clever phrase proves nothing" Hehe but that's not quite true is it. It proves you can make a clever phrase. As for the well know quote, it is well know because it is oft repeated And oft repeated because it is largely liked Hence it is not believed because it is Gospel It is Gospel because it is believed. Edit: Oh you silly yahoos. OF COURSE LIFE IS LOGICAL. Reality made of Energy and Logic. We are aspects of the Logos & created it it's image. When the hungry Lion is about to eat you, you realize Life is not FAIR; which is true. But that doesn't mean it's not Logical. The Lion is hungry, eating you is quite logical.

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  • Ragnar
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    "How is it that anything labeled "science" regardless of how absurd, is more valid then the concept of studying something that cannot be easily studied nor explained?"

    A study of the Paranormal is valid, when done properly. What isn't is insisting that things like ghosts exist without sound evidence, or any basis beyond anectdotes and subjective information.

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  • Tom
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    the To simplify your question if I may.

    There are things that can be proved as real or to be misinterpreted.

    There are other things that are not considered normal and are not able to be explained be currently accepted scientific methods. These are considered paranormal by definition.

    The lack of verifiable and/or replicable evidence does not prove anything more that currently accepted scientific method lacks the ability to afford the verification or proof.

    For a real skeptic or person who truly wishes to find answers, further research is done to find the answers. Any decision to discredit based on lack of proof is not rational and even irresponsible for a person who claims to be working in the field of science. To make matters worse, many who claim to be skeptics (but are actually critics) will openly attempt to deny any theory or further investigation into paranormal matters because they claim there is no proof of such, arrogantly overlooking the lack of evidence to disprove something. Be it in a lab or any other setting, if we are to find answers, further considerations and either modifications of current methods or entirely new theories will need to be developed and tested. The ability to modify and correct methods and theories is a strong point of science, unfortunately it is not always a strong point of the individuals behind the science.

    EDIT: I do hope that you choose a best answer for your question before it goes to vote, no matter which one you choose. This would avoid the possibility of an unusual number of votes being cast for one particular person in a short amount of time as happened recently. I will not accuse the person of havng multiple accounts, just that it is highly questionable as for being honest and of value with referance to the persons own faith in the quality of the answer given.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Its not very rational.

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