Khemehekis wrote: ↑27 Jul 2018 05:17
elemtilas wrote: ↑22 Jul 2018 15:53
Natural philosophy in The World is much more like science was here in the primary world before the secularists took control.
So like Aristotle's idea of science?
In part, yes. Though as much like Mendel and Mercalli and Lemaitre.
I can see some echoes of Quakerism in the lives of Daine. Of course, having no concept of gods makes formal temple style worship and rites a bit difficult. They do make shrines of various kinds for meditation, and when people gather there it must seem a lot like a Quaker meeting. The silence I mean.
That's also very Catholic, the awed silence being in the presence of God.
"As quiet as a cathedral", or "as quiet as a nun's prayer!"
At Recovery Innovations today, I did some meditation with the group. We had music playing, with none of the people there speaking nor moving, and it was Daineësquely quiet meditation.
I'd like to expand on how being a deist rather than one of the dime-a-dozen atheists has shaped the Lehola Galaxy.
As I said before, there is less scientism and atheism than on Earth. This partly reflects my not-always-Bright-like beliefs on what is real and what is scientifically possible.
In the negative second millennium on Kankonia, which was when the telescope, microscope and periodic table were invented and the Fibonacci sequence and Mersenne primes identified, the Poparanian Hyamitl proposed the Tederian Onion (yeskal Tederik). This was a legendary onion from the ancient city of Teder. The outer surface of this onion accounted for 90% of it, the second layer 9%, the third layer 0.9%, etc., and symbolized the idea that the simplest explanation will be correct 90% of the time, the second simplest explanation 9% of the time, the third simplest explanation 0.9% of the time, and so on. With sightings of anthoi (legendary blonde marine people on Kankonia who, it turns out, really didn't exist) and blonde people (really early visitors from other planets), there were questions about whether life beyond Kankonia (then referred to as Pilakh, or "the ground"), some of it not even human, really existed. Hyamitl used the Tederian Onion to argue that it was safest to assume extrakankonial life did not exist.
Ah! I love that: Tederian Onion! Kind of like Occham's Razon, only much more delicious!
"Yeskal" (onion) has come to mean "epistemological razor" in Kankonian. One principle in use by Leholan scientists today is Adrasan's razor (yeskal na Adrasan in Kankonian), the principle that if an explanation requires something to be a huge coincidence, said explanation is probably false.
In Gea, natural philosophers would find the Onion on the one hand entirely intuitive and suitable to the task, but on the other, entirely incompatible with reality. The 90~9~0.9 metaphor is all well and good they say, but, delving deeper, the ninth simplest explanation accounts for the final 99% and, against all odds and sensibility is probably righter that the other explanations put together.
That's science in a nutshell: 90+9+0.9+...+99=100.
Metaxas applies this principle when he writes: "For example, astrophysicists now know that the values of the four fundamental forces—gravity, the electromagnetic force, and the 'strong' and 'weak' nuclear forces—were determined less than one millionth of a second after the big bang. Alter any one value and the universe could not exist. For instance, if the ratio between the nuclear strong force and the electromagnetic force had been off by the tiniest fraction of the tiniest fraction—by even one part in 100,000,000,000,000,000—then no stars could have ever formed at all." Particle physics uses a form of Adrasan's razor in its five-sigma (1-in-3,500,000 chance) standard.
In Gea, natural philosophers are aware of four basic forces: Love, Dwimmery (i.e. "deeper magics"), Affinity & Balance; and the againforces of each (not a force in opposition or lack, but an equal force understood from a different perspective, like darkness so deep you can begin to see your way around).
is the force of Creation and is more or less the glue that holds everything together (not just particles, but existence itself).
is the interaction of physical matter with streams and currents of thaumic particles. It affects other forces and physical entities and can even affect changes upon their natures.
is a polar force of attraction (gravity, e.g.) and repulsion (magnets): yin/yang or hanan/hurin.
is the Ideal of Existence, where all the polar forces of affinity, disaffinity, love and magic are "in their appropriate states". The universe, at such times, is said to be at Rest.
They don't have numbers or "physical constants" to attach to these concepts. Some things are measurable, though. Going back to Chorography
we read: Poseidon, the Rumeliard mathematician and astrologer who refined the optical device called telespeculon
, thus allowing astrologers to better examine the surfaces of the planets, seeing them greatly enhanced, has measured the orbits of the Moons and also of Gea: the greater Moon orbits Gea at a distance of 83·498 1/3 leuyves
and the lesser Moon at a distance of 181·042 leuyves
; while Gea orbits the Sun at a distance of 1·586·468 2/3 leuyves
. He has also measured the height at which the clouds move above the surface of the world, ranging between 52 and 104 stadia
An interesting side note: it is a well known fact of natural philosophy that Selanna is the "greater Moon" of Gea (Wesara being the "lesser Moon"); but in reality this is incorrect, as Gea and Selanna are indeed twins (as the poets say, who've got the 99% of the onion nailed), as together they form a double planet. Natural philosophy also poo-poos the idea of a third Moon (na-Zolab), even though there are people who can, at times, see it quite clearly as it rises in the north and sets in the south.
Adrasan's razor could be said to be an argument for evolution: if not for Darwin's theory of evolution being true, then how would one account for Eohippus fossils under Orohippus fossils under Epihippus fossils under Mesohippus fossils under Miohippus fossils under Kalobatippus fossils under Parahippus fossils under Merychippus fossils under Hipparion fossils under Pliohippus fossils under Dinohippus fossils under Plesippus fossils under Equus fossils?
Gealogy is one natural philosophy that has received a lot of attention over the millennia. Although the animals are different, the basic idea is well understood:
Yeola (also known as Gea) is a planet with a complex geology. Rather than (semi)rigid plates floating upon (semi)liquid mantle, there are (semi)rigid plates upheld by vast stony Beings whose Purpose is to uphold and balance the plates of earth and keep the oceans from sloshing around too much.
For some, their function is to push up mountains. Kind of like a very slow vulcanism. Or perhaps a very fast tectonic process. A mountain range can thus arise and uplift within a few myriades of years. Likewise, should these Beings rest from their uplifting labours, those same mountains may subside again, though a curiously scarred landscape will be left behind.
These powerfuil Beings can also be ticked off:
Quite recently, a powerful mage in the Uttermost West of Hespera, one Jason Zionicus by name, sought to fulfill the desire of the Reman Pharaoh and open up a passage from the Outer Oceans to the rapidly evaporating Midworld Sea. You see, some years previously, one of those impish Beings had caused the western volcano called The Great Dragon to erupt and this filled the Pillars of Herklen with new wasteland. The result of Pharaoh's plan being put into action was that the great subsonic oliphants significantly irritated the Beings down below. In pain, some of them began to shake violently while other fell headlong. Up above, this spawned great earthquakes and a huge rift formed all along the valley from the Decapoleis all the way down into the Empire of the Axiomatics. Pharaoh got her wish of a "canal", but at the cost of great destruction and threats of war from every neighbouring empire.
Gealogers are also very aware of the layering of stones and of the "bones of mighty dragons and behemoths" as well as "liches of lesser more familiar beasts", as these layers are often exposed, either along river cuttings or due to the works of ancient craft. You can often find diligent philosophers out there scaling the rock faces, shiny bronze hammers and Turghun hair brushes in hand, tapping away at some interesting bit of rock.
They've been able to piece together many lineages in stone, and coupled with the lore of folk more ancient than Men, whose recollections have seen evolution in action, have come up with something not unlike our own understanding of changes in form over the long walk of generations. But, that 99% comes to play as well: it's not all smooth sailing on the placid Darwinian sea! Every now and then, and more frequently than a scientist from *here* would like, I'm sure, the rogue waves of Lamarck rise up and tip the boat. Even though things like genetic codes exist and interact with one another, there are external forces that may have their say. Sometimes it might be the vagaries of having sex in the vicinity of a thaumically active node or during a more intense wave blowing off from the deepest parts of Gea. Sometimes the results are pretty tame: a small population of purple eyed children arise among folks known for being grey eyed, for example. Sometimes a whole new species might arise: it's thought that this might account for the separation of wargs from their wolfish ancestors, back in the deeps of time.
I have heard people tell me to my face that this entire fossil record is just one giant coincidence. One Christian teen girl with whom I was arguing online in the nineties told me it was just my "opinion" that the fossil record couldn't be a coincidence. (Of course, there are other creationists who argue that God deliberately planted the fossils of creatures that never existed to test humans' faith, and then there's this guy
, who argues that Satan plants "demonsaur" fossils in the ground to deceive humans. At least these people offer an explanation for fossils, and so do not violate Adrasan's razor.)
Yeah, well, not all Christians get along with science. I've had some wild conversations with Creationists as well. I'm of the opinion that (scientifically) what we see is what we get: fossils are there in the Earth, so there must be a reason. To go with the Onion: the 90% answer is "those were living animals from a long time ago whose bodies became fossilised (whether in rock or in amber)". The 9% answer in that, "yeah, it could be a random coincidence of the formation of rock deep within the Earth". The 0.9% answer is that God is a capricious ass who laced the Earth with random fossilised bones to trick people.
For me, the 99% answer is that fossils are just a manifestation of the wonder of Creation, tiny jewels & treasures that mutely reveal the nature of God's work from before there ever was an Earth or a universe for it to be in. All of these unexplained things are but calling cards, saying "use the brains I gave you and come find me!" It's all part of the great mystery of material existence and the great plan underlying it.
In The World, natural philosophers have chosen not the self-defeating road of scientism, which can never see more than it can see and never explain more than it can explain, but the road of I guess what you might call a theological science. When every aspect of existence points to its own fundamental nature as the work of the Creator, the 99% approach is to take the blinders off and look at the whole picture.