Of Music and Philosophy (or “Why I am Cashed”)

October 30, 2005

OK. You may remember this, or you may not. Either way, we were pretty cool. Well, the chapter isn’t quite closed. We are in the process of finishing the songs and we will release them soon. It will most likely be a free download from PureVolume or download.com or something. Either way, I’m sick of not having this out. I know you guys might be too, so there’s your little miniupdate.

Also, I have been chugging along on a 10 page paper for philosophy. It’s all about how science is a myth. Most of it is all crap I’ve pulled from random papers and my years as a SundaySchool kid. It’s all just simple logic that you don’t really think of. Here’s what I have so far.

In days long past, the Greeks flourished. Their systems of government and economy were the most advanced of the day. Greek philosophers were considered some of the most knowledgeable in the world. And their equivalent of scientists could explain everything. The sun rose and set because of Apollo. It rained because Zeus wanted it to, and when lightning struck it was because Zeus was displeased. And this was fact in those days.
Today the reasons have changed. The sun rises and sets because of the Earth’s rotation about its axis. Lightning strikes because of a difference in electric charge, and rain falls because evaporated water condenses and forms droplets too dense to float in the air anymore. How do we know these things to be true? We know these to be true because science tells us these reasons are true. Just like the Greeks of old, now myths, we believe science as they believed in the gods. Today, science is our god; our myth.
The shifting of thought from rejection to acceptance of an idea is not uncommon. Critics of the Judeo-Christian Bible used to point to a passage that claimed there were mountains and valleys under the ocean. This was a point that was used to refute the Bible for a long time. Then, we actually went undersea and observed these mountains for ourselves. As a society, we also used to believe in a geocentric universe. After years of research and observation we were able to observe that the Earth went around the sun and that the sun was also revolving through the universe. In much the same way, society rejected the idea of the world being spherical for many years. The notion of a flat Earth was so well accepted that it took centuries for people to believe that it was possible to sail around the world, which proved that the Earth was, in fact, round.
Science is not perfect by any means. There are many contradictions in science that science turns a blind eye toward. A good example is evolution and thermodynamics. Evolution states that man is a product of millions of years of changes. Humankind started out as non-living chemicals which underwent processes to become single organic cells. This, according to evolutionists, is the first form of life. These cells then evolved into clusters, which evolved into invertebrates, which evolved into vertebrates, which evolved into primates, which evolved into humans. This contradicts the second law of thermodynamics. This states that “it is impossible to obtain a process that, operating in cycle, produces no other effect than the subtraction of a positive amount of heat from a reservoir and the production of an equal amount of work.” In layman’s terms, time brings disorder. The pattern of disorder evolving into order does not match with the law. Obviously, one of the two ideas is incorrect.
The universe’s origins are also a source of contradiction. One theory being taught as fact today is the “Big Bang” theory. According to Wikipedia:
In physical cosmology, the Big Bang is the scientific theory that the universe emerged from an enormously dense and hot state nearly 14 billion years ago.
Again, thermodynamics must apply, as this is physical science, and the laws must apply to all physical science. The first law of thermodynamics states “the work exchanged in an adiabatic process depends only on the initial and the final state and not on the details of the process.” This means (when applied to several other theories) that matter cannot be created or destroyed. The big bang theory’s essence is that first there was a dense ball (so to speak) of matter, and then it exploded, resulting in the universe as we know it today. The question that arises is where that dense ball of matter comes from initially. Matter cannot be created or destroyed, so how did that initial matter appear? Science cannot provide a reasonable answer without contradicting itself.
Many times, the explanation for some occurrence is not the best explanation, but rather the best defended explanation. The defense could be anything from an apologetic reasoning to a simple mass refutation of the opposing explanation. In Paul Feyerabend’s article, “How to Defend Society Against Science,” he says “Scientists may stick to a degenerating programme, they may even succeed in making the programme overtake its rivals and they therefore proceed rationally with whatever they are doing (provided they continue calling degenerating programmes degenerating and progressive programmes progressive).” What Feyerabend is saying here is that scientists may doggedly push ideas on people until the people accept the ideas as fact, regardless of whether it is or not. In a second reading, Karl Popper’s “Philosophy of Science: A Personal Report,” he states that “it is easy to obtain confirmations, or verifications, for nearly every theory – if we look for confirmations.” Essentially, no matter how abstract or weird an idea may be, if you look hard enough you will find evidence to support it. This means that the truth may have been long replaced with modern scientific theories simply because the theories were more popular. Freyerabend supports this by stating that “what you have to consider is that the absence of good contrary reasons is due to a historical accident; it does not lie in the nature of things.”
What one believes could contradict everybody else’s beliefs. For example, one could believe that the moon truly is made of cheese, and though he cannot provide evidence of this, he can certainly refute all evidence for the contrary. The validity of these refutations is a matter of opinion. The people arguing that the moon is not made of cheese will bring out lunar rocks and the person arguing that the moon is made of cheese will say that those rocks are from a quarry or something to that extent. No matter how many pieces of evidence are brought up to support the common lunar theories, the party claiming that the moon is made of cheese can disprove the evidence as a hoax.
With this being said, how could one believe anything as the truth? Simply put, through blind faith. A typical Muslim believes in Allah because he simply has faith. The same goes with any other religious devotion to a god or gods. While the believer may not have any apologetic reasoning for believing, they continue to believe. This also applies to science. There are many who believe in one theory of macroevolution, while some may believe only in microevolution. No matter what you tell some of these people, no matter the facts you lay in front of them, they will continue to believe in their theories.
As we can see from this, sometimes society is just simply too stubborn to accept a new idea or to reject an old way of thought. For years, civilization believed that the world was at the center of not only the solar system, but also of the universe. People were even put to death for suggesting otherwise. Over time, we observed that we were not the center of the universe. Nor were we even the center of the galaxy or solar system. The modern science of the day prevented people from believing this until some revolutionaries thought of the idea, and slowly it began to spread.
Freyerabend agrees with this. In “How to Defend Society Against Science” he discusses why Nobel Prize winners are worthy of the prize. “They…become scientists without having been taken in by the ideology of science, they will be scientists because they have made a free choice.” History shows us that science often suppresses this choice. Whether it is the choice to ponder a geocentric solar system, the choice to question the geometry of the Earth we live on, or the choice to doubt the reasoning behind gravity, science limits our view to what it considers logical. There is no doubt that it was absurd to think that our planet was flat. After all, we cannot see the curvature of the world with our naked eyes. So science stated that it was illogical to think otherwise.

Now that you’ve skipped past that, you can understand why I am so burnt out. This weekend sucked for me. There was no one in the hall. So I worked all weekend. And to compound these matters into an even worse situation, my partner for this paper/presentation hasn’t even started on his half. Maybe he has. He’s pretty cool, but I don’t think he get’s how big this project is. It is 30% of our final grade. We have to give a 30 minute presentation on it. Tuesday. And we are meeting tomorrow to put it together. C’est la vie. Live.

Also, I had problems scheduling next semester. I’m in a relatively new major here at MTU, and therefore, I tend to get the shaft. Long story short, I didn’t get the courses I needed. But, on the good side, I got into some Spanish language and culture class. That should be good, since I hope to be going to Reynosa again this summer.

And now, I retire. Too much to do tomorrow. An exam I haven’t really studied for, a bowling quiz (woot), running my bill to some bank I won’t be able to find, class, and working on my project. Oh yeah, and picking up a take-home exam early so I can go home (Midland) this weekend.

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