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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Twins: science and magic (Read 580 times)
Vypr
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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #10 - Jun 10th, 2019 at 12:46am
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Frank1 wrote on Jun 9th, 2019 at 8:15pm:
This is your usual response whenever Lewis is cited: "I liked his books but he didn't know much."

Do you have evidence for or against the theory of science and magic as twins born during the Renaissance?

What about Bacon and Newton?

Science arose from a period awash in superstition. People used superstition to explain the world around them. It is only to be expected that there would be people believing in a mix at the beginning. In any event the scientific method isn't about "the pursuit of power". It is a framework to examine and explain. How people use that framework or the results that come from it, are another matter. Superstition used to fill that role of explaining the world (and still does for some people). Religion took superstition and turned it into the pursuit of power.
  

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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #11 - Jun 10th, 2019 at 2:35am
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Vypr wrote on Jun 10th, 2019 at 12:46am:
Science arose from a period awash in superstition. People used superstition to explain the world around them. It is only to be expected that there would be people believing in a mix at the beginning. In any event the scientific method isn't about "the pursuit of power". It is a framework to examine and explain. How people use that framework or the results that come from it, are another matter. Superstition used to fill that role of explaining the world (and still does for some people). Religion took superstition and turned it into the pursuit of power.


The pursuit of magic is the pursuit of power, plain and simple. It is no surprise, of course, that in the Renaissance, with the advent of humanism and its elevation of man's worldly pursuits, that the pursuit of magical powers became prominent.

And someone like Isaac Newton was not pursuing alchemy, in the mid-18th century, out of superstition but out of desire for the power that would have accrued to him if he had mastered the art. To say otherwise is simply to cover for Newton and those like him in a misguided effort to protect scientists and science from criticism. The same people who will question and demean almost any positive view of pre-modern society cannot accept any criticism of science and scientists. Such closed-minded worship of science is unfortunately very common today.
« Last Edit: Jun 10th, 2019 at 2:44am by Frank1 »  


The 17th Century ~ The halfway point between the Middle Ages and Modernity
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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #12 - Jun 10th, 2019 at 8:11am
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Vypr wrote on Jun 10th, 2019 at 12:46am:
Science arose from a period awash in superstition. People used superstition to explain the world around them. It is only to be expected that there would be people believing in a mix at the beginning. In any event the scientific method isn't about "the pursuit of power". It is a framework to examine and explain. How people use that framework or the results that come from it, are another matter. Superstition used to fill that role of explaining the world (and still does for some people). Religion took superstition and turned it into the pursuit of power.



Excellent post thanks Vypr that's what I was going to say but you did it very well.
  

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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #13 - Jun 10th, 2019 at 8:18am
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Frank1 wrote on Jun 10th, 2019 at 2:35am:
The pursuit of magic is the pursuit of power, plain and simple. It is no surprise, of course, that in the Renaissance, with the advent of humanism and its elevation of man's worldly pursuits, that the pursuit of magical powers became prominent.

And someone like Isaac Newton was not pursuing alchemy, in the mid-18th century, out of superstition but out of desire for the power that would have accrued to him if he had mastered the art. To say otherwise is simply to cover for Newton and those like him in a misguided effort to protect scientists and science from criticism. The same people who will question and demean almost any positive view of pre-modern society cannot accept any criticism of science and scientists. Such closed-minded worship of science is unfortunately very common today.



[Pedant]
Newton died early in the 18th C[/pedant]

I think you're trying to attach the malevolent or megalomaniac element in those who seek knowledge to the whole set of those who seek knowledge; it's almost as if you are wary of knowledge and thus try to besmirch the names of those who aren't.
The space in the world for the irrational is shrinking.

That's not without a downside but it's overwhelmingly a positive thing.
  

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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #14 - Jun 10th, 2019 at 4:47pm
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The pursuit of "magic" might be a pursuit of power, but science is more closely similar to spirituality -- both are a quest for knowledge, understanding, and some way to makes sense of the world.

Both science and spirituality have been leveraged by power-seekers, but spirituality far more so.
  

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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #15 - Jun 10th, 2019 at 5:38pm
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forgotten centrist wrote on Jun 10th, 2019 at 4:47pm:
The pursuit of "magic" might be a pursuit of power, but science is more closely similar to spirituality -- both are a quest for knowledge, understanding, and some way to makes sense of the world.

Both science and spirituality have been leveraged by power-seekers, but spirituality far more so.



Utterly right.


Frank?
  

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Frank1
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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #16 - Jun 11th, 2019 at 4:49am
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Limey. wrote on Jun 10th, 2019 at 8:18am:
[Pedant]
Newton died early in the 18th C[/pedant]

I think you're trying to attach the malevolent or megalomaniac element in those who seek knowledge to the whole set of those who seek knowledge; it's almost as if you are wary of knowledge and thus try to besmirch the names of those who aren't.
The space in the world for the irrational is shrinking.

That's not without a downside but it's overwhelmingly a positive thing.


If I say that there was a chivalrous ideal among the nobility in the Middle Ages you will no doubt say many did not live up to the ideal. Fair enough.

Perhaps the ideal for scientists is the disinterested pursuit of knowledge. But how many live up to it and how many are pursuing fame and fortune?
  


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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #17 - Jun 11th, 2019 at 4:51am
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Quote:
Both science and spirituality have been leveraged by power-seekers, but spirituality far more so.


Really?

The rational scientific view dominates the planet today in a way no single religion ever did.
  


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Frank1
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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #18 - Jun 11th, 2019 at 4:52am
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Limey. wrote on Jun 10th, 2019 at 8:18am:
[Pedant]
Newton died early in the 18th C[/pedant]

I think you're trying to attach the malevolent or megalomaniac element in those who seek knowledge to the whole set of those who seek knowledge; it's almost as if you are wary of knowledge and thus try to besmirch the names of those who aren't.
The space in the world for the irrational is shrinking.

That's not without a downside but it's overwhelmingly a positive thing.


You are right about Newton. Which actually jives with Lewis's assertion that the 16th and 17th centuries, not the Middle Ages, represented the height of Europeans fascination with magic.
  


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Re: Twins: science and magic
Reply #19 - Jun 11th, 2019 at 7:30am
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[quote author=1F3D2E28222E3B263C3B4F0 link=1560082724/16#16 date=1560242995]

If I say that there was a chivalrous ideal among the nobility in the Middle Ages you will no doubt say many did not live up to the ideal. Fair enough.

Perhaps the ideal for scientists is the disinterested pursuit of knowledge. But how many live up to it and how many are pursuing fame and fortune?[/quote]

If you're a scientist you only get fame by doing good science.

The uses to which the science is put usually falls outside the ambit of the researcher.

Similarly with fortune.  Only things useful to people will make money.


On chivalry; it only applied to nobles.

See what happened to Eustace the Monk.

Had he been noble he'd have been ransomed.

The nobility were emphatically not chivalrous towards outsiders.
  

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